Georgia - School Counseling—elementary grade levels (K-8): Programs and Services

Area: 
Programs And Services
Policy Type: 
statute; regulation
Summary: 

State law requires the provision of school counseling or guidance services in elementary grade levels (K-8).

2017 Georgia Code 20-2-182. Program weights to reflect funds for payment of salaries and benefits; maximum class size; reporting requirements; application to specific school years

(c) The program weights for the kindergarten, kindergarten early intervention, primary, primary grades early intervention, upper elementary, upper elementary grades early intervention, middle school, and alternative education programs and the program weights for the high school programs authorized pursuant to paragraph (4) of subsection (b) of Code Section 20-2-151, when multiplied by the base amount, shall reflect sufficient funds to pay the beginning salaries for at least one school counselor for every 450 full-time equivalent students. Beginning in Fiscal Year 2015 and thereafter, the program weights for the English for speakers of other languages program and the programs for persons with disabilities shall also earn school counselor funding. Further, beginning in Fiscal Year 2016 and thereafter, the program weights for the program for intellectually gifted students and the remedial education program shall also earn school counselor funding. The duties and responsibilities for such school counselors shall be established by the state board to require a minimum of five of the six full-time equivalent program count segments of the counselor's time to be spent counseling or advising students or parents.


Georgia Administrative Code 160-4-8-.01 Student Support Services

(1)  Definitions.

  • (a)  Alternative Education Program (AEP) - an educational program that serves students who are eligible to remain in the regular classroom but are more likely to succeed in a nontraditional setting such as that provided in an alternative education program, as well as students who are excluded from the regular classroom because of disciplinary reasons.
  • (b)  Counseling - a process where some students receive assistance from professionals who assist them to overcome emotional and social problems or concerns which may interfere with learning.
  • (c)  Guidance - a process of regular assistance that all students receive from parents, teachers, school counselors, and others to assist them in making appropriate educational and career choices.
  • (d)  School Climate Management - systematic plan for addressing the factors that affect school climate including a consistent management style and leadership by the principal, a code of expected behavior, a code of disciplinary responses, a code of ethics for educators, a Student Support Team, delivery of counseling and psychological mental health services, methods to reduce absences and increase attendance, physical health support services, efforts to enlist parent and community support, utilization of volunteers, support by and for the parent teacher organization, a preventive safety plan and a crisis response plan, staff development, and the maintenance program for the school's physical plant.
  • (e)  School Counseling and Guidance Services - guidance program planning, implementation and evaluation; individual and group counseling; classroom and small-group guidance; career and educational development; parent and teacher consultation; and referral.
  • (f)  School Health Services - a process to address medically related health and safety issues and address requests by parents and physicians that the school provide appropriate health procedures to allow students to remain in school and increase opportunities for academic success.
  • (g)  School Psychological Services - psychoeducational evaluation; crisis intervention; case study; consultation to student support teams, parents, teachers, and administrators; behavioral observations and analysis; and psychological counseling.
  • (h)  School Social Work/Visiting Teacher Services - technical assistance on school climate issues; assessment and intervention, including written social histories; individual, group, and family counseling; and networking of appropriate home, school, and community services to address identified student problems.
    Office of the Secretary of State

Georgia Administrative Code 160-4-8-.01 Student Support Services

(i)  Student Support Services (SSS) - integrated and collaborative programs of school counseling and guidance services, school climate management and student discipline, school health services, school psychology services, alternative education programs, and school social work/visiting teacher services, provided individually or through a team approach, to all students at all grade levels.

(2)  Requirements.

  • (a) Each local school system shall develop a Student Services Plan that prescribes and identifies programs and services that incorporate school climate improvement and management processes.
  • (b) Each Student Services Plan must minimally include guidelines for the systematic provision of the following components:
      1. Alternative education programs;
      1. School psychological services;
      1. School climate management;
      1. School counseling and guidance services;
        Office of the Secretary of State
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