Outline of the state of Mississippi
Advanced coursework

School Counseling Staff Qualifications

School Counseling Staff Qualifications

state statutes or regulations recommends minimum certification standards that include advanced coursework and degree requirements for counselors.

Mississippi Code 37-9-79 Professional school counselors; qualifications; comprehensive counseling services; code of ethics

(1) Beginning with the 2014-2015 school year, the assignment of K-12 Professional School Counselors to the particular schools within the district shall be at the discretion of the local school board with the following restrictions:

  • (a) No individual shall be employed as a professional school counselor without a minimum of a Master's Degree in Guidance and Counseling, or in an emergency situation, an appropriate certification as determined by the Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education, Certification and Licensure and Development; and

  • (b) Professional school counselors shall provide the following comprehensive counseling services:

  • (i) Academic and personal/social counseling;

  • (ii) Use multiple student data sources to help students make informed academic and career choices;

  • (iii) Career and educational counseling;

  • (iv) Individual and group counseling (large/small);

  • (v) Crisis intervention and preventive counseling;

  • (vi) Referrals to community agencies;

  • (vii) Educational consultations and collaboration with teachers, administrators, parents and community leaders;

  • (viii) Educational and career placement services;

  • (ix) Follow-up counseling services;

  • (x) Conflict resolution; and

  • (xi) Professional school counselors must spend a minimum of eighty percent (80%) of their contractual time to the delivery of services to students as outlined by the American School Counselor Association. Delivery of services is the direct service provided to students, parents, school staff and the community which are interaction between professional school counselors and students. These direct services may include the delivery of the following:

    1. School counseling core curriculum: This curriculum is designed to help students attain the desired competencies and to provide all students with the knowledge, attitudes and skills appropriate for their developmental level. The school counseling core curriculum is delivered throughout the school's overall curriculum and may be presented by professional school counselors in collaboration with other professional educators and other resources. Collaborative efforts may be implemented to enhance the services provided.
    1. Individual student planning: Professional school counselors coordinate ongoing systemic activities or individual/group sessions designed to assist students in establishing personal/social goals and developing future career plans.
    1. Responsive services: Responsive services are designed to meet students' immediate needs and concerns in regard to social/personal issues. Responsive services may include counseling in individual, small-group settings, or crisis responses.
    1. Indirect Student Services: Indirect services are provided on behalf of students as a result of the school counselors' interactions with others including referrals for additional assistance, consultation and collaboration with parents, teachers, other educators and community organizations.

(2) Professional school counselors shall abide by the American School Counselor Association Code of Ethics.

(3) The State Department of Education may adopt regulations regarding the activities of the professional school counselor as are not inconsistent with this section.

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