Saturday, September 27, 2014

Going for the G.O.A.L!

Hello counselors,

Today I've decided to do a blog post on goal setting from a school counseling perspective! In my graduate classes and at my internship, I am learning the importance of setting goals and providing direction for your program. Since I love acronyms so much, I came up with one on creating goals for your school, your school counseling program, and yourself! I will explain each one and detail, and I'll also include some resources that I love and use again and again! This acronym is great for setting goals as an intern or a practicing School Counselor!

Gather Your Data:     

In the school counseling world, the "D" word is used often, and for a good reason. Backing up your goals with data is a great place to get started. By looking at the numbers from the previous year, or current trends, you can look at ways on how to improve! Also, this serves as a jumping point for creating your goals and making them meaningful to fit the needs of your school :)

Organize your goals using a method: 

Using a method is key, and my personal favorite is the S.M.A.R.T goals method! This acronym stands for specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely!  Again, I sure do love acronyms, and this one is great! It allows you to be able to set a specific goal and make it something that you can measure and place a time frame on as well! You can click HERE to find a great resource on smart goals!

Ask Yourself: How will this benefit me, my students, and my school? 

As we all know, our students are the heart of the school, and they are the reason for all that we do! In creating our goals, keep in mind how will this benefit our students, our program, and the school as a whole! This can also apply when setting personal work goals for yourself, and how this can benefit both you, the staff & student body as well! By asking yourself this question, you are creating goals that are in the best interest of the school and students!

Link up & Collaborate with others! 

Take a minute to think about who is on your side, and who can help in your efforts to accomplish these goals. Also, keeping in mind what resources you have in your school to work towards implementing programs and working towards achieving your goals :) I feel that collaboration and building relationships in the school and community is essential in a school counseling program, and in helping both schools and students achieve goals!

I also recommend the book, The Use of Data in School Counseling: Hatching Results for Students, Programs, and the Profession by Trish Hatch. You can click on the title to order on amazon!

Also, I am currently reading School Counselor Accountability: A MEASURE of Student Success for one of my classes and I'm loving it :) This one will serve as a great reference book in the future for planning and measuring goals to ensure the success of all students!

Both books are great and relatively inexpensive! I recommend them both! I hope that you have enjoyed this blog post! One book that I have on my wish list is Making Data Work by Carol Kaffenberger!

What goals do you have set for the school year? Do you have any resources that you recommend? Is there anything that you would like to share on goal setting?
Feel free to comment below!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend :)


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