Washington Framework for Comprehensive Guidance and Counseling

School counselors have many duties and responsibilities related to designing and implementing a comprehensive school counseling program. Unfortunately, they may also be expected to take on certain non-school counseling tasks in the school building. These tasks may include such things as: clerical work, office or detention room coverage, discipline functions, and test coordination.

Although school counselors are team players who understand they must share responsibilities within a school, in order to promote the academic and personal success of students, they must focus on the duties most appropriate to their training and skill set. School counselor are most effective when their responsibilities include such things as: counseling students; connecting students and caregivers to community resources; supporting educational and post-secondary planning; developing prevention programs based on needs assessment data; collaborating with teachers and support personnel to address social/emotional deficits; and developing group, classroom and school-wide interventions to improve learning and development.

Getting Started:

  • One way to determine appropriate job responsibilities is to develop a complete job description that accurately defines the duties of the counselor.
  • A second way is for the school counselor to meet regularly with their principal to set and monitor professional goals. Professional growth plans and “Counselor-Principal Agreements” can help the counselor develop a plan of action and set individual and program goals to meet student needs.
  • A third way to help define responsibilities and set priorities is to analyze a counselor time’ using either a “time and task” worksheet or a free online tool, EZAnalyze Time-tracker.