November 6-8, 2022
Embassy Suites & Frisco Convention Center
7600 John Q Hammons Drive
Frisco, TX 75034


November 6-8, 2022  |  Embassy Suites & Frisco Convention Center
7600 John Q Hammons Drive  |  Frisco, TX 75034


Breakout Sessions

Breakout Sessions

We look forward to having you join us at the Lone Star State School Counselor Association Conference!

Sunday, November 6, 2022

2:45 p.m. – 3:45 p.m. Breakout Session 1

Connections Wellness Sponsor Session

Lead Presenter: TBA

More details to come!

Count Me In! Engaging SEL Lessons for Young Learners

Lead Presenter: Jeanne Juneau

Do you struggle with your counseling lessons for younger students ? Providing comprehensive guidance lessons for our younger students is one of the most important yet hardest things we do as elementary counselors. With a group that has limited or no reading and writing skills, how do we effectively accomplish this in 30 minutes? Learn how a principal and counselor worked together to provide those tier one supports on their campus. Example scheduling and lesson templates will be shared.

Effective Strategies to Address Bullying and Cyberbullying

Lead Presenter: John Avritt

Former school counselor Dr. John Avritt and former classroom teacher Tara Karch will introduce evidence-based approaches to address and reduce bullying and cyber-bullying. They will share the latest research, the importance of role playing for student learning and practice, safe and responsible Internet use and community-building activities to build empathy, tolerance and good citizenship. The session will end with an interactive discussion on counselors’ current issues and how to mitigate their effects.

Elementary Small Groups 101

Lead Presenter: Megan Hull

Are you wanting to start small groups at your school but not sure where to start? Are you doing small groups already and maybe want some new ideas? Come join us as we walk through how to form small groups, the way we decide on group topics, and the procedures we use while leading small groups. We will also cover great ways to gather data from the groups you run to advocate for your program.

Let’s Block Some Traffick! Decreasing the Speed of Human Trafficking

Lead Presenter: Angelia Hicks

Many of our most vulnerable students, such as those with trauma and abuse experience, are susceptible to the increasingly deceptive practices of child traffickers. In this session, learn how Fort Worth ISD’s counselors and law enforcement professionals came together to develop and implement the FWISD Human Trafficking School Safety Protocol in collaboration with health systems, community organizations, and the entire community.

MTSS Success ! How Can You Serve Your Students?

Lead Presenter: Laronda Manning

This presentation will explain the process for using MTSS to help struggling students in academic and behavior. We will go through step by step procedures for identifying potential SST students, using data to track student performance and ways to help your campus become efficient in submitting request for SST meetings and how to document interventions appropriately.

MTSS: The Counselor’s Role is the Tie that Binds

Lead Presenter: Andrea Nolan

This interactive session includes sharing motivational strategies to reduce systemic barriers, define student success, and gaining a better understanding of how MTSS is a win-win for campuses as a whole. We will demonstrate what it means to build relationships with teachers, parents, students and staff, as it relates to the MTSS process, to get positive results from students and to improve the overall school counseling program.

School Counselors Advocating with Legal Muscle to Support Trauma Informed Schools

Lead Presenter: Carolyn Stone

School counselors can be powerful strategists and formidable advocates when applying legal muscle to problems that impact youth who are victims of trauma. Intervening on behalf of students is infinitely easier if there is a law that provides leverage. This session focuses on the legal rights of students who have experienced trauma such as domestic violence, abuse, homelessness, foster care, sex trafficking, and bullying.

Supporting Your Campus on the Worst Day

Lead Presenter: Anne Lehew

The death of a learner or staff member can have an effect on the entire school community. Prior preparation is crucial to ensure a PSC meet the needs of all stakeholders. In the Texas Model, “In responsive services the school counselor responds effectively to problematic or critical incidents to support students and offer services in their time of need.”

US Army Sponsor Session

Lead Presenter: TBA

More details to come!

With CCMR Students Will Go Far

Lead Presenter: Amy Sinclair

College Career Military Readiness exposure can never come too early! In this session, you will learn ways to increase post-secondary education opportunities in the elementary setting.

4:15 p.m. – 5:15 p.m. Breakout Session 2

Flex Your Mind: Get Mentally Fit

Lead Presenter: Adeli Cortez

Focus on the rockstar counselor and educator you are! Take a chance to learn ways to achieve mental fitness and set goals for your emotional well-being. Reflecting on and preparing for how you can recognize, react, and regulate your emotions is key to your physical, emotional, and mental fitness. Take charge of your command center and engage in wellness activities so you will not burnout.

Help Me, Help You, Help Our Students!

Lead Presenter: Rosy Vega-Barrio

It might come as a surprise to most, but what school counselors want for their counseling program, is what district level leaders want for their learning environments. School shutdowns, systemic inequities, and trauma due to the constant navigating of changes and tragic events require action driven advocacy from all stakeholders to create safe environments for all. Join us and walk away with proven practices to create these optimal environments.

LGBTQIA+ School Counselor Affinity Group

Lead Presenter: Joshua Rose

This session’s goal is to provide a brave space for school counselors who identify as LGBTQIA+. During our time, we will discuss what it looks like to be a queer counselor, what challenges we face, and what can be done to support our colleagues.

Living & Integrating Practical Self-Care Techniques

Lead Presenter: Esmeralda Lopez

Learn how your daily habits build resiliency when your self-care is challenged, learn to hack your internal chemicals to DOSE (using Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin, and Endorphins) yourself with happiness and you’ll learn the value of stimulating your Vagus Nerve, through daily habits, to improve your overall well-being.

Operation Spot ‘Em & Got ‘Em: Identifying & Supporting Underrepresented Populations

Lead Presenter: Kelly Mountjoy

This presentation will describe how one school is helping to close the achievement gap and alter the culture of the school by finding and intentionally supporting students from underrepresented populations. You will learn how to use the data from your students’ course requests and test scores to identify students who are underrepresented in advanced courses in order to diversify and be more representative of the school’s student body.

Post-Secondary Education is Not a Reality for Most Rural Students

Lead Presenter: Jennifer Wilson

Many states have a tremendous number of students who attend rural schools. Students in these schools are not pursuing post-secondary education needed to fulfill most of the middle-skills jobs available within the next five years. For students to be able to compete in the changing workforce, they need a certificate or degree. With post-secondary education, rural students earn more money over a lifetime, meaning they contribute to the economy.

Road to Resilience: Helping Families of Suicidal and Self-Harming Kids

Lead Presenter: Niky Howell

Learn about different levels of care families may experience when seeking help for their child that is exhibiting suicidal or self-harming behaviors. You will gain a better understanding of what inpatient/acute care, Partial Hospitalization Programs, Intensive Outpatient Programs, Residential Facilities, & the Y.E.S. Waiver program look like. There will also be helpful tips and questions families should consider as they seek care for their child.

SAT Digital and BigFuture: Clearing A Path to Life After High School

Lead Presenter: Amanda Dawson

Are you wondering what to expect when the SAT Suite of Assessments goes digital in 2023-24? This is the session for you! You will also learn about updates to BigFuture, College Board’s free personalized guide to help students plan for life after high school, and how students can become eligible for $500 and $40K scholarships by taking key steps in the college planning process, such as building a college list and practicing for the SAT.

Scholarships 101

Lead Presenter: Ashley Ali

Join Class 101 Irving as we teach you all the tips and tricks to help your students pay for the college of their dreams. We understand that getting into college is just the beginning of our students’ journey. Come learn how we help our students receive multiple scholarships to the school of their choice!

Serving Up Student Success With Data Driven Programming

Lead Presenter: Christie Dragoslavic

For many counselors, knowing how to navigate the waters of developing a data driven program can feel overwhelming at first. This course will provide school counselors with a myriad of techniques for using data to drive your comprehensive program. Counselors will walk away with practical strategies for obtaining, utilizing, and communicating data in a way that drives their comprehensive counseling program in the direction of student success.

Stress Management in School Counseling: A Brief Overview

Lead Presenter: Stephanie Lerner

Student levels of stress and anxiety have increased during the pandemic. School counselors are in a key role to support students in alleviating their stress. Participants will explore the research on pandemic-related stress and identify various interventions, resources, and activities to help students manage their stress at each tier.

Monday, November 7, 2022

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Breakout Session 3

2022 School Counselor of the Year Finalist Panel

Lead Presenter: Monica Dominguez

Through leadership, advocacy, innovative practices, and a direct focus on equitable outcomes, school counselors serve student success. Engage in an interactive Q&A presentation with the 2022 LSSSCA School Counselor of the Year finalists to learn more about their school counseling programs, their journeys to develop student-focused programs, and best practices. SCOY Finalists: Amy Sinclair, Marsha Hardin, Ngina Hardy, Shalondra Moore and Dyann Wilson

ACT Sponsor Session

Lead Presenter: TBA

More details to come!

The Big, Bad “B” Word

Lead Presenter: Chris Scheufele

Tired of the angry emails and phone calls? Tired of parents and schools being at odds? Tired of all of the social division creeping into schools without a way to handle it? Tired of EVERYTHING being called “bullying”? Tired of the “same old same old” not working? Chris will show you the simple, laugh-out-loud methods to help unite schools and parents, and help students achieve unbelievable growth in social emotional learning and resilience!

Ideas, Ideas, Ideas

Lead Presenter: Steve Bollar

Creating change doesn’t have to be costly or complicated – in fact, this most popular keynote is chock-full of ways to create massive change in your school withOUT spending a lot or planning huge initiatives. Based on Steve’s popular book of the same title, this session will show you: How to rejuvenate the climate and culture in your school while being creative, unique, and fun… which will show yourstudents and staff first-hand how to use their imaginations to problem solve! Ideas that can be implemented RIGHT AWAY (without months-long planning) to improve the morale, culture andclimate in your school. How to change your thinking when it comes to respect, recognition, reinforcement and results… you don’t have to settle for boring old awards anymore! You can inspire your staff through creative rewards that make a real change in your school!

FAFSA/TASFA Doesn’t HAFSA Be Difficult!

Lead Presenter: Celina Munoz

Come see how Ysleta ISD successfully implemented its 1st year of the Financial Aid Graduation requirement to ensure target goals were consistently met throughout the school year. We will share our district roll-out plan, strategies, presentations, etc. used to create systems for successful completion district wide.

Making SEL a Part of Every Student’s Education

Lead Presenter: Jennifer Madrid

Come learn how Ysleta ISD has implemented SEL lessons district-wide for PreK-12th grade including selecting a curriculum and systemic lesson delivery. We will share the process used for selecting the curriculum and how we share the lessons district-wide.

T-SCESS for Success

Lead Presenter: Ashli Abernathy

Learn how to use The Texas School Counselor Evaluation & Support System (T-SCESS) rubric as an essential ingredient in YOUR comprehensive program! Empower counselors to own the framework as a tool for advocacy, self-reflection, and evaluation. Participants will learn how to use T-SCESS as a foundation in their program to align, document, and serve success for students (and counselors)!

Schoolwide SEL Integration

Lead Presenter: Shannon Lumar

Various circumstances plague our communities, schools, homes, and day-to-day interactions with stressors that affect students’ overall well-being. This session will address how to connect social-emotional learning, trauma-informed care, and mental health awareness to meet the needs of the whole child and enhance academic success. Participants will leave with practical responsive trauma and age-appropriate de-escalation strategies.

SCUTA Sponsor Session

Lead Presenter: TBA

More details to come!

SELebrating SEL Strategies that Work!

Lead Presenter: Amy Sinclair

SEL isn’t just for students! Come learn several ways to up your SEL game and engage all of your stakeholders in social-emotional learning! We’ll discuss ways to infuse SEL into your campus culture, from the classroom, to wellness opportunities for staff, and hosting an SEL night for your families. Students succeed more when everyone on their team is invested in SEL!

TACAC Session

Lead Presenter: Ramon Blakley

More details to come!

12:15 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. Breakout Session 4

Best Practices from National School Counselors of the Year

Lead Presenter: Kat Pastor

Oftentimes one of the most influential leaders on a school campus, is the school counselor. Join this panel discussion of four nationally recognized School Counselors of the Year to discover real tangible examples and best practices that can help equip every school counselor with the leadership tools to lead systemic change that drive equitable student outcomes for our buildings. Come ready to engage in this interactive session!

Finding a Needle in a Spreadsheet

Lead Presenter: Traci Nickleberry

You have 300 students on your roster. You need to quickly identify those at risk of not graduating or your top students for a scholarship. Maybe you need more male students in AVID. How do you find those students with so little time? Learn how to use spreadsheets, filters, and formatting to quickly and accurately identify those students!

Galactic Guidance Goodies

Lead Presenter: Amber Barbee

Learn an out-of-this-world solution-focused approach to guidance, group, and MTSS. You will learn how to use lap books, sand trays, and character stations in your comprehensive guidance program. Character counts lessons will also be shared for each trait. Also, learn how to use everyday games to have playful individual and group counseling and guidance lessons. Tons of free resources.

Help is Here: Implementing TCHATT to Better Serve Students’ Mental Health

Lead Presenter: Joshua Rose

School counselors often meet with scholars and know that they need more support. This is where TCHATT comes in. TCHATT is a state-funded, short-term tele-mental health service that provides up to 4 free sessions for students. During this session you’ll hear from a high school counselor and a TCHATT representative and learn how this resource can increase your school’s ability to provide responsive services and mental health support to students.

Is it Rude Mean or Bullying

Lead Presenter: Teri Hensley Marrow

This energetic, educational and fast-paced session will provide tools, activities and strategies to help students identify the subtle differences between rude, mean and bullying behaviors. Attendees will hear a brief overview of incidences that happen in schools followed by tools, activities for guidance lessons. This session will demonstrate that bullying behaviors directly affect school culture and discipline.

Reinventing Career Day!

Lead Presenter: David Vinson

Have you ever felt like you wish the students could’ve seen more careers on career day? Have you ever been exhausted from planning a career day? If so, then we are here to help! We have a way to reinvent career day! We would love to show you how we help prepare kids for the future in Wylie ISD. You will leave the session with the tools in hand for a new way to help expose our students to more careers and to continue to make it meaningful!

R.E.P.O.R.T. Best Practice For Professionals Responding to Child Abuse

Lead Presenter: Brittany McGowan

As a child-serving professional, it’s not a question of IF you will encounter a child abuse situation but rather WHEN. This workshop offers practical guidance for professionals on how to best work with investigative parties in a way that protects the investigation, the organization, and most importantly, the child. Participants will leave with a robust reporting protocol and guidance for navigating these situations– before it is a problem.

School Safety Solutions

Lead Presenter: Beth Dudjak

Learn about evidence-based/trauma-informed solutions to advance prevention education in your community. MBF has expanded their library of resources to educate and empower students with strategies to recognize and respond appropriately to abuse, bullying, digital dangers and more! Discover a variety of tools to support your school’s unique needs while meeting state laws and mandates.

The Texas Model: A Brief Overview

Lead Presenter: Stephanie Lerner

Texas Education Code 33.005 states that school counselors must “plan, implement, and evaluate a comprehensive school counseling program [CSCP] that conforms to the most recent edition of The Texas Model for Comprehensive School Counseling Programs”. This presentation will guide you through a brief overview of the Texas Model guide. Participants will explore the content of the guide, as well as some first steps in beginning their own CSCP journey.

UTI Sponsor Session

Lead Presenter: TBA

More details to come!

Zannies, Hash, & Your Brain

Lead Presenter: Adeli Cortez

In this session, you will gain insight into current substance use trends and mental health stigma that exist in our communities. We will explore the impact of substance use on the brain and mental health to build a foundation for these tough but necessary conversations to have with our teens. Opening the dialogue about substance use and mental health in a safe space between our stakeholders can save a life and reduce stigma in our communities.

2:45 p.m. – 3:45 p.m. Breakout Session 5

Addressing Emotional Escalation

Lead Presenter: Bonnie Atilano

Managing behavior can be a challenge! This presentation explores the obstacles of addressing emotional escalation. It will provide an overview of the role of the school counselor in supporting behavioral interventions, supportive strategies, and the full scope of the crisis process. The participant will leave with a better understanding of how to address anxiety based behaviors to encourage self-regulation and appropriate emotional expression.

Advocating for Your School Counseling Program Using TSCESS Artifacts

Lead Presenter: Wes Upton

The TSCESS evaluation is a valuable tool in demonstrating the effectiveness of your comprehensive school program. Through the use of this evaluation framework, school counselors can intentionally guide the work being done beginning with the end in mind. This session will provide attendees with examples of how to collect valuable data, how to share with stakeholders, and how to build powerful comprehensive programming to support student success.

Another New Student? Intentionally Integrating New Enrollees All Year Long

Lead Presenter: Laura Pierce

Through experience in a fast growth district with continual new enrollment, we have developed a way to efficiently integrate new students into our school culture and structures. By assigning students to a specialized advisory we address the social/emotional and academic needs of transition. This provides a designated time to connect with exemplary peers, ask questions, become familiar with digital platforms, and more. Free resources provided.

Building, Rebuilding, and Strengthening Relationships in a Changing World

Lead Presenter: Oliva Tarkington

Strong healthy relationships are the cornerstone of fostering positive student outcomes; they are paramount in the counseling process. Building trusting student relationships is necessary, but can be difficult & time consuming. School counselors are asked to help students with limited time & resources. In this interactive session, you will learn simple, practical, and engaging strategies to build, rebuild, and strengthen our relationships in no time!

Developing Your Counseling Program From the Bottom

Lead Presenter: Jacquelyn Solis

Are you an elementary school counselor who often wonders how to just fit everything in? Do you feel there is not enough time to do it all? Let me show you how to break it down! In this session you will walk away with the steps you need to develop your program that aligns to the ASCA National Model.

Foster Care and Student Success

Lead Presenter: LaTrenda Watson

Do you know the requirements and laws that support students in foster care and their academic success? This workshop provides an overview of state and federal mandates, academic resources, and helpful strategies to assist students in Foster Care. Participants will gain knowledge, coordinate with cross-system partners, and build new approaches to support the implementation of foster care and student success systems.

Lone Star Awards

Lead Presenter: Myra Ortega

Are you thinking about applying for a Lone Star Award? Come join us for this informational meeting, meet our committee, and get tips from recent winners at the Bronze, Silver, and Gold levels. Learn the ins and outs of getting your campus recognized and get on the “Road to RAMP”!

Navigating Secondary Education: Parent Engagement to Ensure Student Success

Lead Presenter: Shonedra Redd

Would you like to get parents engaged and keep them motivated in their child’s education? Use monthly parent meetings to keep parents involved in their student’s education.

Practical Strategies for Helping Students Develop Resilience

Lead Presenter: Jason Johnson

How do you help students bounce back from what they have been through? From trauma, isolation, and poverty, to mental health challenges, our students have faced many obstacles over the last two years. Come see a formula to help you guide students through the challenges that destroy motivation and make it difficult to find success.

Secondary Groups, WHAT?!

Lead Presenter: Jessie Gilliland

So often we hear about the impossibilities of providing guiding lessons to students on a secondary level. This presentation will demonstrate not only how to make it work at a secondary level, but also data that supports how creating behavior groups can make a difference in referrals and classroom behaviors.

XELLO Sponsor Session

Lead Presenter: TBA

More details to come!

4:15 p.m. – 5:15 p.m. LSSSCA Track

Building Your CounSELing Toolbox with Effective SEL Activities

Lead Presenter: Ngina Hardy

Educating new counselors on the importance of building a school climate and culture that incorporates daily use of social emotional learning skills. We will provide various activities that school counselors (K-12) can add to their toolbox to help support classroom teachers with implementing effective SEL strategies.

Serving Student Mental Health Needs in Rural Schools

Lead Presenter: Sheila Lashley

“The students are not okay”….how many times have your heard or thought that in the last couple of years? It is no secret that our rural students are struggling with their mental health. We look forward to providing easy to implement strategies and resources to help you talk with, identify and meet the needs of your students.

Small Group Counseling Techniques

Lead Presenter: Paige Pendery

Join us in learning the why behind small groups, learn how to get started with creating your own small groups and ways to identify students to participate, learn what needs to be included in your small group sessions, and dive into examples of small group lesson plans you will have access to using in getting started with your next groups!

Take The LEAP! To See How You Can Change Your School Counseling Program.

Lead Presenter: Tiffany Blackwood

School counselors new to the profession often are not sure where to start or how to take the steps to develop a comprehensive school counseling program. In this presentation you will learn that by Leading, Exploring, Advocating & Prioritizing you can jump right in and hit the ground running. You will walk away with ideas and strategies that will help you make an immediate impact on your school counseling program. Are you ready to take the leap?

There’s A Hole In My Hallway: Small Town Counseling In A Worried World

Lead Presenter: Jenny Patrick

As a rural/small town school counselor sometimes it feels like the weight of the school is literally resting on your shoulders. Add in your own family obligations and suddenly the work/life balance is vastly uneven. Join us as we rally together as small school counselors in an effort to build community and a circle of resources, all while sharing a few laughs as we work to make the next generation of adults better, one small town at a time.

T-SCESS and My College Access Collaboration

Lead Presenter: Alexia McClennon

College Readiness has precise tasks we aim to accomplish; FAFSA/TASFA applications, Scholarships, College acceptance, and Military enlistment. The success is in the collaboration you build with stakeholders. Building a culture of college readiness will easy the pressures of meeting countless deadlines and goals. Lets create a collaborative model that uses the T-SCESS Dimension 3.5 rubric as a foundation for your student success program.

You Can’t Reason with Irrational, But You Can Keep Your Composure

Lead Presenter: Summer Martin

The past few years have left people with very short fuses and tensions run high often in dealing with difficult students, parents, and staff members. This session will present simple and easy ways to work with irrational people and maintain your composure and sanity while supporting students.

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Breakout Session 7

Building a Culture of College and Career Readiness

Lead Presenter: Lauren Parish

Preparing students for life after high school is a group effort. It takes building a culture of college and career readiness at your campus and district. This session will present practical frameworks for college and career readiness priorities. It will also cover associated communication and alignment strategies to improve student outcomes.

College Resources for Youth Coming from Foster Care

Lead Presenter: Drew Melton

The Texas Education and Training Voucher (ETV) is a federal benefit that provides funding for current and former foster youth attending post-secondary school. This presentation will include defining ETV, the Texas Tuition and Fee Waiver, Supervised Independent Living Programs, and many other college resources for students coming from foster care. It will also provide eligibility requirements, contacts, and procedures for accessing benefits.

The Elephant in the Room: Adult SEL

Lead Presenter: Lindsey Jackson

In the field of education, the saying often goes, “you can’t pour from an empty cup.” But what SEL supports are in place for educators to have the ability to fill their cups? In this session, we will address each CASEL competency as it pertains to adults and how their own SEL practice impacts that of their students

Facts Over Feelings- Using Data to Drive Your Comprehensive Program

Lead Presenter: Christina Galanis

The program will go over methods to collect data, types of data, how to disaggregate data from a counseling lens, and creating SMART goals and action plans to address gaps highlighted by data.

Helping Educators With Students Who Have Mental Health Deficits

Lead Presenter: Kimberley Hudson

As mental health issues continue to grow by epic proportions in our children, teachers and staff are seeing the impact of this in their classrooms. What educators need to know is how to respond and support students when they are in emotional distress. This presentation will give specific handouts, ideas, and resources that school counselors can bring back to their campuses to give immediate Tier 1 and Tier 2 support to their classroom educators.

Hit Snooze: Managing Your Internal Alarm

Lead Presenter: Megan McCarty

Trauma and chronic stress have direct impacts on a person’s physiology. Understanding the physiological manifestations of our natural human stress response system allows for a more targeted approach to self-care and wellness. In the spirit of resilience and recovery, it is vital to gain a greater, more concrete understanding of individualized body-based experiences, the dysregulated reactions that ensue, and strategies that can help us rebalance.

LISTEN Hear! – Bridging the Communication Gap

Lead Presenter: Raffinée Wilson

Counselors struggle with healthy communication among parents, colleagues, and their students. In this interactive workshop, Raffinée Wilson, a Licensed Professional Counselor with over 10 years of experience supporting youth and families, will share proven strategies to bridge the communication gap. Attendees will learn the fundamentals to LISTEN and obtain actionable items that can be implemented immediately.

Quick! How Can I Help?: Fast and Efficient Ways to Support Student Needs

Lead Presenter: Lindsey Taylor

Want to add some quick and efficient techniques to your toolbox to provide supports to your students, staff, and families in need? We will walk through numerous strategies and techniques that are based on counseling theories to help ensure that we are empowering our students to become solution-focused and motivated to make the desired changes in their lives. SFBC, CBT, and MI can all play an important role in the school counseling setting.

Receive, Reflect, Release! How Wakelet Transformed My School Counselor Program

Lead Presenter: Dyann Wilson

#techCAREtwins will help you learn how to meaningfully integrate technology into your school counseling program in this hands-on session. Learn about Wakelet, Digital Calming Rooms, and Canva. Discover ways to easily integrate these tools into your program to support social/emotional learning, classroom lessons, digital calming rooms, and much more!

Small Groups Galore

Lead Presenter: Amanda Bustamante

If you are struggling to get started with small groups, or if you just want to add some new tools to your small group toolbox, this is the session for you! Participants will walk away with ideas for selecting students for small groups, tips for planning and organizing effective sessions, and ready-to-go activities and tools that can be used with ANY small group!

“When Mama Ain’t Happy”- Boosting Staff Morale to Increase Student Success

Lead Presenter: Yvette Guzman

Research shows that morale matters and when teachers feel good about their work student achievement rises. Come join us as we explore different ways to keep staff motivated and excited about coming to school throughout the year.

10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Breakout Session 8

A Connectedness Approach to Student Success

Lead Presenter: Naomi Galvan

Connectedness, the ability to create positive and supportive relationships with other students (BSS-2) plays a key role in this effort. Learn how counselors at three different Austin-area campuses responded to their diverse student needs by anchoring them to their respective schools. Explore some fresh and fun ways to get students “anchored” to your school campus and see their mental health improve.

Creating Connections: Serving Your Campus as SEL Director and Coordinator

Lead Presenter: Carrie Dewey

Help! There is only one of me! Find out how to leverage your time and counseling experience by providing a campus wide common flex time for Social emotional Learning. Topics include: getting stakeholder buy in, training and supporting your teachers, best practices for an impactful program, troubleshooting and hands on planning time. Create your own eclectic annual calendar covering communication skills, diversity, and building connections.

How Implementation of SEL Can Fill Both Educators and Students Cups

Lead Presenter: Kat Pastor

Coming off an unprecedented year, schools across the country continue to wrestle with finding the intentional time to dedicate to SEL on their campuses along with educators coming back to the buildings who have experienced burnout and compassion fatigue. How can we intentionally look at our culture and climate on our campuses and begin to meet the needs of both our students and staff. We must provide staff with low-burden, high-impact strategies.

From Surviving to Thriving: The Compassion Toolbox for Counselors

Lead Presenter: Tara Karch

Especially now, counselors and educators run the risk of experiencing burnout and compassion fatigue, and those poised to make the greatest difference in students’ lives face the greatest risk. Join Robin Coach Tara Karch as she shares specific tools and strategies rooted in compassion that counselors can both use themselves and share with teachers and students to help manage and reframe stress, build resilience, and strengthen the school community.

Managing Crisis: Students, Staff & Parents

Lead Presenter: Janis Bennett

This presentation will provide school counselors tools for working with campuses to support students, families, and community members in times of crisis. We will break down what a crisis means for the individual, the family, and the community. We will also identify signs of undisclosed crises and strategies to assist those who may be experiencing a crisis silently.

Maximizing Counselor’s Role in MTSS

Lead Presenter: Patrick Just

Multi-Tiered Systems of Support involves ALL the things! As a counselor, it is important to understand your role in MTSS and how to support all students to enhance your impact utilizing your comprehensive school counseling program. However, it cannot be done alone. We will share key strategies for collaboration to empower the teams you work with for student success.

Music with a Message: Capitalizing on Appropriate Songs for Students

Lead Presenter: Janet Ward

Students are exposed to music through movies, video games, social media and in their homes. Often, those songs include inappropriate language, themes/messages that adults do not recognize. Offering students quality music alternatives may require close attention and can be daunting. This workshop is intended to offer ways to access and utilize quality music with positive messages of self love, acceptance, fair play, social justice and kindness.

Small Group Tips & Tricks for K-12 Counselors

Lead Presenter: Marc Garcia

Do you struggle with small groups? Do you find small groups in the upper grades intimidating? Are you tired of the same old board games? If so, then our session is for you. We’ll show you how we make small groups engaging and effective. You’ll walk away with a list of things to try, such as how to implement technology, art, total physical response games, and more. Whether you teach elementary, middle, or high school, we’ve got you covered.

Solution Focused Counseling in a School Setting

Lead Presenter: Tershundrea Branch

Need to plan counseling sessions in a school setting with limited time? No problem! In this interactive session, we will provide specific strategies that can be used by school counselors from all grade levels to provide counseling sessions.

Tiered Mental Health Toolkit

Lead Presenter: Melanie Acker

Mental health support is an immense need for our students, staff, and families. Creating a tiered approach to mental health supports and a toolkit of resources can create a big impact in your school counseling program. Join us as we align various types of mental health resources to support your campus community by tier and provide a toolkit for student success!

XELLO Sponsor Session

Lead Presenter: TBA

More details to come!



Fax 423.899.4547

National Center for Youth Issues
P.O. Box 22185
Chattanooga, TN 37422-2185