RHS Virtual Counseling Services
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Hello RHS students and families,
Throughout the time of the school closure the counseling department has prepared a plan to support students virtually. We acknowledge there are added stressors from COVID 19 and school closures and its impact on families. We are committed to supporting our students throughout this time. Below you will find virtual counseling services and how to access support, a mental health checklist a.k.a boredom busters that suggests activities to help reduce stress, anxiety and screen time, plus tips for establishing an ideal environment for virtual learning.
Virtual Counseling services are:
- RHS Students may continue to use the Counselor Request bookmark on Chromebook to contact their School Counselor.
- RHS Counselors will periodically check emails for counselor requests throughout the day Monday through Friday (7:35 a.m.-3:05 p.m.) and will respond according to the following guidelines.
- RHS Counselor will respond within 48 hours Monday through Friday via email or Google Hangouts (usage instructions are here) text only will be used for counselor requests that are non-emergency requests.
- RHS Counselor will respond within 24 hours Monday through Friday to urgent or emergency requests via email or Google Hangout (usage instructions are here) video and/or audio call.
- RHS Counselor will contact parents to provide referrals to outside agencies as needed while working with the student virtually.
- GoGuardian notifications will follow the same protocol follow-up provided by Mr. Strong.
***NOTICE*** IF YOU ARE HAVING THOUGHTS OF HURTING OR KILLING YOURSELF OR SOMEONE ELSE, REACH OUT TO THESE RESOURCES IMMEDIATELY OR CALL 911 OR REPORT TO YOUR NEAREST HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOM:
Professionals or agencies I can contact during a crisis:
- National Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255 or text 741741
- KUTO (Kids Under Twenty-One) 314-644-5886
- Life Crisis Services 314-647-4357
- Behavioral Health Response 314-469-6644
- Trevor Project (LGBTQ youth) 1-866-488-7386
- St Louis Youth Connection Hotline 314-628-2929 or Text 4HLP31658
The Ritenour High School Counseling department will adhere to the ethical standards outlined by the American School Counseling Association (ASCA)
Ethical Standards Applicable to Virtual School Counseling
The ASCA Ethical Standards for School Counselors: Virtual Section states the following:
A.15. Virtual/Distance School Counseling
- Adhere to the same ethical guidelines in a virtual/distance setting as school counselors in face-to-face settings.
- Recognize and acknowledge the challenges and limitations of virtual/distance school counseling.
- Implement procedures for students to follow in both emergency and nonemergency situations when the school counselor is not available.
- Recognize and mitigate the limitation of virtual/distance school counseling confidentiality, which may include unintended viewers or recipients.
- Inform both the student and parent/guardian of the benefits and limitations of virtual/distance counseling.
- Educate students on how to participate in the electronic school counseling relationship to minimize and prevent potential misunderstandings that could occur due to lack of verbal cues and inability to read body language or other visual cues that provide contextual meaning to the school counseling process and school counseling relationship.
Mental Health Checklist a.k.a Boredom Busters
- Listen to music.
- Take a break from electronics/screens/news.
- Read a book.
- Dance like no one is watching.
- Sing like no one is listening.
- Eat a meal together without electronic devices on or at the table.
- Cook together.
- Express yourself through poetry...add your thoughts/feelings to QuaranTEEN poetry provided by Ms. Love, follow this link: https://padlet.com/lovec3/quaranteenpoetry
- Work on homework/class assignments.
- Get some fresh air (on the porch, in your yard, take a walk)
- Color (online coloring: https://coloring.besofta.com/ or https://cloudapps.herokuapp.com/coloringbook/ )
- Talk to a friend or family member.
- Write in a journal.
- Draw, paint or make a craft.
- Take five slow deep breaths (inhale for 4 seconds, pause, exhale for 6 seconds).
- Go to bed early or take a nap.
- Exercise (there are many online workouts you can try or create your own workout).
- Clean your space or organize your clothes.
- Write down at least five things that are in your circle of control or you are thankful for.
- Play a card game or board game.
- Make up a dance or a song.
- Help someone.
- Stare or listen to nature.
- Practice mindfulness/relaxation. Check out GoZen; Calm.com; Stop.Breathe.Think
- Write three positive affirmations about yourself (examples; I am strong. I am a good friend. I am calm and in control of my choices.)
Tips for Having Your Child Participate in Online Learning
- Create a schedule together. Routines are helpful.
- Make space for learning. Students typically do their best work in a quiet, comfortable space that is strictly dedicated to learning. This space should be away from TV, video games, and other distractions if possible.
- Set a goal. Decide on how much time to spend on each subject each day. However, be flexible as needed.
- Make time for regular breaks from work. Include time for fun activities, use the Boredom Buster list from above for ideas.
- Schedule time for physical activity. You can find ideas online.
- Feel free to email your child’s teacher with any questions. They are all willing to support you and your student throughout this time.
- Remember, this is only a temporary arrangement. Do the best you can to help, but also be forgiving with yourself.