Counselor's Corner

School counselors are trained to provide guidance and counseling services to help students develop academically, personally, and socially.

The middle school counselor:

  • Assists parents and teachers in helping children
  • Conducts classroom guidance activities
  • Provides individual and small group counseling
  • Coordinates school-wide guidance activities
  • Consults with outside agencies

A child may see the counselor for:

  • Study skills
  • Academic planning and career exploration
  • Issues with friends
  • New situations
  • Difficult decisions
  • Success & Accomplishments
  • Family Concerns
  • Happy occasions
  • Dealing with grief, loss, or illness
  • Any other area of concern

How can a student see the counselor?

  • Student support team referral
  • Teacher referral
  • Administrative referral
  • Parental referral
  • Self-Referral 

The school counselor is NOT:

  • A Disciplinarian
  • An Administrator
  • A Social Worker
  • A Therapist

HOMEWORK MATTERS!

If there is one thing your child will learn in middle school, it is that homework completion is extremely important and that it also has a major impact on their grades. If your son or daughter’s progress report wasn’t quite what you had hoped for, the first step to take is to find out if they have been turning in their homework assignments. A simple phone call or e-mail to the teacher will give you this information. If this seems to be the problem, keep reading.

Middle school aged kids often want more freedom from their parents and say that they don’t need or want your supervision over their school work. Our response to this is that this freedom must be earned. Until your child shows that they will complete and turn in their homework on a regular basis, they need a parent’s supervision. Here are a few steps to take to help your child learn responsible homework habits:

  • Check their assignment book daily. Remember that you can call the homework hotline to make sure they have written down all of their assignments.
  • Make sure your child has a quiet place to study without distractions. Contrary to what they may tell you, they really don’t learn best in front of the television.
  • Provide encouragement and assistance if needed, but don’t do the assignment for them. Your student needs practice using problem-solving skills. It’s okay to give hints, but they need to figure the answers out for themselves.
  • Look over their assignments and ask questions about what they are studying. Show an interest in what they are learning.
  • Take a look at their binder each night and make sure they have organized their papers by subject. Their binder should have a separate section for each class. Make sure that they also put their homework assignments in the proper section. You would be surprised how many students complete their assignment, but can’t find it by the time they are supposed to turn it in.
  • Encourage students to study a little each night for upcoming tests. They will be much more likely to remember the information than if they wait until the night before the test.
  • Praise your child for working hard and completing assignments. Try to stay positive and give constructive advice rather than criticizing.
  • Keep in touch with your child’s teachers and contact their counselor if you need more help.

This information and more is available in the U.S. Department of Education publication, Helping Your Child With Homework (7/18/02), available online at http://www.ed.gov/parents/academic/help/hyc.html. Also, check out the U.S. Department of Education website. They have excellent information geared toward parents on a wide range of education/child development topics.


Mental Health Association

The link in the heading above will connect you to the website for the Mental Health America of Eastern Missouri. The site is dedicated to promoting mental health and wellness, preventing mental disorders and achieving victory over mental illness through advocacy, education and service.


School-based Counseling Services
The Mehlville School District is partnering with Lutheran and Family Children Services (LFCS) to provide school based counseling services to our students. The school based counselor is a mental health position funded though the St Louis County Keeping Kids First Fund. The services are free of cost to students, parents, and schools and supplement the existing guidance counselor services provided by the school district so that students can receive increased services.
Terri Garbo, M.Ed., LPC, LCSW is the LFCS School-based Counselor at Margaret Buerkle Middle School. Mrs. Garbo can provide an array of services, such as consultations with parents, and / or school staff; presentations for staff or parents; crisis intervention; individual counseling with a student; family consultation; skills groups for students on topics such as social skills, friendships, anger management, communication skills, grief / loss; and more.
A student can be referred for counseling by a parent, teacher, school guidance counselor or administrator, or self-referral. If a student is referred for individual or group counseling, Mrs. Garbo will contact the parent or guardian to obtain consent and schedule a meeting with the parent or guardian to gather additional information and further explain the services offered.
If you have any questions or would like additional information about available services please contact Mrs. Garbo at (314) 467-6800.

MBMS Counseling Staff Kelli Merritt -
Last Names A-K

Phone (314) 467-6902
merrittk@mehlville
schooldistrict.net


Katie Shymanski-
Last Names L-Z

Phone (314) 467-6901
shymanskik@mehlville
schooldistrict.net


Cathy Rinck -
Guidance Secretary
Hours:
M-F 7:30 a.m - 10:30 a.m.

Phone (314) 467-6903
rinckc@mehlville
schooldistrict.net

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