• About Us


Students’ Developmental Needs

  • The elementary years are a time when students begin to develop their academic self-concept and their feelings of competence and confidence as learners. They are beginning to develop decision-making, communication and life skills, as well as character values. It is also a time when students develop and acquire attitudes toward school, self, peers, social groups and family. Comprehensive developmental school counseling programs provide education, prevention and intervention services, which are integrated into all aspects of children’s lives.

    Early identification and intervention of children’s academic and personal/social needs are essential in removing barriers to learning and in promoting academic achievement. The knowledge, attitudes, and skills that students acquire in the areas of academic, career and personal/social development during these elementary years serve as the foundation for future success.

What We Stand For

  • Berkeley Lake Counselors School counselors make a measurable impact in every student’s life, assisting with academic, career and personal/social development. Professional school counselors are trained in both educating and counseling, allowing them to function as a facilitator between parents, teachers and the student in matters concerning the student’s goals, abilities and any areas needing improvement. School counselors provide services not only to students in need, but to all students. (American School Counselor Association)

    Berkeley Lake Elementary is staffed by two highly qualified professional school counselors. Together they work with staff, parents and the community to meet the academic, behavioral and social/emotional needs of all students.

Meeting the Challenge

  • Elementary school counselors are professional educators with a mental health perspective who understand and respond to the challenges presented by today’s diverse student population. Elementary school counselors don’t work in isolation; rather, they are integral to the total educational program. They provide proactive leadership that engages all stakeholders in the delivery of programs and services to help students achieve success.

    Professional school counselors align with the school’s mission to support the academic achievement of all students as they prepare for the ever-changing world of the 21st century. This mission is accomplished through the design, development, implementation and evaluation of a comprehensive, developmental and systematic school counseling program. ASCA’s National Standards in the academic, career, and personal/social domains are the foundation for this work. The ASCA National Model: A Framework For School Counseling Programs (ASCA, 2002), with its data-driven and results-based focus, serves as a guide for today’s school counselor who is uniquely trained to implement this program.

  • Laura Marantz

    Laura Marantz, school counselor This year I look forward to being the counselor for students in kindergarten, 2nd, and 4th grades. I am so happy to have Sara Penland as my co-counselor at Berkeley Lake. Together we will remove barriers to student learning.

    This will be my sixteenth year as a school counselor at Berkeley Lake Elementary School. Previously, I was a school counselor at elementary schools in Alabama and Maryland. I earned a Bachelor's degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Georgia, and a Master's degree in Counseling, an Educational Specialist degree (Ed.S.), and a certificate in Psychometry, all from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

    Please let me know how I can help your student on their journey!

    Laura Marantz, Ed.S.



  • Sara Penland

    Sara Penland, school counselor I am very excited to be working with 1st, 3rd and 5th grades for the 2019-2020 school year! I am looking forward to supporting your students through the development of their academic, social, and emotional skills.

    I am a graduate of Winthrop University, located in South Carolina, with a degree in Psychology. I also hold my Master's degree in School Counseling and Development from Winthrop. This is my fourth year at Berkeley Lake Elementary as a school counselor. Previously, I was a counselor at an elementary school in South Carolina and a middle school in Gwinnett County.

    Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or any issues you would like to discuss. I am looking forward to working with you and your children this year and watching them grow!

    Sara Penland, M. Ed.