Welcome to the OMS Counseling Department!
Ms. Siedentop, Ms. Williams, and Ms. Marra make up the counseling department at OMS. For more specific questions about our duties and responsibilities, you may reach us at the individual emails below.
Goal, Mission, and Vision
The Goal of the Osborne Middle School Counseling Program is to assist students in their academic, social, emotional and career development.
Our Mission is to create a warm, inviting, safe environment where all students can feel welcomed and important. The Osborne Middle Counseling Program focuses on three areas of development:
- Supporting each student’s academic achievement
- Promoting personal, educational, and career growth through personal prevention and intervention activities
- Helping students explore education and career choices
The Vision is that Osborne Middle School students:
- will become world-class productive citizens who contribute to society
- will achieve high academic and performance standards and pursue post- secondary education
- will be college or career ready
- exhibit the leadership qualities necessary for meaningful relationships and success
What services are provided by the OMS Counseling Department?
- Individual Counseling
- Small Group Counseling
- Classroom Guidance
- Student Mentoring
- Peer Leader Training
- Parent and/or Teacher consultation
- Individual/family/school crisis intervention
What are some reasons you would contact the school counselor?
- When your student is having difficulty achieving academically.
- When family changes interfere with academic progress.
- When you want to become more involved in your student's educational and career choices.
- When you want to arrange a meeting with several teachers or with both teachers and a counselor.
- When you need assistance connecting to resources that would benefit your student.
- While we can consult with you about your child's schedule, all schedule changes will need to be requested through the grade level AP for your child.
Will my child be in trouble if he/she visits the school counselor?
No. School Counselors are not disciplinarians!
Our role is different from an administrative role and does not include issuing citations, referrals or any other discipline consequence. Our primary role is to assist in removing barriers that may exist that keeps the student from being successful in the academic environment
Will others know that my child is being seen by the counselor?
School counselors take every precaution to protect the confidentiality of each child that we work with. When it comes to their children meeting with a school counselor, some parents are reluctant to support such a decision. They may fear the child will share “family secrets,” which will then be spread throughout the school. Or they worry that all the teachers in the school will learn of their child’s specific problems and hold it against the student. A student’s right to privacy and confidentiality is the basis for an effective counseling relationship. Confidentiality ensures that school counselors won’t share students’ disclosures with others except when the student authorizes it or when there is a clear and present danger to the student and/or to other persons.
If the counselor sees my child, is this on the student's permanent record?
No information shared with the counselor is included in the permanent record. Again, information is only shared with others when there is a clear and present danger to the student or other persons
If my child sees the school counselor, will I be contacted?
Many times parents intiate the referral process and may speak to the counselor before counseling sessions take place with the students. However, parents are not called every time a counselor meets with a child. And, should parents be called in to meet with the school counselor as well, in a collaborative effort to help the student, parents must also realize that confidentiality is the hallmark of a school counselors’ work. When students enter into a counseling relationship with their school counselor, the school counselor will educate the student about the purposes, goals, techniques and rules of procedure under which they may receive counseling.
As counseling with a student progresses, it may become beneficial or necessary for the school counselor to consult and collaborate with parents. Either the parent or the professional school counselor may initiate the collaboration process. It’s the school counselor’s responsibility to reach an agreement with the student about what information to share with the parents unless, of course, there is a clear and imminent danger to the student or others.
While respecting the rights and responsibilities of parents/guardians for their children, the school counselor works to establish a mutual relationship with parents/guardians to maximize a student’s development. In addition, school counselors respect students’ values and beliefs without imposing their own personal values on the situation.
What are the limitations to confidentiality that parents should know about?
The limitations of confidentiality don’t include information of possible abuse or harm to a child. By law, school counselors must report any case of abuse or neglect to the appropriate authorities.
Can the school counselor provide therapy?
While school counselors have specific training in regards to mental health issues, they are not intended to function as therapists. The role of school counselors is to assist students with academic issues that may interfere with their academic success. School counselors are equipped to serve as liasons with outside agencies and can consult with families about the steps to take to link to outside therapeutic services.
Will my child miss academic time when they see the school counselor?
While the school counselor makes every effort to protect academic time, it may occur that a student briefly misses academic time to meet with the counselor. School counselors do their very best to prevent the counseling session from being a burden on the student academically
Will the school counselor testify on behalf of a parent in a custody dispute?
While school counselors work with these families in an equal manner, preference cannot be shown to one parent over the other. The school counselor's primary role is to assist the student which lends itself to remaining neutral in custody disputes.
I have a concern about my child's schedule? Who should I contact?
While counselors work with parents and students to find the best option available, the counselors at OMS are not in charge of scheduling. Contact your administrator if you have specific concerns about an academic or connection scheduling concern.
OMS counselors do not handle academic records' requests. These requests can be made through our registrar, Paulette Reynolds, at 678-765-5987.
We encourage parents and guardians to contact the counselor ahead of time as much as possible should you need to see one of us.
We are often in meetings, working with students, and consulting with teachers. Appointments secure your time with us.
Did you know that our counseling team has Gwinnett County Board Approved standards and competencies that must be delivered to each student? Click on the Counseling Standards and Compentencies link to see how each of these standards are addressed and how each student will receive this instruction.