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The Guidance Counselor is a member of the Mental Health Team who addresses social-emotional/ adjustment issues with students. However, the primary role of the Guidance Counselor is to assist older students and their families in the process of exploring post-Cotting options. The Guidance Counselor serves as a liaison with adult service agencies and works with agencies such as Mass Rehab and Department of Developmental Services to assist the representatives from the agencies to better understand the needs of the students that the agency will support post-Cotting. As part of the transition planning process, the Guidance Counselor will help a student identify his/her interests, skills and strengths so that the student is able to develop a sense of him/herself as a worker and as an independent adult. This knowledge and understanding helps the student set short and long-term vocational goals and identify the steps s/he needs to take to reach those goals.
The Mental Health Team at Cotting School consists of the School Psychologist, Guidance Counselor, Family Support Coordinator and Medical Department Team Leader (RN). The Team serves as a resource to teachers, administrators and parents and will provide consultation to any of these parties around a particular student, family or Cotting School community issue. Additionally, team members, usually the school psychologist or guidance counselor, will meet with students on an individual and/or small group basis to address a variety of issues such as disability awareness, social skills, decision making and the development of problem solving/ coping skills. Increasing a student’s self esteem and enhancing his/her social emotional adjustment will contribute to increased independence and academic achievement, all of which are primary goals of Mental Health Services.