My name is Marissa Schmidt and I am the counselor at Southwest Elementary in the Lawson R-XIV School District. This is my third year at Southwest as a staff member, however I was also a student at Southwest. Our students and families are the best, and I feel right at home here. 

As a parent or guardian, you probably have some questions regarding what a school counselor really does. Here are the questions I get asked the most-
1) What does an elementary school counselor do? 
    - Elementary school counselors do 3 main things. We do counseling lessons in each classroom where we cover topics such as bullying, emotion recognition, coping skills, academic skills, and career development. We meet with students in small groups to discuss things such as divorce/family changes, being new to Lawson, friendship skills, social skills, and anxiety. Finally, we meet with students individually. In individual session we work with students on whatever is going on in their life at home or at school. Our goal, whether we are talking to an entire classroom of students or just one individual, is to help students be as successful as they can in all settings. 

2) Will I be notified if my student sees the counselor?
    -In most cases, yes. If I am going to work with a student individually or with a small group I will send home permission forms first. If your student "pops in" to my office just for a quick chat or a check in I will not always notify you. You will always be notified if your student says something that indicates they may benefit from outside resources, such as outside counseling. 

3) How can I request my student be seen by the counselor? 
    -There are 2 easy ways for you to request that your student be seen by the counselor. The first is to contact the counselor directly, either by phone or email (see Contact Information). The second option is to let your student's teacher know that you would like for them to be seen. You can do this through email or a note sent in with your student.