My son is an elementary school counselor in Oregon and previously was a counselor with a middle school.
When I visited him and his elementary-school teacher wife recently, we had a long discussion about the necessity of counselors, especially in the lower grades, to ward off emotional/psychological problems in kids that could lead to tragedies.
My son has been working with a child whose single mother is minimally involved with his education, and the student has learning disabilities which have led to outbursts.
Hes been suspended several times, yet my son has been vigilant in trying to assist this student by providing every school-related intervention possible.
Naturally, the issue of whether a child such as this could become a threat to students and staff one day came up in our discussions. No outcome is certain, but in many cases, children are getting more needed one-on-one attention via teachers and counselors than they are at home in this day and age.
To cut the districts eight counselors seems very shortsighted.