Letter to the Editor

Valuable services

San Luis ObispoApril 17, 2013 

While attending the San Luis Coastal Unified School District School board meeting on April 9, I was pleased to hear the positive comments from so many teachers, parents and students supporting our elementary school counselors.

As a teacher, I thought that Judy Newhauser’s comment that “even great instructional lessons will mean nothing if a student is in a constant state of anxiety” was poignant. Last year, there was a student in my class who needed extra attention and help, and he saw our counselor about once a day. Because he received a lot of guidance, he is now doing well in school.

Our elementary counselors aid many of our students and families who are experiencing challenging emotional or family-related issues. In a classroom, there is just not enough time to help a child who has emotional problems.

I have talked with several people about SLCUSD’s financial dilemmas, mentioning that it would save the district about $430,000 to stop the counseling programs in elementary schools. Each one was surprised at the small amount the district would be saving in light of losing the valuable services the counselors provide. Considering the number of children and families who are being served, we are fortunate that the cost is not much, much more!

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