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The student website of Van Nuys High School
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The Student News Site of Van Nuys High School

The Mirror

The Student News Site of Van Nuys High School

The Mirror

Counselors: One of the most valuable resources the school may be missing out on

Counselors are meant to be trusted adults that serve students’ emotional and mental needs. This is why they need to have the necessary social skills to perform their job well.
School+counselors+can+offer+advice+to+students+and+provide+much-needed+emotional+relief.+Unfortunately%2C+many+across+the+district+fail+to+be+the+affable%2C+open+people+their+jobs+require+them+to+be.
PEXELS
School counselors can offer advice to students and provide much-needed emotional relief. Unfortunately, many across the district fail to be the affable, open people their jobs require them to be.

The qualified counselor plays an integral role in a school’s community. They provide valuable advice about classes and offer emotional support. Equipped with strong communication skills and ready to provide assistance in any way they can, they help students tackle the many obstacles they may face in and out of the school year. 

Competent counselors are diligent, great listeners and always open to students’ concerns, ideas and requests. They reach out as needed to inform, advise and express any concerns they may have for a student; the essence of their duties is to be involved, to care and to counsel.

Adequately performing these responsibilities results in an enriched school environment where students feel they have a place to go to for help. High schoolers have long faced the crisis of feeling completely overwhelmed and lost, experiencing hopeless despair in the midst of all the academic, extracurricular and personal pressures that they face. 

Having counselors dedicated to providing aid would transform the Herculean task of navigating adolescent life from an impossible challenge to a merely difficult one. Yet oftentimes, students are unable to receive such critical help because it simply isn’t available to them.

Speaking from experience, the counselors’ office rarely feels like a comforting haven where I can seek support. It’s no secret that students are often met with visible disinterest and even irritation. Repeated instances of being rebuffed or turned away can easily lead to feelings of frustration and neglect, and increased emotional stress is the last thing students desperate for help need.

With that in mind, it’s easy to see why students are so reluctant to visit the counselors’ office at this point. If their first samples of a dish leave only a bitter aftertaste, they’re not likely to come back for seconds and thirds. Years of sour tastes and bad batches hint at the larger problem at hand: Counselors across the district simply don’t do their job well enough.

Far too many counselors fail to meet the basic criteria of involvement and care, instead frustrating students with their repeated shortcomings. It’s an issue that contributes to broken school spirit and overall positivity. 

Consider the average highschool student and their problems. They need to worry about the pile of homework waiting for them at home, keeping both their social life and grades afloat and figuring out a way to make time for actually enjoying their youth, all while running on six hours of sleep or less.

A general, negative sentiment that the counselors suck really isn’t the best morale booster. Students deserve to have the help they need readily available to them at school, provided by qualified adults that are eager and patient enough to supply it.

One key downfall that an unqualified counselor typically has is a lack of communication skills. Students will find it hard to open up to and trust an adult they can hardly feel at ease talking with. Heck, teens of our generation are notoriously bad at opening up to even our parents. Being vulnerable to virtual strangers that don’t even look like they want to be there? There’s no chance.

What students deserve are qualified counselors who will listen and have fulfilling conversations with them. If a counselor portrays themselves as friendly and approachable, a student can easily find comfort in speaking with them. Those that follow this criteria are rewarded with their students’ trust and appreciation.

It is a counselor’s sole purpose to be role models for students, helping students achieve their goals and steering them away from bad decisions. Students are entitled to have counselors that are there to help them in times of need.

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About the Contributor
Kimberly Salazar
Kimberly Salazar is an Opinion writer for The Mirror and is currently a sophomore in her first year of journalism. When she’s done trying to catch up with all of her assignments, she’s chatting with friends or listening to her favorite bands like KoRn and Bring Me The Horizon.
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