School Guidance Counselor receives award from PASR
MUNCY – Recently the Lycoming County Chapter of Pennsylvania Association of School
Retirees, LCC/PASR, awarded Mrs. Jean Daniels, a $200 educational grant. Daniels is a guidance counselor at Myers Elementary School in Muncy School District.
The grant is to be used for the CHAMPS (Climbing Higher And Making Positive Strides) program according to Nan Rusczyk, PASR board member. The award was presented to Daniels by Mrs. Carla Auten, Mrs. Sharon Clemens, and Ms. Nan Rusczyk. Dr. Portia Brandt, Muncy School District Superintendent was also present to congratulate Mrs. Daniels.
The LCC/PASR executive board solicits applications from all Lycoming County school districts. This year sixteen applications were reviewed to receive this grant.
Daniels describes the CHAMPS program as a behavior modification program. “In schools there is usually a population of students that are not overlooked purposely, but due to time and financial restraints, their needs are not always met. I’m referring to the population of students who are not failing academically, or at the top of every “watch list” due to behavioral concerns,” she said.
Often these students are lacking success due to difficult situations at home. This causes low self-esteem, a lack of motivation, or a deficit in personal connections to others throughout the school day.
With an extra boost or more numerous connections, these students can be motivated to take steps to be more successful at school. “Students are referred to the CHAMPS team which is composed of the school counselor, principal, and regular/special education teachers,” Daniels explained. “Once a student is accepted into the program, the referring teacher contacts the student’s parents to illicit their permission and help in guiding their child through the program. The student is then assigned a CHAMPS card which contains our school’s four behavioral expectations: Be Prepared, Be In Control, Be Respectful, and Be A Problem-Solver.”
Students are then responsible for checking in with their teachers at various transition times to receive points for their progress in each of these areas. This encourages positive feedback and encouragement to help guide the student in making good choices regarding their behavior and work habits. Checking in with an adult mentor first thing in the morning and at the end of each day, gives the student better connections with more resources.
Daniels further explains that throughout the program, students earn the opportunity to “purchase” rewards with the points they earn.
“Since one of the goals of CHAMPS is to increase self-esteem and also the number of positive social interactions a student has in our building, most of the incentives available for a student to earn are based on experiences rather than tangible objects.”
Tracking the progress of each student is also another benefit. Each student has individualized goals based on their daily progress rate, and the goals are tracked and entered into a computer program called CICO which analyzes the student’s data and provides detailed information on their progress. “This data provides the CHAMPS team with important information which aides the team in decision- making, goal-setting, and monitoring of each student in the program,” confirms Daniels.