School Counselors take this saying seriously because we see what can happen when a student contributes to their school by being a part of a sports team, club or activity. Involved students do better academically in their classes. Involved students tend to contribute of their time and talents to school and community groups and get “outside of themselves” to “give of themselves” to others. Involved students experience success by learning leadership skills and gaining connections to their school and classmates. Involved students are less inclined to participate in negative behavior such as underage drinking or experimentation with drugs.
On the reverse, School Counselors notice what happens when students do not join school clubs and experience what it’s like to make school contributions and feel connected. Negative and illegal activities have an opportunity to fill that empty space. School Counselors know that many students who struggle with drug and alcohol are not involved school clubs.
Parents and schools can do a lot to assure students get involved. Parents are encouraged to attend Open House Programs at their child’s school. Often, club booths are set up during these programs to recruit members. This is an excellent time for proactive parents to encourage their student to sign up and participate in their school. If clubs are lacking in your child’s school, work with your student’s School Counselor to begin a new club.
The transition from elementary school to middle school and the transition from middle school to high school are crucial times for parents to make sure their student gets involved in a school-related club, sport or activity. A School Counselor is an excellent resource for parents and students to find this connection.
Ruth E. Lohmeyer
Counseling Center Team Leader
Lincoln Northeast High School
Recognized American School Counselor Association Program (RAMP)