School counselors recognized this week

Wednesday, February 8, 2012
National School Counseling Week Cassville Mayor Bill Hill signed at proclamation for National School Counseling Week on Feb. 6. Several counselors from area school districts attended the special event, which was held in the Cassville High School library. Pictured above, in the front row, from left, are: Angela Long, Southwest Middle School; Sharyn Crouch, Exeter Middle and High School; Hill; Amy Cole, Cassville Middle School; and Patti Daniels, Cassville High School. Back row: Tim Jordan, Exeter Elementary School; Marcia Hendrix, Southwest Elementary School; Shelley Sparkman, Cassville Intermediate School; Gretchen Bussman, Cassville High School; Julie Winborn, Shell Knob School; and Stacey Hopper, Southwest High School. Absent from the photo is Kristie Preddy, Cassville Primary School.

National School Counseling Week, sponsored by the American School Counselor Association, will be celebrated Feb. 6 through Feb. 10. The event is designed to focus public attention on the unique contribution of professional school counselors within United States school systems.

National School Counseling Week also highlights the impact school counselors have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career.

Counselors help students examine their abilities, strengths, interests and talents. They offer resources for parents as they encounter the challenges of raising children today.

By focusing on positive ways to enhance students social, personal, education and career development, counselors partner with teachers and other educators to provide an educational system where students and realize their potential and set healthy, realistic and optimistic aspirations for themselves.

Cassville Primary School counselor Kristie Preddy and intermediate school counselor Shelley Sparkman offer life lessons in classrooms each week. The women also provide individual and small group assistance and help connect families with area resources.

Middle school counselor Amy Cole hosts the Counselor Coffee each month. The event is designed to share valuable information with families. She also works to help students make plans for their academic future and provides needed emotional support.

Cassville High School counselors Patti Daniels and Gretchen Bussman assist students with career planning, scheduling and college preparation. The women are also available to address students' social and emotional needs.

All five counselors serve on the Southwest Missouri School Counselors Association Board of Directors. Cole serves as president, and Preddy serves as secretary. Bussman is the past-president. Daniels and Sparkman serve as committee representatives.

School counselors are certified, experienced educators with a master's degree in guidance and counseling.

Parents interested in receiving more information about counseling services should call their child's school office. Additional information can also be found online at

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