Celebrating National School Counseling Week

Celebrating National School Counseling Week
Shawnee Mission School District

National School Counseling Week is Feb. 7 to 11, 2022. The Shawnee Mission School District joins schools across the country celebrating with the theme “School Counseling: Better Together.”

The week is observed with a focus on the unique contributions of school counselors in the United States and the tremendous influence they have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career.

Dr. John McKinney, director of student and family services, thanked SMSD counselors for all they do for Shawnee Mission schools, students, and families. “School counselors play an important role in ensuring that all Shawnee Mission School District students have an exceptional educational experience. School counselors are part of a school support team who provide essential social-emotional and academic support.”

Several SMSD counselors recently reflected on their important role helping students, families, and school communities throughout the year:

Kim Urenda – SM West Counselor

Reflecting on 22 years as a school counselor: “It has been encouraging to see the support for mental health for all students within Shawnee Mission. This year has been great to have all students back in our building and being able to connect with them in person through individual meetings, groups, and Advisory activities.  School counselors in elementary through high school settings are important because they help support students with their academic, post-secondary planning, and social emotional learning. While it has been challenging with all the impacts we are seeing from COVID, we are grateful for our district to continue to support us and work towards the National American School Counseling model. I am grateful to work toward meeting the needs of all students in Shawnee Mission with a school counselor at every level.”

Danielle Langley – Westwood View Elementary Counselor

Langley shares that her favorite part of her job is working directly with students,From teaching SEL lessons to hosting lunch bunches, I am glad for the opportunity to teach our students the essential skills to be lifelong learners and happy, productive citizens!”  She continues, “With the COVID-19 pandemic looming large over our shoulders, it's become more important than ever to teach our children mindfulness, emotion regulation, and effective coping skills. I am grateful for this opportunity to be a resource not only for our students, but also for our teachers and families to support them through these challenging times.”

Callie Reynolds – Westridge Middle School Counselor
“School counseling is all about connecting with our students and families in order to help them and our community in whatever ways are needed. We are here to support students no matter what that may look like. My favorite part of being a school counselor is the opportunity to connect with all of the students here at Westridge and making sure that they know I am someone they can count on. I am here to make a difference!”