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2020-21 Monthly Edition #2
Sept. 17, 2020
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What do I want to be after COVID-19?

When schools closed in March, we were hopeful that when we reopened in the fall, COVID-19 would be behind us and business would be back to usual. Fast forward to today and we know that the start of the school year has been anything but usual, especially as mental health needs increase, social injustice continues, and wildfires threaten our county and state.
When I reflect back to the beginning, at a time of uncertainties and unknowns, the graphic, "What do I want to be during COVID-19," was circling social media and our thoughts turned inward as we pondered that question and categorized ourselves into zones of fear, learning and growth. When I look at this graphic today, the question I would rather answer is "Where do I want to be after COVID-19?"

During challenging times, we tend to hold on to things that make us feel safe and secure. We like routines and we like having a sense of control over the work that we do on a daily basis. Although efficient, often times we get stuck doing the same thing and when that is disrupted, we don’t embrace the opportunity to make changes and try something new. It’s uncomfortable and you can’t predict or control the outcome. As school counselors, how can we ensure that our learning and growth does not revert back to old systems simply because it was the way something had always been done?

While compiling resources for this newsletter, the level of learning opportunities that are available specifically for the work of school counselors has been nothing less than impressive. From our local, to our state and national levels, school counselors are not only showing up, but they are stepping up to make important changes for the betterment of our practice, and for the wellbeing of our students. Now is the time to take advantage of every workshop, seminar, and professional development opportunity to connect and learn from those around you, and push yourself beyond growth and into a new zone to embrace the challenge and try on something new.

So, what do you want to be after COVID-19?

Counseling Coordinator
San Diego County Office of Education

Sept Calendar
School Counselor Professional Development Calendar

For an updated list of 2020-21 professional development opportunities and workshops for school counselors, click here.
School Counselor Convening
NEW San Diego County School Counselor Convening Series

Attend our first countywide School Counselor Convening at 10 a.m. Sept. 23. Connect with school counselors across the county in this live webinar to learn about professional learning opportunities, celebrate the work of colleagues and peers, and be inspired by guest speakers, Whitney Triplett and Becky Love from Hatching Results. Mark your calendar for the next two county meetings on Jan. 20, and Apr. 21, 2021. Register here for all three dates. This event is free.

SDCOE Asian Student Experience Panel

We continue to elevate student voice and engage with their experience in school through listening. Our next panel features Asian students and will be one hour. View a previous student panel on our YouTube playlist. Sept. 30 at 3 p.m. Register here.

NEW Counselor Chat Sessions

In partnership between the San Diego and Los Angeles county offices of education, Counselor Chats is an an organized chat room that brings together school counselors from across counties to strengthen best practices, connect with fellow grade level colleagues, share ideas and resources, and simply chat. Registered participants create topics for discussion and facilitate breakout sessions in an un-conference format. The first session will be held Oct. 7 at 1:30 p.m. Register here. This event is free.
San Diego County "Race to Submit" Campaign

Race to Submit is a statewide campaign that aims to increase the number of financial aid applications for California high school seniors who complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and California Dream Act Application (CADAA). Last year, the first San Diego County Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and California Dream Act Application (CADAA) Challenge kicked off at the fall California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) workshop for high school counselors, which this year will be virtual. The challenge was initiated to encourage districts and high schools to set a goal to increase their completion rates.

Information for the 2020-21 San Diego County Race to Submit campaign will be available soon. In the meantime, get started by downloading the CSAC Race to Submit Resource Guide and register for the 2020 Annual Statewide Financial Aid Workshop for important updates. Register here.

Learning Continuity and Attendance Plan Explained for Parents

This free, one-hour webinar is designed for parents in partnership with the NAACP San Diego. In response to the COVID-19 crisis, districts are responsible for submitting a Learning Continuity and Attendance Plan with the requirement of soliciting stakeholder engagement. This webinar will help parents and community members understand the state requirements and the difference between this and the Local Control and Accountability Plan. The session will be offered in both English and Spanish.

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Wildfire Crisis Resources

The American School Counselor Association (ASCA) compiled resources for school counselors to access for families affected by the recent wildfires:

School Leaders Guide to Create Healing Dialogue

As students return to classes, it’s important to address the historical and collective trauma everyone has experienced due to both the COVID-19 pandemic and the events that spurred the current civil rights movement. The School Leaders Guide to Create Healing Dialogue Space from SDCOE's Equity and Student Support Services teams has ways to create and hold authentic, healing dialogue space for those in your school community.
Addressing Student Trauma in the COVID-19 Era

There is no doubt that these are challenging times for all of us, but particularly for students. Finding ways to address student trauma in the era of COVID-19 continues to be difficult. The Center for Collaborative Solutions has developed a free webinar to share promising practices addressing student trauma in the COVID-19 era. This free webinar will be held via Zoom on Sept. 22 at 2:30 p.m. Register here.
REVOLUTION: Equity, Disparities, and Student Mental Health

The California Association for School Counselors (CASC) is sponsoring a virtual conference dedicated to student mental health and race-based trauma in a COVID-19 world. This virtual conference held Oct. 8-10 offers nearly 50 educational sessions, access to industry-leading experts and unique virtual networking opportunities. From school climate issues to research-based solution-focused classroom techniques, there are topics to meet all educators' (K-12 teachers, administrators, community professionals, and school-based mental health service providers) professional development needs. In addition, we have added a new renown individual to our keynote line — California Surgeon General, TedTalk presenter and author — Dr. Nadine Harris Burke. Dr. Burke will be speaking on adverse childhood trauma. Register here.

San Diego Colleges Conference
Destination San Diego

Save the date for our upcoming Destination San Diego virtual event on Oct. 2. UC San Diego is teaming up with Point Loma Nazarene University, San Diego State University, and University of San Diego for this exclusive event for high school counselors. Learn more about what makes San Diego the perfect place for your students to pursue their academic goals. Details and registration will be added to the San Diego School Counselor Professional Development Calendar when available.
Go Virtual! Career Pathways Conference

The Go Virtual! Career Pathways Conference, hosted by the SDCOE will be held Oct. 14 and 15. This free conference for San Diego County educators is a great way to hear from practitioners in the field and find new strategies to bring back to your distance or blended virtual learning environment. Two afternoons of breakouts and keynotes will focus on how to provide high quality career ready instruction in a COVID-19 impacted class. Participants will also have access to recorded sessions if you have time conflicts or would like to attend multiple breakouts simultaneously. More information here.
John Burton Advocates for Youth
Completing the FAFSA. A How-To for Adult Supporters of Foster Youth

Join John Burton Advocates for Youth on Oct.15 for the "How-to" webinar to assist those working with foster youth to successfully complete the FAFSA or CADAA. Review the FAFSA page-be-page, including detailed instructions on how eligible foster youth can qualify as independent students for the purposes of financial aid. Presenters will also provide information on key steps to take after the FAFSA of CADAA is completed, such as applying for the CHAFEE Grant and creating a Webgrants account to access maximum financial aid. Register here.
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Counselors for Computing (C4C) Conference

Computing permeates every aspect of our society, creating a high demand for technological innovations that change how we think, connect, conduct research, build products, and more. Designed and delivered by school counselors, join us for a one-of-a-kind professional development opportunity facilitated by local and nationally recognized school counselors leaders. During the program, you will: learn about career prospects in this fast-growing sector and why employers want a large and diverse talent pool from which to draw; learn why computer science is a fundamental literacy, no matter what your students’ plans; meet technology professionals and learn about their jobs. The C4C Conference will be held virtually Oct. 15 and 16. Registration is free and all participants will receive resource kits and cool swag. More information here.
Community College Conference
2020 Counselor Conference: Counseling for Career Resilience

The 2020 Counselor Conference: Counseling for Career Resilience, hosted by the San Diego and Imperial County Community Colleges Consortium, will be held virtually Dec. 2 and 3. New workshop topics include distance career counseling, career exploration tools, social-emotional development counseling, career pathway mapping tool update, labor market information, and in-demand Jobs. This conference will be free for all participants. More information here.
Crack the Code
Free College Guide for First Generation Students

Every first generation student is not lucky enough to pair with a mentor for encouragement and guidance. Dr. Susan Lieberman, who has mentored students for more than three decades, knows the value of mentorship. Wishing every student could go off to college with a wise mentor, Lieberman has written CRACK THE CODE. A Guide to College Success for First Gens. The advice in the book revolves around recent interviews with 60 current first gen students and recent graduates as well as substantial research. There are many links to additional resources.

Students don’t pay for mentors, and Lieberman doesn’t want them to pay for this quasi-mentor. Accordingly, the book is available for free download from Book Funnel which allows readers to download to a variety of devices. Use this link to obtain your free copy.

Newsletter, Website, Social Media

New Resource for School Counselors

Tired of stacks of resources, post-its, and file folders? Let’s share our resources to uplift each other and our students, while also reducing stress, saving time, and paper. The school counselors who use Counselora inspire its development, let us know what features you would like that can improve your ability to help more students and we will build it. Sign up for a free desktop and mobile account at
Opiod Study
School Counselors Needed for Study on Opioid Crisis

Are you someone who has experience working with student opioid use within the last three years? Support a school counselor doctoral candidate who is seeking volunteers to participate in a qualitative research study. Protective measures are in place to maintain privacy of participants. Click here for information.
If you have any questions or comments on the San Diego County School Counselor Network newsletter, please contact Tanya Bulette, counseling coordinator, at
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