LAKEWOOD - Rep. Linda Sanchez introduced legislation last Friday that would provide underachieving schools with the funds to hire additional counselors.HR 667, also known as the Put School Counselors Where They're Needed Act, would set up a competitive grant program focused on high schools with graduation rates of 60 percent or lower. These additional counselors would work with students at-risk, and set up a plan with parents, teachers and employers to get the students on track to graduate high school. "We owe it to students at risk to provide them with the resources they need to graduate high school," said Sanchez. "It's urgent that we place more counselors in high schools with high drop-out rates. We can't afford to leave millions of children behind - without access to a quality education - if their high schools don't have the money for enough school counselors." The American Counseling Association recommends a ratio of 250 students per counselor. In California, the average ratio is 900 students per counselor. "Seven thousand students drop out of high school every day," said Sanchez. "Professional school counselors can spot potential problems in a student's academic career early on and address them before that student drops out of school because his or her problems are too overwhelming."
********** Published: February 24, 2011 - Volume 9 - Issue 45