LONGMEADOW HIGH SCHOOL | 95 GRASSY GUTTER ROAD | LONGMEADOW, MA 01106 | P 413-565-4220 | F413-565- 4233
WELCOME TO THE LHS COUNSELING DEPARTMENT
The LHS Counseling Department is committed to helping students successfully navigate through high school academically, socially, and personally. Through individual and group meetings with students and parents, we provide information and guidance on course planning and selection, standardized testing options, and post-secondary planning.
We take a developmental approach to providing a comprehensive guidance plan for all students in grades 9 through 12. This begins with the guidance counselors visiting the middle schools to help 8th grade students make informed decisions about course selection and getting involved in school activities at the high school. This is done in conjunction with an eighth grade parent night to introduce parents to the high school.
Once students have transitioned in as freshmen we meet with the ninth graders in groups to stress the importance of being an active participant in their high school education. It is important to understand early on that the decisions they make as freshmen can impact thru future plans.
In the sophomore year, we administer the Pre-ACT assessment to all 10th graders and then schedule individual meetings with the students and parents to begin the discussion and planning for what comes after high school. We often refer to this meeting as “The Kick-off” to the college planning process.
By junior year, students should be in full gear with their post secondary planning and we help jump start this by providing students with the tools to get started in group sessions. We also host a Junior Parent Night to inform parents on the college search and planning process.
The comprehensive counseling plan culminates in the senior year with individual meetings with seniors and their parents to help guide them through the post-secondary and college application process. As you navigate through the LHS guidance pages, I hope you will find the information to be useful and informative.
THE COUNSELING PROGRAM
To help students in developing the ability to make decisions regarding personal, social, and educational matters.
To assist parent/guardian(s) in developing skills needed to support the student’s post-secondary enrollment and career exploration processes.
To support personalized assessment of the educational and career options available to each student.
To make appropriate referrals concerning community and school resources.
To assist students, parents, and others involved in addressing concerns and issues associated with the classroom and school environment.
To assist in the implementation of program accommodations granted as part of approved special education Individual Education Plans (IEP) or regular education 504 plans.
The school counseling program supports the development of each student's potential by:
Assisting the student in selecting a course of study to facilitate successful transition to postsecondary career and educational opportunities.
Providing counseling and advising that promotes individual growth and academic success.
Monitoring student academic progress as necessary.
Promoting effective communication between students, instructional staff, parent/guardian(s) and administrators.
Facilitating post-secondary enrollment in colleges and universities through activities such as:
• Advising students on the enrollment decision process including appropriate academic preparation, admission application and testing requirements.
• Assisting students and parent/guardian(s) in accessing the college financing delivery system.
• Acquainting students with organizational tools and resources that support effective research on post-secondary educational options.
• Encouraging the development of good goal setting and decision-making skills.
• Preparing academic credentials required in the admissions process.
School counselors represent Longmeadow High School in numerous professional organizations, activities, and meetings that promote the reputation and visibility of Longmeadow High School particularly in relation to academic standards of excellence and college enrollment.
The PowerSchool Public Portal gives students and parents the ability to view grades on a regular basis (please note - most LHS teachers use the PowerSchool Public Portal as their gradebook. Public Portal access will be provided to students and parents on an annual basis. Parent/guardian(s) are informed of academic progress through quarterly report cards and midterm progress reports. Parents/guardian(s) and students also have access to attendance and grades through the PowerSchool Public Portal.
Parent conferences related to the student's progress may be initiated by the counselor, parent/guardian, teacher or other school administrator.
The Counseling Department contributes to the LHS newsletter to inform the community of testing dates, college representative visits, important academic schedule dates and other matters of interest.
The Counseling Department provides electronic access to information and services. Several evening programs for students and parent/guardian(s) regarding middle school to high school transition, college planning, and financial aid are offered each year.
The Counseling Department hosts and publicizes visits by representatives of colleges, the military, and other organizations/agencies promoting post-secondary career opportunities.
ANNUAL SCHOOL PROFILE
The Counseling Department publishes the annual school profile detailing information on academic offerings, grading policies, student achievement, post-secondary placement and class results of admission testing.
COUNSELORS & STAFF
Director of Counseling
Elizabeth (Lisa) O'Shea
LHS SOCIAL WORKERS
Adolescence can be the best of times or feel like the worst of times. If you are experiencing a difficult time, you have a safe, confidential place in the high school to sort things out. Students can talk about stress, depression, anxiety, social issues, family issues, or whatever they would like. An appointment is not necessary.
Allison Schlachter, LICSW, RYT
I have spent the last 19 years working with and advocating for children and families. After receiving my Bachelors in Childhood Studies with a special focus in Special Education and Elementary Education, I started my career as an elementary school teacher working in a progressive and diverse suburb of Washington DC. I quickly realized that my passion was in relationship building and working with children and adolescents with mental health and developmental challenges. In 2005 I earned a Masters in Social Work at the University of Maryland at Baltimore with a clinical mental health specialty and later earned the advanced license of Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW).
In 2008 I opened a private practice in Longmeadow focusing on children and families, specializing in anxiety disorders and other mental health concerns. It was an exciting move to enter the Longmeadow Public Schools as a School Adjustment Counselor in 2017. Additionally, in 2004 I became a certified yoga teacher after studying yoga and Body/Mind Psychology at the Silver Lotus Training Institute in Lewes, DE. Yoga and mindfulness have been central in my life and I am thrilled to be sharing and teaching these practices to the students of LHS.
Mary Ann Wesolowski, LICSW
I have been a Social Worker in the Longmeadow Public Schools for the past 24 years. I have worked at Blueberry Hill School, Glenbrook Middle School and began working part-time at LHS in the 2015/2016 school year. I was so happy for the opportunity to begin working full time at LHS in the 2017/2018 school year. Prior to working in Longmeadow, I was a Social Worker at The Department of Social Services, The Child Guidance Clinic, and Baystate Medical Center Children’s Hospital. In 1988 I earned a Masters in Social Work from the University of Connecticut with a specialty in clinical casework and two years later earned the advanced license of Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW).
SUBSTANCE ABUSE RESPONSE COORDINATOR
Do you have a concern or a question about your own drug or alcohol use or that of someone you care about? I provide supportive counseling services and referral to community based treatment for LHS students and families. All requests are treated confidentially. Feel free to contact me by phone or email to set up an appointment. On my website, I have provided additional information about substance abuse prevention efforts in the Longmeadow Public Schools and links to several local and online resources.
My professional life has been devoted to supporting the development of young people, as both a teacher and counselor. I taught history, psychology and sociology at Longmeadow High School from 1992-2000. While pursuing my Masters in Social Work at the State University of New York, Albany, I worked as a counselor at ServiceNet's Crisis Stabilization and Respite Unit in Northampton, MA from 2000-2002. I then worked as an outreach clinician for Valley Psychiatric Services, Inc. in Springfield, MA from 2003-2010, serving youth and families with both mental health and substance use related needs. I have served as the Substance Abuse Response Coordinator for Longmeadow Public Schools since 2010. At that time I earned the advanced license of Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW). I am happy to be serving in the vibrant school community where I started my career, in a role which integrates both my teaching and counseling experience.