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The Guidance and Counseling Program

A Model Comprehensive, Developmental
Guidance and Counseling Program for Texas Public Schools
A Guide for Program Development
Pre-K-12th Grade

Senate Bill 158 requires each counselor at an elementary, middle or junior high school to advise students and their parents or guardians regarding the importance of higher education, coursework designed to prepare students for higher education, financial aid availability and requirements.

Additionally, the high school counselor is required to provide information to a student and parents during the student's first year and senior year in high school regarding:

  • the importance of higher education;
  • the advantages of completing the recommended or higher high  school program;
  • the disadvantages of taking courses to prepare for a high school equivalency;
  • coursework designed to prepare students for higher education;
  • financial aid availability and requirements;
  • instruction on how to apply for federal financial aid;
  • the eligibility and academic performance requirements for the TEXAS Grant;
  • information concerning the financial aid center operated by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board under TEC Section 61.0776; and
  • the automatic admission of students who graduate with a grade point average in the top 10 percent of the student's graduating class as provided by TEC Section 51.803.

Senate Bill 518 amends TEC Section 33.001, 33.005-33.006 and requires all school counselors to assume responsibilities for working with school faculty and staff, students, parents and community to plan, implement and evaluate a developmental guidance and counseling program. The guidance and counseling program shall include:

    1. A guidance curriculum to help students develop their full educational potential;
    2. A responsive services component to intervene on behalf of any student whose immediate personal concerns or problems put the student's continued educational, career, personal or social development at risk;
    3. An individual planning system to guide a student as the students plans, monitors and manages the student's own educational, career (including interests and career objectives), personal and social development; and
    4. System support to strengthen the efforts of teachers, staff, parents and other members of the community in promoting the educational, career, personal and social development of students.

In addition, the counselor shall:

  • Participate in the planning, implementing and evaluating a comprehensive developmental guidance program to serve all students and to address the special needs of students who are:

- at risk of dropping out of school, becoming substance abusers, participating in gang activity or committing suicide;
- in need of modified instructional strategies;
gifted and talented, with emphasis on identifying and serving gifted and talented students who are economically disadvantaged.

  • Consult with a student's parent or guardian and make referrals as appropriate in consultation with the student's parent or guardian;
  • Consult with school staff, parents and other community members to help them increase the effectiveness of student education and promote student success;
  • Coordinate people and resources in the school, home and community;
  • With the assistance of school staff, interpret standardized test results and other assessment data that help a student make educational and career plans; and
  • Deliver classroom guidance activities or serve as a consultant to teachers conducting lessons based on the school's guidance curriculum.

A Model Developmental Guidance and Counseling Program for Texas Public Schools: A Guide for Program Development Pre-K - 12th Grade (Third Edition) is available from TEA Publications Distribution and contains information necessary for complying with Senate Bill 518. For ordering information, please visit TEA Publications web page.


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