Rick Schneider Middle School

Principal: Kristin Still

Section I: Role of our School Counselors

At Rick Schneider Middle School, our School Counselors serve the educational, social, and emotional needs of students through school-wide guidance, individual sessions, and group counseling sessions so that each child will become a productive member of society. Our School Counselors collaborate with the administrative team to develop programs and support families including parent education, consultation, resources, and referrals.

Leadership and Advocacy

Our success at Rick Schneider Middle School is largely due to the active role the Counselors play on the administrative team. They conduct weekly group and individual student counseling sessions for specific students with greater needs. One example of their leadership on campus is when our Counselors meet with teacher teams during their Professional Learning Communities to better equip our teachers on needed skills to help students who are in crisis or have undergone past trauma. Teacher teams spent the past year receiving monthly social/emotional training to better understand and support our students’ emotional needs in the classroom setting.

Section II: Program Implementation Cycle

School Counseling Advisory Council

The Rick Schneider Middle School Counseling Advisory Council (CAC) meets 4 times each school year: September, October, December, and March.

Kristin Still, Principal

Oziel Chapa, Assistant Principal

Justin Duncan, Assistant Principal

Danielle Knight, School Counselor

Maricela Escamilla, School Counselor

Beckie Patterson, Teacher

Trey Jones, Teacher

Rosa Garza, Parent Representative

Sofia Garza, Student Representative

Laura Salinas, Communities in Schools Representative

Use of Implementation Cycle:

At the last meeting of the year, the CAC celebrated our CREST win for the second year in a row and discussed updating our program plan for the 2019-2020 school year based on feedback received from our school family needs assessment. For instance, we discussed our attendance data, and ways we can improve attendance on campus. The CAC collaborated with the Foundations team and the Administration team to put in place fun activities and dress up days to help increase attendance.

Section III: Foundational Components

Pasadena ISD Counseling Department's Mission Statement

The Pasadena ISD counseling department empowers students to become accomplished, self-directed, collaborative, lifelong learners, who boldly contribute to an increasingly complex and evolving world. Through the participation in a comprehensive school counseling program, all students will engage in positive relationships to help create a safe learning environment. The comprehensive counseling program encourages academic rigor and career exploration in order to involve all students in self-exploration and to promote the ability to find innovative meaningful experiences that enrich students’ lives.

Definition, Rationale, and Assumptions


The Pasadena ISD Counseling Department will support and advance the social and emotional health, as well as the college and career development of all students through the delivery of a comprehensive guidance program. Students will receive supports through individual and group counseling, guidance curriculum, along with referral services provided through a variety of community partnerships.


The Pasadena ISD Counseling Department promotes social/emotional and academic development to support, empower and shape positive, assertive students. The counseling program addresses competencies such as health and safety, Intra/Interpersonal effectiveness, along with college and career planning. Pasadena ISD counselors will accomplish these goals through student, staff and parent needs assessments to inform the campus comprehensive guidance program on how to best meet the needs of the school community. The professional school counselor utilizes individual and group counseling, guidance lessons, district resources, advocacy, and consultation to meet the unique and diverse needs of all students.


For the Rick Schneider Middle School Counseling program to be implemented and effective, the following conditions and resources are necessary.

  • Use of data: student/staff/parent needs assessments, campus data (discipline, attendance, achievement).

  • Campus supports: staff supports the role of the school counselor and all support counseling program goals.

  • Training: District provides relevant training to enhance the campus comprehensive guidance program and support the work of the school counselor

  • Materials/Supplies: Campus budget and district supports are available to ensure curriculum and general supply needs are met

  • Organizational and Communication Tools: Calendar for campus and district is communicated and organized for best planning.

  • District Supports: Guidelines and procedures are communicated and readily available to the school counselor

  • Role of the Counselor: Campus and district support the role of the school counselor and make every effort to protect the integrity of the position.

  • Community Partners: Community partners exist to support the overall physical and mental health of all students.

Developing Program Goals

School counseling program goals are key to ensure a purposeful and successful comprehensive school counseling program. SMART goals help tailor our school counseling interventions to meet the needs of our students, staff, and community. The goals are data driven, and the data is from a variety of sources. Data sources include needs assessments (student, staff, and parent), observations, discipline and attendance reports, our campus improvement plan, and academic performance. Reviewing this data helps the counselors identify areas of need or significance that can be addressed through our comprehensive school counseling program.

Evaluating Our Program

At the end of each school year, RSMS school counselors will re-evaluate each SMART goal set in our counseling program through the use of our campus/district needs assessments, district initiatives, and campus-based data on attendance, discipline, and academic performance. The counselors will also utilize our Counseling Advisory Committee to help determine the effectiveness of the interventions and programs implemented. This moment of reflection will help us continuously gauge how well our program supports its stakeholders and make adjustments as needed.

Section IV: Four Service Delivery Components

SMART Goals by Delivery Components

Individual Planning:

At the beginning of every grading period, the school counselors will collaborate with teachers to set an individual academic, reading, and behavior goal for every student to meet by the end of the grading period so that each student can attend a motivational incentive event. Reading goals will be set by each individual student ability level. By the end of the school year, the number of students that meet their academic, reading, and behavior goal will increase by at least 20%.

Guidance Planning:

Counselors will provide a minimum of five Conscious Discipline guidance lesson plans and activities for teachers to deliver to students by the end of the first grading period on the topics of Brain States, Composure, Self-Regulation, Choices, and Consequences.

Responsive Services:

Counselors will provide a minimum of 6 sessions of trauma group counseling using Healing the Experience of Trauma: Path to Resilience guidebook. Trauma counseling will be provided to students that score in the “moderate to severe” range on the trauma screening tool. At the end of the 6 sessions, trauma screening scores will decrease by 50%.

System Support:

By the end of the 18-19 school year, counselors will train 100% of teaching staff about how to create a positive classroom climate and culture using the Seven Powers of Conscious Discipline curriculum. Progress will be measured by a teacher self-report that will be completed before and after the lessons have been delivered.

Activity by Service Component

Individual Planning:
  • Academic, Behavior, and Reading goal setting with each student
  • Truancy Conferences for students with more than 15 unexcused absences
  • Home visits for students with more than 6 consecutive absences
  • Individual counseling for students with BIPs and by student request
  • Respond to all individual counseling requests via online counseling referral
  • Organize School Club program so that every student on campus participates in a school club during the school day
  • Mentor program with Community Partner for students with academic, social/emotional, and/or behavior needs
  • Individual elective course selection for every current and incoming student
  • Gifted and Talented Program screening of all enrolled students
  • Create individual 504 plans
  • Build master schedule around specific student learning needs
  • Provide access to social service needs including food, shelter, clothing, Christmas presents, Thanksgiving meal, transportation for homeless students and migrant students
  • Collaborate with feeder campus to organize Spanish 1 and Spanish 2 Credit by Exam for students to earn high school credit
  • Duke TIP Talent Search
  • Summer School Registration

Guidance Planning:
  • Kids 2 College lessons addressing learning styles inventory, high school options, types of degrees, college admission requirements, paying for college, career exploration.
  • Conscious Discipline lessons on Brain States, Composure, Self-Regulation, Choices, and Consequences.
  • Red Ribbon Week drug awareness lessons and class competitions
  • Internet Safety school assembly by Crime Stoppers
  • “Start With Hello” week lessons on social isolation
  • Anti-Bullying week Kindness Challenges
  • Attitude of Gratitude Week
  • Student and Staff Shout-Outs
  • Sixth grade lessons on Texas High School Graduation Plans and High School options
  • Community Service Project- Canned Food Drive
  • Fire Prevention Week lessons
  • Pennies For Patients Fundraiser for Leukemia patients

Responsive Services:

  • Operation Blessings Coordinator/ Thanksgiving food baskets
  • Spartan Elves Toy Give-away
  • Responded to 178 online counseling referrals in addition to counseling referrals submitted by teachers, students, and parents.
  • 140 students referred to Communities in Schools social worker
  • School supplies, clothing needs, hygiene needs, social services provided through Communities in Schools program
  • McKinney Vento program case management
  • 13 Referrals to Crisis Intervention Specialist
  • Suicide and Violence Risk Assessments
  • ADHD/Impulsive Behavior Student Support Group
  • Self-Harm Support Group
  • Grief Support Group
  • Trauma Support Group
  • Stay-Away Contracts and Victim Coaching
  • Backpack Buddy Program

System Support:

  • Teacher Appreciation Week coordinator
  • Campus Events Calendar for parents
  • Social Media manager
  • Parent Coordinator/ Title 1 Coordinator
  • 504 Training
  • Parent Coffee Chats/ Parent Education Classes
  • Campus Improvement Plan contributors
  • School Messenger (Phone Callouts) manager
  • Team Building for staff meetings and New Teacher Orientation
  • Jingle Jam Coordinator (Christmas Follies/Talent Show)
  • New Student Orientation coordinator
  • Safe and Civil/PBIS Team member
  • Bell Schedule manager
  • Partners in Pasadena Campus Liaison
  • Feeder Campus visit Field Trip Organizer

Individual Planning Highlight

Our Counseling team collaborated with our Safe and Civil/PBIS team to organize fun incentive events for each grading periods during the 18-19 school year to motivate students to achieve their academic, behavior, and reading goals. The counselors collaborated with teachers to set achievement goals with each student, and if goals were met at the end of each grading period, students were eligible to attend a fun event to celebrate their accomplishments. The goal was for the number of students that met their goals to increase each grading period in a single school year. After analyzing the results, the data showed positive results! The percentage of students eligible to attend did increase from the beginning of the year to the end of the year; however, there was a dip in percentage during the third grading period. This is the time of year when the curriculum becomes more rigorous, and staff and students are preparing for STAAR testing. This data showed us that we may need to implement additional motivational interventions during this time to promote grit and perseverance to achieve student goals.

Guidance Planning Highlight

During the 2017-2018 school year, our discipline data showed that 55 office referrals were due to fighting/ mutual combat. In response to this data, the counseling team started the 2018-2019 school year by preparing five guidance lessons for our 5th and 6th grade students to implement during the first grading period. The lessons were designed to help them learn and identify the three brain states, notice their personal triggers, and identify and use coping strategies to help them go from upset to calm. These lessons are based on Conscious Discipline, our character education program. The key concepts taught in the guidance lessons were also repeated in the teacher trainings that were presented by counselors in Professional Learning Communities and were repeated throughout the school year during counseling sessions and classroom lessons. During counseling sessions, students were all able to identify all three brain states and identify which brain state they were stuck in during the time of upset and ways to shift to a higher state. After reviewing discipline data, our goal to reduce the incidents of fighting and mutual combat was achieved! There was a 14% decrease in office referrals related to fighting/mutual combat in one school year, and an 8% decrease in the number of fighting/mutual combat incidents from the previous school year.
Big picture

System Support Highlight

One of our professional goals for the 2018-19 school year was to provide social-emotional learning to our teachers. Counselors presented seven different lessons monthly to our staff and presented them in their Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). The presentations were based on Conscious Discipline’s Seven Powers of Discipline. The purpose of presenting these trainings was to provide skills to the teachers to help them build relationships and make connections with all their students. The lessons helped them shift their mindset and see misbehavior as a call for help and turn them into teachable moments by controlling their own upset, identifying personal triggers, seeing the best in others, offering positive choices, noticing rather than judging, being assertive, and assigning appropriate consequences. Before each lesson was presented, teachers were given a “Skills for Creating a School Family” self-report. Teachers were asked to commit to focus on one skill for the 18-19 school year, and Composure was the skill chosen. Out of 47 responses from teachers, the average level of self-rating of the Composure skill increased from an average of 2.62 (partial development or implementation) to 3.29 (general development and mostly functional implementation) by the end of the school year.
Big picture
Big picture

Parent Collaboration Highlight

RSMS School Counselors collaborated with parents to have a successful Kids to College field trip to University of Houston. Greater Houston Police Activites League Officer Anthony Triplett also came along to help students learn about college life. Students were able to visit the Bauer College of Business, the Student Center, and get a view of residential life.

Section V: Program Curriculum

Discipline reports showed a large percentage of office referrals for fighting or mutual combat. In response to this data, counselors organized an initiative to address the area of interpersonal effectiveness with plans to better help students manage upset. Starting the first two weeks of school, guidance lessons were developed for our 5th and 6th grade students to help them learn and identify the three brain states, notice their personal triggers, and identify and use coping strategies to help them go from upset to calm. These lessons are based on Conscious Discipline, our character education program. Following the first round of guidance lessons, our school participated in the Sandy Hook Foundation program called “Start With Hello” which comprised of classroom lessons, ice breakers, and connection activities to reduce social isolation and promote positive relationships. During Anti-Bullying Week, counselors organized a school-wide Kindness Challenge in which all students and staff participated. Following that, all students and staff participate in a week of “Attitude of Gratitude” activities, which is a week in November focused on students being helpful, kind, and grateful to their school family and community.
The Rick Schneider Middle School counselors value the input and collaboration from all stakeholders including teachers, counselors from other schools, district specialists, parents, community partners, district resources, the school nurse, and students. The counseling program needs are shared with all stakeholders, and assistance is utilized from all resources to ensure that all delivery component expectations are being met. The Pasadena ISD counseling department works closely together to support one another to share resources among schools to meet the needs in the areas of Guidance Curriculum and Responsive Services. The Individual Planning component is a collaboration of teachers, community partners, and the administrative team on campus. Lines of communication between counselors and stakeholders are always open through school website, social media, emails, newsletters, callouts, text messages, and word of mouth. Counselors believe that all feedback is crucial to the continued growth of the counseling program.