Office of School Counseling

Friday Sendoff - November 15, 2019

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Adapted from The Self-Care Institute

This a month where it is common to say yes to too many things. Saying no can be difficult and we sometimes end up saying yes and disregarding our own needs to please others, to avoid conflict, to avoid guilt, or to avoid the discomfort that can come with saying no. However, saying no is often necessary because an inability to say no can lead to exhaustion, resentment, and feeling like you don’t have control of your own life.

Here are five tips for compassionately saying no to others:

1. Use the "No" Thank You Sandwich (put "no" in between two "thank yous"). For example, "Thank you so much for thinking of me. I'm not available to do that. Thank you again, I really hope you have a great time!"

2. Smile softly, make eye contact, shake your head gently, and say "no." It matters how you say no. Say it with kindness, respect, and patience.

3. Try transparency. "It's really difficult for me to say no to this, and it does make me feel guilty. I'm really sorry but I just can't do that right now because I feel so overwhelmed."

4. You don't have to give a reason or explanation. There's no need to over-explain yourself. However, you can give a reason if it feels right to. If you do give a reason, be honest. Exaggerating or straying even a little from the truth will leave you with a feeling of guilt.

5. Try to not give a quick "yes." Instead, a response like "let me get back to you on that" buys yourself some time so you can make an informed decision and plan out your response rather than automatically saying yes.

If saying no is difficult for you, you are not alone. This is a practice you can get better at and saying “no” is a skill you can learn and develop.

MUST DO ITEMS - Please read this section carefully


Use of Time - Please be sure that you are not only tracking your use of time and daily contacts every day but that you are also totaling up your numbers on a weekly or monthly basis. We will be collecting the first semester of Use of Time data on January 31st. You don't want to find yourself spending hours and hours totaling everything up on that day.

Upcoming Meetings

Elementary Counselors Meeting

Thursday, Nov. 21st, 9:30am-12:30pm

3505 Resource Drive

Randallstown, MD

You asked, we listened! We will get a full Conscious Discipline training, including how to infuse it into our lessons, groups, individual sessions, and conversations with staff and families.

First Year Counselors Meeting

Thursday, Nov. 21st, 1-3pm

3505 Resource Drive

Randallstown, MD

Middle School Counselors Meeting (morning option)

Wednesday, Dec. 4th, 8-11am

1114 Shawan Road

Cockeysville, MD

This session will provide a basic understanding of multiple gender identifies, a history of gender, basic terminology regarding identities and sexual orientation, techniques to create environments for non-conforming students and staff, and to learn strategies to support students dealing with harassment or micro-aggressions. 3 CEU's will be available.

Middle School Counselors Meeting (afternoon option)

Wednesday, Dec. 4th, 12-3pm

1114 Shawan Road

Cockeysville, MD

This session will provide a basic understanding of multiple gender identifies, a history of gender, basic terminology regarding identities and sexual orientation, techniques to create environments for non-conforming students and staff, and to learn strategies to support students dealing with harassment or micro-aggressions. 3 CEU's will be available.

High School Counselors Meeting (option 1)

Thursday, Dec. 5th, 7:30-10:30am

2034 Greenspring Drive

Lutherville-Timonium, MD

This session will provide a basic understanding of multiple gender identifies, a history of gender, basic terminology regarding identities and sexual orientation, techniques to create environments for non-conforming students and staff, and to learn strategies to support students dealing with harassment or micro-aggressions. 3 CEU's will be available.

High School Counselors Meeting (option 2)

Thursday, Dec. 5th, 11:30am-2:30pm

2034 Greenspring Drive

Lutherville-Timonium, MD

This session will provide a basic understanding of multiple gender identifies, a history of gender, basic terminology regarding identities and sexual orientation, techniques to create environments for non-conforming students and staff, and to learn strategies to support students dealing with harassment or micro-aggressions. 3 CEU's will be available.


**NEW** Alateen Groups for Children of Addicts - Did you know that Alateen is now an approved School Based Mental Health partnership? By allowing Alateen to run groups in your school, we can remove the barrier of transportation to their center in Towson. If you are interested in partnering with Alateen, contact to get more information.

Presentations from the recent MD-SPIN Suicide Prevention Conference are available on their website.

The Maryland Department of Health (MDH) Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control has compiled a new webpage – Key Resources on E-cigarettes and Vaping. This new resource provides a “one stop shop” for information and materials to help address youth use of tobacco products, including electronic smoking devices (ESDs) such as e-cigarettes, vapes, and pod devices like JUUL®. As you know, use of these products has skyrocketed over the past few years – with a 78% increase in vaping among high school youth from 2017 to 2018 alone – leading the U.S. Surgeon General to classify this drastic rise in vaping an ‘epidemic’. On the website you will find materials and resources your staff and teachers can share with parents, students, and community members – with individualized links for each audience. There are also programs specifically designed as alternatives to suspension for schools to raise awareness on the harms of these products and to help students quit.

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**NEW** Take some time away from the madness and join BCACD and your colleagues for a get together on December 6th at 4:30 - 7:30! RSVP to Flyer is attached below.

Secondary Department Chairs

Unpaid Guest Speakers - Attached is a letter that should be completed by schools/offices for no-charge speakers, such as college and career reps and military recruiters. This letter will soon be posted to the Office of Purchasing intranet page and a BCPS Sup's weekly bulletin item will also be posted.

Workforce Job Trends: Updated LMI Summaries from Workforce Development are attached below.

High School Department Chairs

**NEW** Diploma Process 2020

This message was sent to Diploma Specialists and Back-up Diploma Specialists:

My name is Linda Rehak ( and I will be coordinating the collection of diploma names for the Class of 2020!

This email marks the start of collecting names of potential gradates. The attachments provide:

· Directions for ‘Generating Potential Graduate List for Diploma Ordering’

· The blank excel document that needs to be completed and returned by Friday, November 22, 2019 to Linda Rehak (

· Documentation for principal’s signature, only if your principal is new to your school for the 2019-2020 school year. Have the new principal use black ink to sign the left-hand side of the document, scan and return to

· Review the 2020 High School Graduation Schedule

In order to ensure that information is provided to Herff-Jones for printing and diplomas are printed in a timely manner. Please note, we have received a new format for the excel spreadsheet, please only use the attached spreadsheet to complete this task. The form needs to be completed and returned no later than Friday, November 22, 2019.

When completing the excel spreadsheet ensure:

  • Please include ALL potential 2020 graduates, including those that may graduate in the Summer of 2020, as-well-as those that may be in alternative settings
  • The first, middle and last name as well as any suffix, with appropriate punctuation is typed in column A
  • Type the date of your graduation in column B, C, and D
  • Type your school name in column E
  • Type Diploma, MD Cert or Int’l Cert in column F – this should be specific to the individual student


  • Students should be listed in alphabetical order grouped by Diploma, then skip 3 lines and list alphabetically grouped by Certificate (see blank spreadsheet for example)
  • When creating the list, please do not alter the spreadsheet (do not type in all capitals, do not bold, do not use highlighting, nor different colors, do not add title columns, do not add additional notes)
  • Save this spreadsheet, naming the file your school name

When you send the email back, please include in the body of the email:

· Total number of diploma candidates

· Total number of MD certificate candidates

· Total number of International Certificates candidates

NEW: Starting this year, schools will be receiving their diplomas and covers directly from the company, Herff-Jones. These boxes are clearly marked on the outside indicating graduation materials. The diplomas will be sent separately from the covers. The address labels will state the school name and the name of the diploma specialist.

If there are any corrections or additions after the original form is submitted, please use the same excel template and complete the required information for only for the corrections and/or new students.

Don't forget! Please submit your College Counselor Implementation Plan to your specialist by 11/22.

High School Counselors

Bank of America Student Leaders Program for Current Juniors and Seniors

This is a unique opportunity for high school juniors & seniors to earn a paid internship at a local non-profit organization and participate in a national leadership summit in Washington DC. Past hosts of our interns have included – Strong City, Teach for America & Guidewell Financial Solutions. This program is unique as there is no academic requirement for admission. They are looking for youth that are passionate about their community and making an impact in the world. (see flyer attached below)

Year Up Baltimore The Maryland College Application Campaign (MCAC) has partnered with Year Up Baltimore to provide a pathway to career and education. The Year Up Baltimore is a one-year training program for young adults, ages 18-24. It provides an intensive year-long program with a combination of hands-on skills development, coursework eligible for college credit, corporate internships, and wraparound support. For the first six months of the program, students develop technical and professional skills in the classroom. Students apply those skills during the second six months in an internship with one of Year Up’s corporate partners. To provide young adult a stepping stone to their college experience and/or to a career path

Middle School Department Chairs

The link for this month's College and Career Newsletter is: Please share with families and community members.

Remember that fabulous chart of EVERY CTE and magnet program in BCPS that Alicia Fales presented to you in September? We were able to get an electronic version of it. It has been added to the Schoology group in the CTE Resources folder. It is also attached below.

College Counselors

**NEW** Cornell College: Evaluating College Choices

November 2019

What makes a student say yes to a college?

Inside Higher Ed writer Matt Reed examined this question and posed it to his readers.

Career coaches matter

Ultimately, your students' college journey should end with a terrific launch into graduate school or a career. Hear what students at Cornell have to say about the Berry Career Institute's career coaching.

A College Evaluation guide

We've put together a resource that explains how to evaluate colleges that you can use with your students and their parents when they struggle to make a decision.

Skills training, short-term certificates, or 4 years of college?
What should you keep in mind when students ask what the differences might be between a 4-year college degree and short-term skills or certificate training?

Discover CCBC Information Sessions The Admissions Office will host Discover CCBC Information Sessions on Saturday, November 9th and Saturday, December 14th at 9a.m. See flyer attached below.

MHEC Financial Assistance Programs

State Financial Assistance Programs and Applications

Tuition Waiver for Unaccompanied Homeless Youth

Tuition Waiver for Foster Care Recipients

NACAC Request for Admission Application Fee Waiver

Students who have limited financial resources may use the NACAC Request for Application Fee Waiver Form when applying for college. The form — aimed at students planning to enroll in post-secondary education immediately following high school graduation — helps ensure that access to college is possible for all.

College Fly-Ins

Landmark College Professional Visit Days

University of Tampa - 2/16-17, 2020

Southern Illinois University - 3/19-20, 2020

Roanoke College - 3/22-23, 2020

Saint Anselm College Counselor Fly-in Visit Program - 3/29-31, 2020

PCACAC College Tour - 4/1-4, 2020

MU/UD Counselor Visit Program - 4/26-28, 2020

York College Counselors Breakfasts on 11/9, 11/16, and 12/7

Recently added/updated Scholarships in Naviance

Science Ambassador Scholarship

UMBC Sherman STEM Teacher Scholars Program

UMBC Center for Women in Technology Scholars Program

UMBC Cyber Scholars Program

UMBC Humanities Scholars Program

UMBC Linehan Artist Scholars Program

UMBC Meyerhoff Scholars Program

UMBC Sondheim Public Affairs Scholars Program

Mensa Scholarship

Against The Grain Groundbreaker Leadership Scholarship

Burger King Scholars Program

Live Mas Scholarship

Relevant Bulletin Items

November 8, 2019 Bulletin






Professional Development

"Lunch & Learn" sessions provided by the Maryland Suicide Prevention & Early Intervention Network (MD-SPIN)

Traumatic Brain Injury & Suicide Risk 11/21 @12:00 - 1:00

Our Duty to Protect: Suicide Prevention for Mental Health Clinicians 12/19 @ 12:00 - 1:00

Register for either or both here. (The link may be blocked on BCPS wifi, so you may need to access it elsewhere).

Are you an LCPC looking to become a Board-Approved Supervisor? LCPCM has an upcoming Supervision Workshop. December 12-13 in Columbia. 18 CEU's

If you plan to attend any professional developments during the school day (outside of our mandatory meetings), you must get permission from your principal to be out of the building for that time.
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Resource Roundup

**FREE Resources from Counselor Keri** Keri sends out free individual/group counseling and classroom lesson ideas every week. Recent free resources have included group ice breakers, coping skills coloring pages, and a weekly kindness log. Sign up here.

Check out this idea from Counselor Keri!! Games that Teach Self-Control 6 out of the 10 don't require any materials! (Warning - the link may not work in BCPS wifi. You may need to pull it up elsewhere.)

Lending Library Items of the Week:

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School Counselor Resource Series: Mastering Test Anxiety

Test-taking skills are important assets that help individuals flourish and excel in school and beyond, but many students struggle with test anxiety. Learning relaxation techniques and strategies to reframe tests as opportunities will help students go from surviving in school to thriving. This Resource Series publication contains a comprehensive 12-week curriculum including lesson plans, suggestions and reproducible materials for use with a group or class. Updated in 2019 to align with the ASCA Mindsets & Behaviors.

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Better Test-Taking Skills in 5 Minutes a Day: Fun Activities to Boost Test Scores for Kids and Parents on the Go

Better Test-Taking skills in 5 Minutes a Day is a low preparation and fun-learning aid. You'll discover a practical collection of quick ideas and methods to help your intermediate grade child develop essential test-taking skills, long-term preparations strategies, and techniques for conquering specific test types, including essays. This exciting teaching resource provides valuable learning tools in an interesting, interactive format that includes:
·At the Kitchen Table: Activities for you and your child to do together
·On the Go: Activities for in the car, while waiting in line—anywhere!
·On Your Own: Supplementary activities for you and your child
·Imagine that! and Just for Fun!: Informative and fun facts and jokes
·And Much more!

Office of School Counseling Lending Library

Inspiration and Good News

Glenmar Elementary celebrated World Kindness Day by wearing tee shirts that promote kindness. Students also enjoyed taking photos in their Kindness Photo Booth!

The Counselors at Edmondson Heights organized a pep rally and invited the Woodlawn Marching Band and Dance Team as well as the local rec football team. What a great way to partner with the community!


Schoology Access Codes

Elementary Counseling Curriculum: M4HSN-FCFN4

Secondary Counseling Curriculum: CFBV7-B6PCM

Threat Management: Q6RHK-WHHVC

College and Career Counseling: PFZD6-65N4V

Curriculum Updates: T7BM2-R8JSC

GSA Sponsors (LGBTQ+ resources): ZMBZ-4QXP-DKC89

Contact Information

Naviance Support: 1-866-337-0080 option 2 &

Signup Genius Support:

CPS email address:

MHEC FAFSA Completion (MD CAPS):

Counselor T-Shirt Designs

Want to make a custom shirt for you or your department? Check out these svg desgins. There's a kiosk outside of Burlington in Security Mall that can make one for you.