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Wednesday, May 08, 2013

FSCA eNews Update - May 9, 2013

FSCA eNews Update - May 9, 2013

2013 Convention

The 2013 Convention Registration is now open. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
  • You can register online and pay by credit card or, if you want to pay by check or purchase order, indicate this on your online registration and we'll process it when it arrives.
  • If your membership has lapsed or you are not a FSCA member, you will be given the option to add a membership registration at the normal fee. Then, you will automatically be presented with member discounts.
  •  You will also be given the option to purchase professional recognition banquet tickets and pre-convention workshops. To purchase banquet tickets without registering for the convention, go here.
Click here to learn more and register. Other important links:
Submit a Convention Program Proposal
The Florida School Counselor Association is soliciting proposals for ninety minute break out sessions promoting evidence-based programs in the domains of academic, career, and personal/social development or highlighting the latest techniques and practices in school counseling. Presentations need to showcase proven programs, current research, or skills of value to counselors (pre-K to postsecondary) as well as district personnel, graduate students, and counselor educators. Submit electronic proposals and a resume for the primary presenter by July 12, 2013. Proposals received after 5pm on July 12, 2013 will be accepted on a space-available basis only. Proposals of a political, marketing, or for-profit nature will NOT be accepted.
You will be notified by September 1, 2013, with the Program Committee's decision regarding your proposal.
Advocacy Update
Counselors--- SB 154 and HB 801 Last year, FSCA embarked on a three year plan to move Florida's Guidance Counselors into the 21st century. Here is our score card so far:
Year One's plan was to create awareness of school counseling among legislators in Florida. Instead, our issues and goals resonated with a champion in each chamber and legislation was filed in both Senate and House to change our name, align assignments to training and student needs for access, and increase access by ensuring counselors in all schools with ratios closer to the national standard. The legislation was heard in at least one committee and had a highly positive reception.
While we had hoped to file legislation in Year 2 with plans for hearings in later years, we capitalized on our momentum, improved our legislative goals, and filed our legislation again. This time, Sen. Nancy Detert, R-Venice, once again filed the Senate Bill in January and newly elected Rep. Dane Eagle, R-Cape Coral, filed the companion bill in February. By the end of April our efforts were rewarded by having our bills heard in committee and passed in a revised form. This is a major accomplishment when you consider that usually only about 10 percent of filed bills are passed each year. And that number may even be less this year. This bill represents a victory on the way to achieving our full legislative agenda for Florida's students. In this first phase we achieved our name change from Guidance Counselor to School Counselor.
During the session, each of the bills were referenced to three legislative committees in their respective chambers. In these meetings, there were discussions about the fiscal impact of the proposed ratios (and they were thus removed) and discussions about whether assignments should remain in local control. After much discussion and strategizing, it was determined to defer job assignments and ratios to year three. This was validated by two things, first, the bills were heard in a combined six committees with much discussion on the value of certified school counselors, and the fact the bill needs to now move forward with looking at ratios. Legislators were actually raising the issue a need for ratios! The second is the emergence of a partnership with the PTA. They actually had a representative in the committee room, who on at least three occasions, filed a committee form to wave in support of our bill. They are interested in continuing to help us move this initiative forward next year.
Year three (next year), capitalizing on this momentum, we need the membership of FSCA to set up meetings with their local legislators. As we prepare for our biggest effort next year, please go and talk to them, and explain what you do and what they can do to help you do a better job to support your school, the student and their families. Legislators will be back in their district offices over the summer and will have more time to spend talking to you.
As you plan for next year, plan to go to Tallahassee with FSCA to meet with legislators. We believe that the ones who did found it to be enlightening and it sent a powerful message.
Finally, during our “Day on the Hill", FSCA representatives and their advocate, Carole Green arranged an appointment in the Governor’s Office with two members of his staff. Along with discussing our legislation, they also discussed the Governor’s proposal for the across the board $2,500 pay increase for just classroom teachers. We believe these discussions and our awareness campaign contributed to ensuring that school counselors will now receive the same pay increase as other instructional employees.
Thanks to Carole Green and our legislative champions this year, Sen. Detert, Dane Eagle and other who cosponsored and helped our efforts behind the scenes, get ready for action this summer and next year. Get active!

Your membership is so very important to the entire profession of school counseling in Florida. From FSCA's efforts in Tallahassee, to our quality professional development opportunities, to FSCA's curation of tools, resources, and important information -- your membership dollars make a difference. If you have received this and are not a member, it's time to join. If you need to renew your FSCA membership, take a minute and do it now. FSCA's efforts are not cheap and we want to do more!
Nominate a School Counselor or Stakeholder for a Professional Recognition Award
FSCA is committed to recognizing the outstanding work done by School Counselors, Administrators, and Advocates of the School Counseling profession. FSCA recognizes School Counselors and other individuals who excel in promoting and facilitating the role of School Counselors in Florida. Awards will be presented during an Awards Banquet on Friday, November 1, 2013, at the Hilton Bayfront in St. Petersburg, FL during the FSCA Annual Convention, October 31-November 2, 2013.
  • The nomination and application packet deadline is August 16, 2013.
  • Award applicants will be notified on or before September 20, 2013.
  • To submit a nomination, e-mail the completed application (available for download (Word or PDF) and accompanying documents to Terry Kalten at
Award Categories (a description of each of these is available here):
  • School Counselor
  • School Administrator
  • Advocate Award
  • Administrator/Supervisor
  • Community Service
  • School Board Advocacy Award
  • Legislator Award
Important Reminder: Professional Recognition at the State Level (SCA) is required for Professional Recognition at the National Level (ASCA). In addition, all ASCA Nominations for Counselor of the Year must come from the State School Counselor Associations. Only the SCA can submit nominations for the ASCA School Counselor of the Year!
Upcoming Professional Development
FSCA is pleased to provide all Florida school counselors with opportunities for relevant and timely training:
  • June 15, 2013: Building Your School Counseling Toolbox FSCA 2013 Summer Drive-In (Ft. Lauderdale)
  • June 15, 2013: Feeding The Flame: School Counselor Leadership, Collaboration and Accountability (Orlando)
  • June 15, 2013: From Idea to Reality: Starting and Running Effective Small Groups in Any School (Jacksonville).
  • October 31 - November 2, 2013: FSCA Annual Convention (St. Petersburg)
FSCA eNewsletter
Florida School Counselor Online
Submission GuidelinesArticles should provide practical information or advice for school counselors, school counseling graduate students, counselor educators, district-level school counseling professionals, and school and district leaders who work directly with school counselors.  While research can certainly be integrated into articles, our publication is not an academic journal.   Articles must contain original content and any outside sources must be credited appropriately.  There is no minimum or maximum word requirement, though most articles are between 750 and 1000 words.  All submissions must include the following information: author’s name, professional title and location (graduate student at XYZ University, Miami; counselor educator at ABC University, Orlando; school counselor at ABC Middle School, Jacksonville; etc.), FSCA title (member or board/committee position), and e-mail address.  All submissions must be sent via e-mail to by 5 p.m. on the deadline date.
Themes & Deadlines
Fall 2013
Graduate Student Issue
August 1, 2013
Share your insight on navigating field experiences/internships, balancing multiple demands (school, work, family, etc.), making the most of assistantships/research opportunities, the job-search process, and other topics pertinent to students and recent graduates from Master’s, Specialist, and Doctoral programs.
Winter  2013
Counseling Diverse Populations
November 1, 2013
Florida’s students and educators are privileged to study and work in increasingly diverse settings.  However, working with diverse populations can often present challenges to school counselors.  Share your insight and advice for working with students from various backgrounds and their families.  This may include LGBTQ students, ESE/special education students, ELLs, immigrant students and families, students from various racial/ethnic/cultural backgrounds, and more.
ContactShannon Romagnolo, Editor (for submissions) (inquiries)
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