The Role of Elementary Counselors as Perceived by Elementary Counselors and Principals in the State of Iowa
Among educators there is a diversity of opinion regarding the elementary counselor's role. Consequently job descriptions, where they exist, are inconsistent and arbitrary. Some educators feel that the classroom teacher should be responsible for counseling responsibilities, while others recommend that a professionally trained counselor be on every elementary school staff. The disparity of views led the writer to initiate this investigation. Consequently, the goal is to examine the role of practicing elementary school counselors in Iowa as perceived by elementary school principals and the counselors themselves. A mail survey was used to gather information related to the elementary counselor's role. Ninety-eight elementary counselors and 97 elementary principals in Iowa were surveyed. The survey instrument consisted of an Information Sheet as well as an Opinionnaire. The data were tabulated to show how principals and counselors compare in their perceptions of elementary counselors' roles. The data yielded few differences in perception between principals and counselors. Often, where differences did occur, they were within groups. However, there were areas of principal-counselor disagreement community involvement, the importance of testing programs, the counselor's role in dealing with individual problems.
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