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Cullman, AL: More school counseling staff added; "growing numbers of... mental health " issues

Nov 17, 2018, Cullman (AL) Tribune: CCBOE counselors gaining national attention http://cullmansense.com/articles/2018/11/17/ccboe-counselors-gaining-national-attention It has been a busy year for the counseling staff of the Cullman County Board of Education (CCBOE), increasing the number of social workers on staff, offering more career tools to students, helping train a new generation of counselors across the state, and landing a rare invitation to talk about what they’re doing at an upcoming national conference. … In an era of growing numbers of issues with student mental health, substance abuse and family crises, school counselors have in many cases been dismissed as mere career coaches who lack either the ability or the interest to deal with students’ personal problems. While it is true that most school counselors are not degreed psychologists or certified therapists, the CCBOE is taking steps to offer more help to students in crisis through the hiring of in-house social workers and partnerships with community mental health and advocacy agencies. Pinion explained, “People may not know that our system is one of very few that has three social workers now, just because of all the dire mental health issues that are going on within our system… In addition to its staff social workers, CCBOE partners with other agencies to serve the needs of students: …