The Counseling Gap


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Presentation on Data showing that Gunn High School parents and students are more than twice as dissatisfied with counseling as Paly parents and students are with the teacher-advisor system.

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The Counseling Gap

  1. 1. The Counseling Gap<br />We Can Do Better Palo Alto<br /><br />May 9, 2011<br />Gunn Site Council<br />
  2. 2. % of parents dissatisfied with...<br />Source: PAUSD 2008 and 2010 strategic plan surveys N=660 Gunn, 460 Paly (2008), 440 Gunn, 240 Paly (2010) <br />
  3. 3. % of students dissatisfied with...<br />Source: PAUSD 2008 and 2010 strategic plan surveys N=260 Gunn, 175 Paly (2008) <br />
  4. 4. 2008-2009 Comparison of WASC data from Gunn and Paly<br />Source: 2008-2009 WASC self-study reports, Palo Alto High School and Gunn High School N= N=237, Gunn Students N=1209<br />
  5. 5. 2008-2009 WASC survey at Gunn<br />Source: 2008-2009 WASC self-study report, Gunn High School<br />
  6. 6. Percent of parents who think that improvement of counseling should be a top district priority<br />Source: PAUSD 2008 and 2010 strategic plan surveys N=660 Gunn, 460 Paly (2008)<br />
  7. 7. The "New Trier" Advisory Model<br />"The Advisor room provides an antidote to anonymity, a home away from home.  It is a comfort for students to begin each day with a mentor in whom they can confide and an advocate on whom they can rely for advice and support.”<br /> It’s not just Paly!<br />Paly'ssystem was based on the New Trier Model<br /> One of the first faculty advisement systems, begun in 1928<br /> Nationally recognized for excellence<br /> Each teacher has 25 advisees, meet daily for 25 minutes<br /> Students have the same advisor for all four years<br /> Advisors are supported by guidance counselors and college specialists<br /> Serve as vital communication link between family and school<br />
  8. 8. New Trier High School<br /> Nationally recognized, high-achieving public high school<br /> Ranked by US News as one of the "Best High Schools"<br /> Recognized by NYT, Wash Post, Life Magazine as top school<br /> Similar in size to Palo Alto Unified<br /> 95% of students attend a 4 year college<br /> SAT Scores:<br /> Math: 730 Writing: 680 Reading: 700<br /> 80% of Seniors take AP classes and 80% score 4 or 5<br />
  9. 9. Scholarly Research Strongly Supports Advisory<br /> Stanford Professor Linda Darling-Hammond (Darling-Hammond, Ancess & Ort 2002) has shown that advisory is one of the essential strategies used by schools to improve student achievement and to “ensure connections to parents and attention to student needs.” <br />Wasleyand Lear (2001) argue that a faculty advisory system<br />is “the single most important design element" for personalization and student connectedness.<br /> A Columbia Teacher's College study (Tocci, Hochman & Allen 2005) concludes that advisory is a core element of most  "well-regarded school reform models" and that "advisory is a key mechanism for ensuring that each student will be known<br />well” (Sizer, 1984) by at least one adult in the school.<br />According to Burkhardt (1999) an "advisory system is a simple method that ensures that no secondary school student (middle school, junior high school, or high school) becomes anonymous” (Goldberg, 1997)<br />