By Guest Blogger on February 2nd, 2016
From Feb. 1–5, 2016, Florida Virtual School celebrates National School Counseling Week. Each year we celebrate the unique contribution our professional school counselors, within FLVS and nationwide, contribute to our schools.
We celebrate the counselor who day after day helps our students prepare for life after high school. We celebrate the counselor who day after day helps our students learn from their failures and celebrate their victories, no matter how large or small. We celebrate the counselor who day after day helps our students learn to overcome personal and academic challenges so as to reach and build the future they seek. Continue reading
By Amy LaGrasta on October 26th, 2015
While it may seem difficult or feel awkward, it is important that parents have these conversations and keep the lines of communication open. Research shows that talking to your child early and often is key.
According to the National Family Partnership, children of parents who talk to their teens regularly about drugs are 42 percent less likely to use drugs than those who don’t, yet only a quarter of teens report having these conversations.
Almost 90 percent of youth reported that their parents would strongly disapprove of their trying marijuana once or twice. Among these youths, only 5.1 percent had used marijuana in the past month. However, Continue reading
By Guest Blogger on September 2nd, 2014
Text, Twitter, YouTube, Snapchat…these are but a few of the new and most common ways for today’s generation to communicate. Gone are the days of face-to-face time. Gone are the days of just sitting on the porch and shooting the breeze for hours. Gone are the days of chatting on the phone until late at night and mom coming in and saying “Hey, it’s time to hang up and go to bed.”
Today’s teens spend their hours not speaking with each other, but texting, posting videos, and of course, taking selfies. In May 2014, the term “selfie” joined the Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. (“Selfie: An image of oneself taken by oneself using a digital camera especially for posting on social networks.”) It is now a permanent part of the American vocabulary. Today, kids don’t see the need for words, when a selfie can express what life is all about. Continue reading
By Amy LaGrasta on April 24th, 2014
Stop and think about your life’s journey so far.
Some of us are just getting started on school, many are at the beginning of our careers, and others are nearing retirement. The reality for all of us is that every choice we make and action we take has gotten each of us to where we are today. You, and you alone, are responsible for your happiness or unhappiness, success or failure.
Fate and luck are of no consequence. Accepting personal responsibility is the first step to success. It is the only requirement needed to achieve goals. If you say things like, “it’s not my fault” or “life is unfair,” then you have not yet accepted responsibility for your actions.
It is not too late or too hard to change.
By Guest Blogger on April 22nd, 2014
No matter where you are on your college exploration path, there is a tool that can help you with your research.
The National Center for Education Statistics offers a free college research site that does exactly what its slogan says: “Find the right college for you.”
Using the College Navigator Search Options on the left-side panel of this helpful website, you can search for information about colleges in multiple ways. This blog post walks you through a few features you might find handy.
Get started by visiting the College Navigator online.
By Amy LaGrasta on March 24th, 2014
March is Self-Injury Awareness Month.
Each year, approximately 2 million cases of self-injury are reported annually in the United States. One in five females and one in seven males engage in self-injury. Ninety percent of people who engage in self harm begin during their teenage or pre-adolescent years.
Self-harm can be a way of coping with problems. It may help express feelings that can’t be put into words, serve as a distraction from life, or release emotional pain. Afterwards, one might feel better—but only for a little while. Although self-harm may give temporary relief, it comes with a cost. In the long term, it causes far more problems than it solves. By not learning healthy ways to deal with emotional pain, it increases risk for bigger problems down the line, including major depression, drug and alcohol addiction, and suicide. Continue reading
By Amy LaGrasta on February 24th, 2014
Dating violence is defined by the National Center for Victims of Crime as controlling, abusive, and aggressive behavior in a romantic relationship.
It can include verbal, emotional, physical, or sexual abuse. Teen dating violence runs across race, gender, and socio-economic lines. Anyone can be a victim of dating violence.
One in three teens reports knowing a friend or peer who has been hit, punched, kicked, slapped, or physically hurt by his/her dating partner. Both males and females are victims, but boys and girls are abusive in different ways. Girls are more likely to yell, threaten to hurt themselves, pinch, slap, scratch, or kick. Boys injure girls more severely and frequently. Continue reading
By Amy LaGrasta on February 4th, 2014
National School Counseling Week is February 3-7, 2014.
School counselors are certified school professionals who specialize in helping students make decisions about their personal and educational needs while providing information about colleges and other life choices. The school counseling profession started about 100 years ago with caring teachers that helped their students plan for the future. In the early 1900s, students began to have more educational and occupational options so school counseling became its own profession.
The role of the counselor has changed over the years, but the focus remains the same. School counselors help all students in the areas of academic achievement, personal/social development, and career development, ensuring today’s students become the productive, well-adjusted adults of tomorrow. Continue reading
By Amy LaGrasta on October 25th, 2013
Although many of us know that Red Ribbon Week is recognized annually during the last week of October to raise awareness about the dangers of drugs and alcohol, you may not know the history behind it. It all started with one man, Enrique “Kiki” Camarena. Kiki joined the Marine Corps after high school. After his discharge, he worked as a fireman, police officer, and narcotics investigator. Kiki’s devotion to keeping drugs off the streets and out of schools led him to join the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). Kiki was assigned to the DEA office in Mexico and his mission was to stop the drug trade from crossing the borders into the US. Continue reading
By Amy LaGrasta on October 8th, 2013
Be aware of the signs of bullying, pay attention to your students, and check in frequently to ensure their safety. One of the best ways to prevent and reduce bullying is to talk about it. Continue reading