President's Message

By Kelly Curtis, WSCA President

The Wisconsin Comprehensive School Counseling Model (WCSCM) has been our state’s curriculum guide since it replaced the Wisconsin Developmental Guidance Model (WDGM) in 2008. It embraces a program approach which addresses the needs of all students in the three domains we know so well:  Academic, Career and Personal/Social.

The WDGM had served our profession for ten years, and it is possible we will soon see another shift in our state-wide curriculum model.  With the release of ASCA’s Mindsets and Behaviors, the national standards have a new look and a strengthened focus on behaviors, which is so relevant to our profession.  Although the domains remain basically the same, “Personal/Social” has been renamed “Social/Emotional.”

In a recent WSCA survey, we asked Wisconsin school counselors what they would like to see happen with our WCSCM as revisions are considered. Our initial results showed significant interest in adopting the ASCA Mindsets and Behaviors standards in Wisconsin.  As our state looks toward revising our model to keep current with the needs in our profession, we hope decision-makers in the state will seek feedback from school counselors in the field.

ASCA’s Mindsets and Behaviors:

WCSCM Resource and Planning Guide:

DPI Page for WCSCM:

Topic of the Month:  Comprehensive School Counseling Model

Update OnThe Wisconsin Comprehensive School Counseling Model
by Brianne Mehlos 

The Wisconsin Comprehensive School Counseling Model (WCSCM), along with Student Standards and Benchmarks, was based on the earlier Wisconsin Developmental Guidance Model (WDGM), ASCA's National Model for School Counseling Programs (2nd ed.), the National Framework for State Programs of Guidance and Counseling, the Education Trust School Counseling Initiative, and Wisconsin's Quality Educator Initiative (PI 34). Created in 2007, the current WCSCM has guided school counselors’ practice for the past seven years. Knowing that student developmental needs are always changing, consideration is being given to updating the Wisconsin’s Comprehensive School Counseling Model and student standards. Two of the sources being considered as resources for the update are the 3rd Edition of the ASCA National Model: A Framework for School Counseling Programs and the set of recently updated ASCA student standards.
The American School Counseling Association’s National Model (3rd ed.) was released in 2012 and the student standards were updated in 2014. Both updates were done to fit the current work school counselors do and were based on the latest research and best practice. They are designed to enhance student achievement while promoting college and career readiness (ASCA, 2014). The new student standards, "ASCA Mindsets & Behaviors for Student Success: K-12 College- and Career-Readiness Standards for Every Student" describe the knowledge, skills and attitudes that students need to achieve academic success, college and career readiness and social/emotional development. The standards are based on a survey of research and best practices in student achievement from a wide array of educational standards and efforts. For more information about the new standards, view ASCA’s website to learn all about the ASCA Mindsets & Behaviors and the accompanying student competencies database.
As a practicing high school counselor, I encourage you to share your input on what should be done to update to the Wisconsin Comprehensive School Counseling Model and student standards. The Department of Public Instruction has created a very brief 2-question survey for members to provide feedback.

 American School Counselor Association. (2010). Ethical Standards for School Counselors. Retrieved from
Why Use a Comprehensive School Counseling Model?
by Rachel Berg

The ultimate goal of a school counseling program is to support the school’s academic mission.  Many questions come to mind: How do we ensure we are balancing the needs of all students?  How do we demonstrate our effectiveness to our districts?  We all know how hard school counselors work and the value of what we do.  How can we make sure others (parents, teachers, administrators, community members, etc.) are aware of this as well?
A comprehensive school counseling program is a great start to establish your value in a school district.  Whether following the Wisconsin Comprehensive School Counseling Model (WCSCM) or the ASCA’s National Model, comprehensive school programs are driven by student data and based on standards of academic, career and personal/social development.  
School counselors are tasked with using this data to show the effectiveness of their programs, as well as to improve programming for students (  There are several tools that support counselors through this process.  There are two evaluation tools that I would like to reference today: WSCPAR and RAMP.
The Wisconsin School Counselor Program Accountability Report (WSCPAR) is a continuous improvement document that provides school counselors an opportunity to demonstrate a commitment for getting results and communicating how students are different because of the school counseling program at their school.  This report was developed by a Wisconsin School Counselor Association advisory group. (  The WSCPAR is useful in the following ways:

  • presenting a self evaluation of your student support system;
  • preparing/analyzing results that guide programming for all students in their academic, personal/social and career goals;
  • promoting your program to your administration, school board, community partners, businesses and parents/guardians;
  • preparing reports for school accreditation, grants or awards recognition, and
  • implementing the ASCA National Standards and National Model for School Counseling Programs and the Wisconsin Comprehensive School Counseling Program.
While the WSCPAR is a snapshot in time of your school counselor program, the Recognized ASCA Model Program (RAMP) is a process that should be the culmination of the implementation of comprehensive school counseling program.  Once you have a comprehensive program fully implemented, you will need at least one year to collect the data and information needed to fulfill the RAMP application requirements.  While this is a huge undertaking, the following are benefits of applying and receiving recognition:
  • An engraved plaque, suitable for display on your office wall.
  • Communication sent to your school's principal and superintendent informing them of your exemplary school counseling program.
  • Template press release to individualize and send to local press.
  • Use of RAMP logo for business cards, letterhead, Web site or printed materials
  • School recognition at ASCA's annual conference.
  • Two tickets to the RAMP awards celebration at ASCA's annual conference.
  • Recognition in ASCA School Counselor magazine and on the ASCA National Model website.

Both the WSCPAR and the RAMP are great ways to self-reflect and show the effectiveness of your school counseling program.  As Educator Effectiveness, Student Learning Objectives and many other initiatives come down the pike, we as counselors need to find our niche on how to show our value.  Implementing a comprehensive school counseling program and evaluating that program is a positive place to start.  More information and application is available HERE for the WSCPAR, and HERE for the RAMP.

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DPI Corner

With the increase of frequency and intensity of mental health issues in schools, it seems appropriate to publish guest author Kathryn Bush’s article from the January 2014 Sentinel, the newsletter of the Wisconsin School Psychology Association. Dr. Bush’s article will be broken into two parts for February and March editions of WSCAlink.
Thank you to Kathryn and WSPA for their collaboration.
Frequently Asked Questions about School Mental Health: Part 1
Reprinted with permission from the WSPA Sentinel
Kathryn Bush
School Psychology Consultant
Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

  1.  What can community-based mental health providers do in schools?
Mental health (behavioral health) or substance abuse treatment services may be provided by a  Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS)-licensed and Medicaid-enrolled provider working in a Medicaid-enrolled and Department of Health Services Chapter 35-certified mental health outpatient satellite clinic co-located in a school through a memorandum of understanding  with the local school district.  Fees are managed through the clinic’s own collection system.  Payment options usually include Medicaid, private insurance or self-pay.  Direct face to face services are usually billable.  However, services such as “collaboration” and “consultation” are not often billable.  Therefore, it can be financially challenging for a satellite clinic to allow their mental health provider to attend school problem-solving meetings, or consult with school mental health practitioners on recommended strategies.
As of July, there were 118 outpatient satellite clinics collocated in schools, with an additional 30+ applications in process.
  1. What can school districts do to make this more financially viable for co-located clinics?
Schools can collaborate with private, non-profit agencies.  In some cases, those agencies have provided “collaboration” and “consultation” services without cost.  In others, those agencies have helped with grant writing for certain types of funding streams which may be used for such purposes.
Mental health services provided by a DSPS-licensed provider which are not billable services through Medicaid or private insurance may not be paid for by state or federal funds administered by the Department of Public Instruction.  Based upon the Department of Public Instruction's review of applicable statutes and administrative rules, school districts do not have the authority to contract or pay for mental health or substance abuse treatment. School districts may have a different understanding and interpretation of the law, but the Department of Public Instruction does not authorize the use of DPI-administered state or federal grants for these purposes.
  1. What are School Based Services for students with IEPs?
School Based Services are a broad group of direct (face-to-face) medically necessary services listed in the Individualized Educational Plan as a related service for a Medicaid-eligible student identified as having a need for special education and related services. School based services include occupational, physical, speech and language therapy, as well as nursing, psychological, counseling, and social work services. Psychological, counseling and social work services include diagnostic or active treatments intended to reasonably improve the child's physical or mental condition, and are provided by a Department of Public Instruction-licensed school psychologist, counselor or social worker. The following services are covered if they are identified in the child's IEP:
  • Diagnostic testing and evaluation that assesses cognitive, emotional, and social functioning and self-concept.
  • Therapy and treatment that plans, manages, and provides a program of psychological services, counseling, or social work services to children with psychological or behavioral problems.
  • Crisis intervention.
  • Treatment, psychological counseling, and social work services to individuals or groups of two to 10 individuals.
Mental health school-based services provided by a school nurse would be classified as Nursing Services.
  1.  Where can school planning teams go for more information about school mental health services?
There are two national technical assistance centers:  The Center for School Mental Health  and the Center for Mental Health in Schools
The Center for School Mental Health recently coauthored, with the Technical Assistance Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) and the IDEA Partnership, a guide to the Interconnected Systems Framework (ISF), which is described as “the proposed mechanism that can effectively link school mental health  and Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) in order to leverage the individual strengths of  each of these processes and produce enhanced teaching and learning environments through their strategic linkage” (Barrett et al., 2013, v.).  This document can be accessed on the National PBIS website or at the Center for School Mental Health.  This spring, the Wisconsin PBIS Network hosted a webinar on School Based Mental Health through an Interconnected Systems Framework  and is accessible through this dropbox link: The video will initially show in a preview mode that will allow you to see the first 14 minutes of the webinar. You can either download the video to your computer or to your dropbox (if you use it) to see the webinar in its entirety.
The Center for Mental Health in Schools has provided technical assistance for years, online and in person. Access to their overview, toolkit, and more can be found at .  LaCrosse came together as a community – city, county, and schools – to find a way to better meet the needs of their children and youth.  Learn more about their collaborative process at this site:
The National Assembly on School Based Health Care offers 10 critical factors  to advancing school mental health based on the knowledge acquired by early adopters :
The American School Counselor Association, along with 5 other national educational organizations, have offered a framework for safe and successful schools  (Cowan et al., 2013).  This article is suitable to share with student services colleagues and administrators.
Beth Doll, who once was affiliated with the UW Madison school psychology program, has coauthored a book on population-based school mental health services (Doll & Cummings, 2008).
Rogers InHealth has focused on stigma reduction:  Their efforts are evidence-based.  Stigma has been found to be reduced when parents, teachers and children come to believe through personal testimony that mental health problems among children and youth can improve.
  1.  What additional guidance can be expected this year?

This spring, the Student Services/ Prevention and Wellness Team of DPI will begin drafting guidance on expanding mental health services in public schools in Wisconsin.
References for Part 2
Barrett, S., Eber, L., & Weist, M.  Advancing education effectiveness:  Interconnecting school mental health and school-wide positive behavior support. Digital image, accessed August 2014:
Cowan, K. C., Vaillancourt, K., Rossen, E., & Pollitt, K. (2013). A framework for safe and successful schools [Brief]. Bethesda, MD: National Association of School Psychologists. Digital Image: Accessed August 2014 ;
Doll, B. & Cummings, J.A. (Eds.)(2008). Transforming School Mental Health Services: Population-Based Approaches to Promoting the Competency and Wellness of Children.  Thousand Oaks CA: Corwin Press & Arlington VA:  National Association of School Psychologists.
Knopf, D. et al. (2008). The Mental Health of Adolescents: A National Profile, 2008. San Francisco, CA: National Adolescent Health Information Center.

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Board Member Spotlight

Gregg Curtis, PhD: DPI Education Consultant
Hi, I’m Gregg Curtis, your school counseling consultant at DPI. As I thought about what to write for this profile, I was taken back to the words of the late, great poet Jerry Garcia, “What a long, strange trip it’s been.”

Many of you know my story through the various presentations and professional development opportunities I’ve done around the state, so I won’t bore you with the details. Suffices to say that my educational journey has taken me to the University of Iowa three different times; over the years receiving a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education, a Master’s degree in school counseling, and a doctorate in counselor education (with a minor in the social foundations of education).  My various professional careers have included pipefitter (after a 4 year apprenticeship), changer of light bulbs on radio towers, middle school teacher, middle school counselor, university faculty, and most recently education consultant.

For the last three years I have had the honor of serving as your consultant. In that role I endeavor to provide leadership, professional development, and technical assistance for the state's 2400+ school counselors. My job is to represent you in various state-level conversations and to help you do your increasingly difficult job more readily. The recent WSCA Conference allowed me to meet many of you; and I welcome any opportunity to listen to you, talk with you, or just hang out with you.

While we journey together on this path, please let me know if I can be of assistance as you continue your great work with and for your students. As I know from the long, strange trip so far, “A bend in the road is not the end of the road, unless you fail to make the turn.”
Paula Haugle: WSCA Professional Development and Education Chair
I’ll never forget the magic of the first WSCA Conference I attended as a graduate student from Winona State University in 2007.  The professionalism, integrity, and cutting edge professional development that WSCA has come to represent has kept me a very proud member.   I decided to run for the WSCA Board after attending Fall Summit in Chippewa Falls.  Networking with current board members was very rewarding for me.  I wasn’t elected the year I ran, but in June of 2013, I was appointed Professional Development and Education Chair by Lisa Koenecke, the president at the time.  My position is responsible for the Summer Academy and Fall Summit trainings, and I have also taken an active role as a member of the WSCPAR subcommittee.  My time on the board has been rejuvenating as a professional.  I enjoy working with like-minded individuals to serve the professional school counselors of our state and staying on top of current issues facing our profession.  I have been the 4K-12 School Counselor for the School District of Elmwood since the fall of 2007.  Being the only counselor in the district, professional development has always been central to me as a professional.  I’m happy to serve on the WSCA Board Staff as the Professional Development and Education Chair for one more year.

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2015 Annual Conference

150 attendees for the ACP Pre-Conference with Dr. Gregg Curtis!  School Counselors are recognizing the significance we will play in this state mandate and we're getting ready to answer the call!
Lots of exhibitors!  Companies that have resources that could help us in our practice come back year after year because school counselors take advantage of multiple resources to assist our students and families.
Our State Superintendent Tony Evers acknowledged the importance of school counselors in our schools.  He even said, "The WSCPAR is a stroke of genius for [WSCA] in showing accountability."
Over 80 sessions offered!  Many of the sessions were given by practicing school counselors sharing what is working for them so that we can all benefit from each others brilliance!
Cake and champagne celebration of 50 years for WSCA!!!!  From the looks of the photo booth pictures, people did a great job of unwinding after a full day of professional development.
Minnijean Brown Trickey.  She's living history, and her speech was challenging.  Two big takeaways.  FIrst, many of us are not aware of significant moments in the history of the U.S. related to African Americans.  Second, "If African-Americans don't live where you are, there is probably a reason."  To address both of those challenging statements, you may want to take a look at this brief history of African-Americans in Wisconsin:
Paul Wesselman, one of keynotes for next year, wants to hear from us now so he can take all year getting ready for us.  Paul has offered to provide a special inspirational treat to any of our members who connect with him after THIS year’s conference. Send a blank email to (and no spammy stuff, he promises!).
Read Marcus Engel's WSCA Conference Blog posting titled, School Counselors and Silver Bullets  -

Upcoming Events & Announcements

2015-2016 WSCA Elections - The WSCA Board elections online voting booth is now open!
Voting for your WSCA Governing Board is a WSCA membership benefit.  Please take a few minutes to vote for two of the three candidates.  These individuals will represent you and our profession of school counseling. Members of WSCA place their votes on an electronic ballot. Link to vote is at the end of this message. Candidates were introduced to association members  at the Annual WSCA Conference on Wednesday, February 18, 2015. Below is some information regarding the candidates. Elected officials will be announced by April 10, 2015.  Voting ends March 13th 

Candidates Below:
Stacy Eslick
Madison West High School
Madison, WI
CESA 2 Region
Years as a School Counselor = 15
WSCA Treasurer
WSCA Prof. Dev/Education Cmt
WSCPAR Committee & Trainer
WSCA Exec. Dir. Dev. Committee
Click Here for candidate statement
Angela Goebel
Hudson Middle School
Hudson, WI
CESA 11 Region
Years as a School Counselor = 9
PBIS Internal Coach for Hudson
UW-River Falls Instructor
UW-River Falls Intern Supervisor
Click Here for candidate statement
Tabitha Stelter
Spring Hill Elementary School
Wisconsin Dells, WI
CESA 5 Region
Year as a School Counselor = 9
Former WSCA Grad Student Representative
WSCA Counselink Editor
Click Here for candidate statement

Please use the following link to cast your vote:  
If you experience any problems accessing the online voting booth, please contact the WSCA office directly:
Ph: 608.204.9825

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Summer Leadership Academy - Save the Date

Tuesday, July 28, 2015
9:00 - 4: 00 p.m. - Oshkosh, WI
Click Here for more information
Fall Summit - Save the Date

Thursday, Oct 22, 2015
9:00 - 4: 00 p.m. - Turtle Lake, WI
Click Here for more information
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WISCONSIN SCENE!- Network with Statewide School Counselors Today!

The Wisconsin School Counselor Association is excited to announce the addition of "Wisconsin SCENE" to the American School Counselor Association discussion board, ASCA SCENE, located at 
For Directions on how to use Wisconsin Scene Click Here. We hope this new tool helps enhance and support the important work you do as a school counseling professional in Wisconsin.



March 2015

President's Message
By Kelly Curtis

Upcoming Events & Announcements

Be sure to join WSCA at:

View Previous Issues in the WSCALink Archive