Wellbeing & Belonging
Maranatha Christian Academy Counseling Department is focused on providing data-driven, developmentally appropriate, and Christ-Centered counseling services to all of our students. We have a counselor that focuses on each level of development, Katie Welhouse in elementary (k-4), Jason Polzin in middle (5-8), and Andrea Shoup for the high school (9-12). In order to do so most effectively, MCA School Counselors collaborate with all stakeholders in students’ lives. We seek to empower students to find their voice, to advocate for themselves and for others with integrity and conviction. Ultimately, the Counseling Department aims to equip all students with the tools to thrive in a rapidly changing world with confidence in their immense value as a unique creation of God, using the abilities He has placed in each one.
"School counselors are committed to supporting students’ social/emotional needs. As advocates for students, school counselors promote a positive environment that enhances students’ ability to properly manage the social/emotional demands of their lives. School counselors use appropriate appraisal methods to promote a school environment designed to propel students toward positive mindsets and behaviors supporting social/emotional development through direct (e.g., classroom curriculum, group counseling and individual counseling) and indirect (e.g., collaborating or consulting with staff, families or communities) services." -SchoolCounselor.org
Personal, Social, and Emotional Counseling
All counselors work with students in the following ways:
- Individual meetings to support students regarding personal needs or social/emotional concerns, academic achievement, and college/career planning. The school counselor offers brief short-term counseling to students and collaborates with families, when necessary.
- Consultation and collaboration with parents and teachers. The school counselor works with parents and teachers and may make referrals if a student may benefit from more long-term counseling.
- Responsive services for students in crisis that may need immediate intervention and assistance.
- Small group counseling is designed to help young people build relationships while learning to understand their feelings regarding a myriad of specialized topics relating to their lives. Small groups can focus on (but are not limited to) family changes, anger management, friendship/social skills, study skills, anxiety, etc.
- Classroom instruction includes both upper and lower school through direct lessons, character hour content creation, and classroom assistance.
- Contributors to Maranatha Mornings with parent education and training.
Students can be referred to the school counselor by their teacher, parent, or by request.