How to Become a School Counselor in the District of Columbia

In America, today’s school counselors do a lot more than their predecessors. It may be hard to tell from the outside looking in, but they help teachers and staff handle various issues, counsel parents, and sometimes play a crucial part in shaping education policy. They are a pivotal part of the student success equation, and they help schools create supportive and safe environments for students.

Want to become a school counselor in the United States, but want to know how? Don’t worry; the Edvocate has your back. Check out this guide that we created explaining how to become a school counselor in the District of Columbia.

Academics: A master’s degree in school counseling from an accredited institution;

Necessary Courses: (1) Philosophy and principles underlying guidance; (2) The theory and practice of counseling, including work with exceptional and culturally diverse learners; (3) Educational measurement; (4) Career development theory; (5) Understanding the individual;
(6) Group counseling and group guidance processes; (7) Research and evaluation.

Experience Requirements: (1) Completion of 2 years of full-time teaching experience. 1 year could be satisfied by full-time experience in a non-school setting and (2) No less than 3 hundred (300) clock hours of graduate-level university supervised field experience in counseling in a PreK-12 school setting. One hundred of these required hours may be granted before classroom teaching experiences. The field experience requirement can be met by finishing a degree in school counseling from a program sanctioned by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Program (CACREP) or a National

Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) certificate;

Assessment: Successful completion of all portions of the Praxis I – PreProfessional Skills Test and all applicable portions of the Praxis II

Is an Institutional Recommendation Needed?: No

Licensure: Pre K-12

Licensure Reciprocity: Yes

Criminal Background Investigation: Yes. A chest x-ray or tuberculin-skin test is also required.

DC Public Schools – School Counselor Requirements

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