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Counseling

School Counselor Mission Statement

Bristol Tennessee City Schools' counselors will provide every student equitable access to a comprehensive, data-driven, school counseling program that addresses their academic, personal/social, and emotional needs. BTCS counselors also play an integral part in creating a school climate where every student feels safe, accepted, and advocated for in all areas of the student learning experience.

BTCS School Counselors

Tennessee High School Counselors
Tennessee Middle School Counselors
Elementary School Counselors

BTCS Social Workers Contracted Services with Frontier Health

THS - Amanda Weiford, School-Based Therapist
TMS - Morgan Presley, School-Based Therapist
Elementary District Wide - School

Refer for counseling support through School-Based Therapist and Student Assistance Counselor via Frontier Health (scroll to the referral form at the bottom of the page)

School Counselor Roles & Ratios

REPORTING

Threats to harm self or others:

Any student who makes a threat against the school, others, or themselves will have a three-pronged approach that includes a mental evaluation, potential legal consequences, and school discipline.

Need help? 

  • Talk to your school counselor or trusted adult
  • Make a referral to the school-based Frontier Health social worker
  • Text, Chat, Call 988 (Emotional Distress & Suicide Hotline)
  • Call 423-926-0940 or 1-800-273-TALK (8255) - Emotional Distress & Suicide Hotline
  • Visit your local emergency room 
  • Visit 24-Hour Walk-in Clinic - Turning Point - Don't have insurance?  Ask about SafetyNet

Suicide Prevention

Visit BTCS School Safety for anonymous reporting: BTCS School Safety

False reporting can result in legal consequences.
  • Bullying Reporting
  • SafeTN App
  • Child Abuse
  • City of Bristol Tennessee Police Department Tips Line

What is the school district doing to support mental health?

  • Providing staff: school counselors, district psychologist, and district behavior interventionist to support student needs.
  • Educating staff, parents, and students on symptoms of and help for mental health problems.
  • Ensuring safe environment by maintaining and expanding Anonymous Tips for easy sharing of suspicious activity or safety concerns.
  • Obtaining grants to provide extra personnel and professional development opportunities to support students.
  • Providing contracted services with Frontier Health to provide three school-based therapists and two Student Assistance Counselors across the district.
  • Connecting and collaborating with community organizations to support school and community initiatives.
  • Helping ensure access to school-based mental health supports.

What are schools doing to support mental health?

  • Ensuring access to school-based mental health supports.
  • Promoting healthy social and emotional development of all children and youth by teaching and reinforcing positive behaviors and decisions making.
  • Participating in numerous programs to support behavioral health: Restorative Circles, RTI 2 B, Capturing Kids Hearts, Leader in Me, Second Steps, Skills Streaming, Trauma-Informed Schools.
  • Leveraging anti-bullying strategies, inclusiveness strategies and proactive student supports activities: Student Ambassadors, Student Advisory Teams, Rachel’s Challenge, and Unity Day.
  • Monitoring student laptops, internet activity, Google Workspace, and Microsoft 365 accounts (including email, chats and files) for potential issues like threats of violence, cyberbullying, and more.

What are BTCS teachers doing to support mental health of students?

  • Creating a safe and engaging learning environment.
  • Building strong relationships with students.
  • Utilizing Restorative and Trauma-Informed practices to support student behavior and well being.
  • Recognizing when young people are at risk for or are experiencing mental health problems.
  • Identifying how to intervene early and appropriately when there are problems.

What can BTCS parents do to support mental health?

  • Monitor your child's mobile phone and social media platforms for potential issues, cyberbullying, and threats.
  • Identify changes in your child behavior that signify they may need additional supports from a counselor, social worker, nurse, or school administrator. If you observe one or more of the following behaviors in your child, reach out to the school for help or call 911 if it is an immediate emergency.
    • Feeling very sad or withdrawn for more than two weeks
    • Seriously trying to harm oneself, or making plans to do so
    • Sudden overwhelming fear for no reason, sometimes with a racing heart or fast breathing
    • Involvement in many fights or desire to badly hurt others
    • Severe out-of-control behavior that can hurt oneself or others
    • Not eating, throwing up, or using laxatives to make oneself lose weight
    • Intense worries or fears that get in the way of daily activities
    • Extreme difficulty concentrating or staying still that puts the student in physical danger or causes problems in the classroom
    • Repeated use of drugs or alcohol
    • Severe mood swings that cause problems in relationships
    • Drastic changes in the child's behavior or personality

Substance Use & Abuse Resources

Tobacco/Vaping

Marijuana

Prescription Drugs

Treatment Locator: https://findtreatment.samhsa.gov/locator

Helpful Websites for Grieving

We value community service and acknowledge that everyone needs different levels of help. Perhaps you are considering therapy but want to learn more about it first. Perhaps you are just starting to gather resources about grief and loss. We would like to assist you in any way we can.  We have provided a list of several websites about grief programs or about grief.

Contact your school counselor for questions about grief and loss resources.

  • Camp FireFly - Ballad Health's Camp Firefly is a free, one-day camp designed for children and teenagers who have experienced the death of a loved one. The camp is typically held at the end of September each year.
  • “Undoing isolation for young adults grieving the illness or death of someone close to COVID-19.” COVID Grief Network: https://www.covidgriefnetwork.org
  • Grief support for suicide loss survivors: https://save.org/what-we-do/grief-support/
  • “To put it simply, this website is about grief. That probably sounds oversimplified, but grief is a complex, heavy, frustrating, scary, enormous … ahem, big topic. It starts with a death and envelopes everyone from family to friends, to friends of family and friends. Not only is grief an emotional, logistical, and existential nightmare, but it is taxing. It requires us to navigate the world without someone important, deal with complex feelings and emotions, and figure out ways to move forward when everything seems kind of bleak.” https://whatsyourgrief.com/
  • “Helping you cope with life after loss using meditation for grief, yoga and journaling.” http://mindfulnessandgrief.com/
  • “It’s OK to not be OK. If your life has exploded into a million little bits, you don’t need platitudes. You don’t need cheerleading. You don’t need to be told this all happened for a reason. You certainly don’t need to be told that you needed your pain in order to learn something about life. Some things cannot be fixed. They can only be carried.” http://www.refugeingrief.com/
  • “Modern Loss is a place to share the unspeakably taboo, unbelievably hilarious, and unexpectedly beautiful terrain of navigating your life after a death. Beginners welcome.” http://modernloss.com/
  • This site aims to offer hope, comfort and support for survivors of suicide loss. Jessica and Becky met through Catholic Charities’ Loving Outreach to Survivors of Suicide support group in Chicago after losing their fathers to suicide within five months of each other. Both had the desire to elevate the discussion about suicide in an attempt to give a voice to those seeking support and encouragement. http://www.oursideofsuicide.com/
  • Help4Grief.com is designed specifically to connect bereaved clients in Chicagoland with experienced grief specialists. This professional site allows each seeker of help to easily find excellent resources to meet their need.
  • Barr-Harris Children’s Grief Center provides counseling services to bereaved children and their families; makes these services accessible to underserved communities; and provides training and consultation about childhood grief for those who work directly with children or indirectly on their behalf. http://barrharris.org/
  • Buddy’s Place is Pillars’ childhood grief program, which offers family-based support groups to grieving children, teens, and their families. Buddy’s Place is committed to providing a safe, accepting, and supportive environment where each family can come and express their grief and connect with others in a group setting.  There is no charge to attend the programs offered by Buddy’s Place. https://pillarscommunity.org/services/child-and-family-services/buddys-place/
  • The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors offers compassionate care to all those grieving the loss a military loved on. https://www.taps.org/
  • Will CarryOn is about sharing miscarriage, stillbirth and loss resources, and about sharing hope. It is for ourselves and those who follow us. Started by Erin Kuhn-Krueger in 2011 as a place to heal after the loss of their 4th child, Will CarryOn provides shared experiences and a collection of resources that are essential to survival. It does not take the place of these resources, rather serves as a conduit to guide those in need to the support that will best help them.  https://willcarryon.wordpress.com/
  • The National Organization of Parents Of Murdered Children makes the difference through ongoing emotional support, education, prevention, advocacy, and awareness. http://www.pomc.com/index.html
  • The American Association of Suicidology
  • American Foundation for Suicide Prevention 
  • Alliance of Hope for Suicide Survivors 
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