School Counselor

Headshot of Michael Wadham
Michael Wadham
wadham.michael@oakwoodschools.org
937-297-5338

After 11 years as the musical director and Lumberjack Theatre Adviser at OHS, Michael Wadham is starting a new adventure at Oakwood Schools as the School Counselor at Harman. 

Michael, a Wright State and Miami University graduate and a master's level licensed social worker, previously worked as a child and family therapist at Webster Street Academy in Dayton, and joins us from Springfield City Schools where he served as a Behavior Specialist. Michael's passion for social work and its associated ethics and values (such as empowerment, service, social justice, identifying and leveraging individual or group strengths, the dignity and worth of the individual, and the importance of human relationships) will be central to his practice as school counselor.

Through character education and socio-emotional lessons, in addition to family, classroom, administrative, and community collaboration, the students at Harman have the opportunity to not only become well-prepared for the educational requirements of junior high and beyond, but they will be armed with skills (executive functioning, emotional intelligence, social and life skills) to serve them a lifetime as well. 

What is a School Counselor?

School Counselors (previously referred to as Guidance Counselors) support all students in grades PreK-12 with academic achievement, social and emotional development and career planning. Ohio School Counselors are licensed and have completed an approved master’s program and an extensive internship. They develop and implement comprehensive school counseling programs that promote and enhance student success by collaborating with families, teachers and administrators.

Resource retrieved from the Ohio Department of Education (8/25/17). For more information on this topic please visit http://education.ohio.gov/Topics/Career-Tech/Caree...


Character Education

Timber is our character education program designed to help all learners develop the skills necessary for success in today's world.

To learn more about this program and she the full scheduled for the 2019-2020 school year, go to our Timber page. 

Counseling Services

Character Education

Timber is a character education program designed to help all learners develop the skills necessary for success in today's world.

To learn more about this program, click here.

Classroom Lessons

These lessons are an integral part of the elementary school counseling program and important to every student’s academic success. One of the most effective ways for school counselors to help prevent academic problems is by discussing self-esteem issues such as peer relationships, stress, or dealing with feelings and emotions in large group guidance lessons in the classroom. The lessons are preventative in nature, designed to reach all students, and are taught in the classroom by the counselor. Other topics that could be taught are empathy, problem-solving and anger management skills.

Collaborate with Teachers/Staff

Both teachers and counselors have similar goals: the educational success of each student. It is important that school counselors collaborate with teachers and administrators to promote student learning. If a student is having problems in a classroom, school counselors will join together with teachers to come up with some practical strategies with the intention to remove educational barriers and enhance the learning environment of that student. 

Community Referrals

School counselors can provide short-term individual counseling for students, but when more intervention is required, we can coordinate referrals to community agencies.

Consult with Parents

Parents and school counselors can partner with each other to help the child/student on a variety of issues such as new school transitions, special needs, family transitions, and crisis situations. Studies have shown that children have greater academic achievement when their parents are involved in their education. Parental involvement is critical to helping a child be a successful student. Additionally, school counselors can help put parents in touch with community resources, if the need arises.

Group Counseling

Smith offers a variety of group counseling opportunities based on student needs. These groups include new student transitions, divorce, friendship, and a variety of social and emotion skills.

Individual Counseling

Elementary school counselors are available to meet individually with a student in circumstances when a student's educational success is being impacted or issues arise with the child. The school counselor spends time working with individual students to improve their social skills, discuss feelings, empower, and provide problem solving methods. Elementary school counselors assist all children. While a counselor cannot provide on-going sessions, it may be appropriate for a student to receive short-term individual one on one time. When more attention and intervention is required, school counselors can act as a referral agent for parents to access counseling services within the community.


 

Individual Lessons

Individual students are seen in one-on-one counseling sessions for a variety of reasons based on social, emotional, and academic needs. Topics discussed in individual sessions include, but are not limited to, social skills, anxiety, depression, divorce, grief, self-control, and self-esteem.

Indoor Recess Buddies

Fifth grade students play during indoor recess with first and second grade students during the winter months, as a way to help all students cope with the long winter and make great choices.

Mentor Program

OJHS & OHS students come to the elementary schools during lunch / recess and work with assigned students on their social and emotional development.

Military Kids Club

Military children are a unique group and need support during deployments, moves and meeting the daily demands of military life. This club is designed to help students stay connected with other military kids. It is intended for students who have an active duty service member in their immediate family (mom, dad or sibling).

PBIS

Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports

  • Be Respectful
  • Be Responsible
  • Build Relationships

At the elementary schools we practice the 3R's. This language provides common behavioral expectations for all students throughout the buildings. This system is the foundation for the 5R behavioral system in place at OJHS and OHS.

Parent Consultation

Parent consultations are provided for a variety of reasons, based on the needs of the student or the family, in order to develop plans that best meet the student needs to ensure their social, emotional or academic success.

Small Group Counseling

The purpose of small group counseling is to compliment and enhance students' learning by improving their perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors. Small group counseling provides a safe setting where children, along with their peers, it can increase their self-awareness and improve their cooperation and communication skills. The children can learn from each other. Ultimately, the goal of small group counseling is to prevent problems in the future by teaching children new skills. Students can benefit from participation in a small group.

Tutoring Programs

Talented Tutor:

Fifth and sixth grade students tutor for 20 minutes, one time per week, during lunch, with the guidance of the student’s teacher.

OHS National Honor Society Tutors:

High school tutors work with elementary students after school or during lunch. These arrangements are typically made and overseen by the parents. The list of tutors is available upon request and is updated each fall.

Professional Tutors:

The district provides a list of qualified professional tutors.

The list of tutors is available upon request and is updated each fall.