Degrees and Certifications:
B.S. in Elementary Education with a minor in Psychology from the University of Idaho M.S. in School Counseling from Eastern Washington University
Students call me “Miss Hilary.” I graduated from the University of Idaho with a B.S. in Elementary Education and a minor in Psychology. I then attended Eastern Washington University to obtain my M.S. in School Counseling. I have been a school counselor for 20 years.
What do I love most about my job? Being proactive. You will see me in the halls, at recess, in the lunchroom, and in classrooms. My goal is to know every child's name in our school. I want to be accessible and visible.
Here are a few of the things that I do at Sorensen:
School wide activities play a major role in reinforcing goals at our school. For this reason, adults in the school make a conscious decision to reinforce what’s really important, and to create activities that are inclusive, support children’s learning, foster an appreciation of differences, and provide children with the opportunity to help others. At Sorensen we like to focus on the positive. The more children feel that their school community cares about them and meets their needs, the more likely they are to feel attached to that community. Spirit of Sorensen, blue slips, class meetings, Performance Teams and Friday Gathering are just a few of the many ways that Sorensen makes this happen.
Classroom lessons: This is a time where I meet with each classroom on a myriad of topics including Sources of Strength, conflict resolution, bully prevention, community building, personal safety, and goal setting.
Conflict Resolution: Students are taught how to resolve conflicts during class meeting time. They are taught what "hot, medium and cold" problems look like as well as strategies to use to resolve those problems. Hot problems are problems that require adult intervention (kicking, hitting, bullying, etc.). Medium problems are problems that most students are able to solve on their own (disagreements with friends, sharing, taking turns, etc.). Cold problems are problems that students can solve relatively easily and quickly with an "I message" or by letting it go (cutting in line, accidentally bumping someone, etc.). If students have tried to resolve a problem and it is not getting better, they are welcome to sign up for assistance with resolving the problem.
Small Groups: As needs arise, I conduct small groups to help those struggling with a variety of concerns. Small group topics include teaching social skills through play, helping children cope with family changes such as divorce or loss of a loved one, organizational strategies, self-esteem, and other topics as needs arise.
Behind the scenes:
- I am a member of our MTSS team (multi-tiered systems of support). This team meets three times a week to brainstorm interventions for struggling students.
- I collaborate with parents, teachers and outside providers such as counselors and doctors.
- I am the case manager for 504’s. A 504 is a document that lists accommodations that have been proven to be successful for a student with a diagnosed disability.
- I support our awesome teachers and staff.
- I serve on the Magnet Fund Committee to determine how to spend the money raised at our annual Sorensen auction.
- I am a member of our Arts and Humanities Leadership Team.
How do students make an appointment with me? My room is located on the upper floor on the opposite end of the main office. Students can place a note in my mailbox. I try my best to get a student from class within 24 hours.
If there is anything I can do to help your child please let me know. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling the main office at 208-664-2822.