NEW YORK — A new nationwide campaign launched from the College Board Advocacy & Policy Center will help school counselors guide more students for college. The campaign, "Own the Turf," designed by the College Board National Office for School Counselor Advocacy (NOSCA), provides school counselors with a much-needed toolkit to help them inspire and prepare their students for college success and opportunity, and establish a college-going culture within their schools, districts and communities.
The nationwide average student-to-counselor ratio is roughly 467:1 and many of the state level ratios are substantially higher, suggesting that counselors are overloaded with the number of students to whom they must provide services. Further, U.S. secondary school counselors spend just 29 percent of their time on college counseling activities, according to the National Association for College Admission Counseling.
"School counselors, without fail, juggle an impossible caseload, and this gives them great insight into school culture and offers them a chance to make a major positive impact," said Patricia Martin, assistant vice president of NOSCA. "Now is the time for school counselors to be recognized and strengthened as leaders and advocates, who work to ensure that all students — regardless of their background — graduate from high school prepared for college and career success."
Working with school counselor leaders, practitioners and counselor educators, NOSCA identified and defined a focused agenda to ensure a clear, effective path toward college and career readiness goals. As part of the Own the Turf campaign road map, and among the toolkit materials, counselors will:
- Gain new strategies and tools related to college and career readiness counseling
- Belong to the Own the Turf school counselor online community
- Share experiences and effective practices with colleagues
- Learn about opportunities to get involved
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, in a speech at the AP® Annual Conference this past July, urged school counselors to "absolutely own the turf when it comes to college and career readiness counseling," and recognized that counselors are often saddled with excessive caseloads and a variety of roles in understaffed schools.
On Monday, Dec. 13, 2010, the NOSCA team will offer a live webinar and discussion of counselor advocacy and the Own the Turf counselor toolkit. To learn more information and to sign up for Own the Turf, please visit: www.collegeboard.org/nosca.
The College Board Advocacy & Policy Center
The College Board Advocacy & Policy Center was established to help transform education in America. Guided by the College Board's principles of excellence and equity in education, the Center works to ensure that students from all backgrounds have the opportunity to succeed in college and beyond. Critical connections between policy, research and real-world practice are made to develop innovative solutions to the most pressing challenges in education today. Drawing from the experience of the College Board's active membership consisting of education professionals from more than 5,700 institutions, priorities include: College Preparation & Access, College Affordability & Financial Aid, and College Admission & Completion. For more information, visit advocacy.collegeboard.org.
The College Board
The College Board is a mission-driven not-for-profit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity. Founded in 1900, the College Board was created to expand access to higher education. Today, the membership association is made up of more than 5,700 of the nation's leading educational institutions and is dedicated to promoting excellence and equity in education. Each year, the College Board helps more than seven million students prepare for a successful transition to college through programs and services in college readiness and college success — including the SAT® and the Advanced Placement Program®. The organization also serves the education community through research and advocacy on behalf of students, educators and schools.
Stephanie Coggin , The College Board, (212) 713-8052, firstname.lastname@example.org