HUGHESVILLE - Students in the East Lycoming School District have returned to the classroom to begin another school year. This year, the district has implemented several changes, including a new counseling program, which was discussed at length during the school board's meeting Tuesday evening.
Ronald Lorson, Hughesville High School principal, was on hand to explain the new counseling program. In the past, two of the district's councilors, Jeremy Eck and Michele Beck, have split counseling responsibilities. One would deal with seventh-, eight- and ninth-grade students and their families while the other would attend to the counseling needs of the sophomore, junior and senior students.
"Instead, we're assigning the students to one counselor who will continue to work with students and their families from the time they enter the seventh grade until the time they graduate," Lorson said.
Under the new system, Eck will take responsibilities for this year's seniors and Beck has been assigned to this year's seventh graders.
"Next year, Mr. Eck's seniors will have graduated, so he will be assigned to the new seventh-grade class," Lorson said.
"So the counselor will pick up a student when they're in seventh grade and stay with them until the 12th grade. They will loop with the students," he added.
The new system will allow students and counselors to get to know one another over a six-year period. The relationship will allow counselors to better tailor their advice to each individual student, according to Lorson.
Michael D. Pawlik, superintendent, agreed.
"When it comes time to explore career paths and set expectations, the counselors are going to be able to see that long-term picture because they will have known this child so long," Pawlik said.
The district's as-yet-unnamed multipurpose indoor athletic field will be named by the students, according to Richard Michael, school board president.
"We're going to be holding a contest to see what the students come up with, and let them name the building," Michael said.
The indoor turf facility is expected to be finished in early September.