Sandy Spring Friends School


Counselors FAQs

What is the role of the counselors at SSFS?

At SSFS, the counselors support the social and emotional development of students in each division. We are a visible presence and interact with students throughout the day. We maintain an open-door policy so that students feel comfortable seeking us out any time they have a concern. We work with students individually or in small groups to address stress management, conflict resolution, friendship concerns, or any other issue that is impacting their school day. If a student needs more long-term support, we help families find providers in the community.

Does SSFS have a social-emotional learning curriculum?

Yes! Our Lower School students participate in social-emotional learning through the life-skills curriculum. In the Middle and Upper School, the counselors participate in teaching grade-level health or life skills classes that focus on social and emotional development as well as through the advisory program. These classes address a variety of topics, including mental health, stress management, relationship skills, bullying, and effective communication.

We tailor specific curricula to address any emerging concerns in the community as needed. In addition to the classes we teach, the counselors coordinate with outside resources to bring speakers to SSFS to present on different health or life skills topics.

If my child is struggling with a social or emotional concern, whom should I reach out to at school?

If your child is struggling with a social or emotional concern, it would be helpful if you reach out to your child’s advisor and the division-specific counselor. Advisors act as mentors and student advocates. The advisor can work with the school counselor and the academic team to develop a support plan. The counselor is also a resource if your child needs more individualized support.

What is the Student Resource Team?

The Student Resource Team (SRT) is a part of our Student Support Services. SRT is made up of the division head, dean of students, school counselor, learning specialist, and School nurses. We meet weekly to discuss students who are struggling and may need additional support. Together with families and the academic team, we develop strategies to address the student’s needs.