The Forsyth County school system's celebration of National School Counseling Week culminated with the selection of the district's top counselors.
Kathy Bain, Jody Glude and Tracey Winkler will advance to compete at the regional level after being named the county’s 2010-11 elementary, middle and high school counselors of the year.
They were among 16 counselors nominated for the honor by school staff and parents.
“We believe that our counselors provide such comprehensive counseling programs, any of them could have been nominated and selected,” said Debbie Rondem, the district's director of student support services.
“Judges reported that this has been the most difficult year thus far because the letters of nomination and program descriptions were exceptional.”
Bain, a counselor at Brookwood Elementary, earned her master’s degree from the University of Texas and bachelor’s from David Lipscomb University.
She has been with the school system since 2005. Prior to that, she worked in Texas and Tennessee as a kindergarten and first-grade teacher, as well as a counselor.
Glude has served as a counselor in both the Forsyth and Hall County school systems. A U.S. Air Force veteran who served in Desert Storm, she is currently a counselor at Little Mill Middle School.
Glude earned her master’s degree from the State University of West Georgia and her bachelor’s degree from Kennesaw State University.
A counselor at West Forsyth High School, Winkler received her bachelor’s, master’s and educational specialists degrees from Florida State University.
She also earned her leadership certification from the University of Georgia. She has counseling experience from two Florida schools, as well as at two schools in Forsyth.
The three women will go on to compete for the 2011 Georgia school counselor regional competition.
The winners from the 12 regions will advance to the state competition. Forsyth has three previous state winners: Diann Branch, Denise Eccleston and Heather Roth.
“We are proud of the work of all FCS counselors and wish our three finalists good luck at the regionals,” said School Superintendent Buster Evans. “The contribution of schools counselors extends beyond the common conception that they only help students plan their futures."
Evans added that a school counselor is responsible for the development of students "into successful, productive citizens of society."
"Through their leadership, advocacy and care, school counselors are relied on to be an adult presence in a student’s life that understands the intricacies and pressures that come with being productive and contributing citizen," he said.