Academics

Counseling Services



While learning calculus may seem daunting, learning to be a good listener, to make good decisions, and to advocate for oneself is equally tough. Add to that the changes and challenges of adolescence that wreak havoc on girls’ self-confidence. At GPS, students learn the executive functioning skills necessary to be successful in the classroom, but they also gain the social-emotional tools they will need to thrive in life.
"We always focus on what we do for the whole girl. GPS offers a lot of great courses and extracurriculars, but we also help them grow their emotional intelligence, which helps make them not just good students but good people."
—Heather Landreth, Upper School Counseling Specialist


Meet Our Counseling Specialists

At GPS, there are two trained mental health professionals on site who observe girls’ behavior as they navigate social interactions and perform in the classroom every day. This access allows them to customize lessons to meet specific student needs in both individual and group settings. 

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The Social-Emotional Toolbox



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Based on years of observation and research, in conjunction with what we know about whole girl development, our counseling team provides a curriculum for students to proactively address trends in mental fitness such as: 
 
  • Self-awareness 
  • Boundaries
  • Self-regulation 
  • Responsible Decision Making 
  • Relationship Skills
  • Communication    
  • Advocacy 
  • Growth Mindset

A Scaffolded Process of Support

It is no secret that each developmental stage comes with it’s own set of challenges. Through advisory activities, events, classroom lessons, and more, the GPS counseling team offers age-appropriate tools to help girls meet their social-emotional needs. From the time they enter as nervously excited sixth-graders until they confidently walk across the stage at graduation, they are becoming the most well-rounded versions of themselves possible.

Range of Services

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  • + Classroom Curriculum

    Each year of Middle School brings a new, age-appropriate course for GPS students. These classes meet once a week for the full year. Topics covered include peer relationships, self-awareness, self-care, respect for others, decision-making, peer pressure, and more. These topics are reiterated throughout advisory programming in Upper School.
  • + Advisory Programming

    Advisory programming is planned throughout the year and based on local and national trending topics that relate to adolescents. Examples of topics include self-care, gratitude, and living with balance. 
  • + Individual Sessions

    If a student needs advice or simply a listening ear, she can arrange a one-on-one meeting with her division-specific Counseling Specialist by reaching out via email, dropping by the counseling office, or requesting a meeting through her advisor or other member of the community.
  • + Small Group

    If a group of students is struggling with friendship issues or seeking conflict resolution, they can meet with their division-specific Counseling Specialist, who will help them express their point-of-view and work through differences in a controlled and fair environment. 
  • + Parent Consultations

    While one-on-one counseling with students is the primary focus, Counseling Specialists are also available to families for both individual and small-group meetings. Throughout the year, we offer a variety of parent gatherings with the purpose of addressing the latest trends in mental health, as well as unpacking the ups and downs of girl development.
  • + Faculty Education

    Each year we offer trainings for faculty with the purpose of keeping them up to date on mental health issues and strategies for classroom support. We are always available to consult with faculty as the need arises.
"We help students learn management strategies to help her become the best student—and person—she can be."
—Casey Caldwell Santos ’08, Middle School Counseling Specialist


Counseling Connection

Counseling Connection features our Middle and Upper School counselors, Casey Caldwell Santos '08 and Heather Landreth, as they conduct interviews around campus with those who know our girls best—teachers, advisors, administrators, and coaches. Each episode focuses on a different topic, from relationships to supporting our students through our Learning Center. Click any video below to view.