• Resources, support, and advocacy for Alaskan secondary school students who identify as LGBTQIA+

      Nickell, Jasmine L.; Gifford, Valerie; Dahl, Heather; Wilson, Hilary (2017-05)
      This comprehensive literature review presents findings associated with the needs of students in grades 7-12 who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, intersex, and/or asexual (LGBTQIA+). In addition, the roles of school counselors, faculty, and staff in addressing these needs are discussed, and policy decisions and legislation supporting safe and inclusive environments are examined. A comprehensive guidebook is included which explains the legislative process that can be used to promote systems change in order to address these needs. The legislative proposal in this guidebook would mandate Alaskan school counselors receive proper training, resources, and guidance to appropriately support and advocate for students who identify as LGBTQIA+. Although there are legislative bills currently being introduced to the Alaska Legislature that support more inclusive anti-discrimination state-based laws, Alaska has yet to pass such a bill and its efforts remain inadequate concerning the institution of state law preventing bullying, discrimination, and violence in schools based on a student's gender identity, gender expression, and/or sexual.
    • Restorative practices as tools for reducing the outcome data gaps in the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District

      Kettle, Anne; Gifford, Valerie; McMorrow, Samantha; Repetto, Elizabeth (2018)
      Childhood adversity, toxic stress and trauma have physical and mental health impacts on individuals and affect academic and career success. The result of which may present as challenging or off-task behavior in the classroom. Trauma-informed techniques are being implemented to address these challenges in schools and classrooms across the United States. Restorative practices are proving to serve as successful tools for mitigating the impact of adversity on students and build a more cohesive and successful school atmosphere. There is potential for restorative practices to be used by school counselors as part of a comprehensive school counseling program to work to close gaps in the rates of graduation, suspension/expulsion and attendance between students from the majority population and those from traditionally marginalized populations. Based on a review of the literatures of trauma-informed schools, restorative practices and school counselor roles, a presentation and tool-kit has been developed for the Fairbanks North Star Borough school counselors. This tool-kit builds awareness around the impact of trauma, restorative practices and provides resources to support their implementation in this district via school counselors.