Ethics and Law in School Counseling


I've had the privilege of teaching a graduate course in school counseling ethics over the last several years. My initial fear was that the class would be deathly boring, and the students would sit there politely with glazed eyes while we read out of a very dry textbook and tried to absorb information the students would never need.

It turns out that there's a lot to talk about, and the stories and situations I hear from students are anything but boring! The challenge of balancing student needs (which are the officially stated "first priority" in the Ethical Standards For School Counselors) with the needs of everyone else involved, plus budget issues and ever-present school politics, is an ongoing thing.


Ethics books



I've written some articles and handouts for my students about some of these recurring issues, and I'll share them here with the hope that they may help you navigate rough waters in your work at some point. I've been teased about being the Worksheet Queen for the last 25 years -- why stop now? :)

Please note: I am not an attorney or a legal expert, so please check with your own or your district's legal advisors before taking any actions in a situation where you're concerned about legal or ethical issues.

I'll add articles and handouts a few at a time. Thanks for your patience as I build the site!






To see a summary of ethical tips to use on the job, go to the "Ethical Tips For School Counselors" Page.


To learn more about the official code of ethics, and to see some questions and answers about the Ethical Standards, go to the "Ethical Standards For School Counselors" page.


To learn more about approaching a colleague when you become aware of an ethical dilemma, go to the "Tips For Approaching a Colleague When You Have an Ethical Concern" page.


To look at some legal and ethical "gray area" questions you may want to consider as a school counselor, go to the "Ethical Questions to Consider" page.


To learn more about confidentiality in school counseling, go to the "Confidentiality Guidelines" page.


To learn more about documentation in school counseling, go to the "Documentation Tips and Guidelines" page.


To learn more about Arizona's anti-bullying statute, and to see a sample anti-bullying policy and get suggestions for a program that works to address these issues, go to the "Bullying at School" page.


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