Questions to Ask in an Interview

If you are interviewing for a school counselor position, it's important for you to be able to ask your own questions. School counseling duties vary widely according to district, school size, ages of the students, socioeconomics, administration, politics, and many other factors, so it's important not to make any assumptions about a particular job.

Here are some questions you may want to bring along and ask during your interview:

~ About how many students would be in my case load?

~ How many other counselors are on campus (or in the district)?

~ How are the counseling duties divided (if there are several counselors) – meaning, does everyone have similar tasks, or does one counselor primarily handle scheduling, another careers, another scholarships, and another personal counseling?

~ How structured would my days be, and how much flexibility would I have in scheduling activities such as small groups, classroom presentations, parent phone calls, documentation time, etc.?

~ What kind of documentation system or format does your counseling department use?

~ What (if any) additional duties would I have on campus?

~ When are meetings usually held (before or after school? Lunchtime? Or during the regular school day?) and how often?

~ Would I be using a specific curriculum, or developing my own based on student needs?

~ When does the counselors’ school year begin and end? (particularly important at H.S. level)

~ Are your counselors on the same salary schedule as teachers?

~ Are you expecting or seeking any major changes in your counseling department in the next few years? If so, what changes do you foresee?

~ How open is your staff to programs such as Peer Mediation, student retreats, and other programs designed to build community in your school?

~ What do your school and the nearby community most need right now from this counseling program?

You will probably have other questions as the interview progresses, but these are a good place to start.

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