Davis Counseling Department

Mission Statement

Advocating for the academic and personal success of all students.

Program Goals

Create a school climate that values learning.

Develop mutual respect among students and staff.

 

Announcements

8th grade calendar of events:

Fall - Students should be looking at high school websites and learning about the programs offered. Families can call individual high schools and request personal tours. Some do them, some don't. Please encourage students to tour schools rather than listening to the impressions of friends/family/media. Davis administration has approved these tours to be counted as a school activity rather than an absence, as long as the family completes a school visit form with the Davis Attendance Office. Also, use the OPS website to determine your neighborhood school as well as whether your student would get transportation to each school. Helpful web sites are here and here.

Early December - Students will get their "8th Grade Packet" from their Take Flight teacher at Davis. Inside this packet is ALL of the important information about the selection process. Please make sure your student brings it to you and that you read through it together.

Throughout January - Students should attend High School Open Houses on weekends with their families. Please encourage students to go to as many Open Houses as possible. Dates and information here.

End of January / Beg of February (date TBA) - Students will submit a postcard with their High School Choices on it. Student placement expects 100% participation in this process and all Davis teachers and staff will be involved to make sure all students complete the process.

February - 8th grade teachers complete detailed course recommendations for each individual student that will be given to the high school counselors so they can place students in appropriate courses. Teachers will communicate the details of these recommendations to students and families.
High school counselors will come to Davis to meet in large groups with the students who will be going to their high school. Davis counselors will arrange this after we have been notified of the date and #s of students going to each high school. 8th grade teachers will host groups and supervise.
High school counselors will come to Davis to meet one-on-one to register each student who is coming to their high school. Davis counselors will organize this and students will leave class with individual passes.

Questions about this process can be directed to Student Placement, 402-557-2222. Ask for the 8th-to-9th grade placement person

School Counseling Overview

Vision: 

School counselors are advocates, collaborating with students, school staff, families and community resources to empower all students to reach their highest potential.

Mission: 

The mission of the Omaha Public Schools strengths-based counseling program is to support academic success and preparation for post-secondary opportunities for all students

Goals:

1. Every student will be provided the nurturing relationships and personal support needed to achieve social competence and academic success.

2. Every student will be empowered to gain the attitudes, knowledge, and skills necessary for lifelong academic, career, and personal success.

Focus:

Middle school students will be supported to attend school regularly, advance on grade level, and transition to high school.

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are answers to questions that we have been asked frequently as school counselors. We hope that these will offer some insight to families. If you would like further information on any of these topics, please contact your child's counselor!

How can I protect my child when they are using social media?

Follow your child's social media pages. "Friend" them on Facebook, follow their Instagram and Twitter. Make it clear to your child that you are watching their interactions and looking to protect them. Make sure that your child has their account settings set so that their personal information is private and not viewable by the public. Tell your child that they are not allow to friend or follow people who they do not know in person (check their friends and followers to make sure this is the case). Do not allow your child to have unlimited access to their phone or computer - consider plugging all phones/devices in at night in a central location in the home so that your child is not up late at night online. Remind your child that every thing they say and every picture they upload will be out there forever. In just a few short years they will be applying for colleges and looking for jobs - they do not want every misstep of adolescence to follow them throughout life. A good rule of thumb is "Would I want grandma/grandpa to see this?" - if the answer is no, they shouldn't post it. If there is a social media concern that you believe to be causing a disruption during school, please take screen shots and share them with your child's counselor or administrator. More great information can be found at www.commonsensemedia.org.

 

How can I talk with my child about difficult topics?

If your child is struggling, they need to talk with someone they trust. If they are not able to talk with you or another trusted adult, they will seek information from their peers and/or the internet. It is much better for them to have you or a trusted adult share good information with them. If you don't know anything about the topic, go online together and search for quality resources, then read and talk through them together. Buy or borrow library books to read and discuss together. You don't need to sit down and have "the talk" with your child - instead take the opportunity to chat about topics that come up while watching TV, in the car, or doing an activity together.

 

My child needs help with schoolwork. What should we do?

Davis Middle School teachers host a tutoring program every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday after school. This is an excellent opportunity for students to get one-on-one help from certified teachers. They can do homework on their own or ask teachers for help. Students must sign up for tutoring on the day they play to stay. The signup sheet is on the clipboard in the cafeteria. If students typically ride a school bus, they can also sign up for the late bus.

 

How do I know what homework my child has?

All Davis students were issued an Agenda at the beginning of the year, and all teachers prompt the students to write their assignments in the Agenda during class. You should be able to check your child's agenda each day and find out what they should be working on.

 

How does my child sign up for the late bus?

If your child already receives transportation from Omaha Public Schools, they are eligible to ride the late bus, which will leave Davis at 5:00 p.m. and will drop students off at the elementary school closest to home. They must sign up for the late bus every day they plan to take it. The signup sheet is on the clipboard in the cafeteria.

 

My child is struggling to fit in in Middle School. What should we do?

Middle school is a tough time for students. They are not "grown up" but are no longer small children. They are figuring out who they are and determining where they fit in. Students who participate in school activities will find their "place" more quickly and easily, and will develop friendships that can last years. We encourage students to participate in sports and activities as frequently as possible. Another benefit of participation in school activities is developing a positive relationship with teachers and staff. If you are aware of an incidence of bullying, please report it to your child's counselor or administrator immediately. Omaha Public Schools' bullying procedure is put into place for all bullying incidents.

 

We are concerned about my child's weight and/or activity level. What can we do?

(We worked with our school nurse and PE Department to put together this answer.) The key to health for your middle school student is moderation and physical activity. As children get older they are more responsible for making healthy choices. Help your child to know and understand which foods are healthy and how to select them, whether at home, at a restaurant, or at school. Help them to understand proper portion size. Keep healthy snacks and meal choices at home. However, it's important to allow for a little indulgence from time to time -- if food is too controlled, your child might rebel and overindulge while they are away from you. Participate in fun activities as a family rather than forced exercise. For example, instead of telling your child they need to work out, take a family trip to the zoo and get some exercise while walking around. These are just general suggestions -- for medical advice or if you have a major concern, please make an appointment with your child's pediatrician.

 

Does Middle School "count"?

Yes, middle school counts! In the state of Nebraska, courses taken in grades 6, 7, and 8 are not considered part of a child's high school transcript. A student's credits toward high school graduation begin in 9th grade. So, sometimes students have the perception that middle school "doesn't count". This is absolutely not true. Every course taken in middle school is a building block toward your child's future goals of graduating from high school and moving on to additional school/training and career. Attendance and learning patterns in middle school correlate directly with high school success. Students who attend every day, work hard, and do well in middle school will have more success in the future.