The Upper School (grades 9-12) seeks a dynamic and experienced counselor for international and domestic students. The Upper School Counselor works collaboratively with the Student Resource Team and the Residential Life Program to assess students’ mental health concerns. The Counselor supports parents by providing parenting information, therapy referrals, education and guidance; addresses students’ needs through one-on-one meetings and pro-social guidance; and participates in the Upper School administration through regular meetings with teachers and division level meetings. The clinical work with students is brief, goal-oriented and solution-based counseling. The Counselor works with teachers, the Upper School Academic Dean, Dean of Students, and the Learning Resource Collaborative to provide a learning environment that supports the social and emotional growth and development of students. The Upper School Counselor teaches the Health and Wellness Freshman Seminar curriculum and will be expected to continue to develop this curriculum as new issues arise. This class occurs once per day and focuses on areas of relationships, stress management, emotional regulation, mental health, substance use, and comprehensive sexuality education. Some evening and weekend hours will be necessary.
Successful candidates will be flexible, organized, creative and collaborative with a sound clinical understanding of the development of adolescents, conflict resolution, student and family support. SSFS seeks to nurture the whole child and the ideal candidate will have experience and embrace working with students who represent a broad range of abilities and learning styles. SSFS seeks candidates who value the importance of diversity and can share, appreciate and support differing points of view. Commitment to a progressive, dynamic and diverse school community is required.
Ideal candidates will have a Masters in Social Work or related field with a focus on adolescent development and significant counseling experience (5 year minimum preferred). They will have knowledge of and experience with the developmental, social, emotional and cognitive needs of adolescents. Further qualifications include experience in a student-centered environment; the ability to form trusting relationships with students, faculty and families; and the consistent professionalism with and amongst all constituencies. Strong listening, oral and written communication skills are essential. Familiarity or experience in health education is advantageous. Candidates should possess basic computer literacy for both administrative and instructional purposes. Knowledge of Quaker history and education is desirable, but not required.
Physical Requirements: The ability to navigate stairs as part of daily routines; mobility around a large campus with uneven pavement; bending and squatting as required to participate in activities; lifting/carrying boxes up to 25 pounds; and the ability to rearrange furniture for activities is occasionally required.
Commitment to Diversity
Sandy Spring Friends School embraces the Quaker testimony of Equality and seeks applicants who represent all backgrounds and demonstrate a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. We greatly value our diverse student population with 42% of students self-identifying as people of color and 89 international students representing 21 different countries. We actively seek faculty representative of our students’ diversity. Click to learn more about diversity at Sandy Spring Friends School. Special consideration may be given to members of The Religious Society of Friends.
Sandy Spring Friends School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or a person's status as a qualified candidate with a disability in administration of its educational program, admission policies, financial aid program, staff hiring and other school-administered programs.
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About Sandy Spring Friends School
SSFS offers an inquiry-based college preparatory program that emphasizes deep understanding throughout the curriculum while encouraging collaboration, instilling confidence, fostering practical experience, and cultivating respect for others. The School's teachers help students internalize a process we call "QRA” —Question, Reflection, Action—which ensures that they think critically, integrate new knowledge, and apply what they learn. We help students develop their individual sense of purpose as they become caring citizens of the world.
Our school’s culture, rooted in the idea that collaboration engenders achievement, can be traced to our Quaker heritage and abiding belief in the Quaker values of simplicity, equality, honesty, stewardship of the environment, and peaceful resolution of conflict. Our teachers are lifelong mentors and strive to identify and cultivate each student’s intellectual, extracurricular, and social passions. In doing so, we help shape students whose actions speak volumes and whose lives become exemplars—not only among their peers and families today but also in their personal, educational, and professional communities long after high school. Sandy Spring Frie...nds School students are taught to act upon what they learn. This call to action propels their accomplishments as graduates, in college, and beyond.
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