Tyson, L.E, Perusse, R., Whitledge, J., Coy, D.R., Akos, P., & Moore, I.L. (2004). Screening of
American Counseling Association.
Members: “Everyone is Welcome.” Critical Incidents in Group Counseling (pp.9-14).
This article discusses the importance of pregroup planning which includes prescreening, parental consent forms and practicing in one’s scope of practice. School counselors are not supposed to run therapeutic process groups the way a mental health counselor would. Some brief counseling is appropriate but if the group’s focal point is process/mental health based, this is beyond the school counselor’s scope of practice in this particular setting. Prescreening students is necessary so the appropriate needs are met in the group. If a student mentions during a prescreening interview that he/she is suicidal or needs further treatment, then the appropriate measures would need to be made then. Allowing just anyone to join a group could have detrimental circumstances especially if the facilitator is not equipped to handle certain situations. The group we are trying to organize focuses on peer relationships and social skills. Although at times, the narrative in the group may veer towards a deeper direction, students with significant mental health needs may not be an appropriate fit for this particular group.