Conference Review - By ISCA President-Elect TaRael Kee
Hello everyone, I hope you had a wonderful conference and a Happy Thanksgiving. The ISCA board truly hoped to have an in person conference this year. We really value and enjoy seeing all of our colleagues face to face but the pandemic made that impossible. However, there were some very incredible moments this year despite all of our conference sessions being held online. As a state association, we really grew closer and developed new ways of assessing and meeting the needs of all of our members. Additionally, ISCA gained so much positive momentum coming off of our conference and the disaffiliation vote (officially happening on February 3rd) and we hope to continue moving forward by serving school counselors to the best of our ability.
The ISCA Awards Ceremony was spectacular and held many heartwarming moments. Brian Coleman gave a phenomenal keynote speech and a very touching tribute to our Executive Director (and his mentor) Dr. Vince Walsh-Rock. Our awards ceremony made it apparent that so many counselors are working so hard and accomplishing so much despite the challenges that a pandemic brings. Did you know that in 2020, ASCA awarded nine Illinois schools RAMP designation? Counselors in our state are incredible and build phenomenal relationships with students. Hundreds of students wrote extraordinary essays about their circumstances and the impact their school counselors had on their lives. We highlighted counselor-student bonds at our conference by recognizing ISCA’s seven regional scholarship winners.
ISCA truly values recognizing the amazing effort of school counselors throughout the state of Illinois. During the award ceremony attendees heard personal and very touching speeches about past presidents Leslie Goines and Dr. Matt Liberatorre. The ceremony continued to progress after those heart warming presentations by honoring the 2020 ISCA Award Winners. Ultimately, the night culminated with Dr. Heidi Truax winning the Illinois School Counselor of the Year Award. Our awards ceremony was amazing and served as a snapshot of all of the success that Illinois school counselors had throughout the 2019-2020 school year.
This year, we had 376 school counselors from all over Illinois register for the ISCA Conference! Our attendees participated in 1525 professional development sessions! Even more meaningful is that our members felt like the training was impactful and our presenters received excellent reviews! The topics this year ranged from developing mentorship programs to motivating challenging students. Here is a comprehensive list of all of our breakout sessions. If you are interested in watching additional sessions they are still available until December 31st. All you have to do is log into the conference portal to continue learning! Also, if you missed the conference but are still interested in our professional development videos it is not too late! All you have to do is click HERE to register and enjoy quality professional development! The ISCA Board hopes to continue to provide our members with relevant training. Please help us by completing our brief Needs Assessment.
ILLINOIS SCHOOL COUNSELOR ASSOCIATION