Welcome to Birches Counseling!
Counselor's Hours: 8:40am - 3:55pm
Note: For crisis, use our district Local Services List
School Counselor & SAC are now available remotely - Call or Email!School CounselorSchool counselors have Master's Degrees and are professionally trained in the three domains of school counseling: academic success, career readiness, and social/emotional development. Click here for the American School Counselor Association description of the elementary school counselor. Under Multi-Tiered System of Supports, direct counseling services include: school-wide activities, classroom lessons, individual planning or counseling, group counseling sessions, referral to resources.Student Assistance Coordinator (SAC)The SAC is an additional school counseling department personnel to assist students with social-emotional needs and target prevention/intervention strategies and programs related to substance abuse. Under Multi-Tiered System of Supports, direct SAC services include: school-wide activities, classroom lessons, individual or group sessions, referral to resources. According to the Federal Regulation (42 CFR Part 2), the SAC cannot disclose confidential student information related to substance abuse without the permission of the student. Click here for the Association of the Student Assistance Professionals of New Jersey role.Department Vision/MissionThe District School Counseling Department's Vision/Mission is Building Better People by helping all students achieve school success and plan for their future.
All About Our Staff!
Phone: 856-232-1290 Ext. 3032
Degrees and Certifications:
BA, Elementary Education - The College of New Jersey MA, Counseling Psychology - Rutgers University
Mrs. Kelly Chropka, School Counselor
My professional experience includes over 20 years of both teaching and counseling work with elementary children. I have earned a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education from The College of New Jersey and a Master's Degree in Counseling Psychology from Rutgers University. I look forward to working cooperatively with the students, parents, and staff this year to help our students to experience personal success and confidence.
Below you will find information about some of the counseling services that I will provide. Please call or email me with any questions or concerns regarding your child's academic, social, or emotional development.
Students are referred to see the counselor by parents, school staff, or often seek counseling on their own. Children receive support from the counselor on a variety of topics such as making friends, social skills, conflicts with peers, family changes, problem solving, grief, anger management and self esteem.
If a child would like to see the counselor they may ask their teacher or put a request in the guidance counselor's mailbox. Parents may call the guidance office to conference by phone or in person regarding concerns about their child.
Mrs. Chropka offers a variety of counseling groups throughout the school year. These groups generally meet once or twice a month and are designed to be fun and educational. The children learn together through discussions, activities, and role playing. Parents are contacted by letter before the group begins for permission for their child to participate. Some topics that are often addressed in groups are: Friendship Skills, Anger Management, and Divorce/Separation in families.
The counselor teaches lessons in each classroom on a regular basis . The lessons are based on the Birches Ten Pillars of Character Program and are tailored to the social and emotional needs of the students in each class. Some of the topics included in the lessons are: identifying and expressing feelings, communication skills, problem solving techniques, friendship skills, and anger/stress management.
Please see my individual web page for more information. I look forward to working with you and your child this year.
Phone: Ext. 5022
Degrees and Certifications:
BS, Social Work - Slippery Rock University Certification: SAC
Mr. Michael Petticrew, SAC
Mr. Petticrew is originally from Philadelphia and currently resides in Cherry Hill with his wife Laura and his grandchild Biana. He obtained his BS in Social Work from Slippery Rock State College in Western PA in 1980. He later received his SAC (Substance Awareness Coordinator Certificate) from Rowan University in 1995. He has been working with youth for the past 35 years in many roles including relief houseparent, alternative school counselor, and residential home coordinator. Prior to him coming to Township as a Student Assistance Coordinator and boy's soccer coach, he spent twelve years in the Palmyra School District in Burlington County in those same roles. Mr. Petticrew is at Birches usually on Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday afternoon. He provides individual and group counseling at all grade levels. He assist students with their social, emotional, and character development. He also is the Anti-Bullying Specialist for the school. Outside of work he enjoys traveling, rooting for the local sport teams, playing with his grandchildren, and being with his family at the beach.