April Smith

April Smith

School Psychologist

As school counselor, Mrs. Hamilton is trained to help students with three domain areas: personal/social needs, academic concerns, and career planning. She provides direct and indirect support services for students, teachers, administrators, and parents relative to helping students maximize their full academic potential. She can see students individually or in small group settings and sometimes makes classroom presentations on topics related to any of the three domain areas at the request of teachers or staff.

Ms. Smith's role is to consult with teachers, staff, and parents and evaluate possible learning disabilities in students. She also helps other resources staff to develop Behavior Plans or Individual Educational Plans (IEP's) for students who need additional assistance to be successful in school.

Mrs. Hamilton and Ms. Smith are both available Monday - Friday from 7:30 - 2:30.

Counselors help students to:

  • Sort out problems
  • Discuss feelings and needs
  • Explore options
  • Set goals

Counselors also help students learn new skills related to:

  • Conflict resolution
  • Anger management
  • Resilience
  • Organization
  • Study habits
  • Self-esteem

The Laguna Beach Unified School District Comprehensive K-12 Counseling Support Program is committed to developing each student's academic, social, and emotional competence. Elementary school counselors don't work in isolation; rather, they are integral to the total educational program. They provide proactive leadership that engages all stakeholders in the delivery of our district's quest for excellence and Professional Learning Communities programs, as well as other programs and services to help students achieve school success.

When would a parent need to seek help from an Elementary School Counselor?

Whenever a parent or teacher has a concern about his/her child's academic, personal, social, or emotional well-being and development as it relates to school success, he or she can consult with a School Counselor. The elementary years are a time when students begin to develop their academic self-concept and their feelings of competence and confidence as learners. They are beginning to develop decision-making, communication, and life skills, as well as character values. It is also a time when students develop and acquire attitudes toward school, self, peers, social groups, and family.

What is a Student Study Team (SST) meeting?

Student Study Team meetings are coordinated and facilitated by the counselor at Top of the World. This type of meeting is typically held whenever a teacher or parent has concerns about a child who is not performing academically at grade level or if the parent or teacher has concerns about a child who is demonstrating significant behavioral problems that might impede his success. The SST is composed of specialists who will make recommendations about appropriate interventions for the teacher or parent. The School Psychologist, RSP (Special Education) Teacher, Reading Interventionist, School Counselor, Classroom Teacher, Parents, and Principal compose the team which will arrive at a decision that meets the need of the individual learner.

Some outcomes of SST meetings can be recommendations for specific interventions to be implemented by the teacher or parent for a specified period of time, continued participation in current interventions for an extended period of time, or movement toward possible assessment for special education placement if the student is suspected of having a learning disability.