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Minnesota Administrative Rules


Subpart 1.

Scope of practice.

A school counselor is authorized to provide to kindergarten through grade 12 students school counseling services that focus on the promotion of preventive and educational strategies to enhance the cognitive, emotional, and behavioral development; effective decision-making skills; and resiliency capabilities of students.

Subp. 2.

Requirements for first professional license.

A candidate for school counselor licensure shall:


hold a master's degree or the equivalent from a college or university that is regionally accredited by the association for the accreditation of colleges and secondary schools; and


show verification of completing a Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board preparation program approved under chapter 8705 leading to the licensure of school counselors in subpart 3 or provide evidence of having completed a preparation program in school counseling accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Services.

Subp. 3.

Subject matter standard.

A candidate for licensure as a school counselor must complete a preparation program under subpart 2, item B, that must include the candidate's demonstration of the knowledge and skills in items A to K.


A school counselor understands the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of professional school counseling and creates learning experiences that make education meaningful for students. The school counselor must understand:


the major theories, assumptions, professional challenges and ethics, individual and group counseling methods, skills, and techniques that are central to professional school counseling;


basic diagnostic classifications and referral mechanisms of the helping professions;


comprehensive professional school counseling and guidance program development, implementation, management, and evaluation;


the role and function in the total organizational, curricular, and academic structure of the school;


the organizational structure and changing needs of the school;


human growth and development;


individual and group appraisal techniques;


the need for and ability to demonstrate effective communication and human relations skills;


social and cultural pluralism and diversity;


consultation techniques;


career theories, stages of career development, the changing world of work, school-to-work transitions, and lifestyle development;


educational, career, and vocational interest assessment techniques and demonstrate the ability to provide accurate interpretations in this regard;


academic curricular requirements of students in their respective school settings;


career and academic postsecondary requirements and expectations;


the special learning challenges facing students including collaboration with special education teams;


the need for student advocacy, including crisis intervention, suicide prevention and intervention, violence prevention, conflict and disciplinary resolution and mediation, and how to mediate conflict and intervene effectively in conflict management and disciplinary prevention and intervention situations; and


the integration of services model and coordination with related human services and how to effectively collaborate with human service networks.


A school counselor understands how children, youth, and adults learn and develop and provides learning opportunities that support their intellectual, social, and personal development. The school counselor must understand:


human growth and development as it relates to the selection of appropriate counseling skills and techniques;


human growth and development as they relate to career and academic development; and


developmental, cognitive, and affective influences on learning and diverse learning styles as these influences relate to the comprehensive school counseling and guidance program.


A school counselor understands how students differ in their approaches to counseling and guidance and creates instructional and counseling opportunities that are adapted to students from diverse cultural backgrounds and with exceptionalities. The school counselor must understand the basis underlying:


the application of multicultural counseling techniques;


counseling approaches to students with special learning needs and areas of exceptionality; and


counseling approaches related to gender.


A school counselor understands and uses a variety of instructional and counseling strategies to encourage student development of critical thinking, problem solving, and performance skills. The school counselor must understand:


the implementation of learning strategies underlying classroom guidance instruction;


the implementation of learning strategies underlying the provision of mental health curriculum;


the associative links between instruction, behavior, and learning;


the associative links between counseling, classroom guidance, and learning;


the transfer of effective decision-making skills to lifelong learning, academic, and career choices; and


contemporary guidance and counseling and mental health curricula, programs, and instructional materials.


A school counselor applies the understanding of individual and group motivation and behavior to create a counseling and learning environment that encourages positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self-motivation. The school counselor must understand:


interpersonal dynamics in individual and group counseling settings;


classroom guidance dynamics;


motivational and learning characteristics, classroom guidance, and mental health curricula; and


the application of counseling, human development, and career theories to classroom settings.


A school counselor uses knowledge of effective verbal, nonverbal, and media communication techniques to foster active inquiry, collaboration, and supportive interaction in the classroom. The school counselor must understand:


theoretical approaches and applications of appropriate counseling communication skills in the individual, group, and classroom settings; and


diverse counseling communication styles related to culture and gender.


A school counselor plans and manages counseling and guidance instruction based upon knowledge of subject matter, students, the community, and guidance curriculum goals. The school counselor must understand:


curricular components of the comprehensive counseling and guidance program in the school setting;


the link between school-to-community educational opportunities;


the link between academic, career, and postsecondary planning and instruction; and


how to integrate student emotion, behavior, cognition, and decision making in establishing guidance curriculum objectives.


A school counselor understands and uses formal and informal assessment strategies to evaluate and ensure continuous intellectual, social, and physical development of the learner. The school counselor must understand:


the theoretical basis for educational, career, and other assessment techniques and interpretation for which they are appropriately trained;


the basis for making recommendations to administration regarding testing and assessment in the total school curriculum;


the principles of using assessment data and interpreting information in academic instruction and the counseling process;


the ethical, legal, and cultural implications in the use of assessment data in academic instruction and the counseling process; and


the process and implementation of evaluation of the comprehensive guidance and counseling program as a tool to provide optimum guidance and counseling services to students, parents or guardians, families, staff, and the community.


A school counselor is a reflective practitioner who continually evaluates the effects of choices and actions on others and who actively seeks opportunities to grow professionally. The school counselor must understand:


the historical and philosophical foundations of professional school counseling;


contemporary and research influences on professional school counseling;


the professional school counseling literature, research, organizations, and resources available to aid in the effective updating of the comprehensive guidance and counseling program; and


the importance of self-care in the ability to provide counseling services.


A school counselor communicates and interacts with parents or guardians, families, school colleagues, and the community to support student learning and well-being. The school counselor must understand:


the legal standards particular to professional school counseling;


the ethical standards of relevant professional organizations; and


professional collaboration, integration of services, and networking processes within the helping professions.


The school counselor demonstrates through prepracticum and practicum experiences the ability to provide educational counseling services to students. The practicum experiences must include a series of formal observations and directed instructional experiences with kindergarten or primary, intermediate, middle level, and senior high school students who are participating in a range of educational programming models.

Subp. 4.

[Repealed, 25 SR 805]

Subp. 5.

Renewal of professional license.

A professional license shall be renewed according to the rules of the Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board governing professional licensure.

Subp. 6.

Effective date.

The requirements in this part for licensure as a school counselor for providing school counseling services to students in kindergarten through grade 12 are effective on September 1, 2001, and thereafter.

Statutory Authority:

MS s 122A.09; 122A.18


23 SR 1928; 25 SR 805; L 2017 1Sp5 art 12 s 22

Published Electronically:

August 21, 2017

700 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155 ♦ Phone: (651) 296-2868 ♦ TTY: 1-800-627-3529 ♦ Fax: (651) 296-0569