How some California school districts invest in counseling – and achieve results

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San Francisco Unified is among dozens of districts across California that has invested in counseling in recent years, hiring more staff to guide students through the college and career process and help with their mental health needs. For many districts, the investment has paid off with higher graduation rates, a drop in absenteeism and more students submitting financial aid forms and completing the A-G courses required for admission to UC and CSU.

But while California schools have added more than 2,200 new counselors over the past eight years — a jump of more than 20 percent — student-to-counselor ratios remain high at most districts, and the state average of 609-to-1 is well above the national average and the 250-to-1 ratio recommended by the American School Counselor Association.

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