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Lawmakers to consider added school counselors

November 14, 1999|By JULIE E. GREENE

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. - West Virginia state legislators said Sunday they would look into providing funding for more guidance counselors, nurses and social workers at the state's schools in an attempt to make them safer.

In previous hearings before the Education Subcommittee on Productive and Safe Schools, guidance counselors have said they don't spend as much individual time with students as they should since they have other duties such as helping students schedule classes, said Subcommittee Chairman Del. Dale Manuel, D-Jefferson.

After discussing possible ways to make schools safer during an interim meeting Sunday at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service National Conservation Training Center, committee members agreed to look at changing the funding formula for guidance counselors.

The cost estimate for adding 300 guidance counselors statewide is approximately $13 million, Manuel said.

During the meeting, Sen. John Unger, D-Berkeley, said he thinks state legislators should look at giving local school boards more control so they can decide solutions that best fits that county's need.

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