The experiences of school counselor social justice advocates in rural schools
Grimes, Lee Edmondson
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Examined from many perspectives, rural education and the needs of rural students have been neglected in the education literature as economic and social challenges there grow. Throughout the school counseling literature, agreement exists that advocacy is key to success for professional school counselors as they attempt to remove the barriers to success for students. More research is needed to fill the gaps in the knowledge about social justice advocacy in particular settings. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to discover the essence of the experiences of school counselors approaching their work in schools as social justice advocates in a rural setting. Through interviews with rural school counselors who describe themselves as social justice advocates, this study sought to discover the meaning ascribed by social justice school counselors to their role and to their place, the rural setting, as it relates to their social justice advocacy. The following themes emerged, with each holding both positive and negative elements: the stability of place; community promise; mutual reliance; professional and personal integration; and a focus on individuals.
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