School Counseling

  • Hello!  My name is Erica Holt and I am so excited to be the school counselor at Parkside Elementary.  We are going to have a fantastic school year!    

    I have taught in the Psychology Department of Germanna Community College for the past 12 years and more recently at the University of Mary Washington.  I received my Master of Science in Developmental Psychology from UC Santa Cruz and my endorsement in School Counseling from Virginia Commonwealth University.    

    As a counselor I look forward to supporting the academic, social, and emotional needs of all students.  I will be providing many services including classroom guidance, small group counseling, and seeing students on an individual basis.    

    When I’m not counseling at Parkside, I enjoy spending time with my two daughters and husband, playing tennis, reading, and spending time outdoors doing just about anything from hiking to working in the garden.    

    Erica Holt 540-710-5190

    Jen Liston 540-710-5190


    What does my counselor do?  

    Monthly Classroom Lessons

    Developmental classroom lessons offer an opportunity to provide support to the largest number of students in the school.  The school counselor presents lessons that are developmentally appropriate for students in kindergarten through fifth grades.  Lessons are designed to build students' personal/social, academic, and career development.  

    Topics include: 

    ·         friendship skills 

    ·         goal setting 

    ·         making healthy choices 

    ·         problem solving 

    ·         bully awareness 

    ·         decision making 

    ·         conflict resolution 

    ·         career choices


    Group Counseling

    In small group counseling, the counselor works with two or more students.  During the group sessions, students will become involved in fun activities such as playing games, drawing, role-playing, reading books, and group discussions.  Students will learn ways of getting along with others, communicating more effectively, controlling their behavior, and resolving conflict.  Groups are offered throughout the year based on the needs of the students. 

    Some common group topics include: 

    ·         Stress

    ·         Anger Management

    ·         Social Skills

     ·       Divorce

    ·         Friendship 

    ·         Conflict resolution 

    ·         Self-Esteem


    Individual Counseling

    Counseling is provided on an individual basis for students whose problems or difficulties dealing with relationships, personal concerns, or normal developmental tasks are affecting their school performance.  It focuses on helping students to identify problems and causes, alternatives, and possible consequences, and to take action when appropriate.  Children are referred to the counselor by: 

    ·         the student himself or herself 

    ·         a teacher 

    ·         parent/guardian 


    Parent Information 

    Please call me anytime (540-710-5190) to make an appointment to come in and discuss any concerns you may have about your child. I also can provide support from community agencies to deal with issues that are affecting not only your child, but your whole family. 


    The Parent Resource Center is an excellent resource for parenting sessions throughout the year and has a wealth of material for parents to use. Their new location is at the newly renovated J.J. Wright Educational Center. Check out the PRC website or call the center for more information.   540-582-3616 


    Character Education 

    The entire staff at Parkside promotes positive behavior in all our students through PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports). Students earn tickets for showing Respect, Responsibility, and Productivity.  Classrooms can earn Golden Eagles when the entire class demonstrates positive behavior in common areas.  Students are encouraged and recognized in a variety of ways by our staff for showing good character. 


    Classroom Topics 

    Classroom guidance is delivered monthly to each of our homerooms kindergarten through fifth grade. The objectives of the lessons cover guidance SOLs in each of the three main areas of the county’s guidance curriculum: academiccareer and social/emotional areas. Topics include making decisions, setting goals, school success, conflict resolution, friendship skills, making healthy choices, bully awareness, anger management, and career choices among others. 

    Lessons are frequently delivered in an interactive, game format giving the students a chance to practice the skills needed to show competency in the different areas. 



    As counselor, one of my responsibilities is to also monitor student attendance. Regular and timely attendance is linked to a positive school experience and academic achievement. Parkside staff members work hard to encourage good attendance. When students begin to have unexcused absences or tardies, a staff member may call home to talk to the parent to see how the situation can be improved. If unexcused absences continue, a letter will be sent home.  If absences become excessive, a meeting is usually scheduled with the school social worker, counselor, teacher and administrator to address how to correct the problem.