The role of Student Support Services at UNIS is to assist every student to attain maximum educational, vocational, and personal-social growth. The Student Support Services staff offers a wide variety of services, both direct and indirect, designed to meet the developmental needs of students. The Student Support Services staff works with students individually and in groups, with parents, with teachers and with administrators. The Student Services staff serves as a liaison between UNIS and institutions of higher education, health and psychological agencies, educational specialists, summer programs and other schools.
Placement of New Students
Counselors participate in the placement of new students in a grade and in an appropriate program of study.
Assessment is an important aid to understanding the progress of a child. Student Support Services uses a wide variety of instruments for diagnostic, aptitude and achievement assessment.
English as a Second Language (ESL)
English as a Second Language specialists work with students to help them build and strengthen their academic English so that they will be able to succeed in the regular program. ESL teachers also work with students to develop their social English so that they will be successful in school and in the greater community. ESL specialists consult with classroom teachers and assist in the development of individualized instructional programs designed to meet the specific academic needs of students whose first language is not English. Consideration for ESL service is initiated at the time of admission or by a formal referral from a teacher, parent, administrator or guidance counselor.
Additional Classroom Support
The fundamental aim of the UNIS support program is to assist in the integration of students with their peers in the classroom. In Junior School, Middle School and the Tutorial House, a learning specialist works with teachers to help them differentiate their instructional programs. Small group instruction is provided to students who are experiencing learning difficulties severe enough to threaten successful completion of their UNIS grade requirements. Learning specialists work with the students to help them build and strengthen skills that enable them to succeed in the regular program. Junior School students meet with the learning specialist in small groups. Phonics skills, reading comprehension and writing form the basis of instruction. The learning specialists in the Middle School and Tutorial House work regularly with students. The focus of this support is on class assignments and basic skills, as well as working with teachers to develop study skills and learning strategies to help these students succeed in the regular class.
In the Junior School, the counselor works closely with students, teachers and parents to create an environment that best meets the social and emotional well-being of each learner. Age-appropriate lessons are implemented throughout the year, parent workshops are provided and one-on-one sessions are available on an as needed basis. Throughout the year, strong emphasis is placed on effective problem solving and communication skills.
The Middle School counselors work with teachers, parents and administration to foster the social, emotional and academic development of our students. Students are provided with individual counseling and group counseling as needed as well as classroom guidance lessons in the areas of self-awareness and identity development, interpersonal relationships, decision making, study habits and transitions.
Tutorial House counselors play an active role in the academic and social/personal development of students. They work with students on both an individual and group basis, providing guidance in personal, social and academic areas, approaches to learning and career exploration, continuing to build on skills developed in Junior and Middle School.
Counselors work with the students directly in the course selection process in years Tutorial One and Tutorial Two. In Tutorial Three and Tutorial Four, counselors assist the IB coordinator with the course selection process.
It is the role of the High School counselor to help students work through any issues which hinder their ability to perform at UNIS. For any situations that are beyond the expertise or scope of the guidance department, counselors refer students to outside professionals.
In all schools, students may be seen individually as a result of a referral from the referral team, a self-referral, a peer referral or a referral by a teacher, parent or administrator.
Through personalized and comprehensive guidance, the UNIS College Office helps students and parents make informed college decisions. The College Office works closely with the administration, counselors and parents to assist students with course selection, summer program recommendations and other opportunities to ensure the students' preparation for college.