Indianapolis-based Lilly Endowment Inc. is continuing a focus on boosting school counseling programs throughout the state. The endowment has awarded $12.2 million in grants to 39 school corporations and charter schools. The funding is the second round of Comprehensive Counseling Initiative grants. The program is designed to support development new approaches by schools with counseling staffs that are increasingly being occupied by issues like the opioid epidemic and responsibilities not related to counseling.
In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Lilly Endowment Communications Director Judith Cebula called the initiative "a true statewide program." She says 43 of Indiana’s 92 counties are represented among grant recipients. "In the first round and in the second round (of the grant cycle), we saw educators name the concerns that they were seeing, the challenges that they were facing — so we saw that they have clarity of purpose," Cebula said. "We saw them bring evidence that they have strong partnerships ready to go with healthcare providers in their communities, with local businesses, with technical support at educational institutions so that they could strengthen the way they are preparing their students for academic success beyond high school."
The Lilly Endowment says proposals from the schools include:
- Collaborating with mental health care providers to address their students’ social, and emotional challenges
- Engaging local businesses in helping to prepare students for a range of employment opportunities, including developing mentoring and internship programs and planning industry information sessions and site visits to local companies
- Implementing a comprehensive counseling model developed by the American School Counselor Association
- Making use of digital tools and integrating college and career exploration and preparation into curricula
- Providing professional development to teachers, counselors and administrators so they can identify and address the social and emotional needs of students in order to improve overall student well-being
The initiative was launched in 2016 and the first, $26 million round of grants was announced. In all, some $49 million has been awarded through the Comprehensive Counseling Initiative to educational institutions throughout Indiana.
You can connect to the full list of second round grant recipients by clicking here.
Lilly Endowment Inc. Communications Director Judith Cebula called the initiative “a true statewide program.”