School Counseling

Meet our school counselors, school psychologist, and social worker and learn about our school counseling program

Forest Edge School Counselors

Forest Edge Elementary School has two licensed professional school counselors: Chelsea Nagel and Shantell Russ. The job of the professional school counselor is to plan and implement an elementary school counseling program based on the standards developed by Fairfax County Public Schools and the American School Counselor Association.

Ms. Nagel and Ms. Russ implement a variety of classroom lessons and run small groups throughout the school year on topics such as bullying and harassment prevention, conflict resolution, anger management, study skills, cooperation, listening, feelings, the middle school transition, and a variety of other topics as needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does the counselor know my child's name?

School counselors work with all students, unless a parent has signed the opt-out form. School counselors assist all students with navigating disagreements with peers, managing strong feelings, family changes, etc.

How does the school counselor determine which children to work with?

1. Parents can request and indicate a need and desire that the counselor meet with their children. If you have expressed interest, and your child has not been seen, please call or email a counselor to reiterate your interest.

2. Students can request counseling and are able to fill out a form to let the counselor know that he/she has something to discuss.

3 .Teachers, administrators or other school staff can refer a student to the counselor.

Counseling is conducted with students individually and in small groups when requested and determined to be appropriate. It is short-term, voluntary and confidential. It is not intended to be therapy, nor should be viewed as a substitute for therapy. Parent permission is obtained prior to any extended individual or group counseling.

Learn more about school counseling here.

Please do not hesitate to contact our amazing school counselors!

Chelsea Nagel | 703-925-8000 | cenagel@fcps.edu

Shantell Russ | smruss@fcps.edu

    School Psychology Services

    School psychologists are mental health specialists with knowledge of child development, the psychology of learning, behavior management and intervention, monitoring the progress of students, and program evaluation. School psychologists apply this knowledge using a problem-solving approach to help bring about positive changes in the learning environment, attitude, and motivation. Services offered by the school psychologist may be provided directly to the student or indirectly by working with teachers, parents, and other care givers; however, all services provided by the school psychologist are intended to enhance the academic and social emotional success of students. Minimum requirements to be a school psychologist include a 60-hour master's degree program and a one-year full-time internship; many FCPS school psychologists hold doctoral degrees.

    Our School Psychologist

    Emily Milas | emmilas@fcps.edu

    Social Work and Support Services

    School social workers focus on family and community factors that influence learning. They provide intensive services for students facing issues that pose risks to their academic success such as parent divorce and separation, poverty, truancy, chronic illness, mental health problems, conduct problems, child abuse, etc.

    All FCPS social workers hold a Master of Social Work (MSW) or Master of Social Science (MSS) degree; many have earned a Doctorate of Social Work (DSW) degree. All school social workers are licensed by the Virginia Department of Education. The majority of the staff is clinically licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia Board of Social Work (LCSW) or in other jurisdictions and trained to provide mental health services in any setting.

    Our School Social Worker

    Marcela Dzeda | mkdzeda@fcps.edu