Thank You Counselors...

 This week represents National School Counseling Week 2023.  The week, sponsored by the American School Counselor Association (ASCA), highlights the unique contribution of school counselors within the United States school system and the tremendous impact they can have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career. While there is no doubt that all adults (whether in an educational setting or not) act as a counselor to youth in some capacity, the specific work of a school counselor is at a different level. Believe it or not, many school-related people (including some here in Rome) still refer to school counselors as "guidance counselors". Unfortunately, this term used to address the work of school counselors was removed from school systems during the 1970s, but sadly many communities have yet to realize the work of a school counselor as being more than guidance/career planning, even 50 years later. Many of us as adults can think of at least one moment when our counselor has done something (big or small) to shape our lives. School counselors work tireless hours to ensure student growth, help staff that may be in crisis, and connect with families that may need some additional support. The role of the school counselor has become much larger than the days of the guidance counselor and we are fortunate in Rome to have some of the best school counselors available to our students and families. Whether it be providing classroom lessons to students on all things related to social, emotional, and the realities of the real world to individual conversations with students in crisis or just in need of a chat, the Rome counseling team is prepared daily to make a positive impact on the life of a kid. And, this work isn't limited to students, often a school counselor will also work with families in crisis and even the occasional staff member. In an era where so many people are dealing with bouts of stress and anxiety that they had never experienced before, school counselors everywhere are on the front lines of tackling the mental health crisis in our society that we continue to hear so many references to. I thank all of our hard-working counselors for the work that they do each and every day with our children, families, and staff. To read more about our Rome school counselors, please see our story on our webpage at and please take a moment to thank your school counselor this week.

Face Off Against Colon Cancer - RESCHEDULED

The Rome Free Academy hockey team will be hosting their annual Face Off Against Colon Cancer benefit game (played in memory of Coach Peter Mastracco) on Tuesday, February 7th at Kennedy Arena, where RFA will face off against Ontario Bay at 7:00 p.m. The RFA Ice Hockey Booster Club set up a fund in honor of the late Mastracco, who passed away from his battle with colon cancer in 2015. Please support your RFA Black Knights as they continue their messaging of “Get Checked From Behind”. Cancer is a disease that has greatly impacted our district and community throughout the years. Supporting our students in their quest to support us all is the least we can do.

Vaccination Clinic

The Rome NAACP is hosting a vaccination clinic, in conjunction with The Center of Utica, the Rome YMCA, and Rite Aid to provide a vaccination clinic on Tuesday, February 7. Vaccinations for flu, COVID, shingles, pneumonia, TDAP, and HPV will be available. The clinic will be held at the Rome YMCA from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. For adults, a $25 gift card will be provided per vaccine.

OPWDD Transition Assistance

The New York State Office of Persons with Developmental Disabilities is currently communicating with schools and families regarding ensuring that all students who can benefit from their services are aware of the department. New York State is a leader in transition services for students leaving a school setting and entering post-secondary educational institutions or the workforce. If you have a student in high school who you feel may benefit from their support and guidance upon graduating from high school, I encourage you to visit their website at Our school team is also working with OPWDD to help connect families as their students transition from high school to post-secondary endeavors.

Spring Sports Registration

At this time, Spring sports registration is now open on Family ID. For more information about our Spring sports offerings, please visit our athletic page at To visit the Family ID registration page to create an account and/or register for Spring sports, please visit that page at

Rome Science Fair

Attention students in grades 7-12!! Are you interested in science and want to show off your talents? The Rome Science Fair is for you. Registration is currently open until February 10 for the Rome Science Fair, sponsored by the Rome Academy of Sciences. This year's theme is Global Warming. For more information, please see their flyer on our PeachJar at or speak to your science teacher in school.

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