School guidance is more than academic
Boothbay Region High School welcomed Janet Sprague this month as the new guidance director and school counselor. She brings short-term and long-range goals, and an appreciation for the area.
One immediate goal is to make sure students’ transcripts represent their education in the best possible way. This means reviewing administrative processes to make sure they align with state statutes and standards for the curriculum, “so that students look their very best on paper to college admissions counselors,” Sprague explained.
As an academic counselor, Sprague sees her role as making sure students have the social, emotional, academic and community resources they need to transition to the next phase of their lives. She is a member of the American School Counselors Association and other professional organizations.
She will work with every student to create a four-year plan, whether they are freshmen or seniors so they are aware of all of their options. Sprague believes in providing experiential learning and looks to work with community members to develop new programs.
About 88 percent of BRHS graduates go on to either a two- or four-year college. Sprague cited the resources of the community and its involvement, financial aid and merit-based scholarships as contributing factors. She also pointed to U.S. News & World Report's ranking BRHS 11th among Maine’s 262 schools.
Sprague is a native of Mount Desert Island and has moved back to the area from Florida. She has worked in corporate environments with nonprofits and in the classroom in public, private and charter schools. She is a graduate of Palm Beach Atlantic University for both her bachelor's and master’s degrees and is working on a PhD in psychology in cognition and instruction at Grand Canyon University.
She came back to Maine to reconnect with friends and family and has found a “warm and welcoming” community. “It felt like family,” she explained of her move to the Boothbay area.
Asked what she thinks students should keep in mind, she said, “Be open to new experiences. Freshman year is important in building the foundation for high school and beyond. Most importantly, be open to asking for help.”
She would like parents to know her door is always open to them, and that it’s important for parents to reach out when help is needed.