Each year, schools in Vermilion Parish honor their school counselors. National School Counselor week will be celebrated district wide February 7th-11th.
Appreciative faculties at Dozier Elementary, Erath Middle and Erath High know that their counselors go above and beyond for their school, students and teachers. In fact, each of the three Erath Schools posted a special “We Appreciate Our Counselor” website message to show their appreciation.
The term “school counselor” can be quite deceiving in terms of job description. Obviously their primary goal lies with helping leaders, students, teachers and parents with an array of issues at hand.
Their duties cover counseling, school registration, coordinating state testing and more. However, being a counselor often extends beyond the four walls of an office or the listed tasks on the annual job description they sign.
If you visit Dozier Elementary, you are likely to see Counselor Glenn Roy LeBlanc in meetings with administrators, parents, students or teachers.
However, you can also find him assisting in the office when additional help is needed, in classrooms dressed in costumes to promote academic lessons, shaking hands with his students, assisting with an assembly, offering a constant smile to his students, faculty or visitors entering the school daily.
LeBlanc recently commented how he “enjoys the constant interaction with the faculty, parents, and students.” He added “I view my job as a problem solver and I get a great deal of satisfaction doing that. I also enjoy promoting my school because of the administration, faculty, and student body.”
LeBlanc graduated with a B.A. from USL in 1962. In 1970, he earned an M.A. from Louisiana Tech and then earned +60 hours from USL and Nicholls. His educational career began in 1962 in Delcambre.
He remained in the classroom for 26 years, teaching at both JH Williams and at Abbeville High as well. In 2009, LeBlanc began as a Counselor in at Erath Middle. In August of 2009, he transferred to Dozier Elementary and is currently in his 3rd year as a counselor in Vermilion Parish.
Like LeBlanc, Erath Middle Counselor Jackie Segura Puyau is active with school activities, as well as being available to support to her students and school.
Like so many counselors around the parish, she gives her heart to her job and her students. She stated that she, “loves being here for our kids when they need someone.” Her true goal as an educator and counselor simply stated in her own words is, “I just want to be able to make a difference in their lives.”
Erath native Jackie Puyau, graduated from Erath High in 1984. In 1988 she graduated from USL with her Bachelor’s Degree and in 1994 she obtained her Master’s Degree in Guidance and Counseling.
She taught 5th grade at Erath Middle for six years, then moved into a position where she worked as a Sex Ed Itinerant counselor in the parish for two years. In the mid 90’s, she accepted the counselor’s position at EMS. This year marks Puyau’s 15th year as a counselor at Erath’s middle school.
Angela LeBlanc Lange’s job at Erath High brings additional tasks at the high school level which mesh traditional duties, as well as helping students with new career journeys and higher education.
Lange, who truly enjoys working at her alma mater commented, “I love working with teenagers and being involved in the everyday activities of a high school. Lange added, “ I enjoy my job because it gives me an opportunity to work with the students, parents, faculty, and staff of EHS and share information about graduation requirements, college entry requirements, scholarship and financial aid opportunities, and careers.”
Lange, like Puyau is an Erath native who graduated from Erath High. Following graduation in 1982, she earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education from University of Southwestern Louisiana in 1986.
Lange then earned her Master of Arts Degree in Education of the Gifted from University of Southwestern Louisiana in 1989, as well +27 graduate hours in certification in guidance and counseling from USL.
She worked with the Gifted and Talented Program for two years at Herod Elementary in Abbeville. She then taught 7th grade for nine years and 8th grade for one year at Erath Middle. She has been a counselor at Erath High for thirteen years.
Though the trio in Erath work with different age levels, the one constant linking them lies with the true caring nature each holds with their career and students.
That attitude is evident in a simple smile, kind words, advice or a needed shoulder. Each seem to internalize the meaning behind the quote “a smile is the light in the window of your face that tells people you’re at home.”
Through their actions and a smile, emerges a warm glow surrounding that metaphorical candle, allowing students to know that a caring counselor is home.