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PENDLETON — In today’s educational landscape, school counselors are tasked with a myriad of responsibilities ranging from providing academic guidance and emotional support to fostering a safe and inclusive environment for students. In response to the evolving needs of counselors, the Oregon Trail Regional Educator Network created Counselor Connection, a support network specifically designed to nurture professional growth for this niche group of educators.

According to Emily Williams, data specialist with the InterMountain Education Service District, beginning in 2022, Dave Williams, director of school improvement for the IMESD, led an effort to create and facilitate in-person opportunities for counselors to share ideas and engage in professional learning specific to their realm. Counselors from all 21 Oregon Trail REN school districts were invited to attend three in-person gatherings — in December, February and May — during the 2022-23 school year.

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