Mrs. Kelsey Lage will be working with all students in grades 7-12. As a school counselor she addresses the academic, personal/social, and college/career development of students.
Chibbs is a Labrador Retriever who has undergone training to be a certified Therapy Dog through Pet Partners and is set to become an integral part of our school community. He will work mainly in the Counseling Office with his registered Pet Partners Handler and Licensed School Counselor Kelsey Lage (his owner).
Therapy dogs have been working in schools across the US for many years. Listed below are just few of the benefits:
- Health - there is data to suggest that physical interaction with a therapy animal may reduce blood pressure, assist with pain management, and stimulate the senses.
- Emotional Support - a school dog improves self-esteem, acceptance from others and lifts mood, often provoking laughter and fun. Dogs can also teach compassion and respect for other living things as well as relieve anxiety.
- Cognitive therapy - companionship with a dog stimulates memory, problem-solving, and game playing.
We understand that you may have some concerns such as:
- Allergies or possible allergic reactions to a dog. Chibbs will be subjected to the most thorough cleanliness and grooming regime. He will also only be allowed in situations with students who voluntarily wish to work with him.
- Fear of dogs - some children may have had an upsetting experience and thus have a fear of dogs. Chibb’s training helps him to be calm and gentle around children; he shows signs of a very loving and gentle playful nature. Children can learn to overcome their fear of animals and grow in respect and appreciation for them.
There is a form to fill out if you would prefer your student not interact with the therapy dog, please contact Mrs. Lage if you need one. Please note your student will never be forced to interact with the dog and students/families who wish to see Mrs. Lage and not her dog will be offered an alternate location to meet.
Mrs. Kelsey Lage grew up in the Spicer, MN area. She is a first generation college student with a Bachelor's degree in Spanish and Psychology from Concordia College Moorhead. She also has her M.Ed. in K-12 School Counseling from North Dakota State University. She is a Licensed School Counselor with experience who enjoys working with middle school and high school aged students and advocating for their needs. Previous work experience included academic advising for division I athletes.
In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and dog, reading and partaking in whatever activities are weather permitted in MN.
School Counselors assist students in the following areas:
- Individual & group counseling
- Educational planning
- Post Secondary planning
- Career Development
- Personal/social development
- Communication with staff and parents per individual student academic needs
- Referral to in-school and community resources
- College readiness (PSEO/Concurrent Enrollment opportunities)
- Academic assessments
- 504 Case management
- Classroom lessons