Ms. Kay Gifford
I have worked with students from high school to preschool and their families. I have a Bachelor's of Arts in Psychology and Secondary Education with a minor in Teaching English from Hope College in Holland, MI. I received my Master's in Social Work from the University of Michigan with an emphasis in Interpersonal Practice and Schools. As well as a certified teacher and school social worker, I also maintain my license as a clinical social worker. My general therapeutic approach uses cognitive-behavioral, solution-focused, and systems theory. I always strive to utilize student and family strengths to create successful outcomes as well.
Social Work services are designed to meet the social, emotional, and behavioral needs of students that interfere with learning. Based on the students' needs, goals are created to measure growth in observable outcomes. Referrals for social work services primarily come out of the problem-solving process with staff but parents are welcome to call and inquire about eligibility for services.
The type of social work service range from small group, dyads, long term, and short term. Outcomes are measured monthly or by trimester to guide our services. Drop-in support is also available for students as needed based on availability. Social workers/counselors are also involved in crisis intervention, classroom management support, classroom groups, special education and staff problem-solving.
Sessions with the social worker are typically scheduled during lunch, recess, PE or specials so students do not miss any academic experiences at Shabonee. If a student is absent, we attempt to reschedule that same week if possible. If I am absent, we will also attempt to reschedule or a student/group may receive support from other counseling staff. Please keep in mind that the social work schedule needs to remain flexible to allow for meetings, crisis intervention, etc.
I am looking forward to another great school year. Please do not hesitate to call or email for additional information about our services. Check out or links to additional resources and information, which we will be continuing to update throughout the school year.