Andrew Phillips, School Counselor, Indian Run

"Words cannot comprehensively explain how lucky we ALL are at Indian Run to have Andrew as our School Counselor.  He comes to work everyday with his smiling face and is all ears with students AND staff.  He goes out of his way to connect with students by inviting students to eat lunch with him and is always ready to have impromptu conversations with staff members regarding student wellness.  He is an excellent communicator and problem solver.  All students LOVE Mr. Phillips and consider him a very trusted adult in the building they can talk to and respect.

On a rare occasion, staff members have even contacted him outside of the work day or on the weekend when we've been extra concerned about a student home situation, and he helped solve the issue with the family in no time at all.

Andrew has facilitated professional development in organized, enjoyable and respectful ways throughout his years in our building and I always look forward to learning from him."

Andrew is the epitome of a guidance counselor. He is kind, empathetic, caring, calm, supportive, resourceful, and goes above and beyond to help both students, staff, and parents in any way he can. His calm demeanor allows our students to feel safe and cared for while they are working together to solve whatever the problem may be. Andrew has been know on many occasions to drive to a student's residence to pick them up in order for them to attend school that day. He is not only a tremendous support for our students, but for our staff as well. Andrew lifts all of us up in our time of need and is always offers support in any way he can. 

"Indian Run Ele. has a very large and diverse population (close to 700 students). Within our large population, IRE has many different behavior issues, i.e.students with emotional or mental issues, student's from broken homes, student's who come from violent homes, students who are depressed, students who don't know how to make a friend, etc..

I am amazed how Mr. Phillips is able to meet with so many students and teach his guidance classes on a daily basis with patience, tolerance, honesty, humor and yes, love. 

Mr. Phillip's receives numerous emails from concerned teachers who have concerns about ""their student"" and Mr. Phillips always responds in a timely manner. Mr. Phillips has a mailbox outside his room where students can leave a note when something is bothering them or they just want to talk. Mr. Phillips always responds in a timely manner. 

One of my favorite (and impressive) things that Mr. Phillips does is at the beginning and end of the day. He stands at the intersection in the upstairs hallway, where all the students coming to school or leaving for the day can see him. In the morning, he greets each student by name. At the end of the day, he ""High Fives"" every student who wants give him a High Five and says, i.e., ""See you tomorrow, Yourseff (or whoever) or i.e., ""How was your day, Melody. That's about 700 names! I know the student's feel valued and knows he cares. This is why I feel Andrew Phillips should be the next Golden shamrock. "