Eagle Valley guidance counselor named Counselor of the Year. Kayleen Schweitzer was nominated ‘because she’s amazing’ | VailDaily.com

Eagle Valley guidance counselor named Counselor of the Year. Kayleen Schweitzer was nominated ‘because she’s amazing’

EAGLE — A local middle school guidance counselor was surprised during a pep rally with the announcement that she is one of Colorado's school counselors of the year.

Kayleen Schweitzer is a guidance counselor at Eagle Valley Middle School in Eagle and was chosen from among 1,600 school counselors around Colorado, Matthew McClain, with the Colorado School Counselor Association, said in making the announcement Friday, Sept. 7.

Schweitzer was a "shining star" when the EVMS community was devastated last school year. But that was just the latest in years of great work, said Nicholas Hoeger, an Eagle Valley High School guidance counselor and one of the many people who nominated Schweitzer.

"She was nominated because she's amazing," Hoeger said. "That tragedy was a culmination of all that she is."

Schweitzer said she was "shocked and thrilled," when the announcement was made.

National round

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Schweitzer is one of three Colorado counselors of the year — out of elementary school, middle school and high school counselors.

They'll learn next month which of the three is Colorado's Guidance Counselor of the Year. The winner advances to a national round of 50 finalists, McClain said.

Winners are selected individuals based on several criteria, including: school counseling innovations, effective counseling programs, leadership and advocacy skills and contributions to student advancement.

"School counselors make significant contributions to the overall well being of students and their success," said Richard Wong, executive director of the American School Counselor Association. "They have unique qualifications and skills that allow them to address students' academic achievement, social/emotional and career development needs."

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and rwyrick@vaildaily.com.