She has been a music teacher and reading specialist. In addition to her own college degrees, she holds special certifications from Harvard University’s Institute for College Admissions, Testing & Selection and the University of Colorado-Boulder’s Institute for Financial Aid and Scholarships. From 2006 – 2008 she served as cofounder and executive director of her own firm College Bound of Memphis, a online resource providing students with hundreds of opportunities to help prepare them for and get them into college. She has served and continues to serve on numerous boards related to school counseling. And although she’s a little too humble to mention it, she is also the recipient of a string of civic and education-related awards and accolades.
Obviously, from the photo she chose to submit for this blog, she is also an animal lover and believes in the healing nature of the companionship of pets, as witnessed by hold tight to her beautiful dog Dakota.
Mrs. Amy Ragland is the TSCS School Counselor, working year round to help students and families overcome challenges of various kinds in regard to behavior and mental wellness. Among other duties, her main job is to implement, assess, and manage the school’s counseling program to enhance the academic, behavioral, emotional, and social strengths of TSCS students in grades 6-12. She is responsible for the development of a comprehensive counseling plan, health plans, workshops, and partnering with other community resources for TSCS students and parents, and she’s the Building Testing Coordinator (BTC) for district, state, and national assessments. Another of her key responsibilities is The Counselor has key responsibility for conducting individual and group counseling sessions with students.
TSCS Executive Director NeShante Brown sums it up saying, “Mrs. Ragland is an irreplaceable force within our school. Her extensive experience, deep expertise, innate relatability, nurturing approach, and relentless resourcefulness have been vital to daily operations within TSCS for years.”
For the past couple of months during the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis and the school closure and subsequent quarantine that came with it, Mrs. Ragland has continued counseling students and families with a biweekly “Let’s Talk COVID-19 Behavior and Mental Wellness” email addressing myriad issues related to the stress coronavirus has been causing. Along with a message to email her with any concerns, she offered information and guidance from tips on teaching children breathing exercises when they are feeling stressed, anxious, or afraid, to advice on replacing “anxious” or “worried” thinking with “realistic” thinking so children learn to see things in a clear and fair way without being overly negative.
As she stated in one of her emails, “Let’s acknowledge that this historical time has been difficult for everyone because of all the uncertainty and rapid change. Whether your family is struggling financially, someone is working in an essential job everyday, or isolated at home or simply feeling uneasy about the future, it is extremely important that we all stay informed and take care of our mental health.”
In her closing email before the last day of school, Mrs. Ragland sent long list of valid resources to keep maintaining positive mental wellness throughout the summer, including websites, phone numbers, videos, and more.
TSCS appreciates all of Mrs. Ragland’s contributions to the mental wellness of our students and families during the pandemic and throughout the year, and we look forward to having her with us in-person again when the time is right!