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Meet Michelle Bayer: Brevard County Schools Foster Care Guidance Counselor

MichelleBayerMy name is Michelle Bayer and I am the Foster Care Guidance Counselor with Brevard County Schools.  I have worked with students in Foster Care, age 13-18, for approximately 3 years.  My position entails working with students and stakeholders to help increase/improve educational outcomes.

I work with many stakeholders such as Case Managers, Guidance Counselors, Teachers, Foster Parents, Guardian Ad Litems, Independent Living Specialist, Therapist, Deans, Surrogate Parents, JPO’s, etc.  Some of the reasons I may be in contact with a stakeholder is to address poor academic performance, behavioral issues, school interventions,  Exceptional Student Education, transportation issues, assistance with GED waivers, college applications and financial aid.

I act as a liaison between the school and stakeholders to get the student the supports needed.  I attend Family Team Conferences and work with case management to address issues of concern and follow up as needed.  Although Foster Parents work directly with their student’s school guidance counselors, I also work with foster parents and appropriate school personnel when needed to assist in facilitating communication and employing strategies, interventions, and/or evaluations necessary to help the students succeed.  I attend educational meetings such as MTSS (Multi Tiered System of Support) and ESE (Exceptional Student Education) in addition to Manifestation Determination Reviews and Administrative Hearings to address any behavioral incidents/actions.  Throughout this process I try and supply the school with any pertinent data for consideration in regard to appropriate placement.

During the school year I check on student grades, absenteeism (try and ensure a Waiver is requested, if need be), behavioral records, credits, and test scores.  I also check their Edline account for more detailed information regarding academic performance. My favorite part of my job is working one on one with the students.  I particularly enjoy helping students apply for college and financial aid.  It’s such an exciting time for them and it’s really great to see them achieve their goals.  Sometimes they express that they never thought they’d pass their GED or obtain their Diploma.  They are so happy and I’m very proud of them and their accomplishments.

I encourage Foster Parents and Case Managers to utilize Edline for up to date information regarding student academic performance.  Edline will not only list class averages, but may itemize test scores and homework grades.  It’s also a wonderful tool to see if your student is turning in their homework assignments!  Please feel free to contact me with any concerns.  The best way to reach me is e-mail at bayer.michelle@brevardschools.org or you can reach me my phone at either (321) 242-6450 x5904 or c (321) 735-2348.