Welcome Letter Fall 2014


 Welcome to the 2014-15 school year! My name is Joy Wintersteen and I’m the new counselor at the elementary school. I am so happy to be here, in this lovely new school, working with your children. I look forward to meeting all the students and their families and getting to know your community.


I grew up in Bethel, Alaska and graduated from Bethel Regional High School. My husband Luis is an Argentine I met while I was teaching English in Argentina for several years. Luis and I have been raising our two children, Lucas and Maite (5th and 3rd grades) in Colorado, but we were ready for a change. We are excited to now be back in Alaska.

I have a Masters Degree in School Counseling from the University of Northern Colorado, and have spent the last three years as a school counselor in Fort Collins, Colorado. I am pleased to be part of a school counseling program that addresses students’ growth socially, academically, and vocationally. The school counseling program will include weekly classroom guidance lessons, small group counseling, and individual counseling. Collaboration with parents, teachers, and community agencies is essential.

This year we will continue with the “golden awards”, where classes are recognized for their good work during the week, in the hallways, classrooms, lunchroom and bathrooms. Individual students will earn prizes for their positive attitude and behavior. Kelso’s Choice, the curriculum that Mrs. Pipkin introduced, will also return. I will be in all the classrooms once a week, teaching lessons on a range of topics, such as conflict management, bullying, study skills, team building and career awareness, among others. If you have the internet at home, please go to the AISD website on the Elementary School tab, where you will find a short parent survey about topics you feel are important to address. I also have paper copies outside my office door.

I am, above all, an advocate for all students. I believe that all students, no matter their background or abilities, can achieve, and my job is to assist them in their journey. Whatever we do at the school please know that at the heart of it is your student.
Watch for my monthly newsletter on the school’s website. Call me at 886- 4121 x2253 with any concerns you have, or to set up an appointment. You can also email me at: jwintersteen@aisdk12.org. Confidentiality is at the heart of the counseling profession; I will always respect your and your child’s privacy. I look forward to meeting you.

Joy Wintersteen
Fall 2014



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