A new face joins the guidance office


Isla Karen

This October, eighth grade guidance counselor Ms. Amanda Alicastro made a great entrance to Edison Intermediate School (EIS). After Mrs. Lori Bercovicz, the previous counselor for the eighth graders, left to work at Westfield High School, Ms Alicastro stepped into her shoes. Fellow guidance counselor Mrs. Kerri Webster claimed, “Ms. Alicastro hit the ground running. I work closely with her, and she is a really good fit for our school. She has acclimated extremely well.”

In order to be a well fitting school counselor, candidates have to have a good personality that is able to account for any problems that students or parents might have. Principal Dr. Matthew Bolton claimed, “Ms. Alicastro stood out with her knowledge of school counseling and the way she acted with students. She also fit in with our students and faculty really well.”

Starting in a new school is difficult, but Ms. Alicastro seems to be fitting in as if she wasn’t new. She stated in an interview, “Before Edison, I was a student assistance counselor, but before that I worked for a pharmaceutical industry. After that, I found how much I loved being with children so I decided to go back to graduate school for a counseling degree.”

Many eighth grade students explained how Ms Alicastro is very nice and easy to talk to. This is a key role that someone has when giving advice or helping out a person. In schools, kids have different obstacles that are hard to handle on their own. For example, bullying is one of the many issues that school counselors have to deal with. This action really affects students’ mindsets causing them to have negative thoughts about themselves. According to Vice Principal Mrs. LaNova Schall, “Ms. Alicastro really understands how to speak to middle school students. It is clear that she is very knowledgeable in guidance. She is a tremendous addition to our building.”

Besides counseling, Ms. Alicastro has hobbies outside of helping others. She declared, “I love to cook. In the summer, I love going to the beach. I also love spending time with my family especially my two nephews.”

As we are approaching the middle of the year, Ms. Alicastro seems to be very engaged in her job. After this year’s eighth graders graduate, Ms. Alicastro will then move to the new sixth graders that will be entering Edison. Ms. Alicastro is looking forward to supporting anyone who needs her help. She explained, “ I find everyone supportive, and the more time I spend here, the more I love it!”