Dear Parents and Caregivers,
Allow me to introduce myself, I am Monica Miller, a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and your Head Start & Early Head Start Mental Health Consultant, but you can call me the Feeling Lady. I grew up in Charlotte County and graduated from Charlotte County Schools (elementary – high school). I have worked as a mental health counselor with children and families of all ages in various settings. Head Start is a program that is near and dear to my heart. I attended Head Start as a child in Ohio and believe it gave me the strong foundation I needed to flourish in elementary school and beyond. This is my third school year with Charlotte County Early Education Programs. I love working with the children in the Head Start and Early Head Start Programs.
My role at the Baker Center is to provide support and guidance to staff, parents and children in all areas needed for a well-rounded and healthy social emotional development. This includes screening for mental illness or special education needs but more often, it involves assisting parents and staff when a student encounters obstacles in their daily life. These obstacles come in so many different shapes and sizes, especially for young children, and what may seem “normal” to you may feel like a “crisis” to your child. This can include but is not limited to financial setbacks, moving, family changes such as divorce or remarriage, job loss or gain, illness and death. These kinds of events can cause behavioral changes in infants and toddlers. It is my job to work with you to assure your child’s quick return to a typical developmental pattern. I do this through meetings with you, working individually with your student, and working with the teacher to help ease the transition. Some of my other duties include monthly classroom observations and individual counseling to both students and parents. I enjoy eating meals with students and use this time to help them understand feelings better. Each month, I hold a breakfast for parents. We use this time to explore parenting challenges and gain support and ideas from each other. Our first breakfast will be in August. Watch for a text message or email alerting you to these each month. I look forward to using this time to get to know you.
This year we are continuing our Social Emotional Curriculum called Second Steps to assist your students in their social emotional development. This program includes weekly activities that you can complete at home. You can find this information in your child’s classroom, our website and on the website listed on the attached sheet. Please feel free to contact me for more information or any issues you encounter with the website.
I am in and out of the Head Start and Early Head Start classrooms throughout the district. I work Monday – Friday from 7:30 – 2; however, I am available in the afternoon by appointment. I am happy to meet with you on a drop in basis if I am in the office. You can also call me at the Baker Center (941-757-5470 ext. 218) or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an appointment.
I look forward to getting to know you and your wonderful children this year.
Monica Miller, LMHC