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Rita Sanders Jackson 256-446-5679 Email

School Counselor


Let's make 2016 a GREAT Year at HES! I am here to help students, parents, teachers, and administration. Call me at 446-6414, if I can help!






PBS CHANGES  for 2015-16:   

Students school-wide will be given tokens each 9 weeks for good behavior according to individual teacher point values; however, an end-of-the-year bash will be planned for students maintaining the required number of points for the entire year.





Items Needed FROM PARENTS or GUARDIANS to register:

 1] Birth Certificate (CERTIFIED COPY);

2] Social Security Card of child (copy);
3] Updated Shot Record from AL (original up-to-date)
4] Custody Papers, if applicable;
5] Proof of Residency in parent/guardian's name, (such as a light bill, rent statement, cable or phone bill)







MRS. RITA JACKSON, School Counselor

  • Prior to becoming a counselor, I taught high school / middle school English and Spanish for many years with Limestone County Schools; after which, I explored other surrounding school systems, seeking to serve as a school counselor (and librarian) to gain valuable experience and to learn from other professionals.

  •  I believe in being a lifelong learner, love attending conventions & training, and bringing that information back to my colleagues to share new ideas.

  •  When I am not teaching, I enjoy reading (fiction, non-fiction, and my Bible), being with my husband of 40 years & my 4 grown children {Will, Brandon, Brianna, & Brody} and their spouses (Lisa, Bill, & Claire); enjoy being with our family & grandchildren {Lillian, Abby, Brayden& Bryant}, spending time at our mini-farm at Hunter Gates, traveling to the mountains, watching Alabama football, watching NASCAR races & Atlanta Braves baseball, doing a little deer hunting, exploring /rambling in new places (junking) and playing with our blue heeler, Lucy. I love collie dogs and shelties, love a great cup of coffee, being with my husband/best friend, and cooking for my family. There's no greater feeling than knowing that you've helped another person. That's my purpose in being the counselor. I feel that we each have been given gifts. My gift is to be a counselor, helping kids get into college, find jobs / careers, and enlightening them to possibilities that they may never have considered due to there circumstances or background.  Not having a counselor to show me when I was a junior & senior in school has led me to want to show teenagers the possibilities--regardless of their culture or where they came from. My mother and daddy instilled in my sister and me the desire to better ourselves through the opportunity of an education, something there families couldn't afford. That is why I believe in being a lifelong learner and my goal is to help others and give the GOOD Lord the glory!




  • University of Alabama, (Tuscaloosa) 12 Graduate Hrs in Counselor Education toward Ed.S., 2008 - 2009; CURRENTLY ATTENDING UWA to continue MY Ed.S., SPECIALIZING IN COUNSELING...

  • University of West Alabama, Livingston, 3rd Master's Library Media certification, 2006-2007

  • University of West Alabama, Livingston, 2nd Master's School Counseling/Psychology 2003-2004

  • University of North Alabama, Florence, 1st Master's Secondary English/ Education, 1994-98    +Spanish Teacher certification & 9 Graduate Hours in Special Education via Scholarship (Learning Disabilities, Language Development, Teaching Students w/ Behavioral Issues & Learning Disabilities)
  • Athens State University, Bachelor of Science in Language Arts + Mathematics teacher certification; Sigma Tau Delta officer; Cum Laude; Teacher Honor Society; Who's Who Among America's Colleges & Universities; Writing Center Tutor (3 Years); Steelcase Scholarship recipient
  • Calhoun Community College, Secondary Ed focus; Phi Theta Kappan

  • West Limestone High School, 1976 Honor Graduate; Top 10% of graduating class

  • Limestone County Career Tech Center; Business Office Education; FBLA Officer; Winner of Limestone County Spelling /State Contender

  • Member of AEA, former LCEA Vice President;

  • Member Salem Springs Baptist Church, Alabama Counselors' Association, ALabama Library Association



Prior to graduating at ASU, I worked 3 years in the Writing Center, under the tutiledge of Barbara Searcy, Dr. Curtis Coleman, Dr. Penne Laubenthal, and Dr. Albert Elmore, where I provided assistance to students with their writing assignments and edited publications for faculty members, including Dr. Mark Durm.



  • Ardmore High School, English/Language Arts & Spanish teacher, Limestone County Schools began my teaching career in 1994; Ardmore's first Spanish teacher and began the first Spanish club; textbook committee chairperson for English / Language Arts & textbook committee for Spanish teachers in LCS

  • West Limestone High School, Spanish & High School 10 -1 2 English teacher, Limestone County Schools, hired by Principal Aubry Privett; Coached Varsity Cheerleaders for 2 years; served as EL coordinator for high school; did my counseling internship along with Vicky Shields under Margie McConnell and Patsy Rogers

  • Piney Chapel Elementary & Johnson Elem, School Counselor, under Dr. Patricia Gartman and Joan Austin

  • West Limestone High School, middle school Language Arts teacher



  • Legacy Elementary, Library Media Specialist & Public Relations Chairperson



  • Giles County HIGH, HS GUIDANCE COUNSELOR 9 - 12, split alphabet K - Z, Scholarship chairperson, 504 coordinator, BOYS & GIRLS STATE, AWARDS Day chairperson, FAMILY Night Career Tech presenter, Coordinator of College Recruiter visits, Coordinator of Military Recruiters; Trained by University of TN to administer ACT & PSAT, experienced with End-of-Course Testing; STAR Student Software Management training in Manchester, TN



  • West Morgan High School, HS GUIDANCE COUNSELOR 9 - 12, Coordinator of TESTING (AHSGE), PSAT, ACT; 504 Coordinator; trained in Mobile for I-Now / STI transition for counselors; Transitioned Cum Cards to computer; trained with Decatur City Schools to transition AHSGE results onto I-Now; coordinator of MILITARY RECRUITERS & College / Career Recruiters; trained at ACCESS learning center in Madison (counselor role & principal role training) to coordinate DISTANCE learning; trained with Gwen Baker at Calhoun for Dual Enrollment & KUDER career software. Served only a partial year Sept - June in lieu of a retiring counselor


  • F.E. Burleson, Library Media Specialist; instrumental in encouraging the implementation of RENAISSANCE ENTERPRISE Accelerated Reader hosting program; provided training for faculty; LIFETOUCH trained / YEARBOOK Sponsor; Student Council sponsor; Book Club intermediate grades


The Role of a Counselor in Schools:


A counselor is a professional educator, with a Masters' Degree in School Counseling,

experienced as an educator in the classroom (3 years or more), who has completed an internship,

belongs to a Professional organization, and provides guidance / service in scheduling,

individual and small group guidance, large group via a curriculum in line with the  ALSDE / ASCA standards, maintains permanent records, enrollment/withdrawals, encourages consistent attendance.

COUNSELORS are advocates for students, try to help and assist students who struggle with academic issues that may be directly caused by personal/home issues, and assist teachers in their making their roles in the classroom easier and more efficient.



 "My first year at Hatton was a wonderful one, as I was able to get to know each student to some degree by serving in two roles, as counselor and as library media specialist. Our year began with guidance lessons scheduled in the classroom once per nine weeks. However, as the year progressed and needs were greater with our students, I experiemented with doing a mini guidance lesson at the beginning of most library classes and asked the teachers to allow me to keep their children longer for grades 1 - 6.  [Kindergarteners attention span is very short, so they get a little antsy from sitting so long in the library.]  This worked well, so I am hoping this next school year to begin with a guidance lesson and transition into a library activity and literacy lesson. Parent volunteers are surely a big asset to our school, so we hope that with the 2015-2016 school year, more parents will contact us to volunteer in the library, by reading to a group of kindergarteners, leading activities, or helping with book shelving / decorating our library.  We want our HES library to be the HUB of activities in our school.  Bring your ideas, parents, and share with us fun activities for students. 

Our School Counseling PROGRAM promotes the academic, social, personal, and career interests of your children through lessons that correlate to the ASCA (American School Counseling Association) guidelines. Promoting character, helping students overcome any hindrance to their learning, and helping them to have FUN while learning, while getting along with others, and becoming the very best that they can be to be a productive member of society ~ are all included in our goals here at Hatton Elementary. I am so happy to be a part of the professional team of dedicated educators here in Colbert County and look forward to another fantastic year! Please do not hesitate to contact me, if I can be of service to you!" 


(With my serving as counselor & librarian, you may need to leave me a message; I will return your call as soon as possible.)


Guidance Classes

 Guidance Lessons will be included with library lessons, as while I'm teaching literacy, I plan to incorporate a guidance lesson. 


The first 2 weeks of school and last two weeks of school, there will be NO guidance nor library classes due to enrollment, withdrawal, software class updates, & aligning classes.  





Tattle Tongue - Learning the RULES of TATTLING  - a wonderful book by Julia Cook

      1] Be a Ranger Danger

      2] Be a Problem Solver

      3] Is it a Now or Later Problem

      4] Mind your own Beeswax


 My Mouth is a Volcano  -

Teaching Students to have a filter & not say everything that pops into their heads and rolls down their tongue.  Another book by Julia Cook


7 Habits of Happy Kids    




How Full is YOUR Bucket? / What is a BUCKET FILLER?  




Being Thankful & Kind to Others    - Correlates to Thanksgiving / Food Drive         


RED RIBBON WEEK - GUIDANCE LESSONS extended time with each LIBRARY Class




LESSON / SAY No Way, Jose'; Just Walk Away from DRUGS

Guest SPEAKERS - Riverbend  Lesson - Substance Abuse


Small Group - Thursdays; Individual Guidance on Fridays; Large Group - During library readings



Award-Winning Children's Author, Mrs. Julia Cook & Mrs. Rita Jackson

at the Counselors' Conference