picture of Tom and Liza in the office wearing a blue shirt with a message of hope

Counseling Center

Frequently Asked Questions

Please call or email the counselor with any questions or concerns. 

 When do we get our schedules for the new semester? Students will pick up their schedules for first semester at registration in August but need to be advised to follow the schedule they receive on the first day of school.  Schedules change sometimes between registration and the first day of school in order to level class sizes. 

Semester 2 schedules will be given out the morning of the first day of the second semester.  Similar to the first day of school in the fall, students will be informed to either go to the cafeteria or the gym, depending on grade, to pick up their schedules. 

 Can I switch classes?Students have until one week after the first day of each semester to change their classes. Schedule Change Request forms will be on the bench near the counselor’s office, along with a box to deposit them into, the first week of each semester. Students need to fill out a change request and have their parent/guardian sign it to make a change.  

 Can I switch classes after the deadline date? Only in extenuating circumstances will students be allowed to change classes after the first week of the semester.  The student’s parent/guardian needs to contact the teacher to attempt to resolve any issues or concerns that result in the student wanting to change classes. After attempts to resolve issues have been made and contact between the student, parent/guardian, and teacher have been documented, a class may be changed after the deadline. 

 How do I become an Office Aide, Peer Helper, Teacher Aide, or Math Tutor? Students need to be in 8th grade to be in any helping position elective. Students interested in being an office aide need to apply/ sign up with the office secretary in the spring of their 7th grade year. Peer Helpers, Teacher Aides, and Math Tutors need to discuss helping with the teacher they’d like to help. All students desiring a helping elective need to have positive behaviors and good grades. Students may only be in one helping position per semester.   Math Tutors will sometimes be recommended by math teachers to be in those positions. 

 Do schedules change in any other way  throughout the semester?  Sometimes students require varying classes based on academic needs so might be placed in different core classes or extra support classes.  Some students may be able to fill needed helping positions later on in the semester as need arises.   

 How do I get into honors classes? Students apply for honors classes in the spring of their 6th, 7th, and 8th grade years.  Applications will be on the bench outside the counselor's office and need to be completed and turned in by the deadline date on the application.   Honors classes fill up quickly and students might need to be placed on a waiting list to enter into a class that is already full if they do not turn in their application by the date due.  Students are ranked by grade earned, GPA, and referring teacher rating of classroom behaviors.  The higher the scores on these factors, the higher priority the student has to enter into the honors class they are applying for. 

Sources of Strength

"Sources of Strength is...

  • A best practice youth suicide prevention project designed to harnesses the power of peer social networks to change unhealthy norms and culture, ultimately preventing suicide, bullying, and substance abuse. The mission of Sources of Strength is to prevent suicide by increasing help seeking behaviors and promoting connections between peers and caring adults. Sources of Strength moves beyond a singular focus on risk factors by utilizing an upstream approach for youth suicide prevention. This upstream model strengthens multiple sources of support (protective factors) around young individuals so that when times get hard they have strengths to rely on."


    BJHS has instituted Sources of Strength this year to spread hope, help, and strength into our youth.  Thirty five Peer Leaders were trained in November on the eight Sources of Strength and they immediately got to work on positive messaging, focusing on one or two strengths a month.  In November, a Thankfulness Challenge was held as part of the Spirituality source and the research that supports the positive effects of expressing gratitude.  In December, to address Generosity, the students came up with the "Generosity Warms Hearts" Campaign, and set a goal to report witnessing 1,000 acts of Generosity the week before Christmas.  A giant thermometer was made to track progress and BJHS exceeded the goal by witnessing 1,059 generous deeds in five days!  The "What Helps Me" Campaign is currently in progress for January, as we focus on Mental Health and Medical Access.  We are sharing strength based stories of what helps us handle the three big emotions of anger, anxiety, and depression.  Stay tuned for much much more and please contact the school counselor for more info about how you can get involved with this schoolwide effort to keep our youth full of hope, help, and strength! 

Follow our Counselors on their Facebook page:

BJHS Counseling Center Facebook

Note from Counselors:

As a resource for teens, and a known suicide prevention advocate, we feel a strong responsibility to help our educators and parents process the show, 13 Reasons with their teens. Don’t be afraid to bring up the show with your teen, or even watch with them. Don’t assume by virtue of their age, grade, friends etc that they haven’t seen the show already or talked about it. The entire series is full of teachable moments. Even if they’re not willing to talk about themselves, maybe they’ll open up about friends or situations they’ve seen. Make sure they know there are alternatives to suicide and treatments that can help. It’s okay to admit you’re struggling. The show doesn’t deal with the very real and common mental health challenges many teens face, so Hannah feels alone in her struggle. Don’t be afraid to talk about suicide. When we don’t talk about suicide and other tough stuff, we continue the shame and stigma that keeps people suffering alone. Let them know that you are a resource for them and can handle whatever they bring your way. Many teens won’t come to their parents for fear of overwhelming them, or getting in trouble. Show them that you can remain calm and not overreact. If they’re not comfortable coming to you, help them identify another helpful adult (and don’t take it personally) Listen, listen, listen. One of the biggest mistakes the counselor makes is not listening to Hannah, or validating what she is saying. It’s hard to be a teen, and it’s different than when you were a teen. Remember how big things seemed when you were a teen and give your teens that courtesy. Be a presence in your teen’s life, but not an overbearing one. Even if it doesn’t seem like they want to be with you or interact with you, most teens want you to be around. Think “potted plant,” present but silent. Educate yourself on the warning signs of depression, trauma, anxiety. Be aware of dramatic changes in your teen. Stress the importance of not keeping a friend’s deadly secret. www.youthsuicidewarningsigns.org And, don’t forget to take care of yourself, so that you can be a resource for your teen! . Educate yourself on the warning signs of mental illness, and what you can do. Be aware of dramatic changes in your child’s behaviors or appearance. Most importantly, know your own limits, and when to refer to a professional. https://teenlineonline.org:

SAVE and the Jed Foundation have released talking points: Talking Points www.teenlineonline.org email, call, text and message boards staffed by teens for teens Suicide Prevention Hotline: 800-273-8255

Trevor Project (LGBTQ specific): www.thetrevorproject.org

NASP guide for Educators; https://www.nasponline.org

Like our Facebook page (Teen Line Parents) for information about webinars and conversations, or subscribe to our blog (www.teenlineonline.org/parents/category/blog)

Last, but not least, feel free to reach out! cheryl@teenlineonline.org

Mrs. Castaneda School Counselor


email:  casliza@cassiaschools.org

(208) 878-6613 x1308

As the Burley Junior High School Counselor, I work to implement the American School Counseling Association Mindsets & Behaviors for Student Success and the Idaho School Counseling Program Student Outcomes:  Standards and Competencies to facilitate the academic and professional-technical development, life and career development, and personal/social development of all students.   I've enjoyed working at Burley Junior High School and look forward to continue to work with students, parents, and staff to make a difference for all our amazing students! 

Please feel free to come in, call, or email with questions or concerns and I will be glad to help!  I will also do my best to continue to add more helpful information to the Counseling Center portion of the BJHS website so please visit often!

"Never stop learning, because life never stops teaching."

Tom Rectenwald School Counselor


email: recthoma@cassiaschools.org

(208) 878-6613 x1309