Kathy van der Hagen

I am originally from Little Falls - Go Flyers!  My parents still live there so I still make it back to visit and occasionally take in the big arts and craft fair in September.  I did my undergraduate study at the College of St. Benedict in St. Joseph and graduated in 1988 with a Liberal Studies major and a psychology and management minor.  After marrying my sweetheart from St. John's, we moved to Milwaukee, WI for a couple of years where I finished my masters in Educational Psychology at UW-Milwaukee and received my licensure for K-12 guidance counseling.

We moved back to St. Cloud after finishing up my schooling and moved to the Cold Spring community when our oldest daughter started kindergarten at CSE.  I have been an elementary school counselor for 21 years at Cold Spring Elementary.  I enjoy spending time with the students, helping them discover who they are and developing their strengths and talents.

My husband and I just became empty nesters this year and are trying to look optimistically at this new change.  We were once very busy following volleyball, tennis, softball, golf, band and many other ROCORI events with our children and look forward to staying active with ROCORI events.  We have two daughters.  Mikaela is a senior at Belmont University in Nashville and loving every minute in Music City.  Our youngest daughter, McKenzie, is a freshman at the U of M-TC in the College of Science and Engineering Honors Program and is adapting to college life and exploring all the wonderful clubs and activities that are offered, including ballroom dancing!

My children use to keep me busy, but thank goodness I do have other interests outside of once being a busy mom.  In the summer I love to sit outside and read a good book.  We live on the lake so boating, pontooning, tubing and fishing are all passions of mine.  I love to travel - anywhere! This past summer we went on an Alaska cruise and took way to many pictures. It was beautiful!  I enjoy taking my two British yellow labs for walks and going on bike rides.

I look forward to the new school year and being available to students no matter what the need!  May it be a fantastic year for all and know my door is always open to anyone who wants to come and visit.

Cold Spring Elementary Counseling Services

Individual Counseling

Counseling is provided for students expressing difficulties with relationships, personal concerns, or struggling with normal developmental tasks.  Crisis counseling is also provided to students and their families facing emergency situations.  Students, staff, and parents often make the referrals.  Referral sheets are located by the door of the counseling office.  Parents can call and/or make an appointment to make a referral for their child.


Group Counseling

Small groups are designed to be both preventative and remedial.  The groups formed are based on the current needs of the student body and staff.  Many students are involved in both individual and group counseling.  Students may participate in  more than one group during the year, but not repeat the same topic group that year.

Groups typically run for eight to ten weeks.  The student may participate with a signed parent permission slip.  Referrals for small group may be given throughout the year.

Social skills/friendship group activities and lessons cover a variety of areas such as cooperation, sharing, self-esteem, feelings, decision-making, bullying, conflict resolution and friendship.   Because much of a student's behavior is learned through their peers, role model students are encouraged to participate in a group.  Small group is a beneficial learning experience for any student involved.  Specialty groups (such as divorce, grief and loss, changing family, anger control, etc.) will also be available throughout the year "as needed" for students who need extra help in specific areas. 

Lunch Groups

Lunch groups consist of six to eight students from the same grade level.  Students are selected to participate in these groups.  The group meets once every other week during the lunch periods n the counselor's room.  The purpose of these groups is to help students connect with others in a natural social setting.

New Students

During the first few weeks of school all new students will have the opportunity to visit with the school counselor.  This allows new students to become acquainted with the counselor's role and support can be offered for any transition issues that may arise.  A picture of each new student is taken for the bulletin board.


The school counselor is available to consult with parents, teachers, and staff regarding strategies to help students.  The school counselor also acts as a  resource person and houses a variety of books and information in the guidance office.  During the school year the counselor is available to help make outside referrals via social services, mental health agencies, etc.


Although counseling does not fall under special education, the school counselor works very closely with the special education team, attending special education meetings and IEP staffings.