Legal Issues for School Counsellors

Topics to cover:

1. Testimony

  • subpoenas
  • documents

2. Consent

  • Elementary and Secondary
  • Informed consent
  • mature minors
  • employer’s right to direct the workplace
  • School Act

3. Confidentiality

  • Ethical and Legal Obligations
  • Note taking & retention of notes
  • Privacy Commissioner rulings
  • Privacy commissioner decision re access to counselling notes
  • Privacy commissioner decision re university student who expressed thoughts of suicide

    4. Role of the Counsellor - Employer ability to discipline / direct

  • Abbotsford case regarding counsellor who gave money to student to take bus

    5. Student protection – child abuse reporting procedures

    6. Liability

    7. Boundaries

    8. Questions


Target Audience


To Bring/Important Notes

This workshop needs to occur at the earliest time on Friday.  They are on a very tight schedule.  


Friday 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM

This session is full.


  • BCTF
    Karlan Modeste

    Karlan Modeste is legal counsel for the British Columbia Teachers' Federation (BCTF). She represents the BCTF in labour arbitrations and its members at the Teacher Regulation Branch. Karlan previously worked with a labour and employment law firm and as a staff lawyer with Nova Scotia Legal Aid. She has also practiced criminal defence and prison law. Prior to her legal career, Karlan worked as a child protection worker for 7 years. She has developed a curriculum for law and child protection and teaches as a sessional instructor at the University of the Fraser Valley and Douglas College.

    Karlan holds a B.A. from the University of Fraser Valley, a J.D. from the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University, and a Graduate Certificate in International Business Law from Queen's University. She was called to the Bars of Nova Scotia and British Columbia in 2014.

  • BCTF
    Robyn Trask

    Robyn Trask is General Counsel to the British Columbia Teachers' Federation (BCTF). She has represented the BCTF in labour arbitrations at the Labour Relations Board, Human Rights Tribunal and at all levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada. Prior to joining the BCTF, Robyn worked with a Toronto litigation firm and completed her articles with the Canadian Auto Workers' Union. Robyn has also spent time working with legal organizations in Sierra Leone, Ethiopia and Uganda and is currently a Canadian Technical Advisor on a Canadian Bar Association (CBA) project established in partnership with East African law societies. Robyn is chair of the CBA National Labour and Employment Law Section and was previously President of the Board of Directors for West Coast LEAF. Robyn holds a BA and an LLB from the University of BC, and an LLM from the University of London.