Meet the Counseling Department

UPDATE: Counseling assignments have changed for 2023-24. That info is updated in  this post that otherwise dates to February 2023.

It’s National School Counseling Week and we are recognizing the tremendous impact our school counselors have in helping Garfield students achieve academic success, social-emotional health, and college and career readiness.


Kandace Alston (Grade 9: All students, Grade 12: Last names E-J): This is my 12th year at the Doghouse and my 7th year as the 9th grade Counselor and I absolutely LOVE IT! I am like a bridge between Middle School and High School–someone who offers support and advocates for student needs during their first year. I have one daughter, the light of my life; she’s 3 years old.  I love music and spending time with family! kalston@seattleschools.org

Daniel Lee (Grades 10-11: Last names A-G, Grade 12: Last names A-D): This is my 10th year at Garfield! I’m passionate about advocating for students and helping them find their way and navigate life during this crucial developmental stage. I love to collect and listen to vinyl records and attend concerts. I have 2 kids, ages 9 and 7, and one day, I hope they will also be Bulldogs! dwlee@seattleschools.org

Jessica Allen (Grades 10-11: Last names H-N, Grade 12: Last names K-Q): I was born and raised in Long Island, New York. I completed my Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from George Washington University in Washington, DC, and I’ll be graduating from Seattle University in June with a Master’s degree in Counseling. I have two pet bunnies at my home in Beacon Hill. I spend my free time going to concerts, hiking, spending time outside, reading, and dancing.  jmallen1@seattleschools.org

Ken Courtney (Grades 10-11: Last names O-Z, Grade 12: Last names R-Z): I’ve been a counselor in Seattle Public Schools since 1986 and have been at Garfield since 2006.  I enjoy helping students and families on their educational journey.  I’m a bit of a foodie and love gardening. kcourtney@seattleschools.org

Missy Chow (Registrar): I’ve been with Garfield’s Office of the Registrar for 7 years. I am a 4th generation Seattle/Central District/Capitol Hill denizen, and before Garfield, I worked with Seattle Central College. It is an honor to work with our 1650 Garfield students, 100+ staff, our families and community. Let me know how I can help: mlchow@seattleschools.org Room 104

Effie Iannacito (Counseling Secretary): I just started as the new Counseling Secretary at Garfield in January.  I am enjoying working with all of the counseling staff and meeting the students. I have lived in Seattle for 30+ years, mostly on Capitol Hill and the Central District. I have worked in many fields over the years but mostly in admin. I love music, movies, and baking/cooking. I have a son who is in 8th grade at TOPS and will be here as a Bulldog next year! eriannacito@seattleschools.org

Garfield’s Counseling Department is committed to ensuring that ALL students are equitably supported in their academic, social-emotional, and college and career development. The Counseling Department provides the following services:

  • Academics
    • Consulting and advice on what classes to take
    • Graduation requirement guidance and tracking
    • Student/teacher liaison to support student success
    • Schedule changes & course registration support
  • College and Career Readiness
    • Use Naviance as a tool for researching and planning post high school options
    • Advising students on the college application process / filling out counselor reports during senior year
    • Partnering with various college & career organizations to connect students with resources and opportunities (i.e. Running Start, Seattle Promise, apprenticeships, scholarships, etc.)
  • Social & Emotional Learning & Development
    • Providing mental health curriculum via classroom visits
    • Crisis intervention and response
    • Individual counseling and connection to resources
    • Partnering with community orgs such as Seattle Children’s, Atlantic Street Counseling, DSHS, Coleman Family Services, etc. to provide critical services to our most vulnerable students

The Registrar’s office works with:

  • Monthly State audits
  • Student enrollment and withdrawal
  • Transcript assessments and updates
  • Grades
  • Student academic records
  • Master class schedule for the following year
  • Student class registration
  • Graduation
  • Student and teacher schedules

Thank you for all that you do!