School Social Work

Highlands is a unique building where we have two School Social Workers.  We have a General Education School Social Worker sometimes referred to as the counselor as well as a Special Education School Social Worker.  These two positions work together to help eliminate barriers and support students as needed.

What does a School Social Worker Do?

School Social Workers help students to identify and eliminate barriers in their academics, improve their interpersonal relationships, cope with life difficulties, develop self-esteem/self-discipline, learn to problem solve and resolve conflict, and develop appropriate social skills.

School Social Workers serve as a part of the educational system, and support students in academics and social success.  We are there for students who utilize both general and special education services.  We accomplish this by providing some of the following services to you and your student(s):

 – Assessment of student needs through observation, interviews and psychosocial evaluation.

– Individual and group sessions using research based practices that acknowledge all of a student’s resources and background information.

– Instruction and support regarding social emotional and behavioral difficulties.

– Crisis prevention and intervention

– Provide resources, education, referrals, and information for students, parents and staff.

– Work with community agencies, organizations and other professionals.

About our School Social Workers

General Education School Social Worker

My name is Allison Dykhouse, I have two beautiful daughters and an amazing supportive husband.  I earned my Bachelor’s Degree majoring in Psychology and minoring in Sociology from Western Michigan University.  My Master’s Degree is in Social Work with a School Social Work Specialization from Western Michigan University.  Go Bronco’s!


I have been working for Northview Public Schools since 2015 and love this district!   Please feel free to contact me anytime at (616) 361-3440.  My e-mail is:

Special Education School Social Worker

My name is Erin Atkinson, and I started working at Northview in 2017!  As a Northview parent and community member, I am thrilled to work here.  Highlands has been an incredibly welcoming and supportive school.  I had previously been working in the Coopersville Area School District for five years, and had worked in other community service organizations prior.  I received my B.A. in Psychology and my Masters in Social Work from the University of Michigan.  My husband and I have three young daughters.


You may contact me at (616) 361-3440 or e-mail me at