Meet the Pack: Allison Mullen

Allison Mullen smiles with a student
Allison Mullen smiles with a student

In the fall, the South Colonie Central School District began a new series, “Meet the Pack,” to highlight South Colonie staff members that go above and beyond for the school community. Meet Roessleville Elementary School Social Worker Allison Mullen*!

Allison Mullen is the school social worker for Roessleville Elementary. Mullen received nominations for her ability to connect and have a positive impact on not only students but teachers and families as well. 

“I was surprised when I was nominated! It touched my heart. I always say I love my job and I truly do. I love the people and the students that I work with,” said Mullen

Mullen has been with the South Colonie district for six years. During the first four years, she split her time between Forest Park and Roessleville elementary schools. Two years ago, the addition of new social workers to the department made it possible for Mullen to just focus on Roessleville, which allows for her to be a constant presence in the school and to build strong relationships with students.

“My favorite part of the day is having the students come in and knowing them all by name. I think I know every student’s name in the school,” said Mullen, which is no small feat given that there are 335 students enrolled!

Since COVID, South Colonie’s schools have put an emphasis on their social work department. Mullen shared that there is now at least one full-time social worker assigned at each school in South Colonie. More social-emotional support staff gives school social workers the ability to address crises in a prompt manner and also be there for the day-to-day needs of students like how to cope with feelings or what to do when something goes wrong. 

“Having that connection with students and letting them know that they can come to me whenever they need to, whether it is something small with a friend, something going on at home, or a struggle with a teacher. I want to build that relationship and be a person that they can go to when they need,” Mullen commented.

To Mullen, the best part of the South Colonie School District is the family dynamic. Mullen was initially attracted to the district for the homelike feel and because she is also a Colonie grad.

This March, Mullen stepped into the role of Therapeutic Crisis Intervention for Schools (TCIS) Coordinator. She has completed TCIS training throughout her career and became a trainer last year. She is now responsible for providing training and workshops to all staff on the topics of de-escalation, crisis management, providing a supportive environment, and helping create a trauma-sensitive environment for their students.

When she is not at school, Mullen loves to spend time with her family, particularly her niece and nephews. She is an avid Disney lover and the proud owner of two dogs and one cat. 

* You may know her as Allison Carpenter, since she recently got married and changed her name. Congratulations to the happy couple!