School Counselors

School counselors are professionally trained and Virginia state certified professionals whose role is to identify and address student needs through the use of a comprehensive school counseling program geared towards student success. Our main goal is to advocate for our students and ensure that they each have a successful middle school experience. We work with students individually and within the classroom setting to support and assist them with their academic, social/emotional, behavioral, and personal development. We also work collaboratively with students, parents, teachers, and other professionals in order to identify and minimize any barriers that stand in the way of student success. We specialize in post-secondary and transitioning planning. In addition, we serve as an important source of information, resources, and referrals.

  Aleke Sharpe : 8th Grade Counselorpicture of aleke sharpe wearing blue Indian river braves school counselor shirt

I am proud to be a Brave! I am a certified PreK-12 professional school counselor for Chesapeake Public Schools. I am a proud U.S. veteran of the United States Navy. I received my B.S. in Sociology from Saint Leo University while on active duty and my M.S. in Counseling and Psychology with a specialization in School Counseling from Troy University. I began my career in education in central Florida as a school counselor and my focus every school year is how to best support our students as they learn and grow in school. As School Counseling Director at IRMS the school counseling program is intentional and focused on providing academic, social and emotional support for all students. I am a passionate about encouraging students to not be afraid of trying new endeavors and understanding that education is a journey not a destination.
Contact Aleke Sharpe


Lindsay Newcomb, 7th grade guidance counselorLindsay Rantanen : 7th Grade Counselor

I am a certified PreK-12 School Counselor for Chesapeake Public Schools. This is my seventh year as a Professional School Counselor and at IRMS. I am so proud to be a member of the Braves family! I have my BS in Human development from VA Tech and my MEd from William and Mary, but in my heart I will always be a Hokie.  Middle school can be a stressful time for our students. My goal is to help alleviate some of that stress by working with students on developing healthy coping skills allowing them to be successful in middle school and in life.  I hope to prepare these students to take on challenges with confidence and to learn to advocate for themselves so that they can achieve their goals.
Contact Lindsay Rantanen


picture of julie rich wearing a blue shirt int he library Julie Rich : 6th Grade Counselor

I am a certified PreK-12 school counselor for Chesapeake Public Schools.  I received my B.S. in Human Services Counseling from Old Dominion University and my M.S. in Urban School Counseling from Norfolk State University.  I began my education career as a Special Education Teacher with Norfolk Public Schools.  After teaching for seven years, I decided to make the transition to become a school counselor with Chesapeake Public Schools.  I served as a school counselor at the elementary level for twelve years.  This is my first year at IRMS.  I am excited to be a part of the counseling team.  I have found my heart belongs in middle school, and I am extremely eager to be serving as the 6th grade counselor.  My goal is to build relationships with each and every one of my students in hopes of making their transition to middle school as smooth as possible.  I want to inspire all of them to believe in themselves and to teach them they are responsible for making their dreams come true.
Contact Julie Rich