Talking things over with someone, listening to their problems, and helping to find solutions and supporting them through the bad times, is what counselling is all about. (I will partake in Assessments as well due to being a Pro. Psychologist which a counsellor cannot do).
What does a counsellor usually do?
- Listen effectively to what you are saying
- Interrupt you when it is useful and appropriate
- Facilitate your untangling of thoughts, feelings and worries about a situation
- Offer you their insights into other possible option of how you can act, think and/or feel
- Meaning: Teach, show and help you express your emotions in your own way; Teach, show and help you work out your own solutions to problems; Teach, show and help you accept what cannot be changed; Teach, show and help and support you and your relationship etc.
- While: Issues may involve bullying; parental separation/divorce/abuse; procrastination; friendship issues; ;problems with social skills; anxiety/nervousness and/or depression; loosing a loved one; and/or academic difficulties etc.
*Staff need to reassure students that they are not in trouble if they see a counsellor, nor is something wrong with them. Student/s need to be reminded that all students face difficulties and that they want to discuss will be kept absolutely confidential. Counsellors also provide support in the form of information, advice, mediation and referral to a range of services.
When will counselling help?
Generally counselling will work better if the student seeks help themselves. However, because within schools settings the clients are mainly minors their parents need to consent for them to seek counselling (unless the issue is delegate and the student needs attention without the consent for we have Duty of Care responsibility).
What happens in counselling?
- You will be supported through your problem/s
- Explore many different problem solving strategies
- Develop own strategy for action
What to expect from counselling?
- Will be provided clues to better coping strategies/skills
- Support and guidance to sometimes make difficult changes
- To speak honestly about your state of mind, feelings and dissapointments without any judgements
- To be treated with respect and care towards your concerns or issues
What NOT to expect from counselling?
- Dr. Phil's 'expert' advise
- Things to get better immediately
- Your counsellor to tell you what to do
- 'shoulds' or 'musts' about your behaviour
How long will this take?
There is no set time, it will depend on the student and the problem complexity. An intake will take place after an assessment. It has come to my attention that teachers question students after counselling session/s, All staff members should respect the student/s privacy and confidentiality.
How are appointments made?
Teachers will be advised to fill in a referral form, if they seek that the student is suffering from emotional/physical/learning difficulty. The teacher will also need to get a confidentiality form signed by the parent and submit both forms together. The student can self-refer but this will need to follow a confidentiality form from a parent or a guardian unless the issue is delegate and the student needs attention. There will be a letter box next to the counselling room for this purpose (self-referral), students can be advised of this 'letter box' in coming future.
The child will be escorted by an admin staff when they have the appointment. The student/s are not to be sent by themselves to the counselling room.
The information shared with the counsellor will be help in confidential, unless there is a threat to the individual themselves or to others involved. The person will be informed it will not happen without them knowing.
* All serious behavioural incidents should be reported to heads of schools or directors for counselling will take place after assessment of referral/s.
*All student should be encouraged by staff members to seek counselling and that counselling is Okay if the student is having hard time.
* These will involve as stated above, however if there is any form of Abuse/Harm to the student, action should be taken without waiting for counselling and the person who has witnessed is responsible to report the incident straight away.