Guidance in post-primary schools is a whole school activity that is integrated into all school programmes. Guidance in schools “refers to a range of learning experiences provided in developmental sequence, that assist students to develop self-management skills which will lead to effective choices and decisions about their lives. It encompasses the three separate, but interlinked areas of personal and social development, educational guidance and career guidance.” (DES, 2005, pg. 4).
Here in Coláiste Muire, we have two guidance counsellors; Ms. Caroline O’ Brien & Ms. Karen Heffernan. Both are fully qualified and registered members of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors.
Our guidance counsellors provide advice and support to students throughout their years at secondary school. This time in a young person’s life can present many challenges. The transition to secondary school, choosing subjects, preparing for and coping with exams and making important decisions about the future can at times cause uncertainty and worry. Our guidance counsellors are here to provide information and equip students with the tools to make good decisions and reach their full potential. They also provide a safe space for students to talk if they are experiencing difficulty and offer one to one counselling to help students address these issues. Our guidance counsellors provide a comprehensive guidance program which is both class based and on an individual basis. They are concerned with the personal, social, educational and vocational education and development of each student in our school.
Our guidance counsellors provide the following supports to students:
Subject Choice Presentations
Study Skills & Goal Setting
Relationships & Sexuality Education
Mental Health Education
Attendance at College Open Days & Careers
CV & Interview Preparation
Assistance with College Applications
Assistance with HEAR/DARE Applications
A non-judgemental safe space to talk
Liaise with outside agencies & support services
Liaise with the Pastoral Care Team to improve student welfare