Role of the Guidance Counsellor
Guidance in schools is defined as “a range of experiences provided in a developmental sequence that assist students to develop self-management skills which will lead to effective choices and decisions about their lives” (DES 2005).
The Guidance Counsellor liaises with the school Principal, Deputy Principals, Year Heads, Class Teachers, and Learning Support Teachers. Contact is also made with parents, employers, colleges, counsellors, and the Department of Education to ensure a comprehensive network is in place to support all students.
The Guidance Programme for St. Brigid’s Presentation Secondary School aims to provide support for all students under three main areas:
- Personal and Social Guidance: Some students may require support in meeting their developmental needs and when they experience personal crises. The Guidance Counsellor meets with students individually. Students are provided with a safe space to discuss their concerns, within limits of confidentiality. A referral to a counsellor or other outside agencies may be necessary, depending on the students’ needs.
- Educational Guidance: At St. Brigid’s Presentation Secondary School, we appreciate that each student has their own unique learning abilities and talents. We encourage all students to optimise their learning skills and to reach their full potential. The Guidance Counsellor supports students when making educational decisions and choices, e.g. choosing subjects and levels. Support is provided to students to help increase educational motivation, create a realistic study plan, and to discover study techniques that best suit their learning style.
- Career and Vocational Guidance: Students are provided with information which enables them to source and manage career information and to become aware of the various pathways to further and higher education, and employment opportunities. Career Guidance equips students with the necessary tools for exploring course choices and enables students to make appropriate life choices. Career Guidance can guide students through the application procedures for further education and training institutions e.g. CAO, UCAS and FETAC. If required, CV writing, cover letters and interview techniques are also discussed with students.
How to book an appointment with the Guidance Counsellor Ms. Aisling McCarthy
Junior Cycle Students
Junior Cycle students can request an appointment with the Guidance Counsellor by firstly meeting with their Year Head. The Year Head will refer the student to the Guidance Counsellor. The Guidance Counsellor will contact the student via Teams, to arrange an appointment. Please note that it may take 2-3 school days to arrange an appointment.
Senior Cycle students
Senior Cycle Students can request an appointment with the Guidance Counsellor via their Year Head, or by filling out an appointment card which can be found outside the Guidance Counsellor’s office. Students can place the completed appointment card into the post box outside the Guidance Counsellor’s office. The Guidance Counsellor will contact the student to arrange an appointment via Teams. Please note that it may take 2-3 school days to arrange an appointment.
Referrals to the Guidance Counsellor
Referrals, on behalf of students, can also be made by school staff and parents.
A matter of urgency
In a situation, during school hours, where a student does not have an appointment with the Guidance Counsellor but feels they require help as a matter of urgency, the student is advised to go directly to the school office to seek assistance. A member of staff will ensure the Guidance Counsellor is available or will seek the correct assistance for the student, if the Guidance Counsellor is unavailable.