Counselling

Overview

Counselling is defined as a collaborative process in which the counsellor or psychologist facilitates the expansion of the student’s view of life, enlarges his repertoire of coping resources and enables him to make choices for change in himself, the situation and the environment, without destructive consequences to self or others1. The process is directed by the application of specialised skills and strategies in a therapeutic relationship with the student with problems. The goal of intervention is to help students manage these problems effectively so that their total development would not be impeded.

The counselling services in school are organised in a tiered system, beginning with first level intervention by teachers. If the intervention is unsuccessful or for cases requiring more specialised attention, referral is made by teachers to the Teacher Counsellors, Allied Educator (Counselling)2, Part Time School Counsellors, or external counsellors employed by the school. Students requiring more intense intervention are referred to MOE Guidance Specialists or professional agencies, such as the Child Guidance Clinic.

MOE has made provision for the following counselling personnel in the school:

  • Two specially appointed Teacher Counsellors (TC) in every primary school and junior college / centralised institute and four TCs in every secondary school. TCs are trained in counselling skills, special areas such as suicide intervention and counselling for grief and loss, and management of behaviour in emergency situations;
  • Allied Educator (Counselling), with a Diploma in counselling, and supported by regular clinical supervision to maintain their professional expertise in counselling;
  • Part Time School Counsellors (PTSC), who are retired education officers, trained in counselling at the Diploma level;

Part Time School Counsellor (PTSC) Scheme

The Part Time School Counsellor (PTSC) Scheme for Retired Education Officers was introduced in September 2000 to build the counselling resources in schools. This scheme aims to augment the pool of available counsellors within the Education Service and supplements the Allied Educator (Counselling) Scheme. Retired teachers with suitable counselling disposition are invited to serve as PTSCs.

To be eligible for the appointment as a PTSC, the retired education officers must:

  • have some counselling-related experience
  • possess skills related to rapport building, effective interpersonal interactions, problem-solving and programme planning and implementation

Successful candidates will have to complete a Diploma programme in school counselling comprising of academic instructions, field practice and supervision conducted by a training agency appointed by MOE. Assessment will be done through written assignments, projects and examinations.

The application for the Part Time School Counsellor position is currently closed.

Allied Educator (Counselling) Scheme

Role Profile of AED (Counselling)

The Allied Educator (Counselling)[AED(Counselling)] works closely with the school management in planning and implementing a school-wide counselling system, providing direct counselling intervention to at-risk students and case consultations to school personnel and parents and training teachers and parents on counselling-related issues. The AED(Counselling) will also identify, devise and deliver specialized group guidance programmes for at-risk students who need additional help in the area of social and emotional development, as evidenced by social, emotional and behavioural concerns presented by these students.

Appointment

he AED (Counselling) appointment is open for applications to all eligible candidates.

For candidates who are keen to find out more about the application procedure of AED(Counselling), please visit the Allied Educators Careers website.

Professional Development

AEDs are encouraged to continue upgrading their skills through relevant courses to be more effective in their job. Relevant courses will be organised by Guidance Branch to further enhance AED’s counselling knowledge and skills.

Professional Supervision and Consultation for Trained AED(Counselling)

Professional supervision and consultation for the trained AED (Counselling) will be provided by clinical supervisors appointed by Guidance Branch.

Footnotes:

  1. Adapted from Yeo, A. (1993). Counselling: A Problem-Solving Approach, Armour Publishing (p5).
  2. These personnel are also known as “FTSCs” or “School Counsellors” in schools