A comprehensive guidance programme starts with child’s entry into school. This guidance and counselling is for all boys and girls at all levels. If we consider a guidance programme on longitudinal basis, it lays a firm foundation for uniqueness of each boy girl. For this we have to keep record of psychological, sociological cognitive and physical development of each child so that guidance programme may serve best.
Approaches to guidance service may be:
(i) inventory service
(ii) information service.
(iii) counselling service.
(iv) placement service
(v) follow-up service.
These services are provided across the entire educational system but certain phases of these services are more applicable at certain levels than others. At secondary levels guidance and counselling services are more concerned with appropriate graded information about schooling, social-personal relationship, world of work and placement of the students in subject areas. When a student moves from elementary school to secondary school, guidance and counselling need further increases.
At this stage of maturity, students become more sensitive to peer and adult relationships. According to Farwell and Peters (1968) guidance and counselling programme at this stage may emphasise on boys and girls understanding of the self and implications for interrelation-ships with others.
In Secondary school counselling, according to Gladding (1988) concentrate on:
- Organization and presenting classroom curricula according to developmental levels
- Development of information systems required for educational vocational planning
- Development of information systems required for educational vocational planning. Assisting students to assess their personal characteristics
- Provision of remedial services for special needs
Counselling at secondary school should facilitate healthy learning environment. Primary function of counselling at this stage is to facilitate problem solving within regular classroom, develop professional growth groups, and improve staff communication. Secondary school counselling has many common functions with elementary school counselling but differences are also there.
One of the major differences between counselling in the elementary and secondary school lies in general purpose. In elementary school the guidance should help the students to develop a harmonious and integrated personality core by carefully planned school experiences which reflect integration of the forces that impinge on individual. While services at secondary school assist adolescent to extend themselves to the optimum in all various aspects of adolescent and adult living, such as educational planning, career choice, personal relationships, and living with one’s self”. (Peters, 1968).
In elementary school, the opportunities for manipulation with environment are small as compared with secondary school, course choices in elementary school are non existent or very little while at secondary school choice grows. Another factor that counts towards the difference between these two levels is the degree of dependence upon parents. At elementary level this degree is high, thus requires relatively little counselling while at secondary level, degree of dependence decreases, search for maturity increases, so may require more counselling in this area.
The counselling process in elementary schools differs from counselling process at other levels only in its use of some specialised techniques which are suited to the developmental levels of students at elementary stage. The counsellor’s office provides conducive environment for counselling as it has toys, books, pictures that provide relaxation to the clients.
This is so done to enable the non-communicative child to talk to the counsellor on telephone which may lead to individual counselling settings. Usually the curriculum of elementary schools focuses on subject matter which is non-personal in its sense but curriculum at secondary school provides chances to the students to look at themselves in relation to programme of study.
Organizational structure of elementary school as mentioned earlier gives the teacher counselling role but role played by secondary school teacher is more instructional then counselling. If counselling services are to be established then,
counselling becomes primary function of the counsellor at secondary school. The secondary school teacher may seek counselling service himself but at elementary level, only students of higher grades may occasionally come for counselling services.
As we are just struggling to design and implement the guidance and counselling services in Pakistan, let us study these pages which will assist us in designing the services.
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