What is Counselling and Why Do We Offer It?
Counselling gives students a safe space to talk with a professional in confidence about what is going on in their lives. Often this needs to be someone other than parents, teachers or friends, who can remain neutral and non-judgmental. The process can help them work through challenges in their personal or academic lives, and explore their own strengths and potential. In this way, they can find coping strategies and the means to bring about the changes they want to see.
When Counselling Can Help?
These are just some of the areas in which counselling can help students:
- Identity and self image
- Self esteem and confidence
- School work and exam pressure
- Managing emotions
All conversations with students are private and confidential unless students give permission to share with their parents or teachers. The only exception is when their counsellor believes they could be in danger or potentially put others at risk. In these circumstances, we would inform them first before contacting anyone else.
The only person who will always know about appointments with a counsellor is Jenny Hodson, the Vice Principal for Guidance. This is just because she needs to keep a record; not to discuss with anyone.
Who are our Counsellors?
Shirralee Sisson, Full-time Counsellow (available daily at room 424)
Carmen Ip, Counsellor (available on Wednesdays at room 714)
Libby Bentham, Counsellor (available on Fridays at room 714)
Vienna Kwong, School Social Worker (available on Mondays and Thursdays at room 714)
Making an Appointment
- Email email@example.com
- Speak to Shirralee, the full time counsellor ( room 424) who will assist the student to make contact with one of the counsellors who is best suited to his/her needs
- Speak with the student’s Form Tutor or Head of House who will help the student to arrange an appointment
- Speak to or email Mrs. Hodson (room 412) who can also arrange this (firstname.lastname@example.org)
What Happens in the First Session?
The first meeting is a time for the student and the counsellor to get to know each other. It is the counsellor’s job to put the student at ease and our counsellors are very experienced at doing this. He/She will also explain the boundaries of the relationship. There will be no pressure to talk until the student is ready.
How Many Sessions?
Students may find that only one or two sessions is right for them, but often people want to continue the process for longer. In any case, we will review the situation together after the fifth session and decide what is best moving forward.
Commitment to the Process
Counselling is a collaborative process for both the student and the counsellor. Although the student may find it takes some time to talk openly, engaging in the process will help him/her to move forward. This includes committing themselves to scheduled appointments and taking responsibility for emailing or texting their counsellor if they are unable to attend. Doing this as early as possible is very important as it means that the counsellor can arrange to use that time to see another student.
Click here to download Chinese translation: Chinese Translation for Counselling
For your reference, we have compiled a list of outside organisations that you may wish to contact if necessary: