Attended by - Ms. Nandita Kalra
The Institute of Counsellor Training Research and Consultancy (ICTRC) organised an India International Education Conclave on “Guidance Based School Education-The Emerging Concept” on the 18th of December, 2019 at the India International Centre, New Delhi
The key speakers at the conclave were Dr. V.S. Ravindran, Mr. Keshav Singh and Dr. Deepak Garg.
Ms Nandita Kalra, counsellor from the Junior Wing, attended the same with Mrs. Sangeeta Tripathi, counsellor from the Middle Wing.
The day long session began with a talk by Mr. Keshav Singh who discussed the difference between guidance and counselling. He elaborated that the services of a guidance counsellor are very crucial in any school, as he/she works to facilitate the process of intervention. The need for class observations were stressed and Mr. Singh suggested that a counsellor should be allotted a number of periods to address different topics in classes or conduct group activities. He further stressed the need for formulating a framework of guidance and counselling to meet various needs in schools.
The other eminent speaker, Dr. Deepak Garg brought to light the significance of counselling in higher education to adapt to the rapidly changing scenario. Many academicians have also acknowledged the importance of guidance and counselling in these times when there is disintegration of age old value systems. Dr. Garg also explained how the youth are facing challenging issues which need to be addressed and tackled.
Mr. Keshav Singh, in the third session of the day, spoke about counselling in context of a school. He brought to fore the requirement of a complete ’ecosystem’ (teaching and non-teaching staff, parents, school authorities) to work in cohesion and achieve desired results. He expressed that it is seen in Indian institutions, that every child with problematic behaviour (even episodic/minor /part of normal behavior) is sent to the counsellor without institutional support or authorities acknowledging the problem. Hence most of the workshops taken by ICTRC are for school principals. The system needs to be more structured and organized. Guidance and counseling, in most schools are done in a fragmented way; it is essential that it functions in an organized manner to be effective. He spoke about how school educators respond to guidance based education in four ways- Early adopters, late adopters, resisters and refusers.
He suggested a more effective guidance and counselling process, by setting up separate departments dedicated to counseling, guidance and special education services. He was of the opinion that the guidance curriculum can be imbibed in the mainstream curriculum.
The final session of the day was taken by Dr. V.S. Ravindran, a highly esteemed name in the field of counselling. He deconstructed the myths attached to counselling.
He emphasised the pertinent need of developing Student Inventory Services which include formal (like CRC) and informal testings. He recommended career counselling and placement services assistance to be provided by the school to the students as per psychological and academic requirements. He also prescribed the qualities and traits of a counsellor in terms of being non-judgmental, approachable, etc., towards the students. Dr. Ravindran suggested that counsellors shouldn’t give solutions, rather they should elicit solutions. He propagated absolute confidentiality in terms of the students’ personal and case details.
There were interesting discussions about other issues like suicide, teenage sex, self harm, etc.
It was a highly enriching and insightful experience for all the participants.