The DES Programme Recognition Framework (2016) states clearly the requirements of the Department for those who wish to be employed in the education and training sector as guidance counsellors.
Guidance is defined in the context of adult guidance, i.e. for those over the age of 18 years.
In this adult guidance context i.e. The AEGS, guidance is defined as facilitating people “…to manage their own educational, training, occupational, personal, social, and life choices so that they reach their full potential and contribute to the development of a better society” (National Guidance Forum, 2007; pg. 6).
Activities relating to the work of the guidance counsellor in all service settings include the following:
- Designing, delivering and evaluating guidance learning and developmental programmes relating to personal and social, educational and career development for individual, group and classroom settings
- Developing effective teaching, learning and assessment strategies for the guidance class
- Providing individual and group counselling to facilitate personal and social, educational and career development and at moments of personal crisis
- Providing labour market, learning and career-related information through Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and blended learning approaches
- Planning and organising workplace learning and establishing links with the wider business community, agencies and voluntary sector
- Using psychometric tests (i.e. ability and aptitude tests and career interest inventories) to facilitate career decision-making and personal development, and to support learning and educational choices
- Providing support to, and working in collaboration with, school and ETB management and staff in the planning, leading, delivery, review and evaluation of the guidance service/programme and the whole school guidance plan
- Working with parents (as appropriate) and referral agencies in facilitating the personal and social, educational and career development of students and service users
- Referring students and service users to external agencies and professionals, as appropriate
- Establishing close ties with feeder schools, where appropriate, and with centres of further education and training and higher education
In 2017 the Department of Education and Skills will begin the process of an overarching review of guidance services within the education and training sector. The outcomes of this Review will inform the further developments of the FET Guidance Strategy.
The allocation of guidance hours within the PLC schools is outlined in Circular :
Guidance Service Guidelines:
Until the development of the FET Guidance Strategy, DES guidelines continue to inform practice and delivery of service
SOLAS (An tSeirbhís Oideachais Leanúnaigh agus Scileanna) is the Further Education and Training Authority operating under the aegis of the Department of Education and Skills. It co-ordinates and funds the wide range of training and further education programmes around the country. SOLAS was established to integrate the Further Education and Training Sector in Ireland and give strategic direction to that sector. The delivery of Further Education and Training is the responsibility of 16 Education and Training Boards (ETBs). Guidance in Further Education and Training is informed by the publication, Further Education and Training Strategy 2014-2019. Section 10 of this publication, entitled Guidance and FET, looks at guidance counselling policy as well as current guidance practice pertaining to the FET sector.