NCGE Resources

Post date: Wednesday, October 9, 2019 - 18:14

Presentation for new AEGS Staff

On September 19th 2019 NCGE welcomed a group of Guidance staff recently recruited to work in established ETB AEGS around the country. This was a lively session with Guidance Coordinators, Guidance Information Officers and Guidance Counsellors taking the opportunity to listen and discuss the role of data gathering in the AEGS model, the way the AEGS model of Guidance has developed and how developments in the FET ‘landscape’ will influence Guidance delivery in to the future.


 

Post date: Wednesday, September 4, 2019 - 14:18

Irish Refugee Council – Information Booklet 2019/2020

In March 2019 NCGE facilitated CPD for AEGS’ staff on the topic of Social Inclusion. The Irish Refugee Council were among the presenters at this event to inform on their role working with and for refugees in Ireland. Further to the IRC’s involvement with this CPD, the IRC have provided their Information Booklet 2019/2020, a resource which may be of use for FET guidance provision for Irish refugees or to otherwise provide relevant information/points of referral.

The IRC Information Booklet provides a guide on the education system in Ireland for people seeking asylum, those with refugee status, subsidiary protection or permission to remain. The booklet primarily focuses on education for people over the age of 18. Information is provided on the following areas:

  • A guide to the Irish education system
  • QQI
  • NFQ
  • PLC
  • Higher Education (application/costs)
  • Student Grants
  • Scholarships (provided by Universities/Institutes of Technology)
  • Map w. location of scholarships (incl. in relation to Direct Provision Centres)
  • The IRC Education Fund
  • Other useful information
  • Useful websites
  • Online Courses

Further information regarding the Irish Refugee Council is available HERE. The Information Booklet can be accessed below.

IRC Information Booklet 2019/2020

(Disclaimer: Application deadlines re courses etc. for academy year 2019/2020 may have already passed. Information provided is for guidance purposes and is not complete and may be subject to update)

 

Post date: Friday, May 17, 2019 - 10:02

NCGE FET CPD for staff of AEGS'

NCGE FET Guidance Programme CPD for Staff of Adult Education Guidance Services - March 26th to 28th 2019

NCGE FET continues its engagements with SOLAS, ETBI and ETBs on a number of significant developments across the FET arena – including the Adult Guidance Management System for the AEGS’ and for Guidance in FET in general.

With respect to these ongoing developments, the publishing of the DES / Indecon Independent Review of Career Guidance Tools and Information, and work towards the development of the new SOLAS FET Strategy and FET Guidance Strategy, CPD was developed to offer AEGS’ an opportunity to learn about ongoing relevant policy developments in the area of social inclusion.

Policies, strategies and developments affecting AEGS delivery of Guidance to adults interested in or pursuing FET need to be continually noted and factored into service delivery. Adult Guidance Services continue to be covered by the DES Adult Education Guidance Initiative Operational Guidelines 2012 which state: ‘AEGI targets individuals and groups that experience particular and acute barriers to participation and are more difficult to engage in the formal learning process.

Social Inclusion is therefore already an expectation and notable feature of the AEGS model of Guidance provision.

With speakers from various areas of policy and practice; part of the purpose of this CPD programme was to support AEGS guidance staff in sharing knowledge, expertise and practice. The events  were a reminder of the challenges to sincerely inclusive practice; and the need for useful collaboration and necessary cooperation between services in this crowded landscape where many agencies and services may be working on behalf of different Government departments and associated policies and strategies and priorities.

NCGE FET secured the following speakers who contributed over the course of the 3 days

  • Ivica Milicevic and Robert McCulloch, SOLAS
  • Mary Kenny, EAL & ESOL Development Officer DDLETB
  • Livia Bartolome, Business in the Community Ireland
  • Rory O’Neill Irish Refugee Council
  • Marion Wilkinson, National Disability Authority
  • Donal Rice, Centre of Excellence for Universal Design NDA

NCGE invited Dr. Ebun Joseph to further facilitate the events – Dr. Joseph was very warmly received by AEGS Coordinators and Guidance Counsellors and we will be engaging with her again in the future.

73 Guidance Service staff from AEGS nationally attended the CPD days, and evaluations confirm that the days were well received.


You can access the presentations below.


Policy, Inclusion & practice GIO - NCGE

Policy, Inclusion & practice GCC - NCGE


Active Inclusion and Guidance in FET - SOLAS

Social Inclusion for ESOL Learners - ESOL

Overview of Employment Programmes- BITCI

Guidance for Learners with Disability - NDA

Universal Design - NDA

Creating a Level Playing Field - Dr Ebun Joseph

 

Post date: Wednesday, April 24, 2019 - 12:18

Rogha Ábhar: Acmhainn do Threoirchomhairleoirí

Tá an Bhileog Acmhainní do Dhaltaí, atá deartha mar threoir ghairid do dhaltaí atá i mbun ábhair sa tSraith Shóisearach a roghnú, in éineacht leis an leathanach acmhainní seo do Threoirchomhairleoirí. Tá Bileog Acmhainní do Thuismitheoirí bunaithe ar an gceann do dhaltaí, ar fáil freisin. 


Is léir go mbeidh an raon ábhar, éigeantach agus roghnach araon, ag brath ar acmhainní na scoile agus ar riachtanais na Roinne Oideachais agus Scileanna. Ar an gcaoi chéanna, is faoi scoileanna atá sé uainiú chinnteoireacht na ndaltaí maidir le hábhair a roghnú.

Ní mholtar ábhair roghnacha a roghnú roimh an gcéad bhliain. Cé go bhfuil córais dhifriúla i bhfeidhm ag scoileanna chun roghanna ábhar na ndaltaí a chumasú, glactar leis anseo go raibh deis ag daltaí staidéar a dhéanamh ar na hábhair roghnacha le linn na chéad bhliana ionas go bhféadfadh siad roghanna feasacha a dhéanamh tar éis breithniú cúramach a dhéanamh. Go hidéalach, is le do chomhoibriú agus le comhoibriú a dtuismitheoirí nó a gcaomhnóirí a bheidh sé seo. Glactar leis freisin go roghnaítear ábhair roghnacha roimh dheireadh na chéad bhliana.

San fhadtéarma, beidh tionchar ag forbairt an Chreata don tSraith Shóisearach agus Próifíl Measúnaithe na Sraithe Sóisearaí ar na hábhair agus ar na gearrchúrsaí a chuireann scoil ar fáil. Tá tuilleadh eolais faoi seo ar fáil ar láithreán gréasáin na Roinne ag:

https://www.education.ie/en/Schools-Colleges/Information/Curriculum-and-...

Is cuid de do ról é, mar threoirchomhairleoir, eolas a sholáthar do dhaltaí, i suímh ghrúpa agus ar bhonn aonair araon. Is cuid de do ról é freisin impleachtaí na roghanna a dhéanann na daltaí agus na próisis atá i bhfeidhm chun na roghanna sin a éascú a chur in iúl do do chomhghleacaithe agus do bhainistíocht na scoile. D'fhéadfadh an acmhainn 'Tuiscint ar d’Ábhair Spéise', atá ar fáil le híoslódáil thíos, a bheith úsáideach duit. Is féidir an acmhainn seo a úsáid chun cur ar chumas daltaí a bheith ag foghlaim maidir lena leasanna agus a n-inniúlachtaí. Is féidir an acmhainn a chur i bhfeidhm i suíomh ranga trí í a chur i láthair na ndaltaí lena críochnú, agus plé a dhéanamh ar a roghanna i ngrúpaí beaga.

Tuiscint ar d’Ábhair Spéise


Tugtar spreagadh do dhaltaí dul i gcomhairle le tuismitheoirí agus le daoine tábhachtacha eile, cosúil le treoirchomhairleoir agus a roghanna á mbreithniú acu.

Go hachomair, tá sé beartaithe, ar leibhéal na Sraithe Sóisearaí, gurb é an breithniú is mó a dhéantar ar ábhar a roghnú ná go bhfuil suim ag an dalta san ábhar sin.

Tá sé beartaithe freisin, chomh maith le Gaeilge, Béarla agus Matamaitic, go bhfuil teanga breise agus Eolaíocht i measc na n-ábhar sa 'raon sábháilte' sa tSraith Shóisearach.

I gcás na Sraithe Sinsearaí, moltar, chomh maith le hábhar a thaitin, go gcaithfidh daltaí machnamh a dhéanamh ar na riachtanais iontrála dá ngairm roghnaithe nó dá gcúrsa roghnaithe. Is léir go dtógann sé roinnt mhaith ama ar dhaltaí breithniú a dhéanamh agus go bhfuil gá le go leor faisnéise. Láithreán gréasáin an NCCA ag https://www.curriculumonline.ie/Senior-cycle mar acmhainn riachtanach chun na críche seo.

Tá Qualifax http://www.qualifax.ie/ agus Tairseach Gairmeacha https://careersportal.ie/ an-úsáideach freisin chun riachtanais iontrála cúrsaí a aithint.


D'fhéadfadh an Fardal Stáid Gairme - Roghanna Ábhar a bheith úsáideach chun daltaí a dteastaíonn tacaíocht uathu maidir lena roghanna ábhar a aithint. D'fhéadfadh daltaí a bhaineann úsáid as an CSI atá míshásta i ndáil leis sin tairbhe ar leith a bhaint as na hacmhainní a chuirtear ar fáil thuas.

Fardal Stáid Gairme


Admhaíonn NCGE an méid a chuireann Colum Layton leis an mbileog acmhainní seo a fhorbairt.

Ollscoil Florida Stáit a fhoilsíonn an CSI faoi cheadúnas Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivatives 4.0, rud a ligeann d'aon léitheoir ábhar CSI a chóipeáil agus a dháileadh gan cead ó na húdair nó ó Leabharlanna Ollscoile Florida Stáit, ar choinníoll go dtugtar aitheantas cuí do na húdair agus nach ndéantar an t-ábhar a mhodhnú ar bhealach ar bith.

                                                                                                             

Post date: Wednesday, April 3, 2019 - 14:42

Confidentiality and Consent in Guidance in Schools

The purpose of this resource is to outline how information about other people should be treated by those who learn and work in schools.

The resource outlines the meaning and importance of confidentiality for those who learn and work in schools. Some suggestions are made to help schools to clarify how information is treated and to enable school staff to develop relevant policies in that regard. Although particular reference is made to confidentiality in the work of the guidance counsellor, emphasis is placed on the adoption of a whole-school approach to the issues.

The resource includes information on:

  • Confidentiality in schools
  • Confidentiality and the Guidance Counsellor
  • Confidentiality policy for students under and over 18 years of age
  • Consent/informed consent

The resource also includes a number of relevant documents and further information. This resource is available for download at the end of this page

The following template documents on confidentiality and consent may also be of use to your school:

Confidentiality and Consent Checklist for Schools

Sample Consent Form to Attend Confidential One-to-one Guidance Sessions

Sample School Confidentiality Policy

Please feel free to adapt these templates to suit your school's needs. The templates can be downloaded and saved to your desktop.

 

Post date: Tuesday, February 5, 2019 - 15:45

Access to Further Education and Training for Eligible International Protection Applicants

Following the Governments decision on 26th June 2018, Ireland falls under the EU (recast) Receptions Conditions Directive (2013/22/EU) rendering interim measures no longer valid. 
This article outlines the context, operational guidelines and eligibilities attached to this Directive in the context of delivery of guidance to adults to whom the Directive applies.

 

Post date: Monday, January 28, 2019 - 16:41

Quality Assurance

Quality Assurance of  FET guidance services should be informed by the  ELGPN Guidelines  on Strengthening the Quality Assurance and Evidence-Base for Lifelong Guidance.

http://www.elgpn.eu/publications/browse-by-language/english/ELGPN_QAE_tool_no_5_web.pdf/

http://www.elgpn.eu/publications/browse-by-language/english/elgpn-tools-no-5-strengthening-the-quality-assurance-and-evidence-base-for-lifelong-guidance-brief-summary/

  • Practitioner Competence
  • Citizen / User involvement
  • Service provision and improvement
  • Cost benefit to individuals
  • Cost benefit to government ( and /or managing organisations) 
Post date: Monday, January 28, 2019 - 14:31

Policy and Practice Guidelines

National Policy on guidance within the FET Sector is determined by the Department of Education and Skills.

The DES Further Education and Training Strategy 2014-2019 details the development of the Further Education and training sector in Ireland.

https://www.education.ie/en/Publications/Policy-Reports/Further-Education-and-Training-Strategy-2014-2019.pdf

Section 10 Guidance and FET (pages 112-114)  outlines the need for an integrated  FET guidance approach and that …..

'a FET Guidance Service ought build on current AEGI integrated guidance counselling aims; to offer a guidance service to adults and young people over the age of 16 who have left post primary school early, which includes impartial adult education information, one-to-one guidance and group guidance, which will help people to make informed educational, career and life choices'

The building blocks of an integrated guidance strategy for the FET sector should include:

1. Development of national referral protocols between Adult Guidance Services and DSP and other national agencies – HSE, disability services etc.

2. Widening of the remit of the Adult Educational Guidance Services to become the Adult Guidance and Information Services for the FET sector and general public, providing quality impartial education and career/vocational information and quality guidance provision through one-to-one guidance, group guidance and outreach provision

 3. The Adult Guidance Service would develop and ensure collaboration with PLC-based guidance provision, and will include those guidance counsellors who are currently working within and across other ETB programmes.

4. All guidance staff employed by ETBs, outside of the current AEGI and PLC structure, would be linked to the adult guidance service to ensure quality assurance of service, reporting mechanisms and access to national supports and continuous professional development programmes.

5. Implementation of a national quality assurance system for the guidance services based on national and EU good practice and guidelines.

6. A national advisory committee of representatives from DES/SOLAS/NCGE/ETBI and other relevant stakeholders to ensure a national approach to the guidance provision within the FET sector.


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. 

https://www.education.ie/en/Publications/Education-Reports/Programme-Recognition-Framework-Guidance-Counselling.pdf

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  began 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.


Departmental Circulars:

Circular 70/04 – Adult Educational Guidance Counsellors and Co-ordinators

Circular 0015 / 2007 Adult Guidance Information officers

The allocation of guidance hours within the PLC schools is outlined in Circular :

https://www.education.ie/en/Circulars-and-Forms/Active-Circulars/cl0012_2017.pdf


 

Guidance Service Guidelines:

Until the development of the FET Guidance Strategy, DES guidelines continue to inform practice and delivery of service

http://www.ncge.ie/uploads/AEGI_Operational_Guidelines_2012__FINAL.pdf

Minimum supervision requirements for AEGI staff


 

SOLAS

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.

https://www.education.ie/en/Publications/Policy-Reports/Further-Educatio...

Post date: Wednesday, January 2, 2019 - 17:17

Anxiety and Stress

What is Anxiety?

Anxiety is a normal and healthy reaction to a stressful situation. All teenagers experience some amount of anxiety at times and it is a very common presenting issue among students in school.


Stress affects everyone in different ways. Some stress can be positive as it makes students more alert and helps them to perform better. It can also help them deal with tense or challenging situations like starting post primary education, taking examinations, competing in sporting events, public speaking, going on a date etc. 


However stress becomes distress when it is not short lived and when the young person is worried and anxious a lot of the time.  It is also a problem when there is no obvious reason for them to feel anxious or stressed.

The most important messages that guidance counsellors and teachers can give to students is that:

  • it is ok and normal to feel anxious and stressed
  • this is something they can cope with
  • it helps to talk about how they are feeling
  • there are many techniques to deal with anxiety and stress
  • there is always additional support available

Causes of Anxiety

There are many things that cause anxiety. Anxiety is individual i.e. what causes one person anxiety may not affect another.

You should be concerned when the anxiety that a student is experiencing is impacting significantly on their day to day functioning or if they are school refusing or experiencing Panic Attacks. Panic Attacks can be very frightening for students and also for teachers who are with the student when they occur. Additional seperate resources on Panic Attacks can be accessed via the 'further resources' link below.

The School Refusal Good Practice Guide for Schools is also a useful resource if a student is school refusing.


Symptoms of Anxiety

Anxiety affects people in different ways. It can affect the way people feel (physical symptoms), think (mental symptoms) and behave (behavioural symptoms). See Anxiety resources at the end of this page for further details. Being familiar with these symptoms is important, as it is key for identifying anxious students and aiding them to reduce symptoms.


How to Help a Student to Reduce their Anxious Feelings

There is no single technique to manage anxiety. However there are a number of techniques that when used together will reduce anxiety and its symptoms. See the Anxiety resources below (again) for further details.

Practicing relaxation creates the opposite effects to stress and anxiety. There are many relaxation techniques and different things work for different people. Teachers can introduce relaxation practices into their classes and encourage the students to continue to practise these at home. The resource Relaxation Techniques available at the link below provides a number of different practices that can be distributed to all staff. There are lots of free downloadable Mindfulness and Relaxation apps which can be highlighted and used by teachers. They can also be highlighted on the school website, school newsletter, noticeboards, at parent evenings etc.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is very effective in helping people manage anxiety. (More information on CBT can be found from a number of websites, including the HSE HERE)

Schools can contact www.HealthPromotion.ie for printed poster and postcard packs advertising the Little Things campaign, which was designed to remind us of the little things that make a big difference to how we feel.


Individual Support

Students experiencing anxiety or stress should be encouraged to talk to the Guidance Counsellor for short term extra support.

If they are reluctant to do this or if they need input from a more specialised service, encourage them to visit their GP who can refer them to CAMHS or another relevant service.


ANXIETY RESOURCES:

Anxiety - Information For Teachers and Guidance Counsellors

Anxiety - Information For Parents

Anxiety - Information For Students


Access further resources regarding Anxiety and Stress (and panic attacks)

 

 

Post date: Tuesday, December 18, 2018 - 14:33

Record Templates for Guidance Counselling One-to-One Meetings with Students

In keeping with professional good practice in guidance; records should be kept of all meetings with students.


Examples of simple, one-page templates for use during an educational/career guidance one-to-one meeting and a personal guidance counselling one-to-one meeting with students can be accessed below.

One-to-one template - Education / Career

One-to-one template - Personal

The templates may help to summarise the issues regularly encountered during one-to-one meetings with students.  Please feel free to adapt the templates to suit your needs.  The templates can be downloaded and saved to your desktop.

It would be good practice to discuss the notes you have taken with students at the end of a one-to-one meeting and to invite the student to sign this record also.  As the student can request a copy of your records under GDPR it is important to be mindful of this when taking notes. Notes should be succinct and be factual in nature, and describe thoughts and feelings expressed by the student e.g. John reported feeling confused and anxious rather than ‘John is suffering from anxiety and is confused’.    

It should be noted that:

  • The classes of information recorded in the template should be adapted to your needs
  • Records of the career interviews and interviews of a personal nature (students experiencing challenges/crises) should be kept separately
  • If you have access to the school database, it might not be necessary to record items such as exam results
  • The use of an identifier, rather than a name, will help to maintain anonymity
  • If used, the document linking identifiers and names should be kept separately
  • Records should comply with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).  Guidance counsellors should refer to their school policy on GDPR in the first instance. More detailed information about the GDPR may be found HERE in the School Guidance Handbook

In brief, the GDPR stipulates that;

  • Minimal information be recorded
  • Records be kept securely when not in use
  • Written consent of parents and students to engage with the supports available in a school should be sought at least annually
  • Confidential data may be disclosed only with the clear and explicit consent of the student and parents/guardians
  • You should be aware of your data protection responsibilities
  • Data that you keep should not be freely accessible by others
  • Your data should be in accord with the school’s data security policy