Tag Archives: school-based programs

Mandatory Career Planning

Posted by: Derek Collins on April 26, 2019 8:21 am

In the beginning, I did not like career counselling. I saw it as the “fluffy” part of a school counsellor’s job. Compared to cognitive behavioural therapy or grief counselling, it did not dive deeper into the inner person. I thought that anyone could do career counselling. All a person needed was a working knowledge of the post-secondary world, some insight into scholarships and willingness to take some time and help a student look at requirements on a university website. Most of this information could be gathered through web pages and college catalogues.

I have come to realize how wrong this view was. I took on a new role ten years ago at an outreach school. These are alternative high schools for students who have not experienced success in traditional “brick and mortar” schools. The previous counsellor of the school did extensive career planning with his students. It did not take me long to understand why. For students who had dropped out of school, there was a need to find a new purpose for attending. Career exploration activities was a way to find that purpose. It built a motivating vision of the future. And it was essential for helping students choose appropriate and meaningful courses. Career planning is now mandatory for all the students at the outreach school.

As I mentioned, my primary reason for incorporating career counselling with all my students is to help them find a purpose for school. Most of my students experience stress around school. Career planning has been found to reduce the academic stress of school. (Sharma, 2014) I have also found that there is an interesting gap when it comes to career planning. Often schools may feel that parents will help their children explore careers and post-secondary options. Levine (2013) found that parents themselves are unsure how to help their children.

Parents assume that their children are capable of finding information about post-secondary programs and related careers on their own. This is too bad because parent expectation is the second most important determinant as to whether a student will attend post-secondary study or not. Proper academic preparation is the most important factor. And if we lower a student’s stress, they are more likely to engage in their work. Helping students carry out career planning ends this cycle.

-Derek Collins

Levine, K. A. (2013). History Repeats Itself : Parental Involvement in Children ’ s Career Exploration L ’ histoire se répète : La participation des parents dans l ’ exploration de carrière pour enfants, 47(2), 239–255.
Sharma, V. (2014). Role of Career Decision-Making in the Development of Academic Stress among Adolescents. International Journal for Research in Education, 3(6), 58–67.

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

Identifying Barriers to School-Based Programming for Children with Emotional Disturbances

Posted by: Lori Walls on November 15, 2011 4:22 pm

Students identified in schools as emotionally disturbed often suffer from a number of complex social, emotional, and neurocognitive issues that lead to academic difficulties, problems establishing and maintaining peer relationships, and overall unsuccessful adaptive functioning. Students with emotional disturbances are often labelled by teachers and other students as disruptive or bad due to the high level of intervention required by school officials due to the interference these issues can cause with the teaching and learning process. Unfortunately, emotionally disturbed children remain an underserved population within most school settings (Reddy & Newman, 2009). However, even when programming is implemented for this group of students it is often fraught with many challenges.

Reddy and Newman (2009) offer a tri-part model to help conceptualize the common barriers to program design, implementation, and evaluation of interventions for students with emotional disturbances. The first dimension in the model addresses the complex externalizing behaviours that teachers and parents observe in relation to the student’s school and family functioning. This dimension encompasses child/family-focused barriers. For students with emotional disturbances, externalizing behaviours are the expressions of many internal issues such as neurocognitive deficits or emotional regulation deficits.  These outward behaviours are often so severe that parents and teachers are consumed with the management of the external behaviours that internal problems go undiagnosed. This confluence of internal and external issues presents many challenges to assessment and intervention planning. Additionally, school personnel attempting to implement interventions for emotionally disturbed students face the added challenge that many students from this population come from families with high rates of psychopathology, have ineffective parenting skills, and limited supports (Reddy & Newman, 2009).

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*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA