To start of this trail of thought, I’d like to stress that School Guidance is not a Discipline Office; although for the longest time in most schools here in the Philippines, they are synonymous. Guidance services are relatively uncharted territories in most schools in the Philippines. Most people have a preconceive notion that the Guidance Office/Center is the Discipline Office. That Guidance counsellors or School counsellors exists to punish students. Very wrong!!! Tsktsk…
As the word itself implies, the Guidance Office/Center is a department or school facility that exists to guide students into their holistic development by providing on-going prevention and intervention services and offering personal curricular and career guidance.
With the advent of the K12 program, a bigger emphasis was brought into Career Guidance. Still, a Guidance Office/Center is not a Career Center or Career Hub alone. Rather, likely, a Career Center/Hub is created in conjunction to the Guidance Center/Hub’s bigger focus, the Personal Curricular of the Students.
As crazy as it is; very little is also known of its depth. Not everyone, even majority of the teachers are aware of the full intricacies of its purpose and goals. Still, the Guidance Office/Center is usually expected to handle and solve student problems. Hmmm…
The creation of a Guidance program alone is truly a challenging task. It has to be a comprehensive, developmental program designed to assist the students in making and implementing informed educational and life choices. Altogether, a classroom guidance or homeroom guidance program and career guidance program develops an individual’s competencies in self-knowledge, educational and occupational exploration, and career planning.
The first time I created a full Guidance program, some years back, I had to prepare a whole Basic Education program. I thought that was brain-wrecking. Now, I have been task to prepare a High School Guidance program alone. I never realized it was MORE brain-wrecking. And what has made it more difficult is the fact that these students have not had the intended foundations on the development of their personal curricular. As in, Special Education and Behavior Management, early intervention always works best. However, I believe nothing is impossible. It can be done. There are ways and we will have to make the way with one brick, one block at a time.
Guidance services are both intensive and extensive a task to tackle. It is not just talking to the students. It is understanding the students and summoning in them their best potentials possible.