Ludhiana With an aim to provide impetus to students with regard to their academic and psychological growth, the Punjab Education Department on Thursday announced the setting up of guidance cells at the government schools across the state.
Chairing a meeting with the deputy district education officers in the state and a school government school principals from districts including Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Kapurthala and Moga, SCERT Punjab assistant director Jyoti Soni directed schools to form guidance committees.
The committees are expected to include at least four members including the school head boy and head girl, a representative from the teachers and the principal.
Soni said, “Students may not feel comfortable in sharing their problems with the teachers directly and thus the head girl and head boy of a school can play an important role in counselling”.
The state had earlier earmarked ₹3,000 per school for a special counselling corner, which would have career brochures or information boards.
The Education Department is expected to grant a separate ₹1,000 to all secondary and government high schools in the state, an official said.
Trained teachers to be guidance counsellors
A total of 3,636 trained teachers have been deputed as guidance counsellors in various schools.
“Our teachers were trained by professional counselors from Chandigarh. We also have a website pertaining to guidance counseling and career counseling. The aim behind this initiative is to heal the mental health of the students,” an official said.
Soni said the aim behind this initiative was to reach out to students that are unable to perform due to poor mental health.
“Students in the state reach us at our online portal and we make them in touch with our counsellors. At times students have some family issues which affect their growth. Moreover, we aim to make them aware about the prevailing career opportunities after their schooling and thus schools have been instructed to have such guidance corners”, Soni said.
Schools equipped with computers
Nearly 1800 schools across the state have also been equipped with computers for the counsellors.
“Guidance counsellors need to be equipped as they can save the data and the history of the students in the computers. Department aims to leave no stone unturned to raise the education standards in the government schools. Along with the career opportunities, counsellors also counsel students pertaining to gender sensitivity, teacher-students relationship, family environment and interpersonal skills,” the official added.
DEO secondary Lakhvir Singh Samra said the state is leading in terms of providing career guidance in schools and is putting up sincere efforts to redress problems of students with regard to their health and educational careers.