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Local calls for school Guidance hours to be 'ringfenced'

Apr 20, 2023 15:46 By News Northern Sound
Local calls for school Guidance hours to be 'ringfenced'
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The needs of students are increasing and their mental health must take priority.

A Monaghan Senator has called for guidance counselling hours to be 'ringfenced' in secondary schools. His calls comes as teaching unions across the country highlight the impact that recruitment and retention of staff is having on school communities.

Meanwhile, Senator Robbie Gallagher, says the hours must be ringfenced because access to the service is not equal and students are therefore losing out. He says that the needs of students are increasing and their mental health must take priority.

Senator Gallagher added that the issues within the sector "are being addressed" by Minister Norma Foley. Guidance is vitally important. "Back in 2012, the then Government made a decision, that rather than allocate specific hours to a school in relation to Guidance, it was left to the school management and the Principal to allocate whatever hours they felt fit to it.

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"Whereas prior to 2012 there was an ex-quota allocation to each school ringfenced specifically for school guidance and I think that was the best way to go," he said.

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