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It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to the website for members of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors. The main purpose of this website is to provide information, tools and useful links to guidance counsellors to assist them in their work. Visitors are also welcome to our website. Students, jobseekers and parents can find useful links to the Labour Market, recent Press releases, PR developments and also some excellent resources through clicking on the tiles on our home page.
As practitioners, we deliver personal, social, educational and vocational guidance work to jobseekers across their lifespan encompassing students from 1st year in post primary school to adult clients post retirement. Guidance counsellors work in second level schools, in further and higher education, in youth services, with the adult community, the prison services and in private practice. We are mindful that we have a rich and diverse membership. We strive to address the concerns of all of our members and meet their CPD needs with the shared ultimate goal of offering a world class service to our students and clients.
As outlined in our 2018 Pre Budget Submission, our current priorities are as follows:
1. that the reduced pupil teacher ratio is ring-fenced exclusively for guidance counselling provision and delivered by a professionally qualified guidance counsellor.
2. the critical need for restoration of all 600 posts cut in Budget 2012
3. that AEGS staffing levels for the Adult Education Guidance Services, which were also cut, are reinstated & enhanced.
4. the urgent requirement for an enhanced guidance allocation to facilitate the following:
● delivery on new educational and vocational initiatives like apprenticeships
● contribution in a meaningful way to the new Wellbeing Programme
5. That, following best international practice, we move in partnership at national level towards:
● the development of a Cross Ministerial Framework Guidance Strategy
● the expansion of the National Skills Strategy to develop a National Skills Careers Database.
We applaud the objectives, contained in the Action Plan for Education 2017, including:
• an increase in the number and range of available Apprenticeships
• support and increase of resources to Lifelong Learning
• Accommodation of an expected 25% increase in enrolments in HEIs. We believe that a properly resourced guidance service at third level could work toward reducing our dropout rates, with a significant saving to the exchequer.
As your President, I look forward to a collaborative engagement with the DES to achieve Departmental goals as outlined in the Action Plan for Education 2016-2019 and beyond. Furthermore, as the professional association of members working with clients across the lifespan, the IGC seek to work in partnership, on a cross-ministerial framework basis, in relation to future planning initiatives and strategies - in particular where these initiatives pertain to the development of guidance services and the specific role of the guidance counsellor within those services.
Yours in guidance
President of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors.