A Study on roles and responsibilities ofschool counsellor’s as perceived by the Higher Secondary School Teachers in Kerala.Introduction Schoolcounselling is comparatively a new branch of knowledge in India.

Indian societyis well known for its strong family bonds and emotional attachment throughjoint family system. In times of crisis a child is easily provided withemotional support and care from his / her own family members.  A large shift from joint families to nuclearfamilies is happening in the contemporary Indian society. Indian familiesbecame an island with parents and one or two kids. Obviously the parents needto work and they may not get sufficient time to spend with their children. Herecomes the importance of school in providing such extra care to its students.

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Inthis background school counselling, a purely a western origin branch ofknowledge came to India.Significanceof the study Theteenagers of today face more complex issues and problems compared to the past. Therefore, teachers andcounsellors should work cooperatively to address these issues. (Nazil, 2008).Teachers are the key role layers in an education institution.

They have greatinfluence over their students. Effective partnership between school counsellorand a teacher is one of the appropriate strategies to deal with studentproblems in a scientific way. Teachers and counsellors need to work in a collaborativemanner to maximise the student’s achievement and this can be done in a varietyof ways.  Thiswill have the greatest impact on students learning not only in the academicsbut also in their social development. Even though the ideal situation islike this, many of the school counsellors shared a view that teachers are notaware about their precise roles and responsibilities. The present descriptivestudy is an  attempt to show case theperception of higher secondary school teachers regarding the roles andresponsibilities of school counsellors .Review of literature Ina study structured by Clark and Amatea (2004), teachers were reported that theyneed help from counsellors to address various student issues. Teachersemphasized the importance of counsellor – teacher communication, as well ascollaboration and teamwork in this study.

 Teachers also valued the group counselling sessions and classroomguidance. Individual counselling was mentioned as well as an effective methodfor working with students, despite the recognition that it took much of acounsellor’s time. . Theyidentified counselors as an integral part of building a positive schoolcommunity. Lastly, teachers talked about the special needs of students in theirschools. They mentioned that the role of a school counselor was not only beingknowledgeable about their students’ special needs, but also being able to pointthem towards resources needed when working with these students (Clark &Amatea, 2004).Anotherstudy, conducted by Beesley (2004), surveyed K-12 classroom teachers abouttheir perceptions of the effectiveness of school counseling services withintheir school settings.

In general, it was found that teachers were satisfiedwith their school counseling services and reported strengths in several areas.These areas included classroom guidance, individual and group counseling,consultation, and coordination of special education services. Through ananalysis of the data collected, suggestions for improvement in services were alsofound. The top four areas for recommended improvement were career counseling,academic planning college preparation, community referrals, and publicrelations (Beesley, 2004).Objectivesof the study  1.      Tostudy the perception of teacher on school counsellors effectiveness.2.

      Tostudy the interpersonal relationship between teachers and counsellors3.       To know the awareness of teachers on roles andresponsibilities of student counsellor.Methodology  Thepresent study is a descriptive one which tries to identify the perceptions of highersecondary school teachers. Participants in this study were school teachers whoare teaching in 11th and 12th standard 60 highersecondary school teachers (female n=42, male n=18) participated voluntarily inthe present study. The schools were selected according to whether there is aschool counselor at school or not. There was a school counselor in schools ofall the participants. The researcher used a self-prepared interview schedule tocollect information from the respondents.

All appropriate descriptivestatistics were utilized to analyse the data.ResultDiscussion  Thecurrent study was an eye opener for most of the participants to make aself-evaluation on the effectiveness of school counsellor and the understandingof respondent on the use of school counsellor for betterment of students. Theimportant findings of the current   studyare as follows. The teacher’s perceptions of the school counsellor’seffectiveness in delivering services in general, which were considered as mostimportant for student success.   Table: 1Effectiveness of the student counsellor service asperceived by teachers. S.No Response Frequency Percentage 1 Very satisfied 09 15 2 Satisfied 35 58 3 Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied 16 27 4 Dissatisfied 0 0 5 Very dissatisfied 0 0   Total 60 100  Theabove table shows that among the respondents majority 73 %( 58% satisfied &15%very satisfied) are satisfied with the Effectiveness of the studentcounsellor service in their schools. This implies the effectiveness of schoolcounsellors in government higher secondary schools in Kerala.

Table: 2Teacher’s perception on their communication withcounsellor. S.No Response Frequency Percentage 1 Excellent 6 10 2 Good 24 40 3 Average   5 08 4 Below average 25 42 5 Poor 0 0   Total 60 100  Interpersonalcommunication between counsellor and teacher has great role in improving theeffective result of school counselling. The result shows that half of the 50%respondents have good communication between counsellors but nearly half of the (42%)respondents are having below average level of interpersonal communication withthe counsellors.

This lack communication between teachers and counsellorseffects directly towards the success of student counsellor service Table: 3Referral system by the teachers when student problemoccurs.. S.No Response Frequency Percentage 1 Always 09 15 2 Often 14 24 3 Occasionally 05 8 4 Rarely 32 53 5 Never 0 0   Total 60 100 Schoolcounsellors are trained mental health professionals.  Normally when an emotional problem occurredto a student, their teachers need to refer those students to the counsellor butstudy results that more than half of the respondents rarely consult the school counsellorsin such incidents.

It may be due to the poor interpersonal relationship withthe counsellors and teachers. Table: 4Opinion of teachers on role of counsellor inacademic development of student’s S.No Response Frequency Percentage 1 Very satisfied 15 25 2 Satisfied 26 43 3 Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied 10 17 4 Dissatisfied   09 15   Total 60 100 Oneof the major roles of school counsellor is related to the academic developmentstudents. When a student became week in academics teachers used to refer themto counsellor in such cases counsellors motivate the students to achieve betterresults. A good majority (25+43=68%) of the respondents were satisfied withthis role of counsellor.

    Table: 5Opinion of teachers on role of counsellor in theSocial/Personal development of student S.No Response Frequency Percentage 1 Strongly agreed          18 30 2 Agreed 22 37 3 Neither agreed nor disagreed 09 15 4 Disagreed 11 18 5 Strongly disagreed 0     Total 60 100  Schoolcounsellors, due to their training, experience and accessibility are consideredto be the best equipped school based professionals to develop and implementboth social and personal skills for the students. The above table shows thatamong the respondents majority 67 %( 30% strongly agree & 37 % agreed) wereagreed that counsellor has a role in the social/Personal development of thestudent.Majorfindings1.      Whenthere is lack of inter personal communication between teachers and counsellorsit affects effectiveness of counsellors service.2.      Morethan half of the respondents are not referring the problem child to thecounsellor  3.      Majorityof the respondents are satisfied with the Effectiveness of the studentcounsellor service in their schools.

4.     Majority of the respondents weresatisfied with the role of counsellor in academic development of the student.   5.     Among the respondents majority wereagreed that counsellor has a role in the social/Personal development of thestudent.Recommendations1.      Schoolauthorities should ensure effective and professional communication betweencounsellors and teachers. 2.      Teachersneed to be educated on the roles and responsibilities of school counsellors 3.

      Onthe job training programme need to organise for the school counsellors , inorder to equip them to face present day the challenges. ConclusionThepurpose of the study was to investigate the perception of higher secondaryschool teachers towards the roles and responsibilities of school counsellors inKerala.The results indicated that majority of the teachers were satisfied withthe various roles perform by the  schoolcounsellors in their respective schools.