The Challenges Of School Counseling During A Pandemic
Just like almost every aspect of our lives has changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the challenges faced by school counselors too have undergone some changes. While some say they lack clear direction from the district and school leadership, others say not finding enough time to either get hold of their students virtually or working directly with them on social-emotional issues is a big challenge. However, instead of feeling burdened in the new setup, counselors can share a chunk of their duties with a reliable online counseling service for the national college that can automate some of their mundane, repetitive tasks.
Let’s check some of the challenges school counselors are facing at present and how an automated counseling tool can help.
1- Getting access to students
With parents working from the house and siblings jostling for space, many students miss their online classes and counseling sessions. Some students even fail to come online due to being in an insecure environment or because they are battling other problems like financial/food insecurity. All these make it a tough task for counselors to reach their students. Still, many counselors have tried to check on students who weren’t attending virtual classes or didn’t return to school when they reopened. They could consider using an online counseling service for the national college to schedule and make their sessions more engaging and interesting to boost student participation. Several counselors have also told how their focus has now shifted more on social-emotional learning to help their students adapt to the changing world and cope with the existing challenges.
2- Spending more time with students
Be it helping students navigate social, emotional, or personal issues or helping them with their career planning, school counselors need to spend a large chunk of their time with their students. But in the changed scenario driven by the ongoing pandemic, counselors are often asked to meet administrative or logistical duties. Though such duties are critical, they nevertheless reduce the time that counselors could have otherwise spent to connect with and support their students. By automating some of these routine administrative or logistical tasks via an online counseling service for the national college, counselors can free up some of their time to engage and help their students better.
Some counselors are also swamped with such a high caseload that they find it extremely challenging to handle while struggling to invest adequate time for each of their students.
3- Lack of direction
Lack of clear and precise direction from the district and school leadership is another big challenge that makes the lives of school counselors tough. These professionals play an important role as educational leaders for their school and its students. Be it helping students choose a college, decide on their course load, sending applications, preparing for exams like SAT, ACT, etc., or student interviews, they guide and steer students in the right way at every step. But their job takes a beating when there isn’t adequate clarity on certain aspects in the changed scenario where virtual or hybrid classes have become the norm.
Apart from the above, being rarely involved in COVID-19 plans of their schools is another challenge that several counselors feel is infringing on their ability to get their students career-ready.