Author: Maryanne Ngugi, KRA Human Resources
The Kenya School of Revenue Administration (KESRA) has adopted comprehensive school guidance and counseling program. The program will provide a solid framework for ensuring that students are well-prepared to meet the academic, social, emotional, and career challenges.
The program will support students in meeting academic standards, provide them with a safe and secure environment for learning, reduce dangerous and counterproductive risk-taking behaviors, and enhance their resilience.
The program, which complies with state guidelines and curriculum frameworks, will enable students to acquire personal skills to reach their highest educational potential. Students will now have the ability to successfully manage their lives as healthy, responsible, competent, and productive citizens who respect themselves and others.
A comprehensive school counseling program is an integral component of the total education experience, providing the educational opportunities for intellectual development, effective communication, personal growth, and social responsibility. The school counselors will work in partnership with students, staff, parents, community members, and employers.
All KESRA students will also have access to a full-time certified counselor and have a right to participate in the school counseling program. The psychotherapy program is intentionally designed to be developmental and contains activities that are organized and implemented by certified counselors, lecturers and administrators, and other staff in collaboration with students and parents/guardians.
The program will focus on meeting the student’s needs in four domains; academic, career, mental/ psychological, social/personal domains. The developmental aspect of the school counseling program focuses on attaining results related to skills acquisition, while the remedial aspect of the program ensures the provision of services that respond to the immediate needs and concerns of students.
A significant part of a school counselor’s job is advocating for students. Advocacy includes enhancing relationships between students and lecturers, especially when a student has had a difficult start to the school year or is struggling to interact positively with a lecturer. Once a relationship is developed between student and counselor, the counselor can help lecturers to understand the situation of the student and offer suggestions to promote the students’ success and interest in school. The counselor can also act as a mediator when issues arise between a student and a lecturer.
The global pandemic has also influenced the mental health of many Kenyans and students are no exemption. Changes in ways of learning, low employment rate, Covid-19 restrictions, and trauma that may be caused by direct or indirect infection are some of the many incidences that have affected their stability.
With Mental health being an area of massive concern amongst the Kenyan youth, the newly adopted psychotherapy program will endow KESRA students with the necessary skills that will help them to approach and cope with mental health challenges such as depression and suicide, anxiety disorders schizophrenia, and alcohol and substance abuse. This will in turn lead to the production of wholesome students and better fulfillment of the Institutions values.
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