O'Connell Secondary School

Guidance and Counselling

Guidance & Counselling

O’Connell School 2018-2019


Guidance and counselling in O’Connell School is an integral part of our school’s educational provision.

Guidance refers to a range of learning experiences provided in a developmental sequence designed to assist pupils to make choices about their lives and to make transitions consequent on these choices. These choices may be categorized into three separate but very interlinked areas:

  • Personal/Social Guidance and Counselling
  • Educational Guidance and Counselling
  • Career/Vocational Guidance and Counselling

The activities may take place on an individual or group basis. They include:

  • career information provision,
  • assessment and self-assessment tools,
  • vocational counselling interviews,
  • career education programmes (to help individuals develop their self-awareness, opportunity awareness, and career management skills),
  • work search programmes,
  • transition services

Counselling is offered on a one to one basis and is generally short-term in nature. Counselling offers the opportunity to discuss in private any such issue

s or concerns which impact on academic performance or personal well-being. Deciding to speak with a guidance counsellor can be a positive step towards making life better for the individual. Self-referral to the service is welcomed and encouraged.

Confidentiality Policy The Guidance & Counselling Service is a professional counselling service, which abides by a strict code of ethics and confidentiality policy as outlined by the Institute of Guidance Counsellors www.igc.ie .Confidentiality is a central and integral part of the counselling process and is assured to each student who avails of the service. It offers safety and privacy to those who choose to discuss personal and private concerns. Information given during these counselling sessions is held in strict confidence. No information written or verbal will be disclosed to a third party without the student’s permission. The issue of confidentiality is always discussed with students during the first session.

Limits to Confidentiality In exceptional circumstances the guidance counsellor may need to break confidentiality if they believe there is a real intent of serious harm or danger to either their student or another individual. In as far as is possible, in such cases, a full explanation will be given regarding the necessary procedures that may need to be taken.

Please drop into the Guidance office with any issues you would like to discuss . We can set up an appointment and take it from there

Annual Positive Mental Health Awareness Week

8th -12th November 2018

The promotion of mental health involves a broad range of issues, but it includes those strategies which foster a sense of well being in all our stubents in O Connell School. Mental health promotion remains the most underdeveloped area of health promotion although there is an increasing recognition that “there is no health without mental health”. Positive mental health includes:

  • Good self-esteem
  • The ability to solve problems and
  • The ability to adapt to mental stresses.

The need for positive mental health promotion is universal

and relevant to all of us, none more so than in relation to young men (with suicide rates in Ireland ranking among the highest in Europe), which is why Positive Mental Health Awareness Week is one of the highlights of our school year.

A number of initiatives take place in the school to promote positive emotional health and to highlight the link between physical and mental health. It is a whole-school initiative involving all staff and students. This year’s initiatives included:

Mental health talks from Jigsaw and Ballybough youth


  • Yoga for all senior students
  • Workshops from DIT for junior students
  • Meditation in the classrooms
  • SPHE talks on mental health and well being in junior classes .

Pieta House Resilience workshop


This year Pieta house ran an excellent 6 week workshop with our Second years in November . The topics covered were mental health , resilience, self esteem , anti bullying and racism . The feedback from staff, students and training team was very positive and we look forward to welcoming them all back next year


Nov 23rd 2018

Current Guidance Programme in O Connell School

The Guidance curriculum may be divided into two components:

  1. A) The formal Guidance curriculum is delivered using two forms of interventions employing a number of methodologies:
  2. Individual contact of a personal, counselling nature and careers Guidance. 2. Classroom Guidance delivered in regular weekly classes to senior cycle students.
  3. B) Informal Guidance The informal Guidance programme consists of liaising with

other teaching staff/management to promote cross curricular links and to enhance the development of a Whole School Guidance Plan in relation to the delivery of the Guidance Plan. Meetings with parents/guardians form an integral part of informal Guidance

Junior Cycle and Senior Cycle Guidance

The aims of the Guidance Counselling programme are:

  • to help students to develop an awareness and acceptance of their talents and abilities
  • to explore possibilities and opportunities open to them
  • to grow in independence and to take responsibility for themselves
  • to make informed choices about their lives and to follow through on those choices.

The Guidance Counselling programme at junior and senior cycle aims to assist the full development of each student’s potential, to help students grow in self-knowledge and self-esteem and to prepare him for higher or further education, training and/or employment.


Guidance Counselling should endeavor to provide students with opportunities to:

    • Prepare to manage their successful transition from second level to further or higher education, training or employment.
    • Identify their own key motivating factors.
    • Prepare for the successful transition into adulthood.
    • Learn about jobs search and job retention skills.

Develop research and Information Technology skills so that they can be self-directed in their career exploration and development.

  • Learn about the world of work, including employment rights and responsibilities.
  • Develop skills to become independent and self-motivated learners.

Throughout the year the Guidance department organises

  • Career Talks
  • PLC /Apprenticeship / College guest speakers,
  • CAO talks and workshops
  • Guidance Classes
  • Individual interviews
  • CAO “Irish Times Higher Options “ Day
  • 3rd level open days calendar
  • Advice clinics for HEAR, DARE, SUSI and Scholarships


Thank you

Miss Molloy (Guidance Counsellor)


O'Connell Secondary School,
Richmond St N,
Dublin 1

01 874 8307

© 2021 O'Connell Secondary School