Student wellbeing during COVID 19
Our school counsellor is available on Wednesdays (Kewarra Beach Junior), Thursday and Fridays, during school hours and can be contacted on email@example.com or through the school office on 40368111.
Outside of these hours, students and families should access one of the many excellent support organizations within our community, as listed on our Community Wellbeing page https://tas.qld.edu.au/beyond-the-classroom/community-wellbeing/.
For example, students may find Headspace (ages 12-25, 40413780) or Kids Helpline (24/7, Ph 1800 551 800) helpful and parents can get advice and support through Parentline on 1300 301 300.
Counselling sessions during this period with our counsellor can be conducted through a private group on Microsoft Teams, through Doxy.me or via telephone via appointment. Parents or students can contact their Head of Campus (junior schools) or the students Head of House (senior school) for referrals to the counsellor.
Current clients of the school counsellor
In order to ensure that students continue to receive support for their wellbeing during this period, there are two options available.
Option 1 – Where possible the sessions will continue through the school counsellor
We are hopeful that the counselling service can continue in a more limited capacity using online and telephone technologies. However, it is unlikely that this service can continue with all existing clients during this period. Priority will be given to some students, depending on their circumstances.
Counselling services for students in Years 5 to 12 will be provided through private groups on Microsoft Teams or through Doxy.me. We’ve been assured that these are both private and secure. Students in younger years will have telephone sessions. In the event that Microsoft Teams and Doxy.me are not available or suitable, email or telephone will be an alternative.
During this period, counselling at TAS will remain as an appointment-based service. Appointments will be made at intervals based on availability and client needs. Parents/guardians need to book their own appointment time or email the counsellor if they wish to discuss something. To assist with maintaining privacy, students should have a private space (but still in view) and may like to use headphones with a mic or play some background noise.
Option 2 – Interim counselling services by an external organization
The alternative option that may work for some students is to receive support from community providers, as needed, such as Kids Helpline. Kids Helpline provides a free phone counselling service or online webchat and children and teens are able to choose the gender of their counsellor and request the same counsellor every time. For older students (12 years and older), Headspace is a great option. Alternatively, your GP can organize a referral to an external counsellor or psychologist on a mental health plan.
Once schools reopen, counselling sessions with clients should be able to resume as usual and those that accessed support outside school during closure, should be able to resume sessions at the school.
Please have a discussion with your child (depending on age) about the options available and contact the counsellor via email firstname.lastname@example.org to advise which option you would like to take. Feel free to contact the counsellor if you are unsure or if you have any questions
During this period, try to limit media exposure and encourage students to take time to enjoy some of the things they love at home, practice mindfulness and stay connected to friends and family via the technologies available to us. Remember to try to continue a routine and provide a balance of activities – including physical, creative and relaxing activities.
During this time, please remember to look after yourselves and access support if necessary. Parentline provide free counselling and support over the phone for parents from 8am to 10pm (and webchat 8am to 9pm), 7 days a week. Call 1300 301 300 or visit https://parentline.com.au/.
For further information and resources for student and family wellbeing, please view our page on community wellbeing – https://tas.qld.edu.au/beyond-the-classroom/community-wellbeing/.