School-based counselling “an integral part of school provision in Wales”

The following is a news item from Hafal’s Big Lottery-funded Young People’s Information Hub. To access the Hub please visit:

A report evaluating the effectiveness of school-based counselling in Wales has found that young people, teaching staff, local authorities and counsellors have all expressed high overall levels of satisfaction with the service.

The need for school-based counselling was first expressed by the Children’s Commissioner for Wales in the Clywch Inquiry Report (2004): he said that all young people in schools should have a trusted adult to talk to about their concerns.

The survey, by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), found that:

• Approximately 85% of young people using the service felt more positive about going to school and more able to cope since going to counselling. In particular they valued: the ease of access to services, being able to talk openly and honestly to someone who is trustworthy and understanding, confidentiality and gaining in self-confidence as a result of counselling.

• Amongst the counsellors surveyed there was strong agreement that school counselling was an integral part of school provision, and that the counselling service was recognised and valued by school staff, parents and pupils.

• Teachers showed high levels of agreement that counselling services met the needs of pupils, whilst in addition there had been little impact on staff workload.

Laurie Clarke, Chief Executive Officer of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy said: “The Welsh Government, through its national strategy for school-based counselling, has demonstrated commitment to the emotional health and well-being of young people. The report strongly evidences the role that counselling plays in helping young people achieve their potential”.

Funding of £4.5m in 2011-12 has been made available from the Welsh Government for the implementation of the national strategy for school-based counselling and all local authorities now have counselling provision in place.

For more information on school-based counselling services in Wales please visit: