Anne Turnbull Counselling Service serves a diverse and challenging educational area. It provides counselling services for learners in primary and secondary education primarily through referrals from schools. In addition it provides support and facilitates learning for staff at all levels in those schools.
The external evaluation was conducted over a five-day period and included data interrogation, questionnaires and interviews with managers, front line staff and end users including head teachers, pastoral staff, governors and learners.
The service was found to be good with many excellent features. There were no significant areas of weakness but some recommendations were made.
The service had a robust infrastructure which would support a much more extensive organisation
There were appropriately vigorous recruitment, appointment and support programmes for staff
The manager was involved in a programme of professional development and remained cognisant of current practice and developments
Schools could have complete confidence in the systems professionally, ethically and legally
All counsellors were appropriately qualified, experienced, monitored and supported
The service offered excellent value for money, independent or school employed counsellors would have a similar or higher cost without the benefit of the supportive infrastructure
The way the service is able to interact with the pastoral systems in schools is in line with the demands made by Ofsted
That an annual cycle of review be implemented for all policies and procedure and that representatives of all stakeholders be consulted in the process
That communication be improved by the production of on line or written material making clear the purpose and limitations of counselling as well as the processes and protocols employed
The creation of a corporate image to facilitate improved access to information and clarity for all users
The creation of clear career pathways and the opportunity for staff to gain wider experiences within the organisation
Anne Turnbull Counselling Services offers a sound professional and responsive service to schools. The organisation is aware of the diverse needs of its clients and responds appropriately. The service is at it’s most successful where the school is actively involved in the integration of pastoral services and external counselling. Those schools which have recognised the need for raising awareness of the counselling process with their staff have gained maximum benefit.
The summary report will be made available to schools.