Students are seen individually. The aim is to heighten self awareness and develop personal, social and decision making skills, and also to offer counselling and support on a wide range of issues in a confidential environment. Referrals may be made by parents, teachers or students themselves.
Educational Counselling is provided for students.
This provides information on higher education, develops awareness of employment, the world of work, job-search preparation, and conducts psychometric testing of aptitudes and interests. Students are seen individually and in small and class groups. Career Resources and computer-aided guidance are available for research.
When Home-School-Liaison was set up in St Angela’s by Sr Anne Conway in 1986 it was called “family ministry”. Later this approach was adapted by the Department of Education and piloted in the primary schools and given the title Home-School-Liaison. It is now a well-established post in most schools primary and secondary.
Home school links are focused mainly on 1 st Year pupils and their parents/teacher partnership and collaboration to enhance the nurturing of the whole child. The home school links person works very closely with tutors and year heads of all classes with main focus on parents of 1 st Year pupils.
St. Angela’s is glad to currently have two chaplains; Sr. Mary and Fr. Gerry Chestnutt. Sr. Mary works as a part time chaplain in the school, while Fr. Chestnutt, a priest from the local parish of the Sacred Heart, helps with the celebration of sacraments in the school. Both work together in partnership with the Religion Department to help deepen the students’ experience of, and appreciation for, the Christian Faith, while also exploring and respecting other Faiths within the school community. This takes the form of liturgies and prayer services, joining with a class to discuss particular topics and highlighting liturgical seasons and themes throughout the year.
Within the wider pastoral context, they work with teachers and staff to assist the development of every student according to the school’s mission statement, which aims to help each student achieve their fullest potential, not just in the academic field, but in the personal and interpersonal areas of life as well. This is done by means of being a “significant presence” to students and staff at key moments, such as preparing for exams, journeying in grief at the occasion of bereavement, or simply being available to people who might wish to discuss some aspect of their lives. As chaplains, both function in the school as bridges to the wider faith community, providing both challenge and support to those on the faith journey in the school.
The Ceannaire programme aims to facilitate the First Year Students on the transition from Primary School to Secondary School. One Fifth Year student takes care of four or five First Year students. The Fifth Years undergo training in advance. They meet with the first years on their first day in school – on their induction day. The ceannaire leaders meet with the first years regularly and organise such events as orienteering, quizzes and a Halloween party.
The Ceannaire programme provides friendship for the new entrants and an increased sense of belonging. It also promotes leadership qualities in the Ceannaire students.