Plans to expand CBSE counselling system for 'distressed' students

Plans to expand CBSE counselling system for 'distressed' students

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is working on a suggestion to expand the scope of its existing students counselling mechanism to help those in extreme "academic distress" due to parental or societal pressure for achieving unrealistic goals in their studies.

The board, which has been providing counselling to secondary school students at the time of their examinations and results since 1998, has begun an exercise to “gauge the need and scope” of the student support services available in the schools affiliated to it.

It has formulated a set of questionnaire pertaining to the issue and asked the school principals to submit their response to it by May 20. “The entire process of child development coincides with the years of schooling. This is a most defining phase of life.

However, the environment becomes relatively complex and the child faces a variety of social, interpersonal, physical and emotional problems which need to be resolved,” the CBSE’s public relation officer Rama Sharma stated in a circular to all school heads last week.

The issue of school students facing extreme academic stress has emerged as a one of the major concerns over the years with the parents, relatives, friends and peers keeping extremely high hopes from them.

To help reduce the students’ examination stress and attain overall growth, the CBSE made the class X board examination optional few years back. The Centre also introduced a system for continuous and comprehensive evaluation of the students’ performance under the Right to Education Act.

“Though these measures brought in a significant relief to the students, pressure for excellence continues to haunt them. The board receives thousands of distress calls at its helpline during the examinations every year,” an official said.

In view of the prevailing circumstances, suggestions have emerged to work out a comprehensive strategy to help students deal with academic stress. “Regular guidance and counselling can help students in maximizing their capacities and potential for self-actualization,” the official said.

The CBSE has been providing expert counselling to students during the examinations.

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