Helping Students Achieve
A full range of counseling services is available to Toronto Prep School students. These services form an essential part of the school’s academic mandate. Students are encouraged to seek the services of the guidance department and any member of the faculty that they feel comfortable discussing issues with. The guidance department and the entire faculty are available for educational, vocational, or personal counseling, and for general information. Students are not assigned a teacher advisor enabling each student at his/her discretion to make an appointment with any member of the faculty to discuss any issue. Some areas in which students will find our faculty and guidance department most helpful are: peer relationships, university selection, adult relationships, testing and interpretation, school achievement, high school curriculum, course selection and vocational/occupational planning.
Resource materials will be available in the Guidance Career Centre including books, pamphlets, catalogues for college and university and occupational planning and computerized searches. Students are expected to visit the Guidance Centre and to meet with their assigned academic mentors regularly. Members of the Guidance Centre will visit classrooms to instruct students in areas related to career planning, time management and study skills.
Parents may make appointments to discuss their child’s academic performance, subject selection, or career choices with the Guidance Centre or the Principal. University and College academic calendars are readily available along with other important sources of information. University/College officials will be invited to speak to students about post secondary program and career opportunities.
There will also be Student and Parent Information Nights which will be hosted by Toronto Prep and include current university students from an array of institutions to answer queries. Considerable effort will be spent by this department as well as all other staff to ensure that our students are well prepared to achieve their academic and career goals.
The goal of the Guidance Department is to help students succeed at Toronto Prep School and prepare for post-secondary education. To accomplish this, it provides personal, informative and technical resources so each student can develop a successful and relevant plan.
The guidance and career education program is a vital and integral part of the Toronto Prep School program. Through the program, students will acquire the knowledge and skills that they need in order to learn effectively, to live and to work cooperatively and productively with a wide range of people, to set and pursue education and career goals, and to carry out their social responsibilities. This program will be delivered through various means, including classroom instruction, the teacher-adviser program, orientation and exit programs, completion of the annual education plan, career exploration activities, and individual assistance and short-term counseling.
The goals of the guidance and career education program are outlined in the policy document entitled Choices Into Action; Guidance and Career Education Program Policy for Elementary and Secondary Schools, 1999. As stated in this document, students are expected to:
- Understand the concepts related to lifelong learning, interpersonal relationships (including responsible citizenship), and career planning;
- Develop learning skills, social skills, a sense of social responsibility, and the ability to formulate and pursue educational and career goals; and
- Apply this learning in their daily lives both at school and in the community.
To help students achieve these goals, the content of the guidance and career education program is organized into three areas of learning: Student Development (i.e., the development of habits and skills necessary for learning), Interpersonal Development (i.e., the development of knowledge and skills needed in getting along with others), and Career Development (i.e., the development of knowledge and skills needed for setting short-and long-term goals and for planning for the future). Under the direction of the Principal, Toronto Prep School will develop and implement a guidance and career education plan to ensure that students have access to the learning experiences, personal assistance, and information they need in order to achieve the program goals outlined in Choices Into Action, as well as the expectations given in the secondary school curriculum policy documents for guidance and career education.
The key features of the province’s policy in the area of guidance and career education, which are described in detail in Choices Into Action, are as follows:
- Clearly stated competencies for students in Grades 7 and 8, and Grades 9 to 12
- A range of career exploration activities in the community
- Completion of the compulsory half-credit Career Studies course as a secondary school graduation requirement
- Preparation of an annual education plan for each student, beginning in Grade 7 and continuing to the end of secondary school
- Individual assistance and short-term counselling
The Guidance Department curriculum includes a number of activities and services such as:
- Course Selection
- Monitoring student academic progress
- Facilitates student support meetings
- Participates in developing ILPs
- Provides mediation for students to help resolve conflicts
- Development of four-year plans
- Academic and personal counselling
How Does A Student See a Guidance Counsellor?
- Self-referral or drop-in
- Request by a parent
- Referral by a staff member
- Request by a friend
- Appointment made by the counsellor