PH lacks professional counselors to deal with troubled youths
LINGAYEN, Pangasinan — Bullying in school and depression that may lead to suicide are the youth’s latest problems, but guidance counselors are so few to deal with them, a top official of the Philippine Guidance and Counseling Association (PGCA) said here on Monday.
“We only have 3,000 licensed counselors today, serving thousands of schools, industries and communities,” said PGCA president, Sheila Marie Hocson, on the sidelines of the PGCA midyear conference held here.
Hocson said the job had not been attractive because of the low salary. A guidance counselor at the Department of Education has a monthly salary of P18,000-P19,000, which is equivalent to the salary of a newly hired teacher.
PGCA had asked the Office of the President and Congress for a P27,000-salary a month for guidance counselors.
To qualify for a licensure examination, a guidance counselor has to complete a master’s degree and is required to go through a continuing professional development program before renewing his or her license within three years. —Gabriel Cardinoza
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