SACHI SHIKSHA Counseling and Mentoring of Students Should Start Early

Students are the assets of the future for the country. The more you invest in them, the better results you will get. Most important is emotional investment.

This does not mean that you always pamper them, but a layer of emotional security should always be there.

Never leave them alone. Go back to three decades there were no counselors for the students. The family members were knitted so closely that they made the students feel that they are always standing beside them. Children could also share their problems, confusions with elder brothers, sisters, cousins, uncles and aunts.

The children were more close to their uncle and aunts as compared to their own parents. This was a reciprocal dialogue. With the split of joint families, children have become deprived of emotional care and support. They consider TV, Laptop more close than their mothers and fathers.

It is OK up to school level but when the children go to colleges and moreover to other cities, lives as PG or in hostels, though for some time they feel happy that they are out of the tight grip of the parents, but soon they are involved in so called independence in such a way that it results in many interlinked problems.

With the changed scenario, children passing through mental stress and its related complications have worsened the situation.

Cases of suicidal attempts are increasing day by day. Exam stress is one of the most important causes of suicide. The reason behind this is the pressure of securing high percentage and top positions.

Schools, Teachers& Parents all have now become alert and try to work on it seriously. Family atmosphere plays a vital role in building the personality of the kids.

Reasons Behind This Are:

1. Nuclear Families:

Now the big flats and bungalows seem like graveyards for the whole day with parents being out and without any noise of the kids. The children live in their separate rooms with TV and laptop. This culture has made the kids abnormal.

In the evening also, parents come home and sit in their separate rooms with their mobile and laptop on. Now we are scared of the persons around us and talk to machines, so even our emotions have also become mechanical.

But after a certain period, when we findour self alone and see around us, no one is there. The stress and depression starts.

2. Downfall of Family Values:

Previously people were committed towards the near and dear relationships. The list of the relatives used to be so large that even in marriages no need was felt to invite outsiders. All the relations were rich and strong socially and emotionally.

3. Lack of Outside Activities:

Because of social insecurity, we do not allow our kids for outdoor activities, cycling and other games. Moreover even if we are sitting at home and we avoid playing chess, carom, ludo and other indoor games. Watching TV and playing Computer games have totally restricted our dialogue with our family members.

All these have lead toeye problems and the kids in the small age are becoming victim of diabetes and other allied diseases.

4. Role of TV:

Lot of negativity is served through the TV channels which are making our children emotionless or they are developing a sense of insecurity. The TV can entertain you but if you are hurt by any incident it cannot pamper you or give you emotional shelter.

The recent suicide case of Research Scholar of Hyderabad University Rohit Vemula has even forced the U.G.C. to seriously think over the issue of counseling the students again. The UGC has sent instructions to all the Universities and Colleges to start Student Counseling System. The UGC has also mentioned that it should not be only for the sake of formality, but the involvement of students, parents and teachers should be ensured.

Students very easily come under stress with the increased competition andaspirations. If timely action of providing them counseling and helpingthem to get solution of their problems, is not taken then students tend to make suicidal attempts.

Experiencing the increasing tendency of suicidal attempts, University Grants Commission has instructed all the universities to open Students Counseling System. Under this programme, effective measures will be taken for solving the problems.

At A Glance:

According to the National Crime Record Bureau, in the year 2014 1.31 lakh people committed suicide and among them 41% were between the age group of 14 to 30 years. And 6.1% were students. These figures are in records but there are so many others who commit suicide but never come in record.

Also Observed the Changing Behaviour:

According to the instructions sent by the Secretary to the UGC, the establishment of Student counseling System is now a must. In this Counseling system, student’s problems like anger, stress, failure and loneliness will be covered.

If the parents or the teachers see any change in students behavior this may be discussed between parents and teachers so that a mutual communication could be established which will help a long way in getting rid of these complications of the students.

Counseling At the School Level:

Now most of the play schools and higher secondary schools appoint counselors for the students. Once in a week or on individual basis they provide group or individual counseling to the kids. This option is really worth welcoming.

But personally my view is that instead of appointing counselors at nursery level, we should appoint grandparents especially grand mothers who do counseling of the kids with emotional cover. Kids are very attached to their grandparents. The children can be given counseling through the stories and folklores or lories.

I think it is practical and not professional. Rather than involving the kids into professional training, the soft hands of love for the kids will be much more effective. Once in a fortnight or a month, the mutual feedback from the parents, grandparents (counselors) and the teacher should be taken and the progress and the change in the kid must be recorded.

In this way, we will strengthen and prepare our kids for the future to fight with the circumstances with their internal energy.

Counseling At the College Level:

The most tedious and difficult job is to study the mental status of the college students. They are now matured enough to hide their feelings and thus making themselves mentally sick. The small kids reveal all the emotions of the inner heart with words and innocently tell what is going on inside.

Whereas the college students hide their emotions to such a dangerous level that when they bursts-out and the rug is swept out from under the feet of parents. The system of counseling to the college students should be planned from ground level to the Government level. Instead of passing the files from one desk to other, from one department to other we should make some guidelines and strictly adhere to those guidelines.

In the counseling for admissions, their emotional and mental level should also be judged by a committee specially designed for this. The report of the student must be forwarded to the H.O.D. of that particular department where student is admitted so that proper surveillance could be made.

The students should be introduced to each other and instructions should be given to students to inform immediately to the faculty, if they notice any change in the behavior of a particular student. When the students come out of the safe cover of school and family atmosphere, the duty of the professors and counselors become very important towards the students recently admitted in college.

The atmosphere is considered to be very different and sometime the students find it difficult to cope up with the new atmosphere. Therefore, the counseling at this particular stage is extremely important in making the students mentally strong. – VINITA RAJ