1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The foundation of school counseling did not occur until the beginning of the 20th century. In its earlier beginnings, school counseling constituted a service offered to students largely for vocational guidance reasons, such as preparing students for job after school and exploring prospective occupations. Frank Parsons, regarded as the Father of Vocational Guidance, started the integration of career guidance at the high school level with the notion of assigning dedicated counselor roles inside the school to give vocational guidance (Schmidt, 2003). Therefore, school counseling was formed out of delivering career assistance to pupils. As the 20th century proceeded on, academic guidance grew increasingly interwoven with the vocational counselor’s tasks (Gysbers, 2001), hence the necessity for counseling in schools. Guidance professionals like John Brewer and G.E. Meyers started stressing the instructional role that counselors may play inside schools. By the mid 1930's and into the 1940’s, counselors started giving personal therapy to students as well. Therefore, in addition to giving academic and vocational guidance, counselors started delivering mental health services to students.
The age range of secondary school students runs from 14 to 19, which is in the later teenage phase. Adolescence is considered the most chaotic age of life. Hall (1976) aptly stated that adolescence is a time of stress and strain, a storm and rigidity. The lives of contemporary industrial nations is so complicated that the nuances of the adolescence era are more perilous. Secondary school pupils in contemporary times exhibit heightened emotional instability, a period of unrealism, hero worship, moral problem, rapid changes in the physical and biological systems, temporary imbalances of the whole endocrine system, a proclivity for anti-social behavior, drug and sex abuse, and a variety of other distinct traits. It is commonly understood that teenagers require counseling help when they experience personal, social, family, and educational challenges.
Counselling needs are the demands of a student that are necessary to address his/her difficulties that he/she meets in day-to-day life circumstances and also to enhance his/her personal growth. Counselling requirements appear to be expanding in schools. For instance, secondary schools have suffered frequent clashes and boycotts of classes. Unfortunately, with the collapse of African customs and a busy economic world, parents have entrusted the counseling of children to the schools. On the other hand, instructors are under pressure to show outcomes academically (Nasibi, 2003). Therefore, insufficient emphasis is paid to the area of behaviour modification, which leads to a scenario where pupils are not imparted with life skills. As a consequence, girls and boys confront significant obstacles in dealing with adolescent changes, making educational choices, dealing with competing cultural messages and values, regulating their sexuality in a social climate that favors delay of maturity, living with changes in family structures, and, in essence, leaving counselors with no option but to take on the task of assisting the Hence, in light of this, the research is planned to investigate into teachers’ and students’ perspectives of counselling requirements of secondary school students.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Guidance and counseling services are well acknowledged to be effective in developing the thinking and decision-making capacities of both students and even adults at work settings. It is crucial to have such services in locations where youngsters are developing without understanding what is expected of them, such as in the case of secondary schools, which are being impacted by high numbers of dropouts. As a consequence, we might presume that there are little or no signs of counseling services in secondary schools in Bayelsa state, which should be a prerequisite for secondary school students. Incidences of youngsters growing up without any guidance and making unfortunate decisions are pretty ubiquitous. For example, numerous young individuals opt to embrace early marriage while others pick subjects that do not have the right mix, notably for attending A Level. Presently, the attitudes of teachers and students are unknown and little or no research has been undertaken in Bayelsa State in regard to the perceptions of teachers and students about the necessity for counseling to be delivered in secondary schools.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The main objective of this study is to examine the perception of teachers and students on the counseling needs of secondary schools students in Bayelsa, State Below are the specific objectives;
i. Determine whether students needs counseling to build their thinking and decision making capabilities.
ii. Determine whether students needs counseling for getting awareness of career opportunities
iii. Ascertain whether students needs counseling for appropriate and satisfaction of personal and educational choices.
iv. Identify the factors militating against the effectiveness of guidance and counselling secondary schools in Bayelsa state.