Methodology for the allocation of School Counselling Service
The existing allocation of School Counselling Service to schools has been guided by a state-wide methodology developed in consultation with stakeholders as well as by research. Stakeholders included representatives from the Primary Principals Association, Secondary Principals Council, and PPA SSP reference groups.
The allocation methodology for the School Counselling Service is currently under review. Principals were advised in Term 4 2023 that the current methodology will be maintained during 2024 while the review is undertaken.
The revised allocation methodology will address the changing demands on the service and the demographic profile of schools. The new allocation cycle will incorporate the planned 250 additional School Counselling Service positions.
The new methodology and allocations will be implemented from January 2025.
What principles underpin the methodology?
The methodology for the School Counselling Services:
- is informed by current research, feedback from stakeholders and NSW school and student data
- provides every NSW public school a School Counselling Service allocation that reflects student need.
How is the allocation of School Counselling Service calculated?
The counselling allocation is based on student enrolment data and on indicators of student need.
The existing allocation of School Counselling Service is based on student enrolment data and on indicators of student need. A 60% weighting is provided to enrolments and a 40% weighting is provided to the indicators of need. Students impacted by disability, socio-disadvantage and remoteness are provided 40%, 40% and 20% weightings respectively in the indicators of need.
|Students impacted by disability
Student Learning Need Index (SLNI)
Notional enrolment for each support class including Schools for Specific Purposes (SSPs)
|Average of proportion of students where both parents are not in paid work, and the proportion of students where the maximum education for both parents is Year 10 (Parent Index)
|Acessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA+)
How is the indicator of need for students impacted by disability and additional learning and support needs calculated?
The Student Learning Needs Index (SLNI) has been applied as it is a broad measure of disability and additional learning and support needs. Students in Schools for Specific Purposes were allocated a notional SLNI.
How is the socio-disadvantage factor of need calculated?
The Mental Health of Children and Adolescents, Report on the Second Australian Child and Adolescent Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing indicates there is a strong association between mental disorders and specific socio-demographic factors. Children and adolescents with parents and carers with lower levels of education and higher levels of unemployment had higher rates of mental disorders.
A specific index has been calculated by the Centre for Education Statistics and Evaluation and applied to reflect this research. This data is collected through the Enrolment Registration Number (ERN) system. This index correlates highly with other measures of disadvantage.
How is the remoteness factor of need calculated?
The remoteness factor measures remoteness using Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA+). ARIA+ is a measure of service accessibility and remoteness derived from road distances between populated localities and service centres. ARIA+ is widely used across Australia and has become recognised as a nationally consistent measure of geographic remoteness.