Internal counselling services for teachers are more successful in cutting absence rates and improving health, Edinburgh councillors were told this week. The city is keen to continue a scheme started by the former Lothian Region despite running out of cash. Between September 1993 and November 1995, 1,240 counselling sessions were held for 332 clients.
A temporary counselling and welfare service set up by Edinburgh District Council has provided a restricted service since local government reorganisation in April.
Headteachers and other managers should be alerted to the opportunities for counselling, advice and support, the city's education committee was told. A paper noted: "Managers should be trained to recognise negative stress in staff and to deal with it as with any other performance-related issue."
The council maintains that extra help from a trained counsellor should be available when problems cannot be dealt with by the school.