Counseling Of Students On One-Year Programs In Israel: Models And Techniques

Ari Shames

The year in Israel in post high school programs provides an opportunity for many students to learn intensively while at the same time this year is a turning point in the students' lives. Often the students are trying to work out major and minor crises in their lives, both in relation to the past and looking towards the future, and there is a need for personal counseling. The various programs in general are focused on the educational aspects of the year and the personal side of the student's lives is often not given much systematic thought. This study examined how this question is being dealt with in different institutions of Torah learning for women and how the teachers and other staff are being prepared and trained for the challenges at hand. The nature of the interaction between educators and mental health care professionals in this area was also studied. Interviews were carried out at four post high school programs for women. A description of the overall picture is drawn noting differences between different schools. The author points out the general lack of a systematic approach to the issue in the schools. A detailed three tiered model is suggested for implementation and key elements for building models are suggested in an attempt to raise awareness that a well thought out plan of action can be much more effective than ad hoc handling of particular cases.


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