The Ministry of Education has launched a Guidance and Counselling Policy for schools to facilitate students to focus on learning and help them to protect themselves from distractions that affect their behaviour and school attendance, and social development.
State Department of Early Learning and Basic Education Director General, Dr Elyas Abdi said the policy would help teachers and other stakeholders to guide learners on risky behaviour that may hurt their studies and growth and development.
He cited drugs and substance abuse and radicalization as some of the factors that affected students' focus.
Dr Abdi said the students need protection against negative influences through a robust guidance and counselling framework at the school level.
He spoke during the launch of the policy at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development over the weekend.
Dr Abdi said that children needed a safe environment at home and at school for any meaningful learning to take place saying there were cases where schools acted as rescue centres for children.
He said schools should be able to open lines of communication between the administration and the students so the students feel free to share their problems with teachers in charge of guidance and counselling services.
He highlighted that strong guidance and counselling services in the schools can help address unrest in schools.
Dr Abdi, however, said there was a need to establish systems to take care of the psychological needs of teachers, saying they too faced personal challenges which needed institutional care in order for them to work more effectively.
In attendance was the Director for Policy and Partnership, Chacha Mwita and education stakeholders and partners involved in child protection and development.