CHENNAI: On the first day of special counselling for students ahead of the examinations, the 24-hour 104 Health Helpline received about 100 queries from teachers, parents and students.
The 104 Health-Helpline aims to conduct counselling in three phases - examination preparatory period, during examination and before results are declared. These are the times they are under tremendous pressure and stress. Doctors, psychologists and paramedics will be available to provide suitable counselling to students, said B Prabhudoss, regional manager (Tamil Nadu) of GVK-EMRI that runs the helpline for the State Government. The centre received around 100 calls on its inaugural day, including from three schools - two government schools from Cuddalore district and one private school from Chennai. “The teachers felt counsellors interacting with the children directly will be a different experience for the students instead of themselves giving routine motivational speeches. So the teachers called the helpline,” added Prabhudoss.
The teachers who called put the phone on speaker mode so that all of the students could listen to the counsellor’s advice, Prabhudoss said. Callers also included students and parents; parents wanted to know how their children can score good marks, while the students wanted to know how they could improve their memory. What diet should they take, how many hours of sleep should they have while preparing for exams. These were some of the doubts raised, said B Elayaraja, one of the counselling psychologists at the centre.
One of the questions that counsellors had to field was from a Class 10 student from Chennai who wanted to know if the question paper will be easy this year taking into consideration the distress students faced during the recent floods. “Instead of a straight ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer, I counselled him on how to score good marks,” Elayaraja added.