School Counsellor

Pastoral Care is at the heart of how we relate to one another in a Catholic school and should be reflected in every action taken to promote and enhance physical, social, emotional, psychological, intellectual and spiritual wellness. The outcome of pastoral care is wellbeing.

The role of the school counsellor is to support and assist the school community better understand and manage student mental health issues, with a view to improving student outcomes. School counsellors are part of the pastoral care support team and work with families, school staff and external agencies to maximise educational and wellbeing outcomes for students.

At St Ambrose, school counselling involves individual, group and family counselling. Services include support with;

  • Changing Families (separation and divorce)
  • Anger management
  • Self-esteem
  • Social and friendship skills
  • Growth mindset and resilience
  • Anxiety, depression and stress management
  • Emotional and behavioural issues
  • Loss and grief
  • Parenting strategies

Whether working with students, parents or carers, or teachers, school counsellors will explain how they work, listen carefully to what is said, help clarify options and encourage informed decision-making.

Our School Counsellor

Our school counsellor is Signe Spotswood. Signe holds a Master of Social Work (Australia Association of Social Work accredited) and Bachelor of Psychological Science and most recently completed her training at NSW Community Mental Health – clinical teams in Tweed/Byron and CASPA (Child and Adolescent Specialist Programs and Accommodation). Signe has experience working within a variety of mental health settings within NSW Health including; child and adolescent assessment and therapeutic intervention, acute and sub-acute mental health wards, generalist hospital social work, acute assessment team and community mental health. In addition, Signe has a demonstrated commitment and ability to provide person-centred care through professional psychosocial assessments, counselling, advocacy, education, information and referrals/links to appropriate services and resources. Signe also has a solid foundation of theory and practice in child protection, attachment, complex trauma, neurobiology, engagement and learning, and development.


School counselling is a confidential service.

Confidentiality will be maintained unless legal requirements, e.g. child protection legislation, override it, or the student or other person(s) may suffer serious harm from information being withheld.


Please discuss your counselling concerns with your child’s teacher in the first instance.

Priorities for the school counsellor’s time will be determined, in consultation with the teacher, school counsellor and Principal. Our school counsellor is currently employed Monday to Thursday (school hours) to fulfil the school counselling requirements.

Referral forms and flowchart are available via these links:

Parental Counselling Referral Flowchart

Additional Resources