Benefits of APACS membership
- Opportunities to develop collegiate relationships with your professional peers locally, nationally and internationally.
- Access to the internationally recognised Journal of Psychologists and Counsellors in Schools, published twice annually and of direct relevance to the work of School Psychologists, School Counsellors and Guidance Officers (copies sent to you directly).
- An informative national newsletter that includes articles of interest, information about relevant resources, websites, professional development opportunities, book reviews and other information.
- Advance notice of and discounted rates for the Association’s biennial conference and other professional development opportunities.
- Participation in national and local projects that aim to promote best practice for students. Examples include: MindMatters Plus, Positive Psychology, ASD issues, professional development and journal articles about children and adolescents’ learning and social-emotional needs.
- Representation of the interests of School Psychologists, School Counsellors and Guidance Officers in their work in schools with children and adolescents to employing organisations.
Reasons to join APACS
There are a number of reasons why it is more important than ever for school psychologists, guidance officers and counsellors to join APACS given the following trends:
- Increasing expectations of the role in relation to both individual, group and systems work.
- The need to be up-to-date in professional knowledge and skills of research and practice.
- The need to maintain professional standards and code of conduct in a complex and increasingly legalistic environment.
- An increased emphasis on accreditation and competencies linked to Professional Learning and collegial assessments.
- In some states it is also a work pre-requisite to be a member of APACS.
APACS and the future
APACS through its varied professional activities contributes significantly to the field of psychological support services to schools. These activities provide APACS members with access to the current professional knowledge and practice to enable them to provide quality psychological and counselling services to schools, students and their communities.
The APACS publishes regular state and national newsletters and journals, which inform members of important events and areas of current research in the field of school psychology and counselling.
In past years the APACS has raised its profile nationally due to its partnership with the Australian Principals’ Association Professional Development Council (APAPDC) and the Australian Divisions of General Practitioners (ADGP)in the development and implementation of the MindMatters Plus national mental health strategy for secondary schools. This has meant that the APACS has been able to employ professional staff and consultants to provide support for demonstration schools across Australia and provide significant research and tools for schools in the area of mental health promotion and prevention as well as strategies to support for students with high support needs in the area of mental health.
Some future directions include the following:
- Expanding the associate membership base.
- Linking the APACS website with School Psychologists and School Counsellors.
- Tendering for future national project work.
The continued involvement by APACS in national projects will provide the association with continued input into national directions and funds to commission prestigious research and journal articles.