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Please note: This post is from our website archive. Some of the information within this post may now be out-of-date.


Counselling : External Referrals

From Glenn Fleming, Counsellor

In this week’s edition of Nurrunga, I would like to briefly discuss external referrals. An external referral is when the school psychologist recommends a psychological or mental health service that is not provided by the school.

Why we would make an external referral

Although we support students through school counselling, we are unable to provide the level of intensive treatment available in an outside service. Key differences are:

  • We do not provide counselling outside of school hours.
  • We do not provide counselling throughout the school holidays.
  • We do not prescribe or give advice about medication.
  • The help we provide must be relevant to the students’ wellbeing at school.
  • External services often run groups targeting specific issues.

With this in mind, we regularly recommend external services which can complement our support of our students.

How an external referral is made

Generally, we will inform you as to when we think it is appropriate for a student to access external support. Outside providers fall into two categories, free services and fee paying services. Free services are usually not-for-profit or government funded organisations. Fee paying services are usually private practices who charge for consultations. Most fee paying services offer a Medicare rebate.

In most situations, your GP should be the first point of contact for any mental or physical health concerns. We are happy to provide information about how to access either of these services if required. Simply email one of us on the counselling team, or email me at

If you have an urgent issue

If you have any concerns about mental health or behaviour, please contact either;

  1.  Your doctor
  2. The Kids Help Line on 1800 55 1800
  3. Lifeline on 13 11 14
  4. For urgent or dangerous situations, please call 000.