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Staff Profiles: Simone Courso

Simone C

School Counsellor

I ​was born in France, in Alsace, at the border of Germany and Switzerland. After obtaining my first master's degree in English Linguistics, I moved to Switzerland where I met my husband who is Swiss-American. We lived in Switzerland and Liechtenstein with our three children and enjoyed the many benefits of these countries but still wanted to explore the rest of the world.  We decided to move to Thailand in 1990. Moving from a village of 2,000 inhabitants to Bangkok was a huge cultural adjustment for everyone but also a very enriching experience for our family.

While raising my children I became more and more interested in child psychology and went back to university. I received a master's degree in Counselling Psychology and ​chose to study the problems and success factors of marriages between Thai men and Western women. This  gave me tremendous insight into Thai culture. I worked as a middle and high school counsellor at Ruamrudee InternatIonal School (RIS) in Bangkok for 10 years and went for certification with the National Board of Certified School Counselors in the U.S. ​My latest focus has been on Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT).​

In 2006 my husband and I moved to Hong Kong and stayed there for eight years. I worked at the Canadian International School as the counsellor for Grades 7 and 8.

Since we have a very strong attachment to Thailand (in the meantime we have two Thai grand-daughters), we returned to Bangkok three years ago​ and ​I was very fortunate to ​find​ a position at St Andrews International School Bangkok. I ​am very happy to be part of an institution that is inclusive and addresses the individual needs of every student. I ​am assisting Ms Amy Bonehill on a part-time basis.

In my ​20 years of counselling teenagers, adolescents and their parents my work has revolved around support for students with special needs, difficulties with relationships, bullying, cyber safety, stress, body image, self-harming, loss and grief, and suicide ideation. The greatest thing about this age group is that, as troubled as they may be at times, they are still developing and they can change. Often the students that had a difficult time during puberty were the ones that stood out at graduation or in drama performances. By accepting the help they needed at one point in their lives they had matured and moved on.

Also, being the parent of three children who have lived and studied in Europe, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Australia and the U.S. I understand the needs and issues of third culture children and their parents. In addition to English I speak fluent French, German, Swiss German and conversational Thai. In my free time I like to travel and explore new countries and cultures, read books, watch movies, enjoy some of the activities offered to those who don't work full-time, and spend time with my family.