The Flexible Learning Options Program was established by Swan Hill College with the support of community stakeholders, to provide a more flexible approach to supporting young people at risk of disengaging from learning. An alternate setting located at the southern entrance to the town has been established and although students are enrolled at Swan Hill College they attend the FLO Campus.
It was recognised that a Flexible Learning Options program was required to assist students who are disengaged or at risk of disengagement from education and have difficulties in the mainstream education environment. The program was designed as a pilot to develop and test education alternatives and to shape what could be a sustainable program. A feasibility study was commissioned in 2013 and the findings supported the continuation of the program.
FLO is a select entry program with all students requiring a referral for enrolment. The program aims to provide individual learning and transition plans for students based on a case management model. This also involves providing students with a range of support services through links with program partners, government agencies and community organisations in order to:
FLO will help students to work through any underlying issues in their lives through personalised case management and provision of opportunities for students to engage in meaningful learning. Courses are accredited and can lead to further training and employment.
The majority of students are enrolled in a VCAL program and undertake vocational training. Each student has an individual learning plan which builds on their interests, career pathways plan and individual needs. Training may be outsourced to other providers and some students may elect to continue with some of their subjects at Swan Hill College. The major focus of the curriculum is literacy and numeracy, often delivered through integrated projects.
Enrolments have steadily increased over since the commencement. Students wishing to enrol in the program undertake a series of interviews and meet with FLO staff to ascertain their suitability for the program. Behavioural issues are not the criteria for transferring students to FLO. Generally a referral will be made by a Year Level Manager, Well Being staff member or from an external organisation. This will be followed up with a meeting, an induction session and a visit to the FLO Campus prior to a decision being made as to the suitability of the program for the young person concerned.
Key stakeholders to the project are:
Supporting Services Groups: