Engaging At Risk Adolescents in Literacy Education at Alternative Education Sites in Queensland, Australia

Livock, Cheryl A. (2004) Engaging At Risk Adolescents in Literacy Education at Alternative Education Sites in Queensland, Australia. In 12th World Congress of Comparative Education Societies, October 25-29, 2004, Havana, Cuba. (Unpublished)


In the Australian state of Queensland, approximately 240 000 adolescents are attending high schools. However, a further 10 000 adolescents aged 15 to 17 years are not in school, not in work and not in training. "This is simply not good enough and we have to try harder," said the Queensland Premier and Ministers for Education, and Employment, Training and Youth.

One means of engaging disengaged at risk adolescents in education has been the development of alternative education sites. Alternative education sites, a growing worldwide phenomenon are an alternative to mainstream high schools. They provide a learning environment for at risk adolescents who have either been excluded from or have dropped out of high school.

This paper reports on preliminary findings from an ongoing one year study of literacy programs provided at four alternative education settings. These alternative settings represent a diversity of alternative education sites in Queensland, where a range of at risk adolescents are being engaged in literacy education. This is done through a variety of strategies, which include innovative programming, one on one academic and personal support, literacy outcomes linked to employment, and a less formal and more flexible learning space. The paper will also address difficulties faced by both students and teachers; the successes and failures in solving these difficulties; and the way ahead.

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ID Code: 3251
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Keywords: alternative education, at risk adolescents, critical ethnography, literacy for at risk students, engagement, student teacher relationship
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2004 (please consult author)
Deposited On: 27 Jan 2006 00:00
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2010 12:29

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