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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details


Engaging Early School Leavers in Alternative Educational Settings

Debra Tyler, Helen Stokes.

A minority of young people continue to leave school early. Alternative educational settings such as Technical and Further Education (TAFE) and Adult Community Education (ACE) provide an opportunity for these young people to re-engage in education in a supportive environment. This environment also provides the potential for access to further educational pathways.
This presentation will report on 6 programs across Australia. Although the programs were all different, there were however common structural elements. These were:
oManageable sized modules balanced with group devised work;
o flexible learning spaces;
o adult settings; and
o support in accessing new educational pathways.
The TAFE and ACE courses offered an accessible setting for a second chance for these young people to secure a better future for themselves through re-engaging with education.


Debra Tyler  (Australia)
Youth Research Centre, Faculty of Education
University of Melbourne

debra Tyler lectures in the Education faculty in both pre service teacher education and student welfare. She is also involved in a number of research projects particularly around the issues of transitions for young people.

Helen Stokes  (Australia)
Lecturer and Senior Researcher
Youth Research Centre
University of Melbourne

Helen Stokes works at the Youth Research Centre at the University of Melbourne. She lectures in the Post Graduate Diploma in Student Welfare. Her recent research includes issues around early school leaving, vocational education and school community partnerships that create opportunities and pathways for young people. She is currently looking at how the arts can be used to engage and empower young people in an educational context.

  • Pathways
  • Early school leavers
  • Alternative education
  • Re-engagement

(30 min Conference Paper, English)