The report card is in: student-designed education service yielding great results

08 December 2016

Twenty-two young people with intellectual disability will look back on 2016 with pride in their unique achievements, having both designed a course of study, and now successfully completed modules towards the course, this year.

Education and Learning Manager Stewart Koplick said Endeavour Foundation had established a unique learning program at Ashmore in response to the need for post-school learning options which are tailor-made for young people with intellectual disability.

“What makes the Gold Coast Education and Learning Program truly special is the involvement of families and young people in intellectual disability in designing the course content and the way it would be delivered,” Mr Koplick said.

“The students have achieved incredible growth and development this year, with each one continuing to work hard at the program they designed with us at the start of 2016. That tells us that involving students in the design of their course is a key ingredient in their success,” he said.

Service Co-ordinator David Horstman said that all twenty-two students would receive a Statement of Attainment for each module they completed this year.

“The students will also receive a Certificate of Achievement for attending the Education and Learning Program, recognising that each person has worked hard to extend their own individual capacity,” Mr Horstman said.

The course was first established as a result of lobbying and persistent advocacy by families.

Endeavour Foundation partnered with local group Advocates For Educating Adults With Intellectual Disability to find out more about local needs, creating a foundation to work with students and families to develop an innovative and interactive education option.

Education and Learning Manager Stewart Koplick said Endeavour Foundation was grateful to be granted the use of Pie Cottage Community Centre at Ashmore TAFE, providing a great home base for students to learn relevant skills and knowledge within the community.

“The new curriculum has focused strongly on practical life skills,” Mr Koplick said.

“Students and teachers also had lots of fun planning the fit-out of Pie Cottage, choosing the décor and equipment they needed for a great learning experience,” he said.

“We were confident that planning a curriculum based on what the students want to learn, would make the learning experience even more powerful, and the results speak for themselves,” Mr Koplick said.

The Education and Learning Program offers inclusive, student-centred education and training that enhances skills development, job readiness and independent living for people with a disability, providing young people with the tools to live the lives they want in the future.

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