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Personalized Alternative Education Department 218
Personalized Alternative Education Department

What is Alternative Education (Alt Ed)?

Alternative Education (Alt Ed) Programs are designed for students who are in need of a different approach to learning than can typically be offered in a mainstream classroom. It offers a smaller student-to-staff ratio, curriculum delivery that is tailored to the students’ needs, and more continuity of teachers and learning environment. Students can be enrolled in Alternative Education for the entire school day, or during particular periods.

In addition to the PAE classroom, Dr. G.W. Williams offers the Supervised Alternative Learning (SAL)  Program.  This program provides students who have significant difficulties with regular attendance at school with the opportunity to earn credits through paid or unpaid work and/or online courses of study. SAL also allows students to pursue non-credit bearing activities to support their personal health and wellness with the support of a teacher.


Which courses are offered through Alternative Education? 

In Alt Ed, students can earn a wide range of compulsory and elective credits, most of which are at the College/Applied, Workplace/Essential and Open level. Courses are offered that will support the students’ strengths, needs and pathway goals, with a focus on world-readiness. 

What are the Expectations for Alternative Education students?

Students in Alt Ed are earning credits and are therefore required to meet curriculum expectations. This can be achieved through credit recovery, blended learning, as well as inquiry-based and cross-curricular learning opportunities. In this program, students are empowered to reflect on their strengths, needs and interests, and to give input as to what types of assessment will help them demonstrate their learning. 

Referral Process for Student In-take

Referral for Alt Ed will come from the student’s support team, including Administration, Guidance, Student Success, Special Education, Social Workers, and/or other support staff. These team members will make a referral to the Head of Alternative Education, who will engage the student, parents and relevant staff in a discussion to determine if and how Alt Ed can meet the student’s needs. A Guidance counsellor will then make the required timetable changes.

Which Students are typically referred for the Alt Ed Program?

Students are referred to Alt Ed when they face barriers to their success in mainstream classes. These barriers may relate to social-emotional, mental health, medical, behavioural and/or cognitive factors and are often coexistent with other life-circumstances that make it difficult for them to keep up with the demands of a traditional school program.

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