Each person learns in his or her own way. While education is always important, people learn in a different manner. The Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning is an alternative to secondary school, which provides a more individualised and engaged study option for students who are looking for a change of pace to their regular schooling. Our Vocational College offers five reasons to consider VCAL as a study choice.
Greater emphasis on positive teacher/student relationships
Vocational College is not like secondary school. Smaller class sizes and a more relaxed atmosphere allow students and teachers to build positive regard for one another. Student mentors, coordinators and administration staff are always accessible and approachable, encouraging students to develop both in their skills and well-being. When asked to explain the difference between school and Vocational College, most of our students report that our teachers talk 'to' them, rather than 'at' them.
Greater emphasis on career pathways beyond secondary education and broader opportunities for networking with employers and industry
Most Vocational College students engage in industry electives two days a week. Teachers conducting these classes are likely to be former professionals with first-hand working experience in a particular industry, who have gone on to become trainers in their field. This creates much broader networking possibilities for our students within industry. Coupled with this, there is a greater emphasis on work placement opportunities and the development of employability skills within the Vocational College curriculum. These real world learning opportunities are invaluable to our students, introducing them to positive work practises and connecting them to potential employers. Many of our students have gone on to acquire jobs or apprenticeships as a direct result of their industry and work placement experiences, putting the 'Vocational' in to Vocational College.
Greater opportunity for parents to create ongoing, meaningful interactions with teachers
Each Vocational College student is assigned a teacher mentor whose role is to support their general progress and well-being. At Vocational College, we believe it is important for parents to have continual access to feedback regarding student progress. Therefore, one-on-one communication with mentors is available to parents on an ongoing basis throughout the program. We aim to create a team approach to student development that includes the student, their family and the college. By working together towards the same goals, this team emphasis gives each student the greatest opportunity for success.
Greater emphasis on relevant curriculum, real world application and the promotion of independent living skills
While the aim of most students who enrol with Vocational College is to complete a year 11 or 12 certificate, our program focuses on more than just an academic pass. We aim to develop our students into confident and highly employable young adults by encouraging them to connect with learning that is relevant to the real world. Our curriculum is designed to promote personal growth in young people through not only numeracy and literacy skills, but an emphasis on life-long skills such as communication, teamwork and responsibility. We understand and promote the importance of personal independence and real world knowledge in order to gain, and more importantly, keep a job.
Greater sense of individuality, belonging, safety and fun
Vocational College encourages an environment where all students feel connected, safe and relaxed. There are no uniforms, and all staff are addressed by their name, not their title. We nurture and respect all individuals within our college community, and maintain zero tolerance of discrimination and bullying in all forms. Our aim is to identify and elevate each student's individual strengths through listening and encouragement, and to recognise and celebrate the attributes that make each student unique. Through mutual respect, Vocational College is a place where students can bring out the best in themselves and each other.