Warakirri College serves young people 15-22 years old who have disconnected from mainstream education due to severe mental health problems and social disadvantage. Over 80% of Warakirri students have a social/emotional disability and only 20% have a reading age of 15+ years. The school has campuses at Fairfield, Blacktown and Campbelltown with students in stage 5 or 6.
Our project aims to identify, implement and evaluate strategies that will enable vulnerable Stage 5 and 6 students to improve their ability to read, comprehend and evaluate the texts required for them to complete their schooling and proceed to employment, post-secondary training, or higher education, in order to function independently in the community once they leave school.
We seek to determine the extent to which:
- our students can be engaged in a targeted language and literacy intervention devised by a speech pathologist;
- they make measurable gains in language/reading/comprehension competency, school engagement and general wellbeing;
- they attach value to the experience.
Our literature search supports the contention that students who have better language and literacy skills will have fewer behaviour issues, increased attendance, enhanced academic progress and improved self-esteem and wellbeing.
We will be using a variety of tools to measure language/literacy competence, school engagement, wellbeing, attendance and behaviour patterns.
Findings will be presented in the form of numerical data, graphs and case studies.