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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 08 Hansard (Thursday, 5 August 2021) . . Page.. 2499 ..


Further to the statement made by ACT Policing’s Youth Liaison Officer published in the Canberra Times on 29 December 2017 about efforts to provide an alternative for many high-risk youth who are not attending school, (a) what specific alternatives to mainstream schooling does the Youth Liaison Officer try to get disengaged young people into, and (b) what is the current ACT Government funding for each of these alternatives.

Mr Gentleman: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

ACT Policing encourages disengaged young people to consider the following alternatives to help prevent them from entering the justice system:

ACT Policing works closely with its partner agency Canberra’s Police Community Youth Club (PCYC) to promote programs aimed at creating healthier and safer pathways for young people. Two of these programs include Level-Up and Project 180.

Level-Up is aimed at kids aged 8-17 years and offers a one day per week program for 20 weeks. The program utilises high adrenaline, positive, safe risk taking activities as a platform for engaging disengaged and vulnerable young people in a positive mentoring environment. Young people involved have generally had some contact with the justice system, and may have a history of behavioural concerns at home and at school. Participants are involved for one day per week during school term, with weekly sessions on topics such as domestic violence, complemented by activities such as downhill mountain-biking, motor-biking, welding, bush walking and ball sports. The building of positive long-term relationships is a key factor in the success of the program.

Project 180 offers a four day per week for twenty-week program. Project 180 is a diversion program established for high-needs young people in the ACT aged 12.5-16 years. Project 180 combines the following mix: full time (8.30 am - 3.00 pm) engagement based on a mix of skills-based recreational activities, educational programming and/or vocational pathways; intensive case coordination facilitated through regular meetings between Canberra PCYC, ACT Policing, CYPS; links into weekend activities such as team sports and interest groups.

Apprenticeships or traineeships may also be an option for young people, as an option to continue their learning in an area they are passionate about. The combination of learning with practical and paid work experience can be a motivational factor for a young person who is struggling to remain in school.

Muliyan School is located at Canberra College in Woden and run by ACT Education, as an alternative to mainstream schooling. Only Network Student Engagement Teams (NSET) can refer young people into the program. ACT Policing liaise with NSET to organise this option in appropriate circumstances. Additionally, Galilee School is a registered, independent secondary school for disengaged and vulnerable young people in years 7-10.

Another alternative for young people who have become disengaged with mainstream education is Ginninderry's SPARK Training and Employment Initiative in partnership with Canberra Institute of Technology. The SPARK


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