The Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) is a Victorian accredited senior school qualification. Our VCAL program can begin from Year 10 and focuses on applied real-life learning opportunities for your child in their final years of school. Students who complete the VCAL are aged between 16-18 years old and have been assessed as eligible for enrolment at the Northern School for Autism. The VCAL program provides students with the opportunity to develop work-ready skills over their later years, potentially opening up further study or work opportunities post-school. Some of the options for further study may include TAFE, Apprenticeships, or work opportunities after completion of the final year of school. 

The VCAL has three award levels:

  • Foundation
  • Intermediate
  • Senior

The VCAL is made-up of four compulsory strands:

  • Literacy and numeracy skills
  • Work Related skills
  • Industry Specific skills
  • Personal Development skills

Northern School for Autism offers VCAL Foundation and is delivered over two-three years. Students complete their VCAL via Units of Study that meet the criteria of the above strands. The program is designed to meet each students’ interests and individual learning needs. Students can select accredited Vocational Education and Training (VET) modules and units.

Vocational Education and Training & School Based Apprenticeships.

Students in the VCAL program also have the opportunity to engage in a range of Vocational Education Training (VET) options and School Based Apprenticeship Training (SBAT) option that meets their skills and interests. These programs enhance each student’s applied learning skills development, and also provides the student with an opportunity to explore future career pathways.

The VET & SBAT offer students real-life opportunities to develop their skills & knowledge in work related environments. These programs are delivered via nationally recognised industry-developed training packages and accredited courses.   They are assessed and certified by registered training organisations (RTOs), which also provides students with an opportunity to grow confident that they can thrive in alternative education settings; another confidence booster for future study options.

Most importantly the VET & SBAT allows students the opportunity to explore career options across a range of industries that provide practical hands-on learning opportunities. In past years NSA students have completed VET in Visual Arts, Screen & Media, Sound Production, Kitchen Operations and Integrated Technologies, and an SBAT in Warehouse Operations.

Transitioning to life beyond school

During the Senior years at Northern School for Autism, staff meet with families regularly to ensure a successful transition into life beyond school. Beyond school options can include further education, training, transitioning to employment-ready and/or leisure programs, and employment. NSA staff will work closely with families and communicate regularly to ensure that the transition from school to adult life is well supported to ensure the greatest opportunity of success.