Out of the classroom and on to the courts

By Ashleigh Fielding | posted on August 10, 2017

A GROUP of local Albany education associations have joined forces to create a regular sporting event for at-risk secondary students, to help with re-engagement and confidence in their schooling.

Great Southern Aboriginal Health Service, Albany Senior High School, Great Southern Education Attendance Unit, Albany Youth Support Association, Aboriginal Education Unit, Alta-1 and Wanslea Family Services have collaborated to run basketball matches, known as the Alter Tomorrow Basketball Event.

The aim of the event is to help youth build further social networks and support within the community, as well as to promote leadership, team work, goal setting and social and emotional wellbeing.

The Alter Tomorrow Basketball Event will run once per school term and will also encompass learning about culture, health, lifestyle choices and developing relationship awareness.

“These are kids with very active minds, and getting them out of the classroom to engage in other activities allows them to learn in a differ- ent way,” Alta-1 teacher and chaplain Tim Fairley said.

“We bring them to the basketball courts and they can get together, play, and we put on a sausage sizzle for them.

“Their participation in the program is based on their attendance and performance at school.

“If they have done well, then they are allowed to join in.”

Wanslea Family Support Worker Stuart Roberts said the goal of the program is to re-engage students with school and encourage friendships.

“We are bringing kids from high-risk backgrounds or similar backgrounds together, so they can support one another and work together,” Mr Roberts said.