Students get a taste of real life: No classrooms or lifts from mum and dad

Out of the classroom and into the real world
Out of the classroom and into the real world Photo: Nine News Perth

A group of students at Wesley College won't step into a classroom for ten weeks - all in the hope of real world experience.

Year 8 students are taken away from the traditional classroom structure as part of the school's Katitjin program and are sent into the city as a way to develop life skills.

"The home base is the WA Rowing Club and has been since inception. Students are expected to find their own way there, no lifts from mum or dad," said Deputy Head Nathan Jessup.

One of the major projects of the Katitjin program is a photography exhibition to help raise awareness on homelessness.

"The student's involvement includes all of the photography, design, invitations, event organisation, ticketing, fundraising," Mr Jessup said.

"The boys are also able to volunteer in one of Uniting Care West's city based outreach programs."

Towards the end of the 10 weeks, the boys travel to Morapoi ,a remote indigenous station, where they use the skills they've learned in the program and apply it in a new and unique environment.

The school hasn't ruled out the possibility of aiming the program towards older students, but as it stands the program sets up younger students to prepare for their senior high school years.

"Early adolescent boys are susceptible to disengagement from learning, this was supported by various sources of educational research," Mr Jessup said.

"At this age, boys respond well to alternative experiential learning programs, set within different contexts.

"Students explore awareness of self, how they can contribute in a team environment, how they can positively contribute to the broader community and how the community can impact them in return."

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