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Alternative education programs are one way of responding to the disengagement of young people from mainstream schools. While there are a great variety of programs, those where young people experience success have incorporated a number of elements of best practice. This article reviews the attributes of effective alternative programs, with a particular focus on programs situated in Queensland, Australia. Establishing what constitutes a successful alternative program becomes increasingly important in an education climate that includes rapid movement toward a standardised educational experience with the attendant potential to further alienate those young people already existing on the margins of mainstream schooling


School of Education

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Journal Article

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