Students between the ages of 16 and 18 inclusive will be members of the Senior School at Emerson. The focus the Senior School has on vocational pathways provides a slightly different environment to what occurs in the Middle and Junior Schools. Emerson School has been offering the Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) since 2014.
Apart from the pastoral classroom specialties there are many co-curricular excursions and workshops that are specifically designed to expose students, particularly graduates, to the wider world, including the world of work.
Some VET Certificate courses are offered which may change from year to year but will contribute credits towards the VCAL. These include Food Processing, Horticulture and Sport and Recreation. There are also opportunities for students to gain documented and recognised qualifications in First Aid, Life Saving, Food Handling and RSA to name a few.
Pastoral classes are based on themes of various employment areas and classwork is set in these contexts. Currently the classes offered are:
SSA - Automotive Studies
Provides students a basic understanding in the field of Auto Mechanics. Students will gain valuable practical experience in a wide range of subjects including hand tools, light fabrication, vehicles servicing and maintenance, light engines and basic operating principles of 2 and 4 stroke motors.
SSB – Building & Construction
The Building and Construction class is a practical-based course and is for those students that are good with their hands and are interested in entering one of the various fields in the building industry. Students participate in a wide range of activities designed to develop and improve knowledge and skills in many building and construction trade areas. Students have the opportunity to become familiar with a wide range of tools, equipment and materials, performing tasks under direct supervision and preparing for entry-level roles in this field. Some of the areas covered are: safety on the worksite, teamwork, basic levelling, carpentry skills, workplace communication, read plans and specifications, measurements and calculations and apply OH&S policies and procedures. Industry standards will be observed to give students an awareness of employment requirements. There is a strong emphasis on safety and all students are required to wear appropriate clothing and footwear at all times during practical classes. Some tasks undertaken are outdoors and can be physically demanding.
SSC - Child & Aged Care Studies
Child development, health and safety practices and industry standards are integral to this program. Interactions with children, their parents and centre employees are modelled. Awareness of the appropriate government regulations which are reflected in centre policies and procedures are studied. Students will develop a clear understanding of the skills and knowledge required to apply for employment in a registered, accredited childcare centre.
SSD – Digital Communications
Effective digital communication is the ability to create persuasive communications in different media, be it websites, video, audio, text, games or animated multimedia. Digital communication is a foundation skill for most careers today, as most people will be involved in some form of conceptualizing, producing, delivering, and receiving such communications in their workplace, at school and in their daily lives. Students can learn a variety of digital communication skills across the curriculum, whether they build multimedia presentations to demonstrate their knowledge of academic learning areas, create e-portfolios of coursework, or present ideas in a virtual classroom.
SSE – Essential Food Studies
Essential Foods is a course designed to help foster independence through teaching the basic skills of selecting, preparing and cooking foods suitable for an individual or family. The course also covers menu planning, food labelling, basic nutrition and wise food choices. Students will use a wide range of recipes from “Cookery the Australian Way” to prepare dishes from all areas of the menu including breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, cakes, desserts, special occasion foods and beverages. Presentation is an important focus so that students learn to arrange and serve food in a visually appealing manner.
SSF - Food & Hospitality Studies
Aims to give students a basic understanding of operations in a commercial kitchen environment and the hospitality industry. Students will have the opportunity to participate in the preparation and service of a wide range of dishes suitable for various occasions. Some of the links with food that will be included in the course are safety and hygiene, knowledge and uses of ingredients, processes and equipment, nutritional value, measurements and costs, labelling as well as social, cultural and environmental aspects. Students will be encouraged to broaden their selections of food choices and to value the enjoyment of planning and preparing dishes and sharing meal-times with other people. Depending on demand there may also be the opportunity to undertake a number of short course qualifications in food-handling, responsible service of alcohol and coffee making.
SSH - Horticultural Studies
Aims to give students an understanding of horticultural and agricultural practices in diverse environments. Students will have practical experience in equipment use and learn how to undertake basic maintenance in a safe work environment. Students will undertake a range of propagation tasks and will be involved in recognising plants that are commonly encountered in horticulture or land management situations. Industry standards will be reinforced to give students an awareness of employment requirements in this field. Students will be expected to undertake the Certificate II in Parks and Gardens, which runs for 1 year and is a School Based Traineeship.
SSI – Industry and Enterprise Studies
Aims to develop an understanding of workplace rights, responsibilities and regulations used in industry and business, particularly in the health, sport and recreation sectors. Focus is on the development of transferable skills from the classroom into business enterprises or the community. It aims to develop an understanding of how enterprises in the health, recreation, manufacturing and service industries operate.
SSL – Contemporary Living
Contemporary living aims to develop student’s core skills in communication through expanding opportunities within their personal and subsequently broader community. Students will develop strategies that will enable greater interaction in multiple environments e.g. school, community, local environments and businesses. These will be practised through participation in the Advance program, community travel education program and volunteer organisations as applicable to the individual.
SSP – Performing Arts
Aims to give students a basic understanding of both the amateur and professional performing arts sectors. Students will have the opportunity to participate in the preparation and presentation of a range of performances and workshops. These are designed to increase confidence and explore creativity. It is expected that students in this class will be heavily involved with the annual school productions in some role either as cast, backstage crew or front of house workers.
SSS - Sports & Outdoor Education Studies
Students will develop a clear understanding of the skills, knowledge and competencies required to gain employment in the Sports and Recreation industry. Our learning environments vary between the classroom, outdoors and a practical setting at a local gymnasium. Students also participate in Interschool Sport, Swimming, and Advance programs, including coordinating a childcare sports program.
SSV - Visual Arts
In Visual Arts, students have the opportunity to explore literacy, oracy, work related skills, and personal development studies through art and art history with concentrated efforts. Students will have the opportunity to use art skills and techniques to explore artists from throughout the world, their own expressive ideas, and participate in community programs that support the arts. Work related skills taught through the visual arts will allow students to learn the necessary Occupational Health and Safety measures needed for working with a variety of materials and tools in the art studio and beyond into the workplace. Personal Development Studies are the backbone of the Visual Arts program and it is through acts of communication, problem solving, planning, and community based art activities, students will further develop their skills and confidence.