Northam PCYC celebrates achievements of latest cohort of disengaged students

A group of disengaged at and at-risk Avon Valley students who have secured qualifications over the past 12-months have been celebrated.

Last Wednesday, Northam PCYC and members of the community marked the end of this year's Stepping Stones program with a lunch and presentation ceremony.

Funding by the Department of Education, Stepping Stones is an alternative education program or disengaged and at-risk Year 11 and 12 students.

The program has been delivered by the Northam PCYC team led by centre manager Jane Atterby, program co-ordinator Doug Bush and youth workers Ivana Stankic and Jess Corby.

Graduation day saw Ben Peat, Lili Tipple, Tiarna Scott, Anthony Rees, Norton Matthews, and Jeremy Read receive their end of year certificates.

This year 30 students participated in the Stepping Stones program - nine obtained their learner's permit, eight commenced further education with TAFE or accredited registered training organisations, one participant commenced a university bridging course and three gained employment.

PCYC centre manager Jane Atterby congratulated the newest cohort.

"We are extremely proud of all the students and their achievements," she said.

"It's heart-warming to see so many young people transition onto a positive life path, and even more so to watch them grow throughout the year into confident, capable young adults."

As well as improving basic numeracy and literacy, Stepping Stones equipped students with life skills including obtaining tax file numbers, birth certificates, medicare cards, white cards, bank accounts, learner's permits and driver's licences.

The program aims to improve the lives and prospects for disengaged and at-risk youth in the Wheatbelt, with support from Northam PCYC staff, the Department of Education Wheatbelt participation team, Youth Crime Intervention Officers (YCIOs), the Rural Clinical School of WA, and WANSLEA.