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System Alternative Education

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The goal of System Alternative Education programs is to re-engage students in meaningful learning by helping each of them realize that they are worthy, capable and valued. With this goal in mind, staff works with students so that they:

  • Have an improved sense of well-being and positive connection.
  • Develop a focused and positive sense of direction.
  • Establish a plan that will see them engage in their education in a way that will eventually lead to the successful completion of secondary school.
  • Build on their learning experiences and become contributing members of our community.

System Alternative Education programs have been developed to help students who need an alternative (location, structure, time, function, organization, program delivery) to the traditional classroom environment.

Contact your Student Services Department for more information about System Alternative Education program options.


Students not meeting success in their community school have typically been referred for enrolment in system alternative education programs once the home school has worked with the student through a series of progressive interventions and supports. Our Alternative Education programs have been designed to re-engage youth through a positive school experience. SAE programs have such features as reduced class sizes, flexible daily schedules, integrated project-based programming, community excursions, and experiential learning.

Admission is by home school referral.

Because each existing program is different to meet the specific needs of students, it makes it difficult to generate entrance criteria that would fit all programs.  For that reason, the following list contains the recommended minimum student entrance criteria school staff will consider when nominating a student for enrolment. Students must:

  • Be capable of working collaboratively and independently, with support
  • Have reading skills at or above Low Average limits
  • Be Tier 3 students, from HWDSB Secondary Schools
  • Have parental/guardian consent for participation in the programs
  • Consent to participate in the programs
Updated on Tuesday, November 28, 2023.
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