Early School Leavers

There is a difference between leaving school before  17 years old and after 17.

The Department of Education (DET) requirements outline policy in relation to leaving school before and after 17 years old.

If you are thinking of leaving school early  this questionaire may assist  in overcoming any barriers at school.

Before leaving school it is important to have:

  1. Investigated all in school options.
  2. Talked to a careers advisor and have a plan.
  3. Investigated policy and school leaving age .
  4. Found a job or a course.
  5. Discovered your best career options through career exploration.
  6. Looked at opportunities to gain experience.

This video has information on pathways planning and options – Any more Questions

If you have decided to leave school before you complete year 10 or are under 17 there are many ways of getting year 12 or an equivalent (Cert 3 ), the following options are available :

  1. Continuing education with a flexible  external provider:
  • VCAL
  • CGEA
  • TAFE course- for example –  a Certificate 3 is considered by DET to be a year 12 equivalent.
  • Pre apprenticeships  are courses that may assist in getting you an apprenticeship.
  1. Starting an Apprenticeship or Traineeship – the employment section of this site can help.
  2. Having a break from school and doing a re engagement program. These are short term courses offered outside school.
  3. Online secondary education  and other online courses.
  4. Distance Education 
  5. Home or Part time education 


To find out more about completing school in an alternative setting such as doing VCAL with an external flexible provider there is more information HERE

To find out about  short term programs- that can allow for a break from school – more information is available HERE

To see a map of all the flexible providers in the FMP region – Click here

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