Supervised Alternative Learning (SAL) is an option under the Education Act that allows alternative programming for secondary students aged 14-18, who find they are not benefiting within the regular school system. It is the parent's decision to apply to SAL, in consultation with the school social worker and administration, by completing the appropriate application process and creating a SAL Plan (SALP).
The SAL Plan outlines goals in three specific areas:
The SAL Committee of the Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB) consists of a Supervisory Officer, a Trustee of the Board and a Community Representative. This committee reviews each application at a monthly meeting, and grants the applicant approval to attend the transitional SAL program.
SAL is a transitional program that works in conjunction with schools for students who may present with the following challenges:
Chronic absences from school
Disengaged from school
Difficulties coping with the traditional structured classroom
May benefit from a practical, short-term employment experience
May benefit from different life experiences to help gain personal awareness and knowledge, develop skills for problem-solving, decision-making and goal setting
When given approval for the SAL program, the student may continue his/her learning in any of the following ways, as outlined in their SAL Plan (SALP):
Full-time or part-time employment
Part-time employment and part-time school
Enrollment in one or more courses
Participation in employment-readiness programs
Participation in community-based youth programs
Participation in community-based counseling to address barriers to learning
Participation in life skills and personal life management non-credit classes
Engagement in volunteer experiences and other activities that will help students set short- and long-term goals to transition back to regular school, enroll in alternative school or prepare for the world of work
SAL is a transitional program. All SAL Plans expire at the end of the school year, with the possibility of renewing for one more year. SAL expires on the student's 18th birthday, or by June of the year that the student turns 18 years of age.