What is the change-over program?
The change-over program is traditionally a year long program for students who have reached their remediation goals. It is a preparatory year for students intending on returning to public school, private school, post-secondary education or a place of work.
How is it different from the Learning Disabilities Program?
Students who are placed in the Change-over Program are no longer receiving remediation; rather they are scheduled in academic courses with any necessary adaptations. In addition, homework and advocacy responsibilities increase seeing students apply what they have learned over their time with us to ensure they have what they need to do their best work.
Who is in the Change-over Program?
Students who have been recommended by the Head of School, teachers, Director of Programs, Director of Behaviour & Social Skills and/or psychologist, who work in collaboration to determine a student’s best placement. Consideration is given to a student’s work ethic, skill acquisition, skill transference and application, adherence to and participation in Bridgeway’s program, self-advocacy as well as any updated evaluation scores, psych-ed reports and anecdotal records.
When can students enter/leave the Change-over Program?
A student who is recommended for the Change-over Program typically begins in September and completes a full school year in that program. Occasionally, a student's progress is reviewed and they placed in the Change-over Program part way through a school year. Students traditionally leave the Change-over Program in June (of the same school year they started), however, there have been students change-over to another school after the December Holiday Break.
Where do students go when they change-over?
Once a student has completed their change-over year at Bridgeway, the family chooses one of the following routes:
- Public School
- Private School
- Post-secondary Institution (university, college)
Why might students leave Bridgeway if they are not in the Change-over Program?
Some families choose to have their children leave Bridgeway before they have participated in the Change-over year due to various circumstances. These students are referred to as “leaving” students.
When a student has been identified as a Change-over student, Bridgeway, the student and the family play a part in the process. The family is responsible to notify the Nova Scotia Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (NSDEEC), that the student will be leaving Bridgeway for the upcoming school year. The Learning Disabilities Consultant with the NSDEEC will arrange a meeting between Bridgeway, the family, school board representative, NSDEEC representative and the change-over school. This usually takes place in April or May.
Bridgeway is responsible for preparing a change-over plan including adaptations, transcript, updated report cards and other supporting documentation. Attendance at the change-over meeting is necessary to support the student, family and receiving school in preparation for the transition .
The change-over school is encouraged to contact Bridgeway through the school year should any questions arise. Bridgeway may attend a follow-up meeting with the change-over school in the fall.
Change-over Student expectations
Change-over students have many responsibilities within their change-over year. Students are expected to implement the skills and strategies they have learned in their time at Bridgeway. As well, students are expected to be self-advocates, and participate fully in Bridgeway’s program. Below is a list of expectations:
- Independence in class
- Full knowledge of their adaptations for class
- Completion of homework
- Full knowledge of their learning disability; strengths and needs
- Accountable for his/her choices
- Takes on a leadership role within the school
- Uses agenda independently
- Keeps materials organized
- Arrives in class prepared
Homework assignments for change-over students do not follow the same restrictions as in the Learning Disability Program. Students may be assigned work that will exceed the 10 minute rule, work may be an extension of newly taught class work, projects and assignments may be presented as a single document, leaving it up to the student to break down the assignment into smaller steps (unless this is an adaptation within the student’s program).
Work handed in by the student will be marked as is; leaving the responsibility for quality of work standards to be checked by the student before they submit the assignment. Extensions will only be granted to students who exercise their skills in self-advocacy and make timely arrangements with their teacher.