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Junior Life Skills (Jr. L.S.)

Program Synopsis
The John Oliver’s Junior Lifeskills program is designed and structured for students who have the potential to:
·         communicates verbally or non verbally with minimal support.
·         transition into electives and the school community.
·         follow a visual/written schedule and verbal direction.
·         focus on meaningful lifeskills and functional tasks for at least 20 minutes.
·         independently toilet.
·         work in a cooperative staff-supported setting (1 staff with 3-4 students).
What Supports Are Offered in John Oliver’s Junior Lifeskills?
·         Fully supported home base classroom (minimum 3 SSWs and 1 teacher)
·         Visual supports and aids for communication and understanding
·         Technology support (computer programs specific to individual needs)
·         Supervised school wide activities (cafeteria, electives, clubs)
·         Access to school supports: nurse, police, counselors, multicultural worker, community school team, translation support
·         Subject trained elective teachers (Tech studies, Gym, Fine Arts, Keyboarding, Cooking)
·         Specific IEP set goals to meet individual needs
·         Lifeskills curriculum focusing on meaningful learning for students
How Does John Oliver’s Junior Lifeskills Support Meaningful Integration?
School wide activities such as:
·         Electives: Art, Tech, Gym, Cooking, Keyboarding
·         Clubs at lunch -Lost & Found, Monday Mingler, Impact Club etc.
·         Extra Curricular- Best Buddies Peer Partnership with mainstream students in and out of school hours
Community activities such as:
·         First Student option of bus service to Community Center government supported after school programs (Parks Board supervised)
·         Work Experience in local community Eg. Buy Low, Pre School, Fields, Shoppers, White Spot, work offered by VSB coordinators
·         South Hill Library access
·         Shopping at local stores and Oakridge Mall
·         Awareness of Sunset Community Center for future leisure activity
·         Field Trips- Eg. District-Wide Special Education Events:  Sports Day, Dances, Bowling Parties, Camping, Lonsdale Quay etc.
·         Community bus training
How Does John Oliver’s Junior Lifeskills Support Work Experience Opportunities?
All students begin volunteer work experience in Grade 8 and continue in later grades.  At age 15, based on student ability, students will begin independent work experience for longer periods of time.  Students need as many hours of INDEPENDENT work experience as possible in their portfolio as it opens up many more options for students to continue on in Post Secondary Education Programs and Job Placement Opportunities.  Without independent work experience, students may not be considered for these programs or work placements.  Our programs lead up to independent work experience as much as possible.
Our Junior Program focuses on:
·         Bus Training:  Initially supervised in small groups to local stores, Oakridge mall, from home to school and to/from specific job sites with the goal of complete independence for students who are able. 
·         Work Experience:  Supervised at local stores with the goal to walk/bus to location, manage time, follow directions, focus on tasks for the job and return to school responsibly.  The goal is to decrease support for the student so they will become completely independent over time.
What is the curriculum for John Oliver’s Junior Lifeskills?
Junior Lifeskills curriculum helps students with hands-on training in 4 main areas:
1.      Self Help and Life Skills:  This curriculum helps students with hands-on training in the area of domestic, community and personal management.  The focus is on learning to:
·         have independence with classroom work, activities and schedules
·         ask for help in the classroom, school, community
·         develop skills for consistent personal care
·         remain calm and problem solve in unpredictable or stressful situations
·         identify feelings and express emotions to other students and adults
·         initiate friendships and be friends with appropriate social skills
·         use the telephone, know their address and phone number, use of phone at home and plan social events with classmates
2.      Community and Integrated Learning:  This curriculum helps students with developing skills directly in the classroom, school and community setting.  The focus is on:
·         Cooking, street safety, bus training, volunteer work experience, restaurant skills, banking skills, community recreation, leisure, transitioning,
3.      Functional Academics:  The curriculum focuses on learning functional and personally meaningful reading and math skills throughout the year to help students integrate in the community with independence and develop their reading and math skills. 
·         Math: Includes money, time, basic addition and subtraction, making change, patterns and sorting, recording data and real life math related to shopping and restaurants.
·         Reading:  Includes meaningful books of high interest, communication and social skills, functional phrases, theme and personal interest topics and computer use and email communication.
4.      Electives: Courses are offered to all students.  Students are given the choice to select courses in their Grade 8 year for Grade 9.  As many electives as possible are accommodated.  Currently the courses are in Art, Keyboarding, Tech Education, Gym and Cooking.  The electives teach students to follow a schedule, be mobile around the school, experience other teachers and make friends with other students and to be integrated into John Oliver school life with students from many other classes. 
How Do Students Transition into Junior Lifeskills at John Oliver?
1.      Parents/Student offered a placement in the John Oliver Junior Lifeskills Program by the Case Manager.
2.      Junior Lifeskills teacher visits the student in his/her elementary school to ensure compatibility with this program.
3.      Parents set up a time to visit with the teacher of Junior Lifeskills to learn more about the program and meet other students in the program.
4.      Parents, teacher and case manager are in agreement about the program meeting the students’ needs.
5.      Parents will sign the Placement form.  Parents will fill out John Oliver registration forms.
6.      Student and elementary SSW will visit the John Oliver Program.  Students will receive a picture transition book from John Oliver to help learn about the new school.
7.      Visits to John Oliver Junior Lifeskills Program in Grade 7 year:  1-2 times per week beginning in April.  Students begin with one block and slowly increase participation throughout May.
8.      Elementary SSW to decrease involvement and support while student is visiting Junior Lifeskills program.
9.      Student starts school in September on their own.  Parents to contact First Student for busing.
Admission into this program is through Central Screening.