It opened on a former pineapple farm with just five students, and this week Carinity Education Glendyne will celebrate 20 years of educating Fraser Coast youths.
The independent school at Hervey Bay provides education, vocational training and lifestyle enablement skills for students having difficulty succeeding in traditional mainstream schools.
The co-educational school welcomed its first students in 1998, five young men who had experienced extremely adverse life circumstances.
“Lessons taught beneath the pineapple farmhouse consisted mainly of literacy, numeracy, practical farm skills and welding,” Carinity Education Glendyne Principal Dale Hansen says.
“Despite their history, the initial student group of five disadvantaged young men expressed the same desire to make a success of their lives. And that’s the same for today’s students.”
Around 120 young men and women make up this year’s cohort and “hundreds, if not a thousand or more” positive educational outcomes have been achieved for students over the past two decades.
Before attending Carinity Education Glendyne, Jada Perkins was “a teenager that didn’t like school” and was frequently absent from her former school.
“If it wasn’t for Glendyne I wouldn’t be where I am today. That school helped me in so many ways. They didn’t just teach me basic stuff, they taught me how to be an adult,” Jada says.
“I have nothing but good things to say about this school and sometimes I wish I could go back and do it all over again.”
After gaining a traineeship through school, Jada now works in hospitality and will soon commence study to become a youth worker.
“It was the teachers and youth workers at Glendyne that inspired me to do this. I just pray that I can help kids like me,” Jada says.
As one of Carinity’s four schools, Carinity Education Glendyne caters to students from Years 6 to 12, including at-risk and disengaged youth who have struggled to overcome personal barriers and challenges.
“Our teachers and staff get much satisfaction from seeing teenagers who arrived at Glendyne lacking direction and confidence and with a clouded educational future, and seeing them develop into valuable contributors to their community,” Dale says.
Carinity Education Glendyne will celebrate its 20th anniversary with an event at the school at Nikenbah on October 26 2018.