Employment Services for School Leavers

Young man making toasted sandwiches in industrial kitchen


School days are coming to an end – what is next?

If you are considering employment options for your child once secondary schooling is finished, we can help. We assist students in Year 11 or Year 12 who attend a disability specialist school or a mainstream school and receive additional disability funding or are in a specialist disability class. The following is a guide to the most common questions we are asked by parents or guardians. Contact us to discuss your school leaver’s support needs and circumstances. We can help you navigate the process of funding eligibility and support requirements.

Frequently asked questions

What happens after my child finishes their final year of school?

It is never too soon to start planning their transition from school to work. There are a number of post school options available for your school leaver. 
As a registered DES provider, Ability Centre will help your school leaver find a job in the general labour market. Ideally, we would register your school leaver before they leave school so the transition is as seamless as possible.


My child has been receiving additional funding/support throughout their education or was in an education support unit, where can I go to help them find open employment?

If your school leaver has a permanent medical condition or disability, then they may be eligible to receive support from a DES provider. Students funded under the Individual Disability Allocation program or equivalent may be eligible for DES as an Eligible School Leaver if all other requirements are met. We assist people to find employment and maintain employment in the general labour market.

They must be able to work a minimum of 8 hours of work initially with some support building up gradually to work relatively independently. The minimum number of hours is important as it not only determines a person’s capacity to work with our support but it also identifies the job seeker’s limitations to the amount of work they can do.


What type of support can my child receive?

Our service is tailored to match the needs of the individual. The service we provide can range from full to minimal support, it all depends on what type of employment the individual is suited for and their skill set – we believe in not only providing support to find employment but imparting life skills. We provide assistance in building work capacity and readiness, resume development and selection criteria.

We actively market jobseekers to prospective employers to assist them to secure employment. We also provide on-the-job support to both the new employee/employer to ensure that both parties are happy and the work is sustainable for the new employee. Ability Centre provides ongoing support until the employee reaches a level of independence and does not require regular assistance. We also hold a 7 week preparatory program which provides additional support in preparing for job interviews and job starts.


What type of work will they be able to secure in the general labour market?

We will work with your school leaver to identify their employment goals and establish the steps required to achieve them. A plan is developed between the jobseeker and Ability Centre that includes mutually agreed activities and assistance. The plan provides both parties information on what they are expected to do in reaching the jobseeker’s goals. We have found that often the best way to establish a clear pathway is to undertake a work experience or participate in job sampling. This allows individuals to experience the job first hand and they can decide whether the work suits their skills set and interest. In our experience, most school leavers begin in part time employment and over time, may build up to full time employment.


How long will it take to find my child a job?

We strive to place people into employment as soon as they are ready to find a job. However, there are a number of factors that impact on timing. The type of work/industry, availability and how many other people are competing for the same job. The key to sustainable employment is more about a successful job match and we will invest time into finding a match for your school leaver.


What type of employers do you work with?

Ability Centre works with a variety of employers and business. They range from small to large business. Over the past 25 years, we have established ourselves as a successful DES provider within the business community securing jobs for people in retail, customer service, process/factory work, administration and hospitality to more highly skilled roles such as IT.


How much will my child be able to earn?

We assist jobseekers into jobs that pay full award wages. Any income earned will be paid directly by the employer. We will ensure that all employment conditions are met including being paid correctly against the appropriate/applicable award. In some cases, where a jobseeker may not be able to work at 100% productivity, the Supported Wage Scheme is designed to support a person’s workforce participation.


Will Ability Centre provide transport to and from work?

When looking for sustainable employment, we look at accessibility to the workplace via public transport or private transport so the people can get to and from work independently.


Can you help my child with further education and training?

We will assist individuals with any further education or training needs or interests to help further their career prospects. We have a wide range of networks with training organisations, so we will find the best course available for your school leaver.


For more information or to find out how we can assist you, please contact our Employment Services team on 1300 106 106 or email disabilityjobs@abilitycentre.com.au.