Lithgow High School's additional needs students are stepping out of the classroom and into the working world.
In a move to help the students with life skills when they leave school, the school's support education department have set up a program which allows the students to interact with real businesses.
Students with different needs are accommodated to a particular work place which meets their needs, according to Lithgow High School job coach Elisa Noon.
"We take different groups to different work places, we try to find the right place for each of them because we want them all to succeed," she said.
The businesses the students have worked at this term included Lake Lyell, McDonald's Lithgow and Access Industries.
Lithgow High's head teacher in special education Linda Jennison said the students that worked at Lake Lyell were more likely to disengage from school, while the group at McDonald's were students with high intellectual support needs.
"It's all about meeting their needs, we have students that require a lot of skills to become independent when they leave school, and we want to be able to help with that," she said.
Mrs Jennison said the students were taught life skills and how to work as a team.
"They learn to follow the instructions of an employer and not just a teacher," she said.
Mrs Noon who accompanies the students, said she enjoyed watching them pick up a skill which they could add to their resume.
"I watch them cleaning tables, windows and putting rubbish away at McDonald's and they learn to meet and greet customers and be interactive, I love watching them succeed and we've had plenty of positive feedback," she said.
She also said at Lake Lyell they would help clean the equipment, move firewood and learn basic gardening maintenance.
The students were also taught basic travel training and how to get to and from work through public transport.
Mrs Jennison said the school's job coach program currently had every student from year 10 to 12 participating in some kind of work placement.
"It's really good because it improves their school attendance and increases their self-confidence," she said.
She also said Lithgow High was very proud of them in how they have represented their school and she also thanked the employers for their support.
"Thank you for giving our students a chance to learn work skills.
"The businesses understand the support and additional needs that our students require which is just really wonderful, they have faith in them," she said.
Other businesses students visited during the program included Dimmeys, Gumnut Childcare, Lithgow Car and Detailing, Bouquets by Design, C.W Printing, Sportspower, Bunnings, Vanilla cafe, First Grammar and Glenray in Bathurst.
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