FAQs

Select the ques­tion to reveal the answer.

1. How large is Alice Springs School of the Air?

Our school reach­es stu­dents who live in an area more than 1.3 mil­lion square kilo­me­tres, cov­er­ing the south­ern half of NT and over­lap­ping the bor­ders of Queens­land, South Aus­tralia and West­ern Aus­tralia. We also have inter­na­tion­al­ly based stu­dents from all over the world.

2. How far away is the fur­thest student?

The most dis­tant stu­dents in Aus­tralia are over 1000 kilo­me­tres from Alice Springs.

3. How many stu­dents does Alice Springs School of the Air have?

We have approx­i­mate­ly 100 dis­tance edu­ca­tion stu­dents enrolled with us.

4. How many staff does Alice Springs School of the Air have?

We cur­rent­ly employ approx­i­mate­ly 20 staff includ­ing both teach­ers and admin staff.

5. Who pays for School of the Air?

The school is fund­ed by the North­ern Ter­ri­to­ry Gov­ern­ment Depart­ment of Edu­ca­tion. Gen­er­ous dona­tions from mem­bers of the pub­lic enable us to fur­ther enrich the edu­ca­tion­al expe­ri­ences of our iso­lat­ed students.

6. Who sup­plies the nec­es­sary equipment?

The North­ern Ter­ri­to­ry Depart­ment of Edu­ca­tion sup­plies fund­ing for all learn­ing mate­ri­als and IDL equip­ment. In the past, this has includ­ed trans­ceivers (two-way radios), a TV set, video recorder, cas­sette recorder and com­put­ers for stu­dents. Cur­rent­ly, we sup­ply all IT resources nec­es­sary for the online learn­ing program.

7. What age are the students?

The age of our stu­dents ranges from 4 years old (Preschool) up to 14 years old (Year 9).

8. How many year lev­els are taught?

We teach eleven year lev­els from Preschool to Year 9. After stu­dents have com­plet­ed Year 9 par­ents must decide whether their young per­son will con­tin­ue with sec­ondary edu­ca­tion through the North­ern Ter­ri­to­ry School of Dis­tance Edu­ca­tion in Dar­win, or send their chil­dren to pri­vate board­ing schools in Alice Springs or interstate.

9. How big are the classes?

Class­es tend to be small. They range from 8 to approx­i­mate­ly 20 stu­dents per class.

10. How much Inter­ac­tive Dis­tance Learn­ing (IDL) time do stu­dents have?

The num­ber and length of lessons depend on the year lev­el. Younger stu­dents gen­er­al­ly have 30-minute lessons while the old­er stu­dents have up to an hour. The usu­al num­ber of lessons per week is ten in pri­ma­ry school but some stu­dents can have more depend­ing on electives.

11. How much time do stu­dents spend on computers?

This also varies depend­ing on the age of the stu­dent. At the high­er year lev­els teach­ers are very care­ful not to have stu­dents doing work that requires more than 50% of their day on computers.

12. How much school work is there?

Stu­dents spend five to six hours a day, five days a week, com­plet­ing their school­work at home. Some of this involves online learn­ing. The rest of the time is spent work­ing through learn­ing mate­r­i­al pro­vid­ed to the student.

13. Who super­vis­es the lessons?

Stu­dents are super­vised at home by home tutors. Home tutors may be a par­ent or guardian or might be employed by the par­ents. Usu­al­ly an employed home tutor is called a govie (short for governess).

14. Who pre­pares and teach­es the lessons?

Stu­dents learn through a vari­ety of medi­ums, and they are all pre­pared by our teach­ers in line with the Aus­tralian Curriculum. 

Learn­ing hap­pens in dai­ly Inter­ac­tive Dis­tance Learn­ing (IDLs) lessons, through Dis­tance Edu­ca­tion Units of Learn­ing mailed out to stu­dents, through resources on each class web­site, and through one-on-one or small group online Pri­vate Les­son Times (PLTs). There is a teacher assigned to each year lev­el and the same teacher pre­pares and assess­es the stu­dent work, con­ducts the IDL lessons, and com­mu­ni­cates by phone, email, or online.

15. How often do teach­ers vis­it stu­dents at home?

Pri­ma­ry teach­ers usu­al­ly go out to vis­it each stu­dent in their home once a year.

16. What tech­nol­o­gy is now used?

All our lessons are con­duct­ed online, with most stu­dents util­is­ing satel­lite inter­net tech­nol­o­gy to access all online resources, includ­ing their online lessons.