Tommy undertook a personal journey to develop his social skills
Tommy goes an agency on the South Shore that works with young offenders and school dropouts. He just left Secondary 1, which he was starting over for the third time. He is now in the Pivot program for out-of-school teenagers. To be admitted, he had to show that he wanted to embark on a personal journey. The program does not teach academic subjects and instead develops social skills.
“I’m 15 years old. I should be in Secondary 4 because I repeated a year in elementary school. I was actually pretty good at school. I liked it and I had friends. My parents separated when I was in Grade 4. I moved in with my mother, and the year after I had to repeat Grade 4 at my new school. But things got worse in high school. I started getting into trouble, using drugs, and being a bit of a delinquent. I went to the Option program for two years in a row because I was suspended from school. The first time was for five days and the second was for two weeks.
“I don’t want to have anything to do with school. Once I got to high school, I didn’t do a single assignment. I was put in the behavioural disorders group in Secondary 2. This year, I started training for a semiskilled trade and started an internship in cabinetmaking. I was good and my boss liked me a lot, but I just couldn’t get up in the morning. So the school expelled me from the program, and I came to the agency to take the Pivot program. I come here three days a week. We do activities to learn about ourselves. We play games to understand different topics. I love it! I don’t know if I’m going to make it through high school. I’d like to go to Au Tournant, where I can go through high school at my own pace.”