Curriculum in South Australian schools

Curriculum describes the core knowledge, understanding, skills and capabilities students should learn as they progress through school.

Teachers use curriculum to:

  • plan student learning
  • monitor and assess student progress
  • report student progress to parents
  • support student wellbeing.

Reception to year 10

The Australian Curriculum is taught in government schools for reception to Year 10 subjects. The curriculum learning areas are:

Elective for year 9 and year 10 students:

Years 10 to 12

Years 10 to 12 students study towards the South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE). Students can choose to incorporate SACE studies with:

  • vocational education and training (VET)
  • a flexible learning option (FLO).


Students working towards the SACE study SACE subjects and other learning recognised by the SACE.

SACE provides pathways to work and further education with some subjects counting towards higher qualifications offered through vocational education and university.

Vocational education and training for school students

Senior secondary students can do vocational education and training (VET) in their final years of schooling while studying toward their SACE. Find out more about VET for school students.

Flexible learning options (FLO)

FLO is a student enrolment strategy aimed to assist schools and the wider community in supporting the successful engagement and retention of young people in secondary schools identified at significant risk of disengaging from a mainstream school-based learning program. The program is available in all areas of the state.

FLO enrolment involves:

  • the undertaking of appropriate learning programs (SACE, Australian Curriculum, VET)
  • having a school-managed Flexible Learning and Transition Portfolio (FLTP) in place
  • the provision of individual case management.

Vocational education and training for school students

While students are still at school completing their SACE, they can begin studying for their careers through a flexible industry pathway.

Connecting students with industry

Flexible industry pathways are VET courses that lead to real jobs in key growth industries in South Australia.

Pathways have been developed together with industry so that students can gain the skills, knowledge, and experience valued by employers. This helps ensure students can transition more easily from study to employment.

Choosing a VET pathway

Flexible industry pathways lead to a wide range of careers, from health, agriculture, and cyber security, to construction, mining and space. You can even study VET to support you to start your own business.

Participating in VET

Students can undertake a pathway through either:

  • on-the-job training (a school-based apprenticeship or traineeship)
  • off-the-job training (institutional delivery).

For students still deciding whether VET is right for them, or who would like to build their employability skills, there are options outside of a flexible industry pathway called stackable VET.

Stackable VET courses provide an introduction to VET, pre-vocational qualifications to help build literacy and numeracy skills relevant to the workplace, and short courses to help students to develop skills in a particular work area.

For more information, visit Department for Education’s pathways to further education and employment.

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Page last updated 10 January 2023

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