Open Access College, an amalgamation of the SA Correspondence School and the School of the Air (SOTA), was established in 1991.
The SA Correspondence School opened in 1920 in North Adelaide, later moved to the city centre. Every fortnight, teachers prepared sets of lessons and posted to remote students. Mothers and governesses worked with children to complete lessons that were returned to Adelaide. Questions from students and mothers were also posted to Adelaide. Snail mail, often taking 2-6 weeks, did little to ease the feelings of isolation.
A School of the Air was established in 1958, with support from the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Using two-way radios, students on remote properties became connected with peers and their teachers.
Today, advanced technology connects teachers and students in realtime. Students can see, talk, collaborate, and receive immediate feedback from classmates and teachers. Students are also supported by email and subject/year level websites.
The mainstay of education for remote and isolated families, students enrol for a variety of reasons including health, travel, elite sport, work commitments, and incarceration. School based students enrol to access single subjects not available in their school.
In 2016, Open Access College celebrated 25 years. Download our publication: Celebrating 25 Years of Open Access College (Pdf - 6.7Mb).