Alternative schools are for students whose needs are not met by mainstream schools, which may occur for any variety of reasons, including students who have children, part-time jobs, or who simply have a different learning style that doesn't fit with a mainstream school. In general, alternative schools offer smaller classes, with more of an opportunity for one-on-one interaction with teachers.
In Ontario, students work on one course at a time, and can complete six or more courses in an academic year. Each classroom has 21 students who all work on individual courses, at their own pace. Contact your local school board for more information.