Farewell Term 2 – a term like no other

Today, Friday, sees the finish of Term 2 and Semester 1, 2020 for all students with the exception of our TCE students and it has been a semester like no other.

I am hopeful that we won’t see one like it again. The crisis we found ourselves in proved how collectively capable we are and supportive as a community. Staff have reflected and provided their learnings from our experiences, as have many students and parents. I thank everyone for taking the time to do so. Some of what we have experienced will stay with us after we return to ‘normal’ and help shape our lives and the future of our education. After some time to recharge your batteries please ensure that you take whatever positives you can from the past six months into your lives and learning in Term 3 and beyond.

In April the College launched The Campus, a web-based resource centre full of activities and ideas, information and handy tips to keep young and old alike, engaged. The Campus can be found on the College’s website, under the ‘Our Community’ drop-down menu. New additions to The Campus are happening all the time, so make sure you visit it regularly to view new and exciting resources.

In this last week of term, the Middle and Senior School Inter-House Cross Country was run during HPE lessons for Years 6 to 10 and at lunchtime on Tuesday for TCE students. We saw a fantastic turn-out each and every day as students ran, jogged, slipped and slid in the soggy conditions of Scotch Oakburn Park. Well done to the HPE Team, House Heads, Tutors and other staff, including Cody from the Works Team for putting gravel on the path through the wetlands. This staff team made sure our Penquite House XC was run this year. Similarly at Elphin, LIVE@Elphin has been held each week utilising technology to keep that important community time in the weekly lives of our students. These are just two examples of our adaptability to ensure that our students do not miss out.

At the time of writing, the Premier is about to announce a range of COVID-related restrictions to be eased. I expect that inter-school sport, music and a number of other co-curricular activities will be available to our students once again in Term 3. The College Executive will be assessing the details of the Premier’s announcement, reviewing our COVID-19 Plan and Risk Assessments, putting a range of proposals to the Board of Directors and communicating the outcome of those decisions to the community on or around Tuesday 14 July.

Of note in regard to Government restrictions, is that the dispensation schools had to deliver e-learning or distance learning (soc@home here at Scotch Oakburn) during the COVID-period, even though not registered to do so, will no longer be available in Term 3. Consequently, if any families are planning an interstate holiday in the coming weeks, please factor in the 14-day isolation period upon your return as we will not be allowed to provide soc@home for you in Term 3.

In the meantime, I wish you all a safe and relaxing Term 2 holiday and I look forward to seeing our students return on Tuesday 21 July and a return to more normality in Term 3.

Andy Müller

From the Junior School

End of Term

What a term it has been! Thank you once again to all members of the College community for your fantastic support of each other and particularly of student learning and wellbeing through both Term 2- Part 1 and Term 2- Part 2.

All classes and After School Care finish today for the three-week break. The Vacation Care program commences on Monday and runs throughout this period and details of this can be found online. All Junior School classes and Before and After School resume on Tuesday 21 July. The Junior School office is closed through the break, but the College office at the Penquite Campus is open during normal business hours as usual and the Junior School can be contacted via this office if needed.

Planning for the next stages of the ‘Return to School’ continues next week and all College families will be updated on Term 3 arrangements during the break. While still dependent on Government advice, at this stage we are all anticipating the return of more aspects of broader school programs and activities from late July.

House cross-country, Prep 100 Days of School celebration, early years Bush Learning, choirs, Year 4 Education Outdoors program, Book Week, Science Week and inter-school sport rosters, are among the activities that we are looking forward to as the calendar moves back to a more familiar look.

This break will no doubt be spent close to home for most of us. All students are encouraged to engage in active outdoor experiences as much as possible, as well as to find opportunities to enjoy some good books and perhaps family board games or similar. For those searching for ideas, ‘The Campus’ under the community section of the College website has a wide range of great activities that might offer a starting point for things to do.

Best wishes for an enjoyable family time over the school holiday break.

Lachie Wright
Head of Junior School


Mid-Year Reports

Mid-Year School Reports for Prep to Year 5 students will be available early next week. All families will receive advice as soon as these are released. Where follow-up discussion to these are needed there will be opportunities for this early in Term 3.

Lachie Wright
Head of Junior School

2021 Enrolments

Current College families considering enrolment for younger family members are reminded of the need to act ‘sooner rather than later’ in making a formal application for enrolment. This is particularly important for Early Learning where places and attendance options always become limited as we move into the latter part of the year. All enrolment applications are processed in order of receipt.

Lachie Wright
Head of Junior School

/ Junior School

From the Senior School

TCE Mid-year Examinations

As Term 2 draws to a close, our TCE students are focussed on their preparation for their mid-year examinations next week.  I wish all students all the very best and encourage students to use this experience as a learning opportunity.  Although these examinations will serve an important purpose in preparing students for their end of year examination experience, the primary purpose for this very unusual year is to assist in identifying which skills and understandings require further attention so that these might be addressed in sufficient time prior to the end of the year.


TCE – Parent Student Teacher Conferences

As shown in the College ePlanner, the TCE Parent/Student/Teacher Conferences are being held for TCE students and their parents/guardians on Tuesday 28 July. We are once again offering 3 options: Microsoft Teams meetings, a telephone call or an email. Parents will receive an email with booking instructions and links. We ask that you provide a reliable email address and your best contact number.  Please also note that staff will contact you when time permits and this may mean communicating with you on a day close to 28 July.

Bookings will close at 4.00pm on Friday 24 July – a link t book had been sent to all parents.

Kate Croft
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School


Term Break

I wish all families a restful, winter term break and thank everyone for their support during the past few weeks in our transition back to school.  We look forward to many of our co-curricular activities and experiential learning programs being able to come back on-line next term.

Kate Croft
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

/ Senior School

From the Middle School

Textiles – Operation Agent X


Year 7 Textiles classes have been working very diligently in our specialist textiles room since returning to campus.

Each student acted as a ‘secret agent’ and their secret operation briefing was to investigate, design and produce their own purse, wallet or bag with a secret pocket compartment to hold a top-secret USB.

Students researched and investigated during e-learning, and as soon as they returned, they were ready with their templates for their design and got to work.

Each agent chose, measured and cut out material, learned how to use a sewing machine and went to work stitching and backstitching, creating seams, adding buttons, pockets and secret compartments, bringing their design together.

We are immensely proud of their efforts, focus and dedication toward completing their product in such a short period of time. Well done secret agents! Mission Completed!

Lauren Knight
Head of Design and Technology


/ Middle School

Middle and Senior School House Cross Country

Events in 2020 to date have been different in many ways and the Middle and Senior School Inter-House Cross Country has been no exception. Due to social distancing measures, the event took place over the week within HPE classes, with the exception of TCE who ran during Tuesday lunchtime. The courses were also changed, with the famous hill climb to finish the event (much like a Tour De France stage). The participation rates have been excellent across the board. With the TCE event optional, it was fantastic to see 85% of students still competing. It was clear for many students that their hard work during isolation had paid off, with some excellent times.

The week has been typical cross country weather, raining each day, but the ability for students to push on showed a sense of House and self-pride.

Finally, I would like to take the opportunity to thank all the staff who volunteered their services throughout the week, particularly the Education Outdoors crew, who helped most days.

Congratulations to the following winners and runner ups:


Year 6 – Bella Shaw; Runner-up – Abigail Rigney
Year 7 – Sophie Marshall; Runner-up – Abby Berlese
Year 8 – Maya Martin; Runner-up – Ella Nast
Year 9 – Jasmine Irani; Runner-up Amelia Hughes
Year 10 – Jessica Taylor; Runner-up – Georgie Watson
TCE – Peta Antypas; Runner-up – Harriet Grimshaw


Year 6 – Henry Jones; Runner-up – Will Nicholls
Year 7 – Oliver Atkins; Runner-up – Atlin Devlin
Year 8 – Archie Edwards; Runner-up – George Russell
Year 9 – Matt Russell; Runner-up – Bryce Lawes
Year 10 – Sandy Wood; Runner-up – Jai Davies
TCE – Alex Davies; Runner-up – Liam Canny

View the top 10 placings for each year level via this link – Middle and Senior School House Cross Country top 10 placing by year level 2020

Final House results will be made available the first week back.

Paul McKendrick
Head of Health and Physical Education

/ Middle School, Senior School

College Shop

Please note that with the easing of restrictions, bookings will no longer be required to access our College Shop. Opening hours will continue as normal during term time:

Monday:         9.00am – 5.00pm
Wednesday:   12.30pm – 5.00pm
Friday:            12.30pm – 5.00pm

The College Shop is closed over the term break but will be open Monday 20 July from 9.00am to 5.00pm.

Deanne Dietrich 
College Uniform Shop Manager

Why self-sufficiency is paramount

Author:  Michael Grose


Recently, a mother of two primary school children thanked me for the impact one of my presentations had on her parenting style.

When I asked what was it that made the difference, she said that one particular question I posed in the presentation had the most impact. The question was “What are you regularly doing for your children now that they can do themselves?”

This mother attended my Parenting for Independence seminar after reading my book Spoonfed Generation. My message of developing self-sufficiency in children from the earliest possible age stayed with her.

She said that the independence message really came home to roost when her children went to an international school in Germany two years later. Self-sufficiency was expected at the school so the training she provided them as a result of the seminar such as in teaching them to pack school bags, preparing snacks and assisting with meals, doing daily chores, and getting themselves up each morning helped to prepare them for the expectations of an international school.

Why is self-sufficiency important?

Self-sufficiency, of the ‘I can do it myself’ kind, is the basis of self-esteem and resilience. One of the main developmental tasks is for children and teenagers to gain a sense of control and mastery over their environment. This mastery begins by gaining basic competencies such as being able to feed and dress yourself as a toddler and then gradually adding new competencies as physical and mental capacities allow. The development of children’s independence can be frustrating and time-consuming, particularly if you are time-poor or have a strong perfectionist streak. But that is the price of independence-building.

Step back to allow kids to step up

Respected US parenting and child development expert Dr. Debora Gilboa (aka Dr. G) believes parents need to step back to allow children to step up. It’s a smart phrase that infers that parents need to take on the role of their child’s teacher rather than be the person who is always solving their problems and doing routine tasks for them.

Gilboa says, “It’s crucial that you take a step back and let your kids make mistakes and learn from their experiences. You aren’t going to be there in adulthood to clear the obstacles they face or solve their struggles.” It is through dealing with their own frustrations and learning from their mistakes that kids develop the resilience needed to stand on their own two feet.

Self-sufficiency tips

Gilboa gives the following three tips to develop self-sufficiency in children at any age:

  1. Problem-solving. When your child or adolescent comes to you with a problem, resist the urge to fix it. Invite them to resolve the problem themselves.
  2. Welcome failure. This is hard in our perfectionistic world but expect them to struggle and talk about what they can do to get back on their feet.
  3. Expect them to help. Give them tasks that help the whole family, not just themselves and make sure they do them well. Be patient, but firm.

Self-sufficiency has many forms and many faces, including the ability to problem-solve, emotional self-regulation and taking responsibility for your actions. It’s easiest to develop in children when they are young. This is also because not every child in a family will take to independence as willingly as others.

If developing independence is something that you haven’t focused on before, don’t despair. It’s not too late to start. Begin where you feel comfortable, rather than make huge changes straightaway. Persist rather than give in when you have resisters; the notion of independence is too important for children’s future success.


Kylie Wolstencroft
Wellbeing Coordinator / Registered Psychologist

TCE Play

Our TCE Drama/Theatre students performed their mid-year practical exam play this week to a small audience of one class.

The show was a combination of three plays:

‘The 9 Worst Breakups of All Time’ by Ian McWethy
‘Almost, Maine’ by John Cariani
‘Check Please’ by Jonathan Rand

These three comedies were a hilarious look at dreadful dating moments and laugh out loud relationship break-ups.

This small and adapted performance was a replacement for the large show the Theatre Students are usually required to perform in early June.

Kathryn Gray

/ Senior School

30 Days of Thanks

30 Days of Thanks header

Our 30 Days of Thanks has finished and the response and engagement from the community has been overwhelming.

We received so many nominations we weren’t able to acknowledge them all on our daily Facebook post; however, we’d like you all to know who was nominated for their kindness and generosity. Below is a list of everyone who was nominated by a member of the College community for the 30 Days of Thanks.

All Staff at the drop off / Pick up zones
Becca Biggs, Staff & Current Parent
Deidre Brown, Staff & Past Parent
Evie Chalk, Staff
Suzanne Creese, Staff & Past Parent
Hannah Dearing, Staff
Jess Dorloff, Staff
Helene Dracup, Staff & Current Parent
Nicci Dray, Staff & Current Parent
Nicole Erwin, Staff & Past Student (’14)
Andrew French, Staff & Current Parent
Dean Hawkins, Staff
Rob Jeffery, Staff
Caroline Jones, Staff & Current Parent
Cath Kilner, Staff
Steve King, Staff & Past Parent
Lauren Knight, Staff & Current Parent
Doreen Liang, Staff
Ross Linsley, Current Parent
Kylie Long, Staff
Tanya Lunn, Staff
Jo McFarlane, Staff, Current Parent & Past Student (’89)
David Morris, Staff & Past Parent
Andy Müller, Staff & Current Parent
Karen Meyer, Staff & Past Parent
Robyn Ockerby, Staff, Past Parent & Past Student (’82)
Andy Prideaux, Staff
Pip Robinson, Staff & Current Parent
Kendal Selby, Staff & Current Parent
Louise Viney, Staff
Kylie Wolstencroft, Staff & Past Parent

If you’d like to go back and have a look at the various Facebook posts you can do so here.  Those included in posts were:

Bronwin Ballantyne, Current Parent & Past Student (’86)
Janet Cleaver, Staff & Past Parent
Anne Maree Coombe, Current Parent
Nardia Deverell, Staff & Current Parent
Bridgit Dexter, Current Parent
Jess Dorloff, Staff
Ashley Draper, Past Student (’16)
Clyde Goosen and the community program to Fred French, Staff & Current Students
Harry Heathcote, Staff
Holli Hofing, Past Student (’13)
Diane Jessup, Current Parent
Anthony Kwong, Current Parent
Roslyn Lippis, Past Student (’75)
Arsalan Mahmud, Current Parent
Jerome Muir Wilson, Current Parent
Jackie Muir Wilson, Current Parent
Kiran Oates-Pryor, Staff & Current Parent
Andrew Palmer, Current Parent
Carly Pitt, Current Parent
Bo Power, Staff & Current Parent
Rob Prescott, Past Student (’74) & Past Parent
Lucy Reed, Current Parent
Anita Reeve, Current Parent & Past Student (’82)
Andrew Robinson, Staff & Past Student (’10)
Emily Sanzaro, Current Parent & Past Student (’99)
Marissa Saville, Staff
Alistair Shephard, Current Parent
Mark Simco, Staff
Pete Smith, Staff
Suwana Sterzing, Current Parent
Michelle Stevenson, Staff & Past Parent
Lei Sun, Staff & Current Parent
Brendan Vince, Staff & Current Parent
Brennon Von Stieglitz, Staff
Don Wing AM, Past Student (’55)
Oscar Winspear, Current Student
The entire eServices team
All College Staff
Collective thanks to our entire community

Thanks again to our community.

Andy Müller


Round Square Postcard opportunity

Next week’s Postcard session will be run by the Kingsley School in England at 8.30pm our time next Wednesday 1 July.

Find out more about the huge debate over English cream tea.
Learn how to speak Cockney rhyming slang and find out where the Queen does her weekly food shop.
We expect this to last 90 minutes and have some really good fun!

The school has advised that it would be really helpful if you either had a dice on you or a dice app on your phone for the event.

If you are interested in being a part of this Round Square Postcard program please contact the College Round Square Chairs or Mr Stuart Walls to register your interest by next Monday 3.00pm. Email

The sessions are great fun and very rewarding.

Mark Munnings
Director of Education Outdoors and Sustainability

Fitness Centre open in the holidays

The Fitness Centre will be open during the holiday break on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings from 6.15am until 8.15am. Classes will take place at 6.15am and will be repeated again at 7.15am. Those with individual programs are more than welcome to come and complete those. Tim Reese, our personal trainer, will be on site if you want to tailor a program to meet your needs. Considering the gloom of winter darkness and chill, and exams for some, it is a great time to be active and moving.

Have a wonderful break!

Paul McKendrick
Head of Health and Physical Education

Community news

We are pleased to provide a community news section in our news highlighting events in the wider Launceston community that may be of interest to families. Included this week:

  • Music Theatre Masterclass – 9 July
  • Tas Dance Term 3 public program classes now available
Go to Community News