VIBES was a fantastic community event.


The last two weeks have flown.  Chaplaincy has launched its College-wide Christmas Campaign, held a prayer vigil for those who have suffered through unkindness, started opening our chapel from 7:30 am for prayer times for our exam students, commenced opening at lunchtimes for those students who want a quiet space for prayer and meditation and culminated in today’s Remembrance Day Service. I share my reflection below for those who could not attend.

“First of all, I thank everyone for the opportunity to offer a closing reflection on what you have heard here today, of what this day might mean for you in the 23rd Century, and thank all the contributors in this service for their very moving reflections.   I hope you took them in because I want to ask you a question.

What are you doing or have you even thought about what you are going to do with the freedom, the soldiers’ whose life and death we celebrate today, bought for you?

In his 1914 book, “The War That Will End War”, H.G. Wells infers that World War I was the last time that we would ever see war.  However, in the 20th Century alone, we recorded a loss of 121, 700,000 lives due to conflicts between human beings since that war, and that figure does not include our nation’s own history of 270 frontier massacres over 140 years of Australian history.

So, today we all have a choice to make – will our words and actions add to the harm of others that leads to war, war within our own souls, war against others, and war ultimately, within the arms of our human family?

Or, do we make a choice, right here today, to give our lives to the freedom our soldiers died for and choose our words kindly, walk our actions gently across this earth and honour all people, whether black or white, who come from a different race to ours, believe in a different religion to ours, love differently to us, look different to us, talk a different language to us. Will our friendship groups include difference, diversity, kindness, love, joy and peace? Imagine a world where everyone is living in a way that we don’t have to remember war anymore.

I stand here today for the first time wearing my recently received National Emergency Medal because I choose to spend my time helping others.  This Term, I commenced a Global Masters of Business Administration so that when I finish at Scotch Oakburn, I am prepared to open a Global Franchise of children’s homes in war-torn countries so they can experience the freedom our commemoration today stands for.

I wonder what it is for you?  Scotch Oakburn is about ‘creating our future” and I wonder what future you are creating so that the lives we are commemorating today are not wasted, now or into the future.

Let us pray….Holy One, Please bless us with kindness and a soul full of love, always and in all ways.


May the Lord be with you as you travel this next week with joy and peace also.

Grace Reynolds
College Chaplain


/ Middle School, Senior School


This weekend we will have eight teams competing in the Basketball Tasmania Northern High Schools Tournament. There are five boys and three girls teams across two divisions. These are combined teams of Year 7/8 and Year 9/10 students. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the staff, coaches and parents who will be assisting with these teams over the weekend. This competition is part of a state-wide event being in the North, North West and Southern regions. The top three teams from each Division 1 competition in each region will then meet for the State Championships on 26-27 November.

A summary of the games can be found here – Basketball Tasmanian Northern High Schools Tournament – rostered games. The majority of Sunday’s game times will be determined on placings from the Saturday games. It would be great to have as many supporters as possible at our games, please note that there is no cost to enter each of the venues.

We wish all our teams the best of luck for their games and look forward to an exciting weekend of Basketball.

Natalie Good
Director of Basketball

Clay Target

This week the Scotch Oakburn clay target team was invited out to the Northern Midlands Sporting Clays range near Longford. Sporting clays involves multiple throwing machines which send the targets along the ground, straight up in the air, and across from the sides at a variety of speeds and elevations. Students from Launceston Grammar’s clay target team also attended. It was a challenging but enjoyable session for the students, with the unpredictable nature of the targets testing everyone’s reflexes and technique.

Mark Hassell
Person-in-Charge of Clay target

Equestrian Games

The Pony Club of Australia held its National Prince Philip Mounted Games in Canberra last month. The event saw teams from across the country compete in this fast-moving, exciting and skilled equestrian event, and we had the pleasure of being chosen to represent Tasmania. Our other team members were Ilanna McDougall, Ruby Hirst (past student) and Sarah Shelveton.

The event is more than just an opportunity to ride, it also allows you to make friends and connections with people from across the country, who share a love of horses and equestrian challenges. Mounted games consist of various challenges against the clock, ranging from bending your horse in between poles, jumping off your horse to grab a ball, and then vaulting back on at high speed, or grabbing an object off a barrel and putting it onto another barrel. All are done at the maximum possible speed and in adjacent lanes, adding to the pressure as you can see how your competitors are faring. These games are all about horses and riders working together. Another challenge is that our team didn’t take our own horses to the event, and we used loaned ponies, which meant trying to “learn” the horse in a short time and working out how to perform as a team.

The senior team rode first and Tasmania performed strongly to finish second. The junior team went the next day and there were some nerves at first, and the team did some switching of horses to try and get the best combinations. Our tyre race was our best event for the day, with our tactics working extremely well, resulting in first place. After the final race, we were placed fourth overall, with a great job done by all team riders, the coach and manager, as well as the supportive senior riders. It was a day of mixed emotions, but we all loved it.

Our trip was more than just horse riding, we also toured around Canberra, taking in the amazing landmarks and sites. We visited Parliament House, the Royal Mint and the Australian Institute of Sport.

Ashlea Rees and Meg Kilby 
Year 9 and Year 8 Students


On Monday 31 October, Scotch Oakburn College hosted students from across the state at the Tasmanian Interschool Chess Finals. Owing to our successes at tournaments throughout the year, the College had qualified to enter 10 students in each of the Secondary and Primary divisions.

Our Primary Team, comprising students from Elphin and Penquite campuses, finished fifth with only a one-point difference between them and the team that placed third. Our best player in this division was Shiv Kataria (Year 6), followed by Bosco Kwong (Year 4), Hugo Clifton (Year 6), Finn Harris (Year 6) and Hugo Clifton (Year 6).

In the Secondary division, the competition for first place was tight, with both Scotch Oakburn and The Hutchins School topping the leaderboard at various times throughout the day; however, Scotch Oakburn finished with a half-point lead and was announced as the 2022 State Champions. Our top five Secondary players were Himash Keerthiratne (Year 8), Harry Lillywhite (Year 9), Addison Djatschenko (Year 12), Mitchell Fulton (Year 11) and Hamish Knowles (Year 12). Himash was also awarded third place as an Individual Player and James Walker (Year 8) was awarded Most Improved Player.

Our Secondary Team has qualified to enter the National Tournament, which will take place at the end of November. This will be the final tournament for our Year 12 chess players and we would like to take this opportunity to thank Addison Djatschenko, Hamish Knowles and Ishani Kataria for their years of commitment to playing chess for the College.

Kate Gard and Anne Jones
Persons-in-Charge of Chess


Last weekend, Scotch Oakburn hosted the First Lego League Challenge. The Challenge bring together groups of students from Years 4 to 8 to apply science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) concepts to solve a real-world problem.  Over 300 people and 20 teams attended. Winning teams will now advance to the National Championship South in Melbourne. We congratulate the winning teams from Sacred Hearth Ulverstone, Devonport Christian School, St Patrick’s Catholic School in Latrobe, Leighland Christian School and the Smith Family STEM Club and Invermay Primary team.

Thank you to all the volunteers that helped to make the event a success.

Meg Hughes


  • Do you have trouble getting your child to school?
  • Does your child struggle to make and maintain friendships?
  • Are you concerned about your child falling behind?
  • Do you battle with meltdowns and tantrums?
  • Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed and powerless?

If you have a child with talents that are sometimes overshadowed by an executive function disorder, autism, ADHD, or other hidden disability, chances are you’ve answered yes to one or more of the questions above.

The idea for this group is to offer a judgement-free group of parents that just want to share their experiences with others who will understand.

If you are a parent/carer of a child at Scotch Oakburn College and would like to share a casual drink and chat about the challenges of disability and rewards of having children with superpowers, then please come along to our first meeting. No agenda, no speeches, no obligations; just turn up amongst friends and say hi.

Next meeting: Monday 21 November 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Venue: DuCane Brewery and Dining Hall
Cost: free, buy your own drinks.

Look out for the yellow sunflower on the table and you’ll find us.

Any questions contact Sam Denmead on 0400 224 942 or

Ben Marsland
Deputy Principal



The cleanup and restoration of Scotch Oakburn Park is well underway.  I would like to acknowledge the extensive work being undertaken by our Grounds and Work team whilst working through the flood recovery process. An update on the process:

  • Extraction of approximately 140,000,000 litres of water has been removed from the Park over two weeks.  Moderate flooding of the North Esk river last week did set back recovery progress, however, did not affect the overall outlook for the Park.
  • Within several days, access to the Bushby Oval was achievable and the Grounds team have successfully been able to work on the grounds to remove unwanted debris and minor silt/mud to improve grass recovery.
  • Other ovals, however, have suffered a longer period underwater, causing more damage to the playing surfaces.  On Wednesday 26 October 2022, some 12 days after the inundation, Grounds team were able to gain access to the main oval to start its grass recovery.
  • Clean-up of the main playing fields has commenced and involved screeding the ovals of mud/silt with approximately 27 tonnes of silt being removed from the Keith Mclaughlin Oval, with a further estimated 100 tonnes still to be removed.  Further screeding and washing of the ovals will continue in the next couple of weeks to support the recovery of grass and to heal their soils.
  • Extensive cleaning of all buildings, structures and contents continues into the near future to ensure facilities are in proper working order.

Those in our rowing community will be pleased to know that engineering recommendations for repairs to the pontoon have commenced and should be completed in the next couple of weeks.

Adrian Brock
College Services Manager



/ Middle School, Senior School

Scotch Oakburn College has a long and proud tradition of Musical Excellence.  A core component of the College’s extensive Performing Arts Program is its Instrumental and Vocal Music, and Dance Lessons Program.

Research indicates that students who study and participate in music achieve higher academic results across all aspects of the curriculum, develop a greater sense of connection with their peers and the world around them. Active participation in music has positive benefits in a student’s life. Playing a musical instrument is not just an enjoyable experience, it also promotes teamwork, listening skills, personal discipline, and develops their sense of well-being and commitment.

Our students can also choose to enrol in Australian Music Education Board performance exams, with the added benefit of the support and experience of their tutor during the preparation process.

The Penquite co-curricular program at Scotch Oakburn College continues to evolve to offer a diverse range of Performing Arts subjects available to students in this highly effective learning environment.  Lessons are 1:1 with an experienced tutor for 30-minutes each week.

In addition to our wide range of Instrumental lessons and Voice lessons, we are pleased to be able to now offer Dance lessons to our students.  With the addition of dance tutoring at the College with Natasha Millwood-Green, students have the opportunity to be introduced to dance as a new art form, extend or refine current dance skills and knowledge, learn an additional dance genre, have routines choreographed or focus on performance and examination work across a wide range of genres including Ballet, Lyrical, Jazz, Contemporary and Highland styles.

The program is regarded as a year-long commitment with tuition continuing automatically into the next term.

By enrolling in Instrumental, Singing or Dance lessons, students are making a commitment to tuition, practice and active membership in relevant College Choirs, Bands or Ensembles for the academic year.

If you would like to learn more about our Co-curricular Performing Arts program please view our Dash page at The Dash – Music@Penquite or The Dash – Dance@Penquite .  Alternatively, feel free to contact us at or 6336 3344.

If you would like to enrol your child in lessons at school for 2023, please note that there may be limited availability in some subjects.   We aim to complete all 2023 enrolments prior to the end of Term 4, 2022 and currently enrolled students are given priority to their tutors’ availability.

Stephen King
Head of Performing Arts

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