MWSC College News – Issue 12

18th August 2023

Read all the latest news and events happening at Mount Waverley Secondary College in this edition of MWSC college news.

Photo:  Mount Waverley Secondary College Junior Campus, 145 Stephensons Road Mount Waverley.

Upcoming Events

College Principal’s Report

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Stage Band and Jazz Band win Gold Awards

On Monday 14 August our Senior Stage Band competed in the Senior category in the Victorian Schools’ Music Festival (VSMF)and won a gold award. Our Jazz Band also won a gold award at the competition on Wednesday. The adjudicators on both occasions gave fantastic feedback and accolades to the ensembles when working with them on stage. The bands received a gold award with every criterion being judged as excellent or outstanding from all judges. Congratulations to all the students involved and Mrs Tijtje Keatley our Music Director and Mr Damien Maughan who conducted the Jazz Band.

German Poetry Competition

Thank you to Mrs Katja Chitters and Mrs Rachel Huang who accompanied some Year 7 and 9 students on Wednesday 9 August to compete in a German Poetry Competition at Box Hill High School. Five Year 7 students (William A, Kingsley C, Elyann J, Dhineli T and Jacob W) and four Year 9 students (King Win F, Divya G, Aisha H and Yaj K) took part in this competition. In each year level, students won gold, silver, and bronze awards. This was a fantastic achievement, as students worked hard to learn and memorise their poems. It takes a lot of courage to step outside your comfort zone and perform a poem in front of people in a foreign language. Gut gemacht (Well done)!!


VCE Leadership Awards

One of our College Captains students; Jocelyn S has been shortlisted for the ‘2023 VCE Leader of the Year’. Only eight leaders from across the state are chosen by VCAA (Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority) each year. This is an amazing achievement, and the award ceremony will be held at the end of this term.

Thank you to Mr Jacob Myers, Head of Student Voice for his work in supporting our student leaders.


2023 Parent/Caregiver/Guardian Opinion Survey

Invitations to the 2023 Parent/Caregiver/Guardian Opinion Survey (previously known as the Parent Opinion Survey) link has been emailed out via Compass. Each year the school conducts an opinion survey amongst a sample of our learning community. This year, all parents/caregivers/guardians have been invited to participate. Results will be used to inform and direct our future school planning and improvement. The survey will be conducted online and should only take 20 minutes to complete.


Student Parent Teacher Conferences

On Thursday 7 September student/parent/teacher conferences will occur. The day will run from 1 pm until 7.30 pm and will be run virtually again via WebEx. Classes will not be held on this day.


Lions Club of Ashwood–Mt Waverley

The Lions Club of Ashwood-Mt Waverley works with youth and the community to provide support and promote good citizenship. Lions is an international organisation.They work with schools in our area through the Youth of the Year competition and Community Service Awards. They also provide holidays at the Licola Wilderness Village for deserving junior students.

They raise funds through Bunnings sausage sizzles and other local activities. 100% of funds raised from the public are returned through support provided. Their fund raising, support and social activities provide a very friendly level of social interaction and fellowship. If you would like to know more or would consider joining the Lions Club, please contact Roy at or on 0468 780 039.


The 2023 Victorian State Spectacular

The 2023 Victorian State Schools Spectacular brings together government school communities from across Victoria to produce a 3-hour live show including music, dance, circus arts, puppetry, and skating. This year’s show will be performed to an audience of about 12,000 people at John Cain Arena on Saturday 9 September, over 2 shows at 1 pm and 6:30 pm.

Talented Victorian students will feature on stage, while many other students will work behind the scenes, gaining unique, on-the-job, professional experience. One of our students Ananya H from Year 10 will be appearing as a principal vocalist. Congratulations Ananya!

For a fun, family entertainment experience, and to cheer on students from the audience, be quick to secure tickets through Ticketek. Adult tickets cost $40; children aged under 15, $20; and concession, $30. Buy 10 tickets and get one adult ticket free (the 11th ticket is free) by calling Group Bookings on 1300 364 001.


Term 3 College Raffle

We have been working hard on sourcing some great prizes for our college raffle this year. Over $3500 worth of prizes have been donated including Interior/Exterior painting, DJI Mini Drone, Republica Restaurant, Village Gold Class Indulgence voucher, Ceiling Fan & Bathroom Heat Lamp, Coles Myer, and Ultimate Teens Gift Cards and more.
The MWSC raffle is running online again year and tickets can be purchased via Compasstix. Please support the college by purchasing either raffle tickets for $2.50ea or $12.50 for a book of 5 tickets or $25 for a book of 10 tickets.

Feel free to forward the Compasstix link to family and friends. All proceeds will go towards the purchase of new student-led initatives.
Raffle tickets can be purchased online via Compasstix link
Online college raffle and is due to close on 27 August at 4pm.  Raffle to be drawn and winners announced on Wednesday 30 August.





Mrs Karen Wade
College Principal


Campus Principal’s Report – Junior School

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National Day Against Bullying and Violence

This week was the National Day Against Bullying and Violence. On the Junior Campus we created a public art installation in the friendship garden and invited students to collaborate in the creation of a ‘yarn bomb’ inspired tree to promote the theme of ‘growing connections’.

Thank you to the members of our school community who donated wool, yarn, and other materials, and well done to the students who got involved!


Community Showcase – 13 September

On Wednesday 13 September, the Junior Campus will be hosting a ‘Community Showcase Afternoon’ from 4.00pm – 6.00pm. It is open to all families across both campuses, and seeks to highlight the community partnerships that exist within our college, and celebrate the excellent work done by our staff and students.

Please save the date and come along to have a look around at our amazing learning environment.


Around the grounds

I am privileged to get to explore the campus at times throughout the week to see what is happening. There are always so many vibrant learning programs and exciting activities for our students to get involved in. Here’s some snapshots of the last few weeks on campus.



Getting to know: Ms Brinda Manogaran

How long have you been at MWSC?
Six months

What is your role at MWSC? Previous roles?
First-year Humanities teacher.

What do you like to do outside of school?
Play sports, go out with friends, travel, and eat good food.

Favourite thing about working at a school?
Every day is different and I get to see the progress and growth of students.

If you didn’t work in a school, what would you be doing?
In event management.

What kind of student were you at school?
I was most definitely the type of student who enjoyed school for its social and extracurricular aspects. I enjoyed school a lot and really valued and respected all my teachers as I couldn’t wait to be like them.




Mr Matt Sheehan
Campus Principal – Junior School

Campus Principal’s Report – Middle School

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As we move through Term 3 students have been busy both inside and outside the classroom.  Students have also started to make decisions and choices for what their next year will look like.  Student Parent Teacher Conferences are on Thursday 7 September, providing an opportunity for students and parents to engage with teachers, get feedback and look at improvement strategies for Term 4.


PSW Uniform Price Increase

WE have been informed by PSW our uniform that there will be a price increase this year.  This price increase will take affect form 1st November 2023.  Updated pricing will be provided once this is available.


Mount Major Projects Update

STEAM Centre

Work on the STEAM Centre is coming to an end.  The finishing touches are being put on the building along with landscaping and furniture being added.  We hope to be moving in as soon as possible.



Senior Campus Courts

Following an extensive redesign process work has commenced on the Senior campus Courts.  Work will now continue into Term 4 on this project.




Mr Ian MacLeod
Campus Principal – Middle School

Campus Principal’s Report – Senior School

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Subject and Course Selections

The last few weeks have been very busy for all members of the college community. Work is currently being done on finalising and checking student selections as this forms the basis of the subjects run and the 2024 timetable.


VCE Central Australia Trip

The trip is fast approaching. A parent and student information evening session will be held shortly to provide more information about the trip and other requirements and arrangements. Information will be sent via Compass in the coming weeks.


Upcoming events for VCE students

Students and parents/carers should continue to check Compass for notifications. Information has been sent and there are several events such as the Year 12 Formal and the Year 11 Fancy Dress are held this term.


Professional Learning Week and Learning Walks

As part of the college’s program to continually support our staff’s professional knowledge and skills, several events have occurred over the past few weeks. On July 31st staff were involved in workshops with Dr Jodi Richardson focusing on staff and student mental health and wellbeing.

This day has been followed up by sessions last week during our Professional Learning Week. These sessions were offered by our Wellbeing Team for teachers to attend. Sessions have included ‘Empowering anxious students’, ‘Embracing Neurodiversity’, ‘The art of metaphor and indirect communication’ and ‘Student Mental Health’. Thanks to all who participated and to the Wellbeing Team who facilitated sessions all week.

During the past two weeks teachers on both campuses have also been visiting each other’s classrooms as part of our Learning Walks. Thanks to the teachers who took part in the walks and to the teachers who opened their classrooms to their colleagues. It helps provide a snapshot of all the outstanding teaching and learning that is taking place.




Mrs Julie Cain
Campus Principal – Senior School

Student Wellbeing Report

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Professional Learning Term 3 – Wellbeing Focus 

On Monday 31July 2023, all staff engaged in a whole day of professional Learning with wellbeing expert, Dr Jodi Richardson. Part one of the day – which was broken into two sessions – focused on Boosting teacher and mental health and wellbeing. Part 2 of the day was specifically focused at teachers to support them to empower anxious students in the classroom. 

Dr Richardson was an engaging and thoughtful presenter – sharing her lived experiences with mental health and providing staff with pratical self care tools and how to support anxious students.

The following week – 7th to 10th of August – the wellbeing team designed and delivered several workshops during the Professional Learning Week. These included:

  • Follow up session- Empowering anxious students in the classroom with staff encouraged to discuss case studies and share strategies on how to support anxious students.
  • Student Mental Health- Utilising the educator wellbeing module on Open Parachute- teachers were encouraged to “check in” on students wellbeing when appropriate utilising a simple three step process : Empathise, Validate and Encourage Support.
  • Jason Mann (Mental Health Practitioner) – delivered a very thought-provoking and interesting presentation on The Art of Metaphor and Indirect Communication and this can be used to create change.
  • Paul Graham (Student Support and Resources Manager) took new staff through a self-reflection session utilizing the Student Wellbeing Model and highlighting areas of strength and areas for improvement.
  • Embracing Neurodiversity – Jesse Lee from Murduch Children’s research institute presented to staff an engaging workshop focusing on embracing neurodiversity.

With wellbeing a significant focus for teachers in the classroom – it was important that we as a school continue to invest in developing teacher capacity in supporting students’ mental health and wellbeing. We look forward to reviewing the feedback provided and delivering future professional learning opportunities for staff.


Wellbeing Days

To support year 10’s with their subject selections and future career planning and to help address their anxiety and concerns about the future- the Wellbeing and Careers Team hosted the Wellbeing/Careers Day on Friday 28 July.

The Year 10’s started their day by attending a presentation from guest speaker, Jonny Shannon. Jonny shared his high school story – the challenges he faced and how he overcame these challenges to be successful in business. He introduced the students to the PERMA model and encouraged them to create a vision board to set short-term and long-term goals and dreams. For the rest of the day, the students broke into smaller groups and attended three different workshops. The REACH foundation ran their two workshops challenging gender stereotypes and the Alumni guest speakers shared their journey from MWSC student to university into their chosen career.

The Year 9 students will be attending their wellbeing day on the last day of term 3. In what has become an annual event – the Year 9’s will hear from Real Life Resilience in the morning followed by some workshops including Pat Cronin Foundation. In the afternoon the students will be able to participate in inflatable activities in the hall – which was a massive hit last year.


Upcoming Awareness Days

There are four key awareness days coming up to end the term. This Friday 18 August is International Day of action against Bullying and Violence. The theme this year is growing connections. There are activities on both campuses to celebrate our diversity and culture and help create positive connections among students.

Next Friday 25 August is Wear it Purple Day – an annual LGBTIQA+ awareness day. If students wish to celebrate this day they will be encouraged to wear a touch of purple to celebrate diversity. Towards the end of term we have Women’s Health Week – where we will be providing some activities including an opportunity to students to attend a Q&A with our college nurses. One of the biggest awareness days on the wellbeing calendar is widely recognized “RUOK Day”. We look forward to celebrating this day – encouraging students to check in with each other. More details to come!




Mr Paul Graham
Student Support and  Resources Manager

Student Voice Report

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The General Sir John Monash Annual Commemorative Service (Leadership)

On Friday 11 August, six student representatives from the Year 10 leadership team were invited to attend the General Sir John Monash Annual Commemorative Service at Parliament House, which was a collaboration between many learning institutes.
A riveting performance on the bagpipe from a member of the Scotch College started the service. The service was aimed to commemorate the life of Sir John Monash, exploring his life through the speeches presented by several fellow attendees. Students were given an insight into his military, schooling and scientific background which made him such a large figurehead in Australian history.
The service ended with a minute’s silence, allowing attendees to reflect on their newfound knowledge of the person John Monash was.

We would like to also thank Ms Walk for accompanying us to the service.

~ Year 10 Leadership Team


VCTA Conference

On Friday 4 August, Jocelyn, Stanley, Parker, Clementine, Georgia and myself, along with Mr Myers presented at the VCTA 7-10 Civics, Economics, and Business Conference in Melbourne CBD. To start the day off we listened to the keynote speaker, Eva Jo Edwards, about her personal experience with the Stolen Generation as an Aboriginal person. We gained insight into the concept of identity and what it truly means to be ‘Australian’. It was an eye-opening presentation and made us ponder how we can implement reconciliation within our communities.

Then it was time to present our workshop surrounding ‘Student Agency’, which mainly focused on our experiences within Mount Matters. We covered the strengths and challenges faced by both staff and students within the program. We also touched on the rewarding aspects of having so many leadership pathways at this school. 

We had lots of discussions with like-minded teachers across Victoria about what it truly means to support student agency and leadership, and how staff can nurture and encourage students to grow their citizenship skills not just within school but for the rest of their lives. Overall, it was a very exciting and rewarding experience to attend and present at a conference for teachers from across Victoria.

~ Tasfiya H (Year 12)


Mount Waverley North Primary School – Mini Mount Matters

On Wednesday 9 August, three Year 11 leaders, Farah H, Georgia K and Maya C, visited Mount Waverley North Primary School to participate in a ‘Mini Mount Matters’ session. During the session the student leaders worked closely with the primary students to complete a brainstorm around what the concept student agency looks like.

It was great to see our student leaders helping guide the younger students with their work. Additionally, our senior leaders left with a stronger sense of what agency looks like at our college and had some great ideas on how they can help promote it through the school.

It was fantastic to get over for a ‘Mini Mount Matters’ session and we want to thank Mount Waverley North Primary School for the opportunity. We are looking forward to some more sessions throughout the term.




Mr Jacob Myers
Head of Student Voice

Music Director’s Report

College Music
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As always, Term 3 is a music time for the music department at MWSC with many competitions and eisteddfods featuring a range of ensembles from the college. These events cannot happen without the support of staff across the college, and music teachers who attend to support these wonderful musical opportunities.  Congratulations to all of the ensemble directors and students on the hard work and preparation for Monash Youth Festival and VSMF.


Monash Youth Festival

On Saturday 12 August, the MWSC Senior Guitar Ensemble and the Jazz Combo attended the Monash Youth Festival. The afternoon featured many varied ensembles, including many string and piano chamber groups. Both groups from MWSC performed exceptionally well and the Jazz Combo was awarded an honorable mention. This was significant given that the group performed in a very contrasted style to the other ensembles.

On Monday 14 August, the Junior Choir also attended this event. This is the first time that this group has attended a competition of any sort. Congratulations to the group who performed exceptionally well.

Jazz Combo


Victorian Schools  Music Festival

VSMF is an amazing musical event held every year, and is a great opportunity for our students to perform, receive feedback from esteemed adjudicators who are experts in each particular ensemble, listen to other schools, and participate in an on stage tutorial with the chief adjudicator. A number of MWSC ensembles have attended over the past 3 weeks and achieved excellent results and feedback.

  • Presto Strings; directed by Timothy O’Connor received a Silver award in the Junior String Category
  • Chamber Strings; directed by Timothy O’Connor received a Silver award in the Intermediate String Category
  • Senior Singers; directed by Tom Frost and accompanied by Sherrilyn Lim received a Silver award in the Open Choir Category
  • Jazz Band; directed by Damien Maughan received a Gold award in the Junior Jazz Band Category
  • Senior Stage Band; directed by myself received a Gold award in the Senior Jazz Band Category. This is the first time that any ensemble from MWSC has entered a senior category of this event.




Mrs Tijtje Keatley
Music Director

Sport News

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Eastern Metropolitan Regional Athletics Carnival

Thursday 17 August  saw us back at Knox Athletics Track for our Division Athletics Carnival. It was a cold and windy day at the track, and our students handled the difficult conditions in style. Overall, MWSC came in second place, only 44 points behind Vermont SC.

Our Year 11 and 12’s won the Senior Shield, while we were runners up in both the Junior and Intermediate Shield. MWSC had a remarkable 25 students who qualified for the EMR carnival, which will be held at the beginning of term 4. Congratulations to the following students who were awarded year level champions:

  1.  Jonathan F – 14yo boys age group champion
  2.   Avril T  – 17yo girls age group champion
  3.  Jack A –  17yo boys age group champion



Mr Danny Gwynne & Mr Jaidyn Newport
Sport Leaders


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Numeracy skills are used in our everyday lives, from banking to reading transport timetables. Developing strong numeracy skills, including problem-solving abilities, helps prepare students for daily life.

Recently, students in Years 7 and 9 received their NAPLAN results. As a college, we performed exceptionally well. 90% of Year 7 students and 85% of Year 9 students received a strong/exceeding proficiency level. In both year levels, we performed better than similar schools and those in our network. Congratulations to our students on their achievements!

Improving numeracy skills has become a focus at MWSC. In our PLC (Professional Learning Communities), teachers have collaborated and developed numeracy skills/practices in their subjects. For example, Technology focused on measurement, Music investigated fractions, Languages studied numbers, English looked at interpreting infographics, and History on chronological timelines – just to name a few. The MWSC Numeracy Google site – Numeracy@MWSC – has a host of numeracy resources and activities for staff to use in their classrooms.

The Numeracy Program (designed using the Numeracy Learning Progressions set by VCAA) is a program that runs in Years 7 to 9. It provides an opportunity for students to access numeracy skills in other subjects. The online tasks assigned include determining ratios for ingredients in a recipe or interpreting a graph to find the number of car sales over a given period. These tasks are set in the first ten minutes of most Mathematics lessons. After each task, students are encouraged to reflect on their knowledge and skills. This is a highly effective program as it allows students to apply their skills to real-life numeracy examples across the curriculum.

More recently, differentiation in our Years 7 and 8 Mathematics classrooms has included students utilising their agency to direct their learning through a choice of work level. Using a 3-star system, students select their challenge within each lesson based on their current level of understanding. These tasks include collaborative activities and independent practice; to ensure students can work with other students at a similar level and access support as needed. Some of our high-achieving students in mainstream Mathematics (in Years 7 to 9) have joined an invite-only Extension group – this is where students can apply higher-order skills to a range of different topics.  All students have also been encouraged to work on their problem-solving skills through the weekly MWSC Challenge problems.

To continue to develop strong numeracy skills, students can practise numeracy at home with their families by tracking expenses for a week or calculating the tip on a restaurant bill. This encourages us all to think more about how numeracy skills are used every day.


Ms Amanda Sfinidilis Reed & Ms Melissa Chapman
Learning Specialists – Numeracy

Alumni News

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School Production 1983


Welcome to August’s issue of Mount Waverley Secondary College Alumni Newsletter.

In this issue read about our Alumni giving back to our school events, the next School Reunions, “save the date” and take a trip down memory lane with school photos from the past.

To view August’s newsletter, click here:  Alumni Monthly Newsletter Issue 7 – August 2023

To register your details, click here.



Ms Victoria Tortopidis
Alumni Coordinator


Blood Donation

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The Year 12 student leadership team is running a blood drive and they need your help!

Every blood donation will make a real difference to a person’s life. Did you know one blood donation can save up to three lives?

The Year 12 leadership team is calling on the broader MWSC community to roll up their sleeves and donate! The leadership team has set a target of getting 25 donations.

How to donate:

  1. Check your eligibility. Sometimes people have to wait before they can donate so it’s best to double check.

  2. Find a donor centre. You can give blood close to home, or near the office on your lunch break — it’s simple to find a centre that suits you.

  3. Book a donation. Get ready to start calling yourself a ‘life-saver’! Find a time and day that works for you and book it in.

  4. Remember to book your donation under the team name ‘Mount Waverley Secondary College.’ Or just mention it on the day at the donor centre when you go to donate.

People can register online at and join the team ‘Mount Waverley Secondary College’.



Mr Jacob Myers
Head of Student Voice

MWSC College News – Issue 12