Northcote High School Newsletter

02 February 2016
Issue One
Term 1 2016 What's On
VCE 2015
Principal's Welcome
Anna Langford's letter to The Age
Eureka Prize 2015 judging
Yr 8 Boho Camp Update
Sports Inews
Inews Update 1
Inews Update 2
Inews Update 3
Things to know 1
Things to know 2
Key Contacts
Community Services
Careers & Pathways
Student Leaders 2016
Northcote High School
9488 2300
St. Georges Rd
Northcote, Victoria, 3070

Term 1 2016 What's On

Wed Feb 3

Yr 12 Study Conference at La Trobe Uni
Council Governance SubCommittee 6 pm

Thurs Feb 4

Production Meeting - Lunchtime Hall

Frid Feb 5

Tienjin Binhai HS visit (half day)

Mon Feb 8

10 students from Beijing Normal Day School visit (to Friday Feb 26) 

Tues Feb 9

6 pm + Yr 7 Family and staff Picnic

Click to download the invitation

Wed Feb 10

VCE Parent Forum - 6.30 Library

Frid Feb 12

VCE Cricket
Council Finance SubCommittee 8am

Mon Feb 15

Yr 7 Dot-com workshops
Captain's Conference
Yr 7 Cricket

Tues Feb 16

Yr 8 Boho camps (to Feb 19 )

Wed Feb 17

Yr 8 Cricket

Thurs Feb 18

School Council 6 pm

Frid Feb 19

Yr 7 Dot-com workshops

Mon Feb 22

Yr 8 Boho camps (to Feb 25)

Tues Feb 23

Yr 9/10 Cricket
Yr 8 Leadership program

Wed Feb 24

Cricket Finals Yrs 7-10

Frid Feb 26

School Photos Yrs 7-11

Mon Feb 29

Yr 8 Boho camps (to thurs Mar 3 )

6pm Events & Fundraising SubCommittee

Tues Mar 1

 Sport - Tennis/Volleyball

Wed Mar 2

Yr 12 & Staff Photos

6 pm Governance Subcommittee 

Thurs Mar 3

Yr 7 Parent Info Night

Frid Mar 4

Swimming Carnival Yrs 7-9

Mon Mar 7

Yr 8 Boho Camps ( to Thurs 10)

Coming up soon!

Parent Teacher Meetings  March 17 & 23
VCE Politics trip to Europe March 19+
Yr 7 Camp April 22+

VCE 2015

Outstanding VCE results!

This year Northcote High School celebrates its 90th anniversary. It is fitting therefore that we celebrate our most successful year of VCE results ever. Many excited students received their VCE results in December 2015 and we congratulate  all of them on their outstanding efforts.


For our Year 12 class of 2015, the highest ATAR (Australian Tertiary Admission Rank) achieved was 99.8, achieved by Themba Hodge.  Six other students achieved ATARs over 99. 

Overall, 61 students or 25% of our students achieved ATARs over 90, that is, in the top 10% of the state!


In addition, 

- 40% students achieved an ATAR over 80. 

- 54% of students earned an ATAR of 70 or above. (These students were achieving in the top 30% of the state)

- 12.3% of study scores were over 40. 

- The median study score has climbed to 31.3.

There were perfect scores of 50 in three subjects: English, Biology(2) and Psychology.


Congratulations to all our students – another great year for the school! 

Themba Hodge (99.8) and Kate Bongiovani-Hodges (99.4) will be the Male and Female Duces of 2015.

2015 Tertiary Offers

After the first round of Tertiary offers, this is the breakdown of pathways (although there are several more rounds to come). Continuing the trend of the last ten years, RMIT, Melbourne and La Trobe remain the most popular destinations.


23% University of Melbourne

32% RMIT University
19% La Trobe University
5% Monash University
5% ACU
5% Swinburne University
4% Victoria University
7% Other (including interstate & overseas)

Types of Courses

It is difficult to categorize types of courses across a large Year level cohort but this list of first round offers is an indication of our student tertiary interests: 

13% Business
3% Media
3% Events/Comm's/Marketing
13% General Science 
10% Art & Design
2% Music
8% Education/Social Wk 
9% Engineering /IT
3% Environmental
4% Architecture/Building/Int Des

7% Sport/Out Ed

11% General Arts
4% Law/Justice

5% Politics/Int Studies

4% Other


Principal's Welcome

Photo: Yr 7 Welcome Assembly

Welcome to NHS

Welcome back and a special welcome to our new students and families. We are so delighted you are part of the wonderful Northcote High Community!


90th Celebrations – 1926 - 2016

This year is Northcote High School 90th and there is much to celebrate!

The 90th celebration  program includes a colourful calendar of events, activities and projects across the year for alumni, students, staff, families,  the Northcote community and friends around the world.


90th Program highlights include:

  • 90th Launch - Celebration of the life of Northcote High School 1926 - 2016
  • 90th Exhibition - Celebration of the life of Northcote High School 1926 – 2016 (by decade)
  • Historic plaques around the school highlighting significant locations, events and achievements
  • NHS Back to Day for past and present members of the schools community
  • International Student Program alumni celebration

A little about our school

Northcote High opened on its current site in 1926. The school site and surrounding area was originally home to Dr. Charles McCarthy’s Inebriates’ Home which dated from 1873.

Northcote High originally opened as a district high school and was the fifth high school north of the Yarra and the ninth in Greater Melbourne. The school was originally co-educational, in 1928 the Education Department opened Preston Girls’ High School, making Northcote High a boys’ school from this time. Greater public engagement with equal opportunity resulted in girls again being enrolled from 1989. 


Stay posted for further history updates and a calendar of events and opportunities to get involved.


2015 Achievements

Congratulations to the Class of 2015 for their exemplary VCE Results - see snap shot below including winners of the various University Scholarships.  This year more NHS students have been awarded scholarships than ever before.  Scholarships are difficult to get, which further highlights:

 1. The quality of young people graduating from NHS and

2. The importance of maintaining a well-balanced life/program  including getting involved at school and in the community – sport, coaching, study abroad, part time work, volunteering all define who young people are how they will contribute to the world.

Stay tuned to the eNews and for students the daily ebulletin on myNorthcoteHigh and screens around the school to hear about the myriad of ways you can get involved at NHS and Beyond.


Vision and Values

In 2015 we launched the new school vision and values – following the conclusion of a collaborative community project – Re-Visioning our Values.  We are keen to ensure the schools’ vision and values live in our community.  See the attachment for a snapshot. The Behaviours  are a series of statements co-developed with community to exemplify the the various values. This has been an exciting project and will provide many ways to celebrate young people and community through the Values – Achievement, Curiosity, Humanity and Fairness.


Eureka Prize and [email protected]

2015 also saw the launch of the Eureka Prize – thankyou to Clare Wright (Parent, author, historian and social commentator)  who donated part of her Stella Prize winnings to establish the Eureka Prize at Northcote High. Congratulations to all the Eureka Prize entrants who are featured in this eNews.  We are looking forward to the Writers Festival and Talkfest later this year.

In 2015 Year 7 students lived a new teaching and learning program in English.  Post review and this writers program, Year 8 will also be featuring a strong focus on writing in 2016.


Building projects and Campus Master Plan

In 2015 we celebrated the delivery of $3million election promise for a Performance Hub and VCE Centre on the corner site of St Georges Road and Euneson Avenue. Kerstin Thompson Architects have been appointed to kick off this first Campus Master Plan Project.  We will be reporting regularly to you around facilities upgrades – in progress are discussions regarding:

  • 2 x Court Stadium (Stage 2 Campus Master Plan) seeking partnership with DET, Darebin Council and Local clubs i.e. basketball etc.
  • Netball / Basketball Court (additional) as a part of the election commitment to women’s sport in Darebin, Melbourne, Moreland and Yarra Council areas
  • Merri Park (south) – surface maintenance/upgrade - Darebin Council
  • Front of School – Safety improvements to the St Georges Road interface i.e. trams, Pedestrians, bikes and cars – working with Fiona Richardson, Darebin Council, Vicroads and Yarra Trams
  • Fitzroy Baseball regarding clubroom facilities sharing

Continuous Reporting

This year we will introduce Continuous Reporting there will be a feature outlining the what, when and how for students and families in our next eNews.


myNorthcoteHigh and Compass

are your key communication connects with Northcote High.  myNorthcoteHigh will link you with learning information and what’s happening in our classrooms, Compass is generally more administrative – absences, timetable, payments, GPA (progress reports) etc.

We also send targeted newsfeeds regarding upcoming events and need to know information e.g. Year 7 Families will receive a newsfeed about the upcoming Yr 7 Family Picnic on Tuesday 09 Feb 2016 at 6pm!

Importantly, each fortnight the e-news will feature students shining in so many ways. Leading learning and leading projects in their areas of interest and passion.


‘Partnership and Participation at NHS’ and Notice of School Council Elections

There is compelling evidence that an involved, participative and dynamic school community results in better educational outcomes for our students.

You are invited to participate in supporting NHS by becoming involved in one of many activities where a parent/carer voice is important .

These include:

  1. School Council and sub-committee membership (Finance and/or  Governance,)
  2. Task specific working groups (Events and Fundraising and Communications)


As needs arise, other working groups will be formed during 2016.


If you would like more information about participating in any of these groups please contact:

Rob Ryan, School Council President via [email protected]

Kate Morris, Principal, via [email protected]


We are advertising School Council Elections with an opening date for nomination 12 February and closing date for nominations being 19 February 2016.


Although any parent/carer  is eligible to nominate for School Council, we would encourage some prior involvement in working parties or committees. Of course, this is not a pre-requisite for Council membership.


Further information to follow regarding Notice of the 2016 School Council Elections or contact Rob or Kate as above.


Once again welcome to our vibrant and dynamic learning community and a great year ahead. We look forward to partnering with you and appreciate your involvement and support.


Kate Morris












Anna Langford's letter to The Age

Dear World Leaders,

I was nine when I first heard about climate change, and the idea scared me so much that I ran to my room and cried. My parents were arguing about it one night, and the "global warming" they were talking about that would melt the icecaps and flood the coastlines seized my whole little body in fear like I don't think I'd ever felt it before. 


I could barely comprehend the sheer enormity of what they were talking about. 


But surely if it was such a big problem, leaders would be doing something about it? I knew it was the job of big adults to fix problems like global warming, and if it was such an obviously urgent problem then they would surely be on top of it. That's the last time I can remember trusting governments to do the right thing.


When I was 15 I found a video of (Canadian environmentalist) Severn Cullis-Suzuki speaking at the 1992 Rio Earth Summit when she was 12. I was shocked by the fierce urgency in her young voice and the raw honesty of her words, and I couldn't believe the situation was much the same 20 years later. That year I became a climate activist. I've spent the past two years at rallies, marches and meetings because you leaders are not doing enough. 


World Leaders, if you could see yourself now from the eyes of nine-year-old, you, a lot of you, would be sorely disappointed. 


Do you know what it's like to be a young person now and have absolutely no faith in adults to plan for a safe future? Just once I would like to go to sleep without a tense feeling in my stomach, like there's a cord around it that clenches when I relax and don't think about the environment. 


Since I was little my parents have taken me to see and fall in love with Earth's wild places. But when I visit a beautiful place now, I can't fully enjoy it without thinking: will this still be here in 20 years? Will this beach be flooded by rising sea levels? 


The weird thing is, World Leaders, I'm a climate activist and I can't talk about climate change any more. I get a physical reaction to it – my body tenses in fear and I start to feel faint as the enormity of it is so overwhelming. Did you know that most of Australia will become uninhabitable and dead if catastrophic climate change happens? Places I love – Kakadu, the Daintree rainforest and the Victorian Alps. To think about a world without them cuts something raw inside me.


Please. Please, take climate action like it's never been taken before. We don't have any other option. If you leaders don't take urgent action, you'll be responsible for the worst thing humans have ever done to this planet. 


This is a cry from the rest of the world – from climate refugees in the Pacific islands to children choking on smoke from the fires in Indonesia – demanding that you step up.  


I hope you listen to what we are saying. Think back to when you were 10. Or imagine yourself now as a kid in Tuvalu, helping to build a sea wall to stop the ocean flooding your home; or in Beijing asking your mum what a night sky full of stars looks like, because you've never seen one through the smog. What would you think of yourself now? 


Anna Langford, Yr 12.(Published by The Age in December 2015).

Former NHS staff member Pip Kelly now lives in Costa Rica. Her work  encouraging that country's Government to embrace renewable energy appeared in ABC-TV's Foreign Correspondent on 30 November, 2015. The Sloths and Howler Monkeys are photographed in her back garden.(really!)

Eureka Prize 2015 judging

Judges’ Report

Judging Panel:

* Joel Becker, CEO, Australian Booksellers’ Association

* Aimee Collard, past NHS student (2015)

* Dr Clare Wright, Associate Professor in History, La Trobe University

The judges for the inaugural 2016 Eureka Prize were overwhelmed by the quality and diversity of the entries.  Forget about comparing apples with oranges; we had to compare apples with figs, apples with lychees and apples with avocados!

The judges had so much difficulty in deciding a winner that we decided (with the Principal’s approval) to create two annual prizes:

·         A junior prize (Years 7-9) and

·         A senior prize (Years 10-12).


We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the entrants for their energy and inspiration, and also Merrin Healy and Kate Morris for their tireless support and enthusiasm.


And the winners are:

The Eureka Prize (Junior)

A poem on Cecilia Payne-Gaposchkin


Highly Commended:            
Isabelle Zeevaarder and Eva Massey:
Portrait of Anne Frank

The Eureka Prize (Senior)

Interview with my Grandmother (see Screenshot below)


Highly Commended:
Amy Twigg
Portrait of a Mentor


Click here to read the full report by the judges, which includes other commendations.



Yr 8 Boho Camp Update

Yr 8 Boho Term 1


The 2016 Year 8 Camps program will start in Term 1. This camp forms part of the core camps the school runs at Years 7 and 8, which are a prerequisite for the school’s elective camps which start in Year 9. Students will attend the camp with their tutorial group and two tutorial groups will be at the camp at the same time, however, activities are done in the separate tutorial groups. Permission forms will be distributed in the first full week of school.

The camp will run for 4 days at Camp Boho South which is operated by Northcote High School and is the former Boho South State School. NHS has operated this camp since the late 1970’s. The activities on this camp include: an overnight hike, horse riding, and canoeing.

Due to the dry conditions in rural Victoria and the risk of fire these camps may be rescheduled if necessary. Decisions regarding fire danger will be made the day before the camp departs when fire weather warnings are issued. Camps may also return early if conditions change.


Year 8 Camp Dates 2016

(Forms are being allocated as we go to press)

Term 1


Camp 1 Tuesday 16th – Friday 19th February

Camp 2 Monday 22nd – Thursday 25th February

Camp 3 Monday29th - Thursday 3rd March 

Camp 4 Monday 7th – Thursday 10th March

Camp 5 Tuesday 15th – Friday 18th March

Camp 6 Monday 21st – Thursday 24th March


Alternative Dates if required:


Monday 18th – Thursday 21st April

Tuesday 26th – Friday 29th April

Tuesday 3rd – Friday 6th May


Mr. R. Griffiths

Camps Coordinator


Sports Inews

Swimming Carnival 

This year's Swimming Carnival is to be held on Friday 4 March 2016 at Northcote Aquatic Centre. It is the first of our large community sporting events. The event provides the opportunity to celebrate NHS and it's accomplishments. A variety of competitive events and novelty events will be held allowing all to participate. Attendance is compulsory for Year's 7-9, peer support leaders, sport's captains and school captains. It is optional for Year's 10, 11 and 12. Parents are encouraged to attend and any wishing to volunteer their time to assist with events please contact the sports coordinator.


We look forward to celebrating this event with you.
Ms Sarah Blanchard, Sports Coordinator


We have another busy sporting year approaching and would like all students to participate in as many sporting teams as possible. As in previous years you can sign up to as many activities as you like via My Northcote High.  Select the  extra-curricular tab on the left hand side followed by the sports tab, from here scroll to the bottom of the page and select the survey linked to your year group. Deadline for completing is 3pm on Fri  12th Feb 2016.

Staff as well as Parents are encouraged to assist with the coaching of teams, please contact me you be interested.


We look forward to seeing you/your child at training.
Ms Pauline Drinan, Sports Dept

Sport & PE guidelines

Some important reminders for all 7-10 students and families;

We encourage all Phys Ed and Sport students to be actively sun smart. Students should get in the habit of bringing water bottles and wearing hats, sunglasses and sunscreen, especially during these summer months.
All students are required to be in full Phys Ed uniform for ALL Phys Ed and Sport lessons. The uniform shop can supply the polo top and shorts or track pants. Students MUST also were lace up runners with the Phys Ed uniform. Students are provided time to change at the beginning and end of each PE/Sport class and are expected to be in full school uniform for other classes on that day. Each student will bring home a copy of our “Learning Agreement” over the next couple of weeks outlining the Uniform policy in more detail.
As it is a requirement to be changed for every Phys Ed and Sport class it is very important that all students mark their names on all articles of their Phys Ed and School uniforms. Our change rooms are used by a number of classes throughout the day, students often get their belongings ‘mixed up’ with others.
All year 7-10 students will have their own locker all valuables are to be left in these during Phys ed and sport classes. Students DO NOT leave valuables in the bags in the change rooms, leave them locked securely in their locker. The school is not responsible for any valuables that go missing from the change rooms. (See elsewhere in this issue for advice on insurance)

Inews Update 1

Photo: 7K's first day at School

Welcome Year 7

Over 270 Year 7 students started class on Friday January 29.  Welcome to our 90th year of enrolments!


Welcome to new staff

2016 sees a number of returning staff. We also welcome a number of new staff



A full list of new staff can been found here:



Teacher farewells

Farewell! see picture below –In the last week of 2015 we farewelled Francesca (Italian Teacher Assistant), Laura Ritchie, Isabel McGann, Catherine Sturdee, Andrew Aitchison, and Heather Cantwell.  All have been fantastic at seamlessly becoming part of our great school and also (of course) teaching very well.  Thank you and good luck.

Dr. Yali Shao's Award

The Victorian Multicultural Awards for Excellence recognise and celebrate the extraordinary contribution of a diverse array of Victorians to our vibrant and inclusive society. Our own Dr. Yali Shao  is the recipient of a 2015 award for her work.


YALI SHAO has been a teacher of Chinese language for over 21 years. She has taught the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) class at Northcote High School and the Chinese Fellowship Chinese School since 1995. Her students have benefited not only from her academic tertiary qualifications, but also for her experience in teaching VCE classes in the state education system. Yali brings a unique combination of her invaluable skills and experience in quality Chinese language teaching. Her interaction with students of various backgrounds and cultures at different levels truly makes her a respected teacher.


Inews Update 2

NHS Volleyball News

During the last week of school in 2015 four teams represented NHS in the Australian Volleyball School’s Cup . All teams displayed a wonderful team spirit, commitment and perseverance throughout the week.

Congratulations to all teams for their efforts. The Under 14 Girls finished 5th, Under 15 Girls finished  5th, the Under 15 Boys finished with a bronze medal and the Senior Girls didn't make the finals but played exceptionally well.

Thank you to all the players, parents, team managers and coaches for their support throughout the tournament. We are looking forward to next season which will begin early in Term 1. Trials will be held in Week 2 and training will begin in Week 3. Please check the bulletin for more information. 

Ms Beth Wright

Young Changemakers

Over the last 6 months, Yr 10 students at Northcote High School took part in the Young Changemakers program.  This practical example of local philanthropy involves students assessing local not-for-proifits and making decisions about how to distribute money as grants. This program was initiated by the Inner North Community Foundation and funded by the Clifton Hill / North Fitzroy Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank, and inspires young leaders to use energy and creativity to become community leaders in the community they live, and will one day work.

A five minute documentary about the program was launched by students from Northcote High School. They  hired the Westgarth Cinema, where 75 friends, family, donors, grantees and supporters came together to watch a film about young people reflecting on philanthropy.  Youthworx Productions, a local social enterprise, made the film. The film can be seen here. (click to follow link)

School Production 2016


Calling all actors, singers, dancers, stage technicians, make-up artists and all those who love theatre! Sign up to be a part of the 2016 NHS Production!


You must attend the meeting on Thursday 4 February at lunch in the hall if you would like to join in the fun.


Any questions? Have a chat to Ms Brogan, Ms E. Templin (formerly Este) or Mr J. Templin.


Inews Update 3

VCE Parent forum

Wednesday 10  February

6:30pm - Library

RSVP  Kate Challis on 94882332 or by email

[email protected]


Our 2016 Year 11 and 12 students have commenced their final years of Secondary Schooling.   This journey can be full of many emotions for us all - excitement, confidence, anticipation, apprehension, nervousness and stress.


Parent involvement is an essential component of this successful journey and we encourage parents to come along to our Parent Forum and share ideas about how we can best support our Year 11 and 12 students in their final years of secondary school.

Shane Gemmola Head of Senior School

Enrolment Policy Reminder

An important reminder to all parents. 

Over the last few years, Northcote High School has experienced unprecedented demand for Year 7 places. For entry in Year 7 in 2015 and again in 2016, over 450 applications for places were received, far in excess of the school’s capacity. 

For 2016, Northcote High School has accommodated all students for whom the school is the closest, but only some siblings of current students who do not live locally. 

The school enrols students into Year 7 in accordance with the Department of Education (DET) Placement Policy. Students are enrolled in the following priority order: 

1. Students for whom the school is the designated neighbourhood government school (measured in a straight line from door to door). 2. Students who no longer live locally, who have a sibling at the same permanent residence who is attending the school at the same time. 

3. Students seeking enrolment on specific curriculum grounds, where it is not provided by the student’s nearest government school 

4. All other students are prioritised by how close their permanent residence is to the school. 

In light of population growth projections, including increasing higher density in the inner suburbs, it is likely there will continue to be very few curriculum claims accepted. It is also likely that siblings of current students, whose families do not live locally, will not be accepted for Year 7 in future years. 

School Council has approved a revised enrolment policy, which can be read online on our website.

Things to know 1

Bell Times 2016

Click to enlarge Or download here

Bikes, Boards & Safety

Bikes can be parked at the school - there are several locations to secure them. Please also see the notice below regarding thefts and the need for proper locks for bikes.

All students need to wear a helmet to and from school.

Skateboards can be stored in Dr Butler's office near the General Office. Please ensure your son/daughter is wearing appropriate safety gear.  

Hoverboards cannot be brought onto the school premises, as they cannot be stored safely during the day and may pose a health and safety risk to staff and students.

Staying safe on the way home

This letter from a local motorist  is a reminder on road safety : "Last November I almost knocked over a Year 7 NHS boy who was on his way home in Thornbury. The accident was so close that he actually touched the bonnet of my car with both hands then overbalanced, almost falling over on the road in front of my car. The boy was on a skateboard and was listening to an ipod at the time. Luckily I was not travelling very fast ...This boy shot out of nowhere on the skateboard and I didn’t see him until his hands were on the bonnet of my car. He then toppled over, picked himself up, collected his skateboard and continued on down the road. The whole thing happened so quickly it was frightening. He had his earplugs in the whole time." 
 Please remind your son or daughter of the dangers of being in traffic with headphones on. The school also regularly reminds students of this . 

Beware Bike Thefts!

Over the last few years Northcote HS has worked with Northcote Police to reduce incidents of opportunistic day-time bike thefts. While the thieves are generally known to Police, the thefts are upsetting to students and recovery of bikes almost impossible.

The type of bikes targeted are those with combination style locks, which are often broken, hacked or the cable is cut. The bike thieves tend to ride up on scratch-built bikes (such as the one shown below) to the scene of the theft, dump it, and leave on a freshly stolen bike.(NHS has three such bikes). Police estimate the stolen bikes are then disposed of within the hour for a small amount of cash. 


The best deterrent is the U-Lock.
Also, please -
* do not park bikes off-site (eg: against a tree in the park)
*or against street signs,
*or leave them at school overnight.


CCTV footage of typical bike thief behaviour can be found on Youtube.

Things to know 2

Use of student images

 At Northcote High School we celebrate the efforts of our students by mentioning their participation in school events and their achievements in this newsletter. As you would have seen, we use photographs of students and sometimes examples of their own work in this newsletter. We also use photographs and examples of their work in the school magazine Ripples, at the end of the year. 

A low resolution electronic version of the newsletter is linked from our website. 


On the School website 

Small group photographs of students involved in school activities and excursions are also on our website, although here we do not usually identify these students by name, age or form group. Where larger scale photos are used (such as on the front of our homepage) or where the student could be easily identified, the school will seek student and parental consent before placing information and/or photographs on the website.



At Special Events 

Unless special arrangements have been made, we allow parents to record school performances, as this creates a memento that can be shared with other family members. Video or audio recording is permitted at school under a copyright licence paid by the Department of Education (DET) on behalf of all Government schools (AMCOS/ ARIA license). The only exception to this rule can be live performances such as the school production, where use of flash photography may be prohibited, as it might disturb/ temporarily blind those on stage. 


In the Media 

We sometimes invite local press and state media to school events and they are expected to follow DET and school policy on the publication of photographs of students. When a press story is about an individual or small group achievement, the school will seek parental consent before approving or passing on information and/or photographs. If you have any concerns about how photographs of your child may be used by the school, please let us know. 

Accidents, damage and Ambulance cover !

Parents are reminded that the Department of Education (DET), and Northcote High School do not provide personal accident insurance or ambulance cover for students. Parents and guardians of students, who do not have student accident insurance/ambulance cover, are responsible for paying the cost of medical treatment for injured students, including the cost of ambulance attendance / transport and any other transport costs. All private property ( including electronic devices)  brought to school by students, staff or visitors is not insured and the Department of Education (DET) and Northcote High School does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage.  That is, "owner onus" applies! This also includes motor vehicles and bikes belonging to students and parents. Student accident insurance/ambulance cover policies are available from some commercial insurers, and can be obtained by parents/guardians for individual students. 

Key Contacts

Contacting the right person!

This is a list of key contact staff at the school, with the direct number. To avoid delays and frustrations, please try to direct your enquiry to the appropriate person. 

Year Level Offices

Head of Junior School - Yr 7 & 8
Mr Gerard O'Shaughnessy -
9488 2370

Year 7 Year Level Program Leaders
Ms Jaymie Metcalf  & Mr Luke Slingsby - 9488 2343

Year 8 Year Level Program Leaders

Ms Audra Keane & Mr Rowan Hore - 9488 2320

Head of Middle School -  Yr 9 & 10
Ms Airlie Tudhope (formerly Swallow)  -  9488 2384

Year 9 Year Level Program Leaders

Mr Jamie Lethborg & Ms Sarah Green - 9488 2382

Year 10 Year Level Program Leaders

Mr Paul-Micah Sullivan & Ms Jane Lange - 9488 2327

Head of Senior School - Yr 11 & 12
Mr Shane Gemmola - 9488 2388

Year 11 Year Level Program Leaders 
Mr Colm Reale & Ms Carolyn Richards - 9488 2386


Year 12 Year Level Program Leaders

Ms Diana Corkery & Mr Simon Lasslett - 9488 2331

Student Wellbeing Office

Student Support Services Coordinator -

Ms Katie Archibald- 9488 2321/9488 2388

Student Welfare Coordinators:
Ms Cathy Lester, Mr Paul Giddy &
Ms Felicity Marlowe - 9488 2321/ 9488 2388

Adolescent Health Nurse - Merryl Arnold - 9488 2388

Pathways & Careers

Ms Kylie Witt - 9488 2301

Community Services


My name is Darcy Cornwallis. I'm currently preparing for First Year Arts at the University of Melbourne. I am tutoring in Literature (for which I received a 44 in 2015), Global Politics (42) and Classical Studies (for which I received a 46, the third highest mark in the state). I can help with essay writing skills, synthesis of information  and viewpoints, and help you construct ideas and arguments. If you're looking for advice and support in these subjects, give me a ring on 0466 508 661, or email me at [email protected]

From Public Transport Victoria

If you or your child are a users of public transport, please read the following important letter from PT Victoria. It contains information regarding the Victorian Student pass and acceptable proof of concession. 


Anglicare Fostercare 

Anglicare provides support to some of the most vulnerable families in Victoria. Anglicare's role is to recruit, train and support the special families who voluntarily provide foster care to vulnerable children. We are desperately seeking to increase the number of foster carers to ensure these children can be placed in a safe and nurturing home. Please read the attachment for more details

Financial assistance info. for parents

The Camps, Sports and Excursions Fund (see attached flyer)  helps ensure that no student will miss out on the opportunity to join their classmates for important, educational and fun activities. It is part of making Victoria the Education State and the Government’s commitment to breaking the link between a student’s background and their outcomes. The appplication form is enclosed and also available at our General Office.



From Dasha the lost dog

Shown here is a nice thank you note and flowers from the owners of Dasha the lost Golden Retriever, recovered by NHS students whilst faaffing about on Merri Park.


Careers & Pathways

Careers myNHS

The myNHS space has been updated, and so has the Careers Page. For information about topics related to careers, pathways, work experience, uni options and applications - visit this page regularly, as it will be updated throughout the year.


The VET page is also a valuable source of information about more hands-on options that can either lead more quickly to the workforce or enhance a VCE study program. Do not wait until your child is in VCE to engage with their planning for the future, though – the resources are intended for everyone, and if you feel something is missing, please let us know.


Students are encouraged to make individual appointments with our careers practitioner, Ms Kylie Witt. To make an appointment, please follow this link:      

You can also contact Kylie by phone or email via Compass (see below). 


Where are they now?


Our 90th birthday year is a good time to reflect on where life has taken our alumni. If you are an NHS alumnus, or know of someone who is, please make contact with the school this year to update your details. From a careers perspective, our current students can benefit enormously from finding out about where former students have ended up post-NHS, and what factors have shaped their career journeys.


NHS careers spotlight - Patrick O’Sullivan NHS 1971


Currently Chief Executive of the Urban Camp, a cooperative that facilitates city camps for students from country schools, Patrick commenced Year 7 in 1966 at NHS when it was boys only and during turbulent and interesting times. Teacher strike action in Year 10 during 1969 meant that his schooling was disrupted by a complete term of minimal teaching.


The Principal of the day, Stan Seabrooke, who was quite a visionary for his time, showed an interest in Patrick’s career prospects, recommending him for study at ANU and facilitating an interview with the ANZ bank; both of which led to the offer of a position. He simultaneously sat the Public Service entrance exam successfully, and began his post-school life working for 5 years in the Health Department. When the Labor Government under Prime Minister Gough Whitlam introduced free university study, Patrick returned to his first love – the fine arts – and completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts at Ballarat Uni (recently reborn as Federation Uni). A subsequent Bachelor of Education (Teaching) at Melbourne University led to 15 years as a secondary Art Teacher in regional Victoria. A move back to the city and a career change has seen 20 years involved in a community based cooperative which links country students to city life.


Patrick remembers NHS in the 60's & 70's as an uncompromising school both inside and outside of the classroom that prepared students to deal with the many and varied challenges that life and work situations presented. Several teachers, including the Principal, left an indelible mark and provided inspiration to make the most of opportunities that may arise in life.

If you are a former NHS student, and would like to share your career journey, please make contact with Kylie Witt. Or “dob in” someone whose story you think would be of interest to our school community.

How can you help?

Young people start to internalise career-related information quite early, based largely on the input they get from their environment. Who am I? What am I good at? What is the “right” job for me? They ask and answer these questions for themselves regardless of whether the answers are readily available to them. We can all reflect on moments in life when we internalised a message or assumption that may have later been revealed to be a misunderstanding, but which shaped certain parts of our career journey – eg: “I can’t do subject XYZ”.


Teenagers look to their parents, teachers, family friends, peers and various media sources for information. If they are to make wise choices, they need accurate information about a wide variety of options, as well as the capacity to reflect on their own skills, wishes and personal strengths. It is now widely accepted that a set of skills that enables young people to adapt to change, identify and embrace opportunities, and develop resilience for the inevitable tough times are more important for long-term career success than memorising a specific body of knowledge. That said, the capacity to acquire new knowledge and develop new skills is crucial to surviving in a world where rapid change is the only constant.

NHS addresses this continually through our formal curriculum, tutorial programs and extra-curricular activities. However, parents and the wider community play an equally (if not more) important role in assisting their children to find accurate and relevant information. Helping them to find opportunities to develop so-called “employability skills” in a variety of settings (eg: work, sport, volunteering, hobbies) will pay huge dividends later.


We are always looking for anyone who has time, expertise or insight to share with our students as they begin to prepare themselves for the world beyond their secondary schooling.


Activities we already run that might interest you include:

-        Speaking at an assembly

-        Talking about your career journey at a year level career expos

-        Running workshops on workforce-related issues (CVs, interviews, job-searching)

-        Articles for the newsletter

-        Classes or lunchtime sessions for small interest groups

-        Meeting with staff and/or students to discuss your field of expertise from a careers perspective

There is also plenty of scope for additional activities to be added, or for existing ones to be fine-tuned, so if you have any thoughts on this, please start by contacting

Ms Kylie Witt.
Careers Practitioner

Student Leaders 2016

School Captains 


Matthew Thomas (left), Lilian Chalmers (second from left),
Deputy Captains - Francesca Kenneally (third from left), Thomas Hughes (right)

Student Leaders

Year 11 Captains

Luke Bell Layton

Mira Tonkin

Year 10 Captains

Lily Mooney

Finn Mc Burney

Year 9 Captains

Isabella Ford

Noah Sutherland

Year 8 Captains

Gemma O’Toole

Alice Brown


Year 7 Captains
To be appointed

Music Captains Senior

Tristan Knight

Hoang Van Le

Music Captains Junior

Joshua Dulfer

Jaimee Doyle

Sport Captains Senior

Ted Clayton

Noah Wright

Holly Phillips

Julia Makridis


Sport Captains Junior

Oliver Harris

Leon Foggiato

Rhiarn Harrington

Katie Gevaux

International Captains

Wen Qi (Wendy) He

Thien Nguyen

Northcote High School Newsletter
New staff.docx
The Eureka Prize citations 2015.docx
Sean Bellew.jpg
Sean Bellew.jpg
Parent Forumflyer edited.pdf
Public Transport Letter.pdf
Public Transport Letter.pdf
Public Transport Letter.pdf
Yr 7 Picnic invite 2016 v3.pdf
Yr 7 Picnic invite 2016 v3.pdf
Year 8 Permission form 2016 (1).docx
NHS Campus News No. 1- DEC 2015.pdf
Northcote High Vision Values and Behaviours.pptx
Yr 7 Picnic invite 2016 v3.pdf