Mentone Girls' Secondary College Newsletter

09 November 2018
Issue Seventeen
Key Dates
Principal's Message
College Matters
Career and Pathways
Vocal Night
World Challenge
In our community
School information 
Mentone Girls' Secondary College
(03) 9581 5200
Corner Balcombe Road & Charman Road
Mentone, Victoria, 3194

Key Dates


Monday 12 November

9am, College Tour


Wednesday 14 November

Diwali celebrations


Friday 16 November

Year 11 exams commence 


Monday 19 November

Year 9 & Year 10 exams commence


Wednesday 21 November

2018 Unit 3 & 4 exams conclude


Monday 26 November

Report Writing - Pupil Free Day

2019 Student leaders training day 


Tuesday 27 November

Headstart - Week 1

8pm, Presentation Evening


Wednesday 28 November

Late start - No period 1 


Thursday 29 November

World Challengers depart


Monday 3 December

Headstart - Week 2


Tuesday 4 December

7pm,  2019 Enhancement program parent and student information session


Wednesday 5 December

Report Verification - 2.30pm finish


Thursday 6 December

Report Verification - 2.30pm finish 


Friday 7 December

10.15am College Assembly 


Tuesday 11 December

2019 Year 7 Orientation Day


Friday 21 December

Staff Training Day

Last day of year. Office closes. 

Principal's Message

Dear parents and families


Our Year 12 students are currently sitting their exams and are coming in to study in our library or to meet with their teachers to go over course content a few more times.  It was only two weeks ago that they were celebrating the end of their six years at the college at the Valedictory dinner with their parents. It was a splendid evening and I would like to thank the Director of Senior School, Sylvia Christopoulos and the Year 12 Student Managers, Leah Liakos and Julian Day for their care and guidance of the year 12 students this year. 


In the same week as the Valedictory Dinner, the Year 10 performance of 'Cosi' was playing for three nights. I attended the opening night and can report that the performances were very engaging and I congratulate the students on their performance as well as Geoff Perks for his direction. 


On Thursday 25 October we held the 15 year (Class of 2003) and 20 year (Class of 1998) reunion in the library. I was actually teaching at the college during the years and so it was terrific to be there to see some familiar faces.  I give my thanks to members of the Past Students' Association - Maureen Griffin, Philippa Cadman and Sue Box for hosting the event and to Carol Duggan, Assistant Principal (and past student) who is always on hand for these events to take the students on a tour of the school.  I encourage all of the departing students to join our Past Students Facebook page so they don’t miss a reunion in the future.


The Vocal Night held on the Wednesday 31 October showcased the talents of students from Year 7 to 12.  I am forever impressed by the talents of our students and congratulate Blanca West for her voice coaching.


The campus gardens and plants have responded to the spring weather.  The work and planning throughout the year of our gardener Tammy Schindler-Hands can be seen and enjoyed. The buildings have been transformed by our painters refreshing the exterior with fresh, new colours. 


2019 Student Leaders

It is with great pleasure that I announce our 2019 Student Leaders.

College Captains -  Ruby Crofts & Amethyst Parlanti
SRC President - Libby McQuiston

Senior School Leadership Team
Visual Arts - Alice Brill
Languages - Katie Barnshaw
Mathematics - Sophia Trias
Science/STEAM - Casey Boswell
Performing Arts - Angelina Hornidge
English - Charlotte Gallagher   
EAL - Annie Zhu
Humanities -  Brianna Strampel
Health/PE -  Megan Blignaut

House Captains

Sports – Belle Hopkins
Performing Arts – Meg Walker 


Sports – Jacqueline Lemieux
Performing Arts – Rebecca Smith


Sports – Caitlin Morris
Performing Arts - Darcie James


Sports – Natalie Desylva
Performing Arts – Dessy Turk

Please join with me in congratulating them on this wonderful achievement.  I also wish to thank all of the students who expressed interest in the positions as well.



Ms Linda Brown 


College Matters

Message from the School Council 

As a parent member of the School Council, I recently had the privilege of being part of the school’s strategic review - an intensive and detailed process which occurs in every Victorian state school on a four-year cycle and one that all parents should be aware of. 


The intent of the review process is to evaluate the school’s performance against its previous strategic plan and to use the results to inform the development of the school’s next strategic plan along with the improvement goals for the next four years.


In addition to looking at the previous strategic plan, the review also assesses the school’s performance against the Department of Education and Training (DET) framework for improvement of student outcomes with its four priority areas of Excellence in Teaching and Learning, Professional Leadership, Positive Climate and Community Engagement in Learning.


Throughout the review, the school had the support of a School Review Panel. The MGSC panel was extensive and included an independent accredited reviewer, a Senior Education Improvement Leader (SEIL) from the DET, the principal, assistant principals and school leaders, two principals from other Victorian high schools and school community members, including students, parents and the School Improvement Team. This collaborative approach allowed for a deeper analysis of data and performance, with no stone or opinion left unturned!


The MGSC review included evaluation of a wealth of data including:

  • NAPLAN and VCE results, benchmarked against other similar schools (those with similar demographics)
  • School performance reports
  • Parent Opinion Surveys
  • Student Attitudes to School Surveys
  • Staff Opinion Surveys
  • Staff feedback on student voice and agency, student leadership, curriculum content, teaching practice and strategic plan goals.

During the review, the panel heard opinions from both parent and student focus groups and undertook observations in classrooms to get a first hand look at teaching practice and student engagement.


The outcomes of the review and the new direction for the school will be shared once finalised over the next few months. However, there were a few takeaways I wanted to highlight:


1. MGSC’s existing performance data is impressive, which was endorsed by the external members of the panel. Whilst there are always areas for improvement, the next strategic plan will definitely be making an already good school, better. 

2. The students, from across all year levels, who participated in the review were extremely good ambassadors for the school. They were open, honest and articulate and expressed opinions in a constructive manner. They also enjoyed the experience, reflecting that the use and outcomes from data that is collected from students (opinion surveys etc) should be discussed more openly to encourage proper participation. 

3. There was minimal parent engagement with the review,  with only myself and one other parent in the parent forum. This is despite requests for parents to join the parent panel through newsletters and on Compass. The review really is a chance to shape the future of school and I strongly encourage all parents to make the most of every feedback opportunity moving forwards. 

4. Linda Brown and her team are certainly working hard to ensure the best for our girls! Exciting times ahead! 


Geri Sumpter

Council member 

Exam arrangements Year 9, 10 & 11


The exam period commences on Friday 16 November and runs till Friday 23 November.  Students can check individual exam timetables and rooms on Compass.
The Year 11 exams start on Friday 16 November.
Year 9 and 10 classes WILL run on this day.
The Year 9 and 10 exams will run from Monday 19 November to Friday 23 November. 
There are NO Year 9 or 10 classes in this week.
Please note that Year 9, 10 and 11 students only attend when they have an exam

Booklist - Second-hand options

Booklists will soon be distributed to students. They will all be online this year.

There are a number of second-hand options for families, including a Facebook page set up by the PFA – MGSC Book Swap and Sell.

Further details, including the list of texts from 2018 that are being used again in 2019, will be published on Compass.

Canteen Cafe - Online ordering now available

The canteen operators, Bocca Foods, have introduced online ordering. By using the service students can avoid queues and receive a 5% discount.  Orders can be placed up to 10am on the same day.

Registration is required at

Presentation Night 

All MGSC families are warmly invited to the Presentation Evening, our final formal event for 2018 celebrating the outstanding achievements of students in Years 7 to 11.  The award recipients have been notified. 

This year’s guest speaker is Ms Shanthi Pillai (Class of 2008 ) who currently works at CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency and innovation catalyst.

Tickets are free and can be reserved on this link :


Past Students - 20 year reunion

At the end of October we welcomed past students from the Class of 1998 for their 20 year reunion.  Attendees were able to catch up with each other and former teachers still on staff including Linda Brown,  Luke De Munk, Dave Shillabeer, Michael Warden, and Geoff Perks.   A highlight was being able to tour the buildings and see the changes and upgrades and the refurbished library made an excellent venue for the Reunion. 



Ms Carol Duggan & Ms Bronwyn Moline

Assistant Principals


VCE jumpers at Costume World

Current Year 10s can now purchase or lay-by VCE jumpers from Costume World. 

Second-hand uniform items

Families are encouraged to pass on uniform items they no longer need to the second-hand uniform shop to prepare for the expected demand as students prepare for 2019. Summer and winter items are needed and blazers or jumpers must have the new logo.

Items can be donated or sold on consignment. Reimbursement after sale of items is by bank transfer. 

Please label all items clearly with: 

  • Seller's name and contact details
  • BSB and Account Number

All items can be handed into the General Office. 

VCE jumpers needed

The maroon jumpers worn by Year 11 and 12 students are urgently needed to meet the demand from Year 10 students going into Year 11.  Only jumpers with the new logo  will be accepted. 

Year 12s please consider passing on your jumpers now! 

Volunteers needed for 2019 

At the end of this year Donna Harrison and Diane Weston, two of the volunteers in our Second-hand Uniform Shop, will be stepping down.


Geri Sumpter has kindly offered to take over the morning session in 2019. This will be on Friday mornings  from 8.15 to 9.15am.   If anyone is able to assist Geri in the shop next year, please contact her on 0423 103 331. There will be opportunities for training and practical experience before the end of the year. 

Career and Pathways

Girls in Property 

Fifteen  Year 9 students took part in an initiative called 'Girls in Property'  held at Foy’s Arcade in the city.


The program is aimed at helping young females understand the career possibilities and pathways in the property industry. 

They were given the opportunity to listen to and interact with a number of industry facilitators and were also given a site tour of Melbourne Central, highlighting the many retail property opportunities.

After a busy but exciting day, the girls made their way home with their pink high-vis vests and goodie bag in tow.


Ms Rebecca Poulos

Career & Pathways Manager



Five aerobics teams comprising students from Years 9 to 11 competed in the Spring Challenge Aerobics competition in Geelong.  It was a successful, fun day to end another fabulous year of aerobics. MGSC teams placed as follows: 


Stage 1 (Year 7 & 8) - 5th, 6th, & 9th
Stage 2 (Year 8) - 5th
Creative Stage - 1st for the Dynamos


Fantastic results for all involved and a great way to be welcomed back from leave during term 3.


Congratulations to everyone!


Ms Tess Molina

Head of Aerobics




Over the past three weeks, all levels from Year 7 to 10 have participated in the annual Public Speaking Competition. All girls presented in class and one from each form was chosen to perform in front of the whole cohort. 


The standard has been excellent and girls are learning invaluable skills, both for their future academic pathways and for workforce opportunities.


Place-getters will be presented with their certificates during a forthcoming College Assembly, while the winners will receive book vouchers from Beaumaris Books. The winner of the Year 10 competition will deliver her speech at the assembly 


Ms Anne Gamble

Head of English and Literacy

Vocal Night

On Wednesday 31 October, MGSC held its Halloween themed Vocal Night.


Filled with spooks, scares and plenty of singing, it was definitely a night to remember. It was great to see everyone dressing up and getting into the spirit of Halloween. We had an excellent turn out with friends, family and peers coming to support the students and the talent showcased was amazing! It was incredibly heartwarming to see every student show so much support towards one other before, during, and after each performance.


A big thank you to Ms Blanka West, Mr Tim Veevers and Ms Wendy Harvey for making this night possible; as well as all of the singers who performed. Without them, this incredible night would not have happened.


Kira McArdle and Eden Dubinovski (Year 9) 




The students had a great time at Sovereign Hill. They saw an underground mine, made candles, rode on a horse carriage, and panned for gold. Although they did not find any specks of gold, their highlight was actually eating meat pies and sausage rolls.


Bridging Garden

The garden is making great progress. The four hearts have been planted out.  Next we'll be adding mulch and then fixing the 'paths' around the hearts.


Ms Ekaterina Xanthopoulos

 ELC/EAL Coordinator



Our Intermediate Basketball team is in the State Finals! 


Following success against tough competition at the Regional Finals the team will be competing at the State Basketball finals later in the month.


Congratulations to  Mikala Clarke, Olivia Hampson, Tess Hemingway, Eleni Kourtis, Sienna Lee, Montana Roussety, Emily Ryan, Marion Scully, Sanju Suresh and Daisy Walker  and their coach Mr Gavin Bell. 



Mr Philip Hull

Interschool Sport Coordinator


World Challenge

This week teams 1, 3 and 4 will be bringing all their gear (not their spending money) in for the day before attending the Build-up Day session in the JLC at 3.30pm to 6pm.


Parents are welcome to come from 6.00pm to 6.30pm.


Team  2 will have their Build-up Day session on Thursday 15 November.


World Challenge has arranged a free Bangkok city tour on arrival on the 30 November as well as a cultural workshop in Kathmandu during the early part of the expedition.


If you have not yet got medical clearance or the Nepal visa, can you please arrange to have these done as soon as possible. The declaration of medical clearance will need to be uploaded to World Challenge (the visa does not).


Hint #20: Use cough lozenges to avoid "mountain dry throat" when hiking cold, dry, high altitude tracks.


Mr Michael Warden

World Challenge Coordinator

Bohemian Rhapsody Rapture

It was a great night with all seats sold out.


Thank you to the whole school community for supporting the Red Hot Chili Steppers, World Challenge team. The total raised from the evening was over $1000, going directly to the Nepalese community, Mother Children’s Arts Foundation.


Ms Fiona Faulkes

Red Hot Chili Steppers Team Co-Leader


In our community

Life saving bronze course at Black Rock 


Sandy Soccer Club trials


Indigenous tennis participation program

Chelsea Heights Tennis Club have received a participation grant for children who identify as having Aboriginal origins.  More information here: 


Foster Care Forum 


Her Place Exhibition

A free exhibition honouring the lives and contributions of women throughout Victoria. Many of the women featured in the exhibition have been inducted onto the Victorian Honour Roll of Women.

Netball clinic 


Parkdale Pre-school vacancies


Mordialloc Beach Primary 150th

Join 150th anniversary celebrations on Saturday 24 November, 12 noon to 3pm. 

RSVP to 

Mentone Park Primary Colour Run Fundraiser


School information 

General Office

8.15 am to 4.15pm

Monday to Friday 

Tel 03 9581 5200

Principal Team

Principal - Linda Brown

Assistant Principal - Bronwyn Moline

Assistant Principal - Carol Duggan

Director of Junior School - Lisa Kosack

Director of Middle School - Deb Jarvis

Director of  Senior School - Sylvia Christopoulos

Attendance & Absences

Students should aim for an 100% attendance record. They are expected to attend school regularly and remain at school and in class until officially dismissed.

Year 7-10 absences: Parents/guardians use Compass to log when and why before 9am.

VCE student absences:  Parents/guardians contact the VCE Office on 9581 5231 before 9am and update attendance on Compass.  If contact is not made on the day of absence, an explanatory note must be brought from home on the day the student returns and handed in to the VCE Office for VCE students. All notes should be written and signed by a parent/guardian and must clearly show the student’s name, form and date of absence.

Late arrival - after 8.50am

Years 7-10 must sign the arrival book at the General Office and take the white late slip to class. 

VCE students sign in at the VCE Office.


It is your responsibility to ensure your child attends school every day. Learn about your responsibilities and what you can do to help your child's attendance. Schooling is compulsory for children and young people aged from 6 -17 years. School participation will help your child develop important skills, knowledge and values to further their learning and participation in the community. Attending school every day also helps your child develop crucial social and emotional skills such as good communication, resilience and the ability to work in teams.

Children and young people who regularly attend school and complete Year 12 have better health outcomes, better employment outcomes, and higher incomes across their lives. 

For more information see:  DET Attendance and missing school.



Second Hand Uniform Shop

Open during the term on:

Tuesday 2.45pm - 3.45pm

Wednesday 8.15am - 9.15am

Reimbursement after sale of items is by bank transfer. Cheques are not issued. 

Please label all items for the second-hand uniform shop clearly with: 

  • Seller's name and contact details
  • BSB and Account Number

Please hand in items to the General Office. 

If you have any queries please, contact Carolyn Page, Finance Manager.


Uniform Supplier - Costume World 

Shop 5 1291 Nepean Highway, Cheltenham

T: 9584 7006

Assessment & Reporting

A parents' guide to assessment and reporting can be found on Compass under School Documentation, which is located in the Community tab on the menu at the top of the page. The guide is also on the website under the Curriculum tab.  Guide for parents.

Library hours

8.30am to 4.30pm, school days

Facilities Hire

Many of the school's spaces are available to hire including the gym and lecture theatre. 

For information on hire rates and availability, contact Bronwen Peterson, Facilities Manager

on 9581 5200.


Online ordering is available through the canteen operators Bocca Foods. 

Register at


Like and follow us on Facebook. 



Statement of commitment to child safety 

Mentone Girls’ Secondary College is committed to safety and wellbeing of all children and young people. This will be the primary focus of our care and decision-making.

Mentone Girls’ Secondary College has zero tolerance for child abuse. Mentone Girls’ Secondary College is committed to providing a child safe environment where children and young people are safe and feel safe, and their voices are heard about decisions that affect their lives. Particular attention will be paid to the cultural safety of Aboriginal children and children from culturally and/or linguistically diverse backgrounds, as well as the safety of children with a disability.

Every person involved in Mentone Girls’ Secondary College has a responsibility to understand the important and specific role he/she plays individually and collectively to ensure that the wellbeing and safety of all children and young people is at the forefront of all they do and every decision they make.  Please refer to our policies on our website: for detailed information.

Mentone Girls' Secondary College Newsletter
Aboriginal Partcipation collection form.pdf