The Brunswick Star  

20 February 2018
Issue One
message from the principal
important dates
assistant principals
welcome to 2018 @ BSC
leading the way
senior school
year 7 transition
BSC presents......
year 7 makes a song and dance
word on the street
adventures abroad
serenading adela
Brunswick Secondary College
03 9387 6133
47 Dawson Street
Brunswick Victoria 3056, Victoria, 3056

message from the principal

Welcome to 2018 at BSC

and to the first edition of 
The Brunswick Star
for the year.  

We look forward to sharing student, staff and community successes with you throughout the year


2018 marks an exciting year for Brunswick Secondary College.  We will see the completion of our major building works, we will conduct our School Review which will guide our Strategic Plan for the period of 2019-2022 and we welcome two new Assistant Principals.


The new APs will lead work in the portfolio areas of Teaching & Learning and Climate for Learning. These portfolios are part of the framework that the Department of Education and Training uses. These areas will direct focused effort on key areas that are known to have the greatest impact on school improvement. 


Samantha Milbourn (Assistant Principal – Teaching and Learning) and Claudia Johnson (Assistant Principal – Climate for Learning) introduce themselves to you later in this issue. I hope that in the near future you have the opportunity to meet and  converse with them about the work they will lead at Brunswick Secondary College.


All year levels have started the year really well: there is a very productive and positive feel around the school. 


We look forward to welcoming Year 7  and other new families at the Welcome Evening event (Tuesday, February 20) and our Senior School families are invited to the Success Integrated information session (Wednesday, February 21)  this week.  We encourage all families to participate in events so that together we can build strong working relationships.  Commitment to this approach will help support every student at the school to achieve success.    

Alumni 2017

We wish our alumni students of the Class of 2017 all the best as they embark on further study, work or travel. We are delighted with the outcomes for this group of students who were justly rewarded for their efforts last year and who achieved so highly.  They are excellent role models for our current students and we hope that they remain connected to BSC through the Alumni Association and/or by visiting and attending school events where they will always be welcome.


If you, or someone you know,  would like to register with the BSC Alumni Association,  just submit the details here.


2018 Co-Curricular Program

Our full range of Co-Curricular Programs for 2018 are published and started last week.  All students are encouraged to participate in at least one activity.  The breadth of opportunities  is again wide and I thank the supervising teachers for their commitment to this ongoing and  successful program.


Click here to access the 2018 Co-Curricular Handbook for more details about the program.

A list and schedule of current clubs and activities can be viewed and/or downloaded from the handbook.

Professional Practice Days

This year every teacher in a Victorian Government School is entitled to one professional practice day per term for full time teachers (pro-rata for part-time employees), where they are  released from their scheduled duties to focus on the improved delivery of high quality teaching and learning.  Brunswick Secondary College teachers have nominated their professional practice day for semester one, with a spread of teachers across each day. These professional practice days allow teachers the opportunity to plan together or to assess work together.


2018 Building Project

Our building works are progressing well in spite of some unavoidable technical delays.  At this stage, we are tracking to have H Block (Food classrooms and  Canteen), D Block (Performing Arts theatre and Instrumental Music classrooms), D Block South (General Purpose Classrooms) and the refurbished hockey field all ready for use in Term 2. The retractable seating for the theatre is scheduled to be fitted starting February 26. 


I thank students and staff for their cooperation during this phase of building works which has them without the use of the hockey field Term 1.  We continue to use the gym at lunchtime and recess so that as much recreation space is available to students as possible. Additionally, the staff car park is being used at lunch and recess times for small ball games eg handball.  


International Guest

We have the honour of having been asked to host renowned Canadian educator Dr Mary Jean Gallagher this Friday afternoon. 


Representatives from Hume Central College and Roxburgh Secondary College will be joining us in a privileged opportunity to present work with a literacy focus to Dr Gallagher.  Brunswick Secondary College staff will present our work in the Multi-literacies in Secondary School Science project which is a collaboration with Australian Catholic University, Roxburgh College, Penola College and Caroline Chisholm College.  We will share more on this project and Dr Gallagher’s visit in our next newsletter.

important dates

Please see the attached document for a list of important dates for 2018.  

This list may be amended as the year progresses,  and any updated documents will be included in future editions of the Brunswick Star.


assistant principals

Claudia Johnson

Claudia Johnson

Assistant Principal

Climate for Learning


I am thrilled to join the Brunswick Secondary College community. As a local, I have been drawn to the college by the remarkable and positive changes that have been happening over recent times, with the strong sense of community and rising student achievement data. The status that BSC is developing as a great school was known to me as an education professional and is something of which we should all feel immensely proud.


My most recent position was as a campus leader at Albert Park College, but I have held many roles in curriculum and student wellbeing across three government schools over almost 25 years in my teaching career. My professional experiences also include co-authoring several textbooks and working across three universities. My own studies in a Masters of Education are on pause while I immerse myself in this role and continue to raise my family of three with my husband. I have been privileged to work with some incredible people and organisations and I bring these experiences and expertise to BSC with excitement to build on the wonderful work of current staff and students.


My responsibilities include leading staff, students and families to develop a climate for learning that is supportive, challenging, focused and respectful. This can be seen in teacher professional learning in building classroom routines that lead to an excellent place for learning; in increasing opportunities for families to become more involved in the school based on professional and personal capacities and skills; and working directly with students as a classroom teacher, as a visible presence in the yard, and through team teaching to continue, and improve on, the current trajectory of high-achieving and happy students.


Some initial outcomes include publishing clear rights, responsibilities and expectations for students, staff, and families so that every student is consistently challenged, focussed and supported to perform in class at their very best. You will find more information on this in this newsletter edition. Excellent learning environments are clearly and delightfully evident in my observations in classrooms, and respectful behaviour is overwhelmingly apparent as I make daily visits to the yard to engage with students. The college goal is to guarantee that the very best environments and behaviours are evident everywhere and, at all times, to ensure a climate for learning that is comparable to the very best schools you find anywhere.


Thank you to the students, families and staff who have already welcomed me so warmly into the community. I look forward to building strong relationships in the BSC community, and welcome families and community members to contact me with aspirations, suggestions or concerns about our school climate.

Samantha Milbourn

Samantha Milbourn

Assistant Principal

Teaching & Learning


Thank you to the Brunswick Secondary College community for welcoming me so kindly to the college. It was lovely to begin the first day of the school year with students at assemblies and to meet new Year 7 students and parents who, no doubt, felt as nervous and as excited as I did. While walking around the school during break times, students have approached me with openness and kindness to help me learn about the school and tell me about their ideas for their learning. It is my responsibility to lead improvements in teaching and learning so that all students achieve success. This is a very challenging task as BSC already has exceptionally advanced teaching practices.


I will oversee the development of curriculum programs, which includes curriculum development and evaluation, and assessment and reporting. I will also provide leadership on the best research-supported teaching strategies that provide the greatest impact on learning growth for students. My previous leadership portfolios at Mill Park Secondary College prepared me well for this challenge as I led significant improvements to curriculum programs and teacher instruction during my 15 years there.


When visiting classes during the day at BSC, it has been a pleasure to see the wonderful teaching by the staff and the learning experienced by students. I have commenced work with the incredibly talented Teaching & Learning Team to consider ways in which improvement can be achieved.


Within my first few weeks at BSC I have witnessed many occasions of students and staff helping each other to stay organised and achieve their goals together. These experiences and the support I’ve received in my transition to the school have filled me with pride at becoming a member of the BSC community.


welcome to 2018 @ BSC

Wednesday, January 31, brought a sea of happy faces through the BSC gates. New faces and old friends came together to form the 2018 school community - eager to embark on a brand new year.

The 2018 Year 7 cohort were greeted by Principal, Karen Harris and Assistant Principals, Claudia Johnson and Samantha Milbourn.  While they patiently waited for the school day to begin, they mingled, met new friends and reflected on the moment -  having reached a significant milestone in their lives.


Swarming through and around our newest community members came the familiar faces of older students and staff - meeting and greeting each other with smiles and laughter  - as old friends do.  Students joining the school at higher year levels were also introduced to their new school and peers.



Just as significant,  today welcomed our determined Year 12 students as they begin their journey through their final year of secondary school and toward a life beyond Brunswick.


The first day of school always brings an air of excitement and expectation - and we are set for a busy and successful year. 

We wish every student
a positive and exciting year of learning ahead.

We look forward to
sharing and celebrating
the experience together!

Click on any gallery to enlarge

leading the way

Leadership Camp

Members of the SRC Executive attended a 2-day camp at , located 2 hours from Melbourne in Trafalgar East. The students participated in a range of activities including a Monster Circuit - which saw them scale vertical walls, squeeze through tyres, swing over a pit, walk a beam over a muddy lake and belly crawl through mud. Other activities included walking across a 60 metre high skybridge above a lake, climbing 21 metres to a summit window to abseil down a sheer wall and working as a team in laser skirmish.

These activities are designed to present students with a range of physical challenges, mental puzzles, tests of skill and endurance and the opportunity to face tasks that they may not have thought themselves capable.

The aim is to provide opportunities for each student to gain a sense of personal achievement and a sense of belonging to the team in order that they can work cohesively and strategically to achieve set goals.


Caroline Hart

Student Wellbeing Coordinator

The 2018 SRC Executive embraced this leadership program and put every effort into getting the most out of the experience.  Not only did they acquire new skills, they also demonstrated tremendous support for each other. All the captains were quick to appreciate that each individual brings a unique set of skills and experience to the team  - resulting in a spirit of respect and cooperation.


Isabel Weaver

BSC  School Captain 2018

Year 12

At the beginning of the school year,  the Student Executive piled into two minibuses and made our way to Summit Camp.

The following two days - full of fun activities - challenged us both mentally and physically!

The Monster Circuit was my favourite activity by far - we all had to work hard to accomplish difficult tasks as a team.

I was surprised and happy to see how quickly we all were able to get along and work together at camp. I think we can look forward to a fantastic year ahead!


Antonio Cowell

BSC School Captain 2018

Year 12

The student leadership camp was a great experience. Having the opportunity to work together with other captains - forming new bonds and friendships  - will help us to become a  cohesive team.

The activities at the camp were great as they showed us how we will react to challenges through the year as well as the value of supporting and encouraging each other.

Damian Christakis

Language Captain

This camp was fantastic - it has helped me become a more confident person. I learned fantastic ledersip and team skills that will be helpful throughout this year, but also useful throughout life after BSC.


Diya Ahuja

Peer Support Captain 

All the activities were really fun. We all got out of our comfort zone and pushed ourselves. A lot of the activities were pretty hard, but teamwork and unity are what helped all of us through.


Adam Cooper

Science Captain 

The camp was a brilliant team building experience that brought the whole student leadership team closer together.



Isabella Harding

Public Speaking & Debating Captain

Year 10

At camp, the various captains were introduced to one another. I liked getting to know them all and discussing our objectives for this year.

Eric Seychell

SRC Chairperson

Year 11

The camp was really fun and was a great opportunity to bond with the other captains. We discussed our plans for this year and I am very excited for the changes we are hoping to make.


Salvatore Rosagrata

VCAL & VET Captain


The Summit was an experience that I can’t find words to explain. The snowy river challenge was difficult, but that challenge was what made it exciting. It brought out whom I really am.


Elaine Luo

International Student Captain

Year 12


I’ve learned that a team works better if they’re helping each other. The best time was the lake after the Monster Course.


Timothy F

House Captain - Lan Se

Year 10


The camp was a lot of fun; I met new friends and became closer to the student leadership group. The monster course challenged us all as a team but we all managed to complete it covered head to toe in mud.


Jesse Doherty

House Captain - Oro

Year 11

The camp was great. I enjoyed being able to get to know the team better.



Peter Biancofiore

Media Captain

Year 12

The camp was an excellent opportunity for the new student leadership of 2018 to become acquainted and start thinking about ideas for the year, as well as going through a few obstacle courses.

Ellie Constantinou

Social Justice and Community Captain

The camp was a valuable and memorable experience - there was so much laughter!  We took the opportunity to brainstorm ideas for 2018 as well as participate in activities that pushed us outside our personal comfort zones. We all gave this  a go and supported and encouraged each other.


Gabriel Tobing

Peer Support Captain

Teamwork was the key to the success of this camp. I really enjoyed the Skybridge Challenge as it helped me overcome fears and made me reach for my full potential. The Monster Circuit was really exciting - we had to go through mud pits, over cargo wheels and crawl under barbed wire - working as a team to get through.  I made new friends, improved my teamwork skills, faced my fears - and had an extremely enjoyable and exciting time!


Jude Angove

Music Captain

There are captains from all senior school year levels, so it was good to get to know them and to understand their goals for the year and to learn to work with them.  The experience will really help us in the year ahead.

senior school


Sarah Meads

Senior School Leader

Senior School students, particularly Years 11 & 12, have begun the year with a very clear focus on achieving their best outcomes in VCAL, VET and/or VCE. It is great to see the enthusiasm and positive attitude, and I know it will be a great asset for all the students over the coming year.


BSC  staff aim to provide the best possible support to all students to reach their goals.  In addition to scheduled classes, the CCP program offers English, Maths, Art Folio, Language and Performing Arts and other clubs so that senior students can use the opportunity to extend and hone their skills, study together or  receive extra help whenever required. Alongside this, COGS sessions will provide students with helpful strategies for time management and study habits, life skills, health and wellbeing, as well as to help guide them with planning for life beyond Brunswick.


Additionally,  students have access to careers guidance counselling with Veronika Khatountseva, with whom they can address any concerns about their careers pathways. Also, students are always welcome to discuss any issues with their Year Level Coordinator, teachers and myself. 


While the senior school years can be busy, daunting and demanding,  it is also a time when students mature, life-long memories are made and friendships are firmly established.  We know that if staff, parents and students work together, support and help each other,  it will be a wonderfully exciting  and rewarding experience for us all.



Tarini Dhavala

Year 12

My last year of high school! I have started the year as a normal year - but I am working harder and will try not to get stressed.

Sophie Oehlman

Year 12

I am approaching Year 12 as just another year of school - but the expectations feel so much higher.


Eric Seychell

Year 11

I have settled in really well this year and I am trying to experience as much as I can at BSC before starting Year 12 next year.  

Emma Barnes

Year 12

My advice is that senior students manage their part-time work schedule around their studies so that you can fit everything in!

James Donner

Year 12

I am resolved to keep up to date with all my subjects so that I don't get bogged down or stressed out.


Blair Phan

Year 12

The best way to tackle Year 12 is to try your best and not to give up.  Be positive!

year 7 transition

Sally Goss

Junior School Leader

The commencement of the  2018 school year has been as busy as ever, but especially so for our new Year 7 students.

Allocation of lockers, finding classrooms and organising their resources are challenges that they have all tackled!  all the students are mindful of becoming more independent and are happily putting forward their best effort. At the same time they are confident enough to ask for  help, advice and of course, directions! 


Our Peer Support Captains and Leaders have spent significant time with our newest members of our community, most notably during Performing Arts day. This interaction with the older students has been beneficial for all.  Seeing a familiar and friendly face as you pass them in the hallway or at the canteen provides an avenue for building friendships across all year levels, and our older students enjoy the chance to lead,  mentor and support their peers through these important first weeks of high school.


I am pleased to say that the Year 7 cohort have approached thier transition with a positive, can-do attitude and, as the days and weeks pass, will become as comfortable at BSC as if they were old hands. It is a delight to see them so enthusiastically engaged in their high school experience: this will translate into good learning outcomes adn healthy, happy relationships both inside and outside of the school.


Well done to all!





Will Campbell

Year 7

Starting hgh school is just like going into the first day at primary school except everything is bigger - the buildings and the number of students. Learning where classrooms are, teachers names, students names - it can be pretty hard to settle in with so many things on your mind. I don't focus on that -  my mind would overload! I just listen to my teachers and ask for help if I need it.  I have also started learning trombone which is a lot of fun.












Adeline Fallon

Year 7

School days are very different from primary school - it can be confusing.  You have to move between different classes, different teachers and different rooms, you have keep organised!  I am getting used to it and I am really enjoying it though.  It is a challenge and can be hard at times - but I am still enjoying it. I really enjoyed the Performing Arts day and have started drum lessons here at school. 


Liliana Streeter

Year 7

I have found it quite easy to settle in.  It has been hard to make sure you have the right books, then get to the classroom on time, especially when the class is not in F Block where our lockers are.  But so far I have remembered where all my classes are and I am having a lot of fun.  I am really enjoying having instrumental music lessons - I learn the drums. I think the new buildings are going to be great and it is exciting to watch the building happening.


Seamus Ericsson

Year 7

I  think ahead and try to do things like get to my classrooms early and think about what classes I have that day, because I think that makes things a lot easier. The biggest difference from primary school is that you have to move around more. I am looking forward to seeing the hockey field in action again too.


BSC presents......

Lindel Bell



The 2018 whole-school production Oliver! was officially launched this week.  Students were invited to an information session held on Thursday with students eager to be involved.


Since our first whole school production in 2013, Fame, this co-curricular activity has exploded in popularity. Fame enjoyed a dedicated cast and crew of just 40 hardworking and talented students.  By contrast, this weeks meeting regarding Oliver! drew an enthusiastic crowd of  over 160 students.


Whether on stage, backstage, in the orchestra pit or elsewhere,  there are numerous ways for students to bring their skills, talents and passion to the show - and we will welcome them all!


Production offers so many opportunities for students to shine - while some enjoy performing on stage, others commit to the orchestra;  behind the scenes the backstage crew design sets, source and/or create props, manage set movement, operate lighting or can even can work on marketing and promotions. So many different skills are required to make a production a truly great experience - and every individual effort is important tot he entire company.


It is also no secret that Production is a fabulous way to have fun, to meet others from all different year levels and build skills and confidence - so we applaud the enthusiasm our students have shown already! 


To register an interest in Oliver!  students must enter their details online via Compass Newsfeed.

Scenes from Cameron Macintosh' London production of Oliver!

year 7
makes a song and dance

Timothy Roach

Head of Learning - Performing Arts


The Year 7 Performing Arts Day is primarily an opportunity for students to experience the many opportunities available to them by the BSC Performing arts faculty.  For many students, this is their first opportunity to investigate this learning area and many have not yet considered their potential in this area.  It is the chance to try something entirely new on a more informal basis - try an instrument or perform with their peers - and often they find a passion that they never knew they possessed! 


It was a noisy day - filled with the sounds of students trying instruments -  violins, guitars, percussion, trumpets etc - and singing songs.  They also learned some basic dance choreography and gained drama skills. To follow this, they were asked to design and perform an act at the end of the day.   All students were asked to contribute to this performance - by playing music, singing, dancing or acting - so preparation and collaboration were key components.  Helping students to work together is the highlight of the day as you can witness the confidence in their own ability and creativity grow.


To lead, support and encourage the Year 7 students, the Peer Support Leaders (Year 10 students) were assigned to stay with each Year 7 class, assisting the teachers and younger students as they moved through the different activities.  Engaging with their younger peers in this way is another step along a path of smooth transition into high school -  building connections, fostering friendship across the year levels and further establishing their sense belonging to the BSC community. It was fabulous to watch the friendships forming and to see the activities bringing all the students together.​


To lead, support and encourage the Year 7 students, the Peer Support Leaders (Year 10 students) were assigned to stay with each Year 7 class, assisting the teachers and students as they moved through the different activities.  Engaging with their younger peers in this way is another step along a path of smooth transition into high school -  building connections, fostering friendship across the year levels and further establishing their sense belonging to the BSC community.


The cohort certainly embraced the spirit of the Performing Arts Day and gave it their best shot. They all brought enthusiasm and energy to every class and activity and can be proud of their achievements. We look forward to many of them returning to join the PA learning area by taking up instrumental music lessons and/or joining one of our many Co-Curricular activities.


Mia Brown

Year 7

I really enjoyed the day because it was a chance to work with different people. I like acting, and it was good to see what other people liked and what their interests and strengths are.




Linn Thit

Year 7

We spent time working as a class to make a nursery rhyme into a play - A Sailor Went to Sea Sea Sea.  Throughout the the day we got to work as a team and create better bonds with each other. It was also a lot of fun.

Josephine Coyle

Year 10

Peer Support Leader


The Year Seven Performing Arts Day was a really great experience for me as a Year 10 Peer Support leader. It was a chance to really get to know the Year 7 students.  This is a pretty rare chance, particularly as being in the senior school we don’t have many classes around each other. It was also really great to contribute to the process of making the performances (which were awesome) and to see the process more from a teacher’s perspective. I really enjoyed the day and I had a lot of fun with my Year 7 class.

Sienna Calvani &

Anna Orford 

Year 7

On the 14th February, the Year 7s participated in a full day of performing arts, and split up to work on a class performance based on a nursery rhyme. We got to work with lots of different teachers throughout the day, as well as some lovely year ten helpers. Each performance incorporated dancing, music and acting which was taught in the first two periods. In period three, the classes planned and rehearsed their acts as a team, so they could present their final acts in the gym to the rest of the grade, staff and Year 10 helpers. In our class (7K), our nursery rhyme was Jack and Jill  which was changed in the music session to an ‘Australian version’ but wasn’t included in the final act. Many of our class played a variety of instruments for the act which benefited their music skills while the rest faced our fears and acted out the scene. Overall, the day was very enjoyable and was a wonderful start to Year 7!


word on the street


Year 10

Cadet Reporter


It is a new year and Brunswick Secondary College has welcomed both new and familiar faces among the community. Students over a range of year levels and age groups were asked about how they have settled in, what they are determined to achieve individually this year or how they feel about the school in general.



Sheila Jim

Year 8

Settling into school has been good.  My goal for school is to make more friends and to talk more with them to improve my English. I want to work to finish my education.



Ariana Matue

Year 9

I like how our school has some focus on drama and music.  I love singing and dancing. I also love sports because my family is very sport-orientated and fitness is good for you. You can never really get enough of it.  In the future, I aim to get into 10A Maths next year and I am determined to do my best to achieve my goals.





Zayne  Hickling

Year 7

There has been quite a lot of homework and some of it is hard, but I believe I can get through it. I like high school overall and I am excited for the rest of the year especially for the Swimming Carnival, athletics and for inter-school sports.


Mo Ali

Year 12

Throughout the year I am aiming to do well in my SACs and exams. I am aiming  to get over 70 for my ATAR.  After high school, I want to go to university and study to be a physiotherapist.


Tokea Samuel

Past student 

In high school, you don’t realise how much you will miss it until you leave.

For me, my biggest regret is that I wish I had taken some of the opportunities that the school offered - so my advice would be to take every opportunity you get, keep your friends close, stay on top of your work and do not be scared to ask for help!


Editors Note:  If you know any past students who would like to stay in touch with BSC, they can join the BSC Alumni Association.  Register details here.



adventures abroad

William Mott

Year 12


India is a fascinating country.

It’s filled with diversity - not just within its population, but with both the natural and human environments that the nation’s borders encompass.


Last year, two groups of students from Brunswick Secondary College took the plunge and embarked on a most exciting adventure - atop mountains, through crowded cities and across barren deserts. I was fortunate to travel with sixteen students, teachers Ms Gilbert and Mr Roberts, and our World Challenge leader, Pete. The expedition certainly crept up on us. After wading through the quagmire of Year 11 studies, exams and the completion of yet another very busy year, the prospect of travelling to a completely foreign nation certainly scared me to an extent. In other words... I was petrified!


Our trip was to last for three weeks (from November 29 to December 21 2017). My nervous anticipation lingered throughout the long wait at the airport for our flight. I had no idea what to expect. To be honest, the most I had seen and heard of India was just from the cricket I often watched on television! My parents had also told me stories of an incredibly friendly, humble and generous people - memories from their own travels (20 years ago!).  At least I could take solace in the fact that whatever may happen, these people would look after me!



Uttarakhand is a north-eastern province of India. On the map above, I have marked the locations which we visited in red, After a 10 hour bus trip through smog-blanketed New Dehli, we headed east to the lakeside city of Nainital. I think we were all too tired for culture-shock, though I did remark how alien I felt in this new place. It was a strange feeling to have eyes always following you - we were a novelty to the locals and  I was acutely aware of ths at first.


Nainital was the perfect place to acclimatise to our new surroundings. India seems to run at such a frenetic pace all the time.  Its near-incomprehensible traffic is testament to this: if you want to cross a road you just have to bite the bullet and pay attention to the traffic all the time!  Nainital, though not the busiest city, was perhaps the most beautiful. Situated around a lake in the mountains, great photo opportunities were never rare!




Physical Challenge

The next phase was the physical challenge: the Rantham Pass. I was most looking forward to this massive trek which was to take us 4000m above sea level and through the Himalayan foothills.  The last night  spent in a bed before our trek was bliss  - but I realised in hindsight of course!  The luxury of running water, lights, couches, chairs - I had no idea I would miss these things so much!


We travelled by jeep to our starting point. The winding roads of the 10 hour ride proved too much for some people’s stomachs. Imagine driving up the Dandenong Ranges for ten hours straight while listening to the same hour-long Hindi song...  the same song that seemed so unbelievably soothing at the beginning of the ride. Ah I loved it!


The trek took us to beautiful places, expansive vistas and in the shadow of colossal peaks, including the Nanda Devi, a towering 7.5km tall mountain and one of the tallest on Earth. Some of the cliff-edges along which we walked made my stomach turn, the dwindling oxygen made me light-headed and my heart pounded -  just like after one of those dreaded P.E beep tests. I know, it was like that. Being a relatively active person, to feel myself working so hard to do something as simple as walking was certainly an odd feeling, and I wasn’t alone. The trek which was truly a bonding experience for the entire group. Approaching Rantham Pass,  we had we had to trek near to a 1.5km ascent, travelling over 8km in length. The sense of achievement that we all felt when reaching the peak of the Rantham Pass, was indescribable.     This peak is 4000m above sea level. To put this in perspective, Mount Kosciusko (the highest point in Australia) is just 2200m above sea level. We were nearly double that height! Mindboggling stuff.


That trek lasted six days, including the two 10 hour jeep rides that bookended it. At the end, filled with the satisfaction of having literally climbed a mountain, we returned to the luxury of Mount Quail Camp. Incidentally, it was Nelson’s 18th birthday that day, so the girls organised an impromptu cake and celebratory hat from Nainital - so that day was filled with warm and pleasant emotion.


Community Engagement

The community engagement phase was truly the most gratifying thing I think any of us had experienced - and we had just climbed a mountain! After a single day in Jaipur, during which we visited the Amber Fort, we headed north-east to a tiny village called Surethi. This village is in the desert of Rajasthan, and was more like a conglomeration of farms. Here we worked to help construct new classrooms so that the local school could retain students beyond Grade 6. Plastering, brick-layering and helping in classrooms occupied the four days we stayed there, beneath that hot, Rajasthani sun.

This is what struck me about the Indian people whom I had met: there was a humility and gratitude with which they approached life that was striking. Despite the conditions in which they found themselves, there was an uncynical happiness and humility displayed in how they behaved toward us. They are devoid of the excesses and vanity of our society and the in thier company we felt warm and alive all the time. The community of Surethi was such an engaging environment and we all felt so proud that we could make even the tiniest contribution to the betterment of their education facilities and daily lives.

Rest & Relaxation

Rest and Relaxation took us to the Taj Mahal in Agra, to the “Yoga Capital of the World” in Rishikesh, to the Pink City in Jaipur and to the Elephant Rescue Centre.


As I said, India is fast-paced and an assault on the senses. My tastebuds were not prepared for the heat that came with every meal - often I called for the yoghurt side dish to extinguish the fire in my mouth. New smells, new sights, new sounds, new words, new climates... everything was such a blur. We had lost ourselves in the culture to such an extent that the final day crept up on us, much like the trip had itself. And what a way to finish - on the marble steps of Taj Mahal . It was so…India!



The whole team is so grateful for having been given this experience, the culmination of the work of so many people. The people whom we met, like Gurav, Chandan, U.P Singh, Max, Sandeep, Monika, Deepak and all the children have all helped to open our eyes to a new humanity. We are so grateful for the hospitality they showed towards us and the memories that they have given us.


We also take this chance to thank Hilary, Tayler and Pete, World Challenge and Brunswick Secondary College for supporting us through this invaluable experience.     

serenading adela

Brunswick community

Serenading Adela is a locally produced street opera.  Staging the show (first in December 2017 and then in January this year) proved to be a major community theatre event. The shows were performed to large and appreciative audiences in both Brunswick and again at Pentridge Jail where the show marked the centenary of the event that was itself the inspiration for the opera.



A colourful protest took place on January 7, 1918.  On that hot summer night during World War I, supporters of British-born suffragette and anti-war militant Adela Pankhurst gathered outside the bluestone walls of the Women’s Prison at Pentridge in Coburg.


Ms Pankhurst had been jailed for her energetic anti-war campaign and her loyal and vocal supporters refused to be silenced in the face of her incarceration.  Initially about 50 people “understood to be socialists, and a majority of them women”, gathered to serenade Adela so that she would know she was not alone and that her sacrifice would strike a blow for the anti-conscription campaign. Solidarity Forever and The Red Flag were sung. The crowd cheered and coo-eed, and let off coloured lights.  Word spread, and the crowd quickly swelled to 300.


It was a courageous and defining moment for Adela's campaign, and an important chapter in local community history.


Students of Brunswick Secondary College were invited to participate in  Serenading Adela, and here tell us of their exciting experience.

Maddie Horner

Year 9

Serenading Adela was a really unique experience.  While singing in such a large and diverse choir was amazing on its own, the fact that we were performing it in the same venue in which the events we were celebrating occurred added to the atmosphere of the performances.  We jumped into  rehearsals a bit later than everyone else, and we could immediately see how dedicated everyone was to this performance!  The cast and crew were mostly local to Brunswick, so everyone was really passionate about what we were commemorating. 

Ally Long

Year 9

Being a part of Serenading Adela was an experience that I never thought I would get to try. We got to work with members of the community to commemorate Adela Pankhurst in the best way possible, through song! The rehearsals were hard as we kept getting thrown into different parts and we had to adapt really quickly. Walking into the first rehearsal at Pentridge Jail was weird  (because we were walking into a jail) but I kept thinking about how Adela [had been imprisoned] there and I felt so privileged.  This experience was amazing and I will never forget it.

Ella Byrne

Year 9

Serenading Adela was a great experience. We started with rehearsals, where we got a booklet with all the songs we were going to sing. Whilst being able to learn about what happened historically, we were also able to perform and have fun. When were went to Pentridge it was very exciting and we got to see a small glimpse of what it looked like. When we performed at Pentridge in our costumes it looked really good. Being able to be part of this was amazing, and a great memory. 


The Brunswick Star  
Audition Information Oliver 2018 .pdf
Audition Information Oliver 2018 .pdf
Important dates term 4.pdf
Important Dates 2018.pdf
Important Dates 2018.pdf
Important Dates 2018.pdf
0218 Important Dates 2018.pdf
Important Dates Semester 1 2018.pdf
Important Dates Semester 1 2018.pdf