Oakleigh Grammar News 

28 October 2016
Issue Sixteen
From the Principal
Deputy Principal
Important Dates & Notices
OAKLEIGH GLENDI - 29th & 30th OCTOBER 2016!
Senior School
Middle School
Junior School
The Arts at Oakleigh Grammar
Faculty News
Parents' Association
Community Board
Oakleigh Grammar
77-81 Willesden Road
Oakleigh, Victoria, 3166

From the Principal





Today is a celebration in the Greek Community calendar called ‘OXI’ day. The 28th of October is celebrated at Oakleigh Grammar as a day of pride set by our founders as part of our Hellenic Community Celebration. ‘OXI’ day is a day to celebrate the Greeks saying no to the invasion by Italians. The Glendi celebrations which have been organised by the President of the Greek Orthodox Community of Oakleigh & District Inc, Mr Angelo Sardellis will be held this over Saturday and Sunday this weekend at Warrawee Park, Oakleigh. The formal part of the Glendi will be held on Sunday morning with our students participating in a variety of activities on both days. The Glendi is a multicultural event supported by the City of Monash and the Victorian Multicultural Association. 


Year 12 Graduates 2016

As a school community following a very fine finish to their formal classes and associated celebrations I take this opportunity to wish our 2016 Year Twelve students every success for their forthcoming examinations.  Our 2016 Graduates raised the bar in relation to appropriate conduct on their final celebration day which lead into a joyous graduation dinner. My hope is that in time they will reflect on their contribution to their School and we look forward to meeting them at future alumni events.


Uniform Expectations

Oakleigh Grammar appreciates the support we receive from families in ensuring that our students represent their school with pride not only whilst at school but when travelling to and from school and at all times when wearing school uniform.  A few reminders about expectations include:

  • No scarves are permitted to be worn with summer uniform.
  • Correct socks are to be worn.
  • No jewellery or make up is to be worn at school, including nail polish.
  • Hair should be neat and tidy and not extreme in colour or length.

Awards Nights

A reminder that our Awards Nights will be held in December on the following dates:

  • Middle/Senior Awards – Thursday 1 December 2016 at 7:00pm
  • Junior School – Tuesday 6 December

Deputy Principal



Deputy Principal


Examinations and assessments . . . learning that matters!

The academic term is well under way with major assessments and examinations just over the horizon.

Students in Years 9, 10 and 11 will be sitting their semester written examinations beginning Friday 11 November. This is a key educational experience that is of enormous benefit to students as they progress through their upper secondary years to the VCE.

The Middle School Assessment Week begins on Monday 21 November. Here students sit summative assessment tasks (for each of their core subjects) that they have been preparing for during the course of the term.

Assessment in its many forms is integral to all teaching and learning at Oakleigh Grammar and is central to our goal of thoughtfully and effectively guiding students through the key elements of the learning process. It requires teachers to identify, gather and interpret information about student achievement to provide feedback on the learning process.


The aim of assessment at the school is to enable students to develop and demonstrate their potential. Assessment can be used for a number of key purposes which include: assisting student learning; evaluating and improving teaching and learning activities; providing information on student learning and for the differentiation of the learning program; providing evidence of student achievement at the end of each unit of study; and reporting on the achievement of each student at the end of each semester and year of the study.

All students across the school are assessed for learning using a variety of assessment strategies and tools that include both summative (assessment of learning) and formative (assessment for learning) approaches. It is good teaching practice to gauge what it is that students have grasped and what else they should know or be able to do. Formative assessment tasks allow teachers to provide students with valuable feedback on their learning progress.

The exams and assessments should be seen as a learning experience designed to enable students to test their knowledge and understanding, to work under time constraints and to become used to the pressure associated with a formal examination.  As with most situations in life, it is practice which enables people to feel more comfortable with a difficult situation and consequently perform to the best of their ability.

Important Dates & Notices


A reminder to all parents that the 2 minute zones on Clapham Road are strictly for drop-off & pick-up purposes only. Parking your car in these zones for more than 2 minutes will result in a parking fine by Monash City Council.



Twilight Cinema

The Oakleigh Parents' Association invites you to a twilight screening of 'Zootopia' on Saturday 19 November in the outer yard weather permitting (entry via Clapham Road) or the Conference Centre if it is raining.


Gates open at 7PM. All welcome! Gold coin donation at the gate for entry.


Leaving us in 2016?

Remember - one terms notice is required in writing to the Admissions Office if your child is not returning to Oakleigh Grammar.


For further information please contact a member of the Admissions Team to discuss on (03) 9569 6128.

Second Hand Shop

A reminder that the Oakleigh Grammar Second Hand Shop (formerly Uniform Exchange) is currently accepting consignment items and donations.


Donations: any used uniform items will be accepted by School Reception staff.


Consignment: bring items to the Uniform Exchange during its opening hours & days (listed below) where items will be accepted and recorded for resale on your behalf, for up to 30% of new prices.


Second hand, current, official Oakleigh Grammar Uniform items are available for purchase for no more than 60% of new prices. Please note: only current Oakleigh Grammar uniform items will be accepted for consignment. All old OGOC uniform items will be donated to Paradise 4 Kids (P4K) in Africa.


Upcoming Second Hand Shop Dates:

  • Friday 11 November (located in the Community Conference Centre from 2:30PM-4PM)

Please direct any queries to [email protected]

Conference Centre & 9ways Venue Hire

We are now accepting external hires of our Conference Centre & 9ways Centre.


If you would like to make a booking, or obtain more information, please contact

Miss Zoe Taylor, Marketing Officer on (03) 9569 6128 during school hours or on 0449 863 622 after hours to leave a message or via email at 

[email protected]


Check out our website:



You can also find us on Facebook:


and Instagram: @ogconferencecentre.

Absentee Line

The Absentee Phone Line and e-mail address can be used by parents to report student absences promptly and conveniently. 


Simply phone the line and state your child's name, year level, estimated duration of and reason for absence after the tone. 


Your message will be sent directly to Student Services so that your child's absence can be recorded. 

Absentee Line: 03 8554 0050

Email: [email protected]

OAKLEIGH GLENDI - 29th & 30th OCTOBER 2016!


Senior School

Head of Senior School



Head of Senior School


The first few weeks of Term 4 have been taken up with trial examinations and revision in preparation for the VCE examinations which commenced this week on Wednesday 26 October.  At the end of Week 2 it was finally time to celebrate achievements, and for us to thank, bless and farewell our Year 12 Class of 2016.


As a community, we had the opportunity to come together and celebrate their time as students of Oakleigh Grammar. I would like to thank our Year 12 students as they have been a pleasure to be involved with and should be congratulated for the way they finished.  It was obvious as we watched on during their celebrations in their last official days, the closeness of their relationships with each other and the affection they felt for many of their teachers. This Year 12 group have set an enviable standard as they departed the School with dignity and full of enjoyment.


Their last school challenge will have begun by the time this newsletter is read. We wish them all good luck and hope they take every opportunity to display their knowledge and understanding during the VCE exams. I would like to thank the teachers that have worked with the students throughout the year to prepare them, not only for the upcoming examinations, but also for their chosen paths after school. In particular, I wish to thank Steve Zafiropoulos, Mary Spiropoulos and Jenny Bean for all their tireless efforts and support as the Year 12 Pastoral team. From the camp in February to the graduation dinner it has been wonderful to work with such professional and caring individuals.


Celebration Day

Year 12 students dressed in costumes ranging from Tweedle Dee to their favourite wrestling character. The boys of the year level took full advantage of the jumping castle organised for them, to put on an entertaining show that highlighted their wrestling skills and probably, more importantly, their ability to choreograph action sequences without anyone being hurt. Junior School students, who lined up against the outer yard fence during their recess break, were delighted with the show and shouted for their favourite, encouraged by Louis Panagopoulos who was supervising in that area. A few mischievous rascals managed to fill their Home Group teachers’ office with balloons. Names are withheld to protect those involved! After a BBQ lunch cooked by Steve Zafiropoulos, ably assisted by Nico Giannetakis, students left the school at 12.30pm.  


Farewell Assembly and Morning Tea.

The warmth and affection for our Class of 2016 was particularly evident in our final assembly, as was their enjoyment of their time at the School. Students were presented individually to the School Community and received a flower from the members of the 2016 Prep classes, signifying the ending of one era and the beginning of another. It has become a tradition that is beautiful to watch and one that brings more than one tear to the eyes of those parents present. The VCE teachers were also recognised and thanked by the students for their part in their final year. The assembly was followed by Morning Tea in the Year 12 common room for the students and their parents.

Graduation Dinner

On Thursday 20 October, members of the school community gathered to bless and farewell our Year 12 Class of 2016.  This evening celebrated the culmination of education for our students in Year 12, most of whom have been on a learning journey at Oakleigh Grammar since Prep. Fittingly, the celebrations commenced in our church where each student received a blessing imparted by our School Chaplain, the Reverend Father George, and an icon of the School’s patron saints, Sts Anagiri.

Graduation Dinner was held at Merrimu Receptions after the blessing. Students were introduced individually to those present and were given a commemorative graduation certificate by the School Principal.  Mr Chris Damatopoulos, Vice President of the Board of Management, formally welcomed everyone to the evening and was followed by the School Principal, Mr Mark Robertson, who told tales about each of the members of the student leadership team.


The School Captains, Michaela Takos and Nick Limnios reflected on their time at the Oakleigh Grammar and acknowledged the closeness of the year level. They also thanked those that had helped them throughout this journey, their teachers and their parents.

As the Head of Senior School, I observed that as individuals and as a group, the Class of 2016 had grown immensely.  They were no longer the boys and girls that entered Senior School in Year 10 but instead had developed into articulate, informed and capable men and women, ready to face whatever challenges lay ahead. The evening was completed with lots of dancing.


Goodbye and good luck to all our graduating students in the Class of 2016 in all their future endeavours.

Solo Drama Performances

I was fortunate to able to view the individual performances of members of the 3/4 Drama class before their performance exam last Friday. To say we have talented and charismatic actors is an understatement. Each performance was unique; some were filled with passion, whilst others were comical, yet all delivered strong messages. Congratulations to John Christou, Eirini Souli, Christina Katatrioti, Lukas Smyrnis, Nicole Papazois and to their teacher, Elise Zijai.


Middle School

Head of Middle School



Head of Middle School


Again I would like to take an extract from a terrific website that I have mentioned before in Grammar News. This edition discusses the importance of regular and punctual attendance at school.



To get the most out of a good education, children need to go to school every day. School attendance has a major influence on educational outcomes. Students who attend school regularly are more likely to achieve better results at school and are more likely to complete their schooling.


Parents can make it easier for their child to attend school by having a positive attitude to learning and education.


Poor school attendance patterns can start as early as Year 1. It is important that from the first day of school parents set an expectation that their children will be at school every day. Missing an average of ten days of school a term adds up to missing two full years of schooling by the end of Year 10.


During the transition from primary to high school or another school parents need to be clear with their child that they expect the child to attend school every day. It is important to remember that all Australian states and territories have legislation in place that requires parents to ensure their children attend school. These laws apply to all students in government and non-government schools.


All Australian governments have agreed to a school attendance target for 2019 where all schools will achieve a minimum of 90 per cent attendance.



  • Talk positively about attending school and learning
  • Help your child get into a routine for getting ready to go to school stress-free
  • Help your child to get ready for school in the morning
  • Talk about the positive social of the school environment:
    • Friends
    • Favourite classes
    • Favourite teachers


  • Talk with your teenager about their long term goals and dreams and how school can help them achieve their dreams

Developing a positive outlook towards education is an essential beginning for student.


Year 9 Camp

All reports from the Year 9 at Wilson’s Prom have been extremely positive. Luckily, our bushwalking groups missed much of the terrible weather that plagued Melbourne at the time and the weather was kind for the campers.


Students learnt much about independent travel, camp-craft and self-sufficiency from the trip and have grown in personal confidence as a result.


The students got to take in many amazing views and beautiful scenery on the remote walking tracks and returned to school exhausted but with a sense of personal accomplishment. Congratulations to the students who undertook the walk and many thanks to Mrs Tsiagalos, Mrs Zijai and Mr Wengier for organising and undertaking the camp with the students as well as for supporting the walkers through those challenging moments.


Year 6 Family Life Classes

This week our Year 6 students begun a series of three sessions on sexuality education run by Family Life Victoria. The sessions aim to support schools implement particular aspects of the curriculum including the physical, social and emotional changes at puberty. The sessions are run in single sexed classes and take a light-hearted and fun approach to these sensitive topics.


Year 6 Swimming Lessons

Year 6 swimming lesson have also begun this week as part of the school’s Health and Physical Education curriculum. Parents and students are reminded of the importance of developing water safety skills and the social benefits that come with feeling comfortable in and around water.


Swimming lessons will continue on Thursday mornings, the 3rd of November and 10th of November, during timetabled sport classes at Ashburton YMCA Swim Centre.


If involved, please ensure that your child is organised with their swimming uniform and towel. Swim goggles are highly recommended. Swim goggles can be borrowed from the PE Department if required.


Student Medication

A number of painkilling cold and flu tablets continue to be found in the Middle School of late, presumably falling from student’s pockets or lockers which raises many safety concerns. Please be reminded that medication must be left, including instructions, with the school First Aid Office and taken under her supervision when required. Students are not to carry and self-administer any forms of medication whilst at school. Thanks you for your co-operation in this matter.

Junior School

Head of Junior School



Head of Junior School



Level Crossing Removal Project’s Play & Learn Schools Exhibition

On Thursday 20 and Friday 21 October the Year 2s and 3s caught the train down to the Murrumbeena Information Hub to learn more about the Caulfield to Dandenong Level Crossing Removal Project. Students were given the opportunity to investigate the concept further through exploration and play using Lego. They were also able to view a spectacular Lego working model. Students got the chance to become engineers and work together in a team to create their own railway project. Everyone participated eagerly and had a fantastic time building with the Lego. The students gained a much better understanding of the level crossing removal project and had a wonderful time. We would like to thank our lovely parent helpers for coming along with us, without you, this excursion would not have been possible. Thank you Mrs Ambre Borneman for arranging this wonderful experience for us.


Classes for 2016

The process of placing students in classes takes many factors into consideration.  Teachers look at academic, social, emotional factors and ‘best fit’ when placing students into classes. This process results in well-balanced classes, which cater for all the students’ needs. Should your son or daughter be disappointed by their class placement, please use this as a parenting opportunity to teach them about managing disappointment, developing resilience and grit.  These social-emotional skills are known to be important indicators for future life success.


Parent Helpers

Assisting in the classroom is always under the direction of the classroom teacher by either working with small groups of children, providing a role model for learning and helping with literacy or numeracy.  You are a huge valued member of the school community.  Your support in the classroom ensures that children remain on task while the teacher is working with other groups and your willingness to assist in classroom activities shows other parents what can be achieved when partnerships are formed.


I would like to take this opportunity to remind you of the Parent helper seminar run in February every year where the following is explicitly discussed:

  • Beware of making judgements
  • All children can learn.
  • Children learn at different rates and have different learning needs.
  • Retain confidentiality
  • The privacy of both parents and children must be respected at all times.
  • Do not mention the names of children or teachers with whom you are working in front of your own children or other parents
  • Children can easily be hurt by apparently harmful remarks from their peers or other children

Oxi Day

The students performed marvellously in song and drama at the annual Oxi Day performance.  It was wonderful to have our Year 5 leaders at the Church service, our grandparents for a high tea and then to finish the afternoon with the performance.  A huge congratulations to the LOTE department for their work in classrooms over the last month in preparation and the fine show that we all enjoyed.  It was wonderful to see so many people in the audience which made it extra special for the students. 


Book Fair

Thank you to Ms Chitra and the library staff for running the Semester 2 book fair.  Not only does this instil a love of reading and books with their students but also allows the Library to purchase resources with the bonus given to a School.  Ms Chitra has purchased a new camera and a portable projector screen for our School.  Thank you Mrs Evie Cassimatis for putting together the timetable.


Year 1 Minibeasts

Last Friday our Year 1s came to school dressed as their favourite Minibeast. We had Lady Bugs, Butterflies, Army Ants, Caterpillars, Spiders and more roaming around the schoolyard!


Upcoming Events

We have a number of events coming up this term and you will receive notification as they draw closer.  Some of the events include the ELC and Year 5 Graduations, Transition Day, Carols in the Park and the Junior School Awards Evening.

Year 1 Minibeasts

Last Friday our Year 1s came to school dressed as their favourite Minibeast. We had Lady Bugs, Butterflies, Army Ants, Caterpillars, Spiders and more roaming around the schoolyard! We also had an information packed visit from the ‘Insect-a-Mania’ company on the day. The children had a chance to touch and hold various insects and their predators, as well as learn all about them. It was an amazing and fun-filled day enjoyed by all.

               - Mrs Gameras and Mrs Sare


The Arts at Oakleigh Grammar



Head of Art


Year 12 Drama at Oakleigh Grammar

Congratulations to the Year 12 Drama students who not only performed their seven minute solo performances to their parents and friends last Wednesday evening, but also for their successful completion of the Solo Exam. These students worked extremely hard to create, develop and refine wonderful performances and I could not be more proud of how they conducted themselves throughout this process. Hopefully their efforts and talents will pay off with good VCE results!

Year 9 Drama at Oakleigh Grammar

One group of students from the Year 9 Drama class was lucky to score itself a spot in the International Youth Make Silent Film Festival competition as a top 20 finalist. The Film ‘Reminiscence’ will be screening at Kingston City Hall this Saturday the 29th of October. Please follow the following link for more information: http://www.kingstonarts.com.au/FILM/iysff2016


Congratulations to Ioannis Badogiannis, Stefania Karakousi, Evgenia Mougkaraki, Evangelos Stafylidis, Antonis Stamatakos and Angeliki Stamatopoulos for this accomplishment.


Primary Schools Debating Tournament held by the Debaters Association of Victoria

The Year 5 and 6 debating teams achieved much success at St Raphael’s Primary School as they debated against other teams from various Schools. The students prepared two topics and then the Year 6 team also prepared a secret topic. Both teams were successful and the Year 5 team finished second overall. Congratulations to Helena Papageorgiou from Year 6 and Noah Peoples from Year 5 for being recognised as the Best Overall Speakers


Faculty News



Career Advisor


What Degree? Which University?

"What Degree? Which University?" is a guide to making an informed decision about what degree to study, and at which University. You can search information by degrees, by universities, or even by subject areas and interests http://www.whatdegreewhichuniversity.com/


Australian Apprenticeships & Traineeships Information Service

Great career resources for people interested in a variety of industries, pathways, and includes practice aptitude quizzes for a range of jobs, occupational videos, and more.



AIE: Graduate Showcase

29th November, 4pm to 7pm @ Melbourne campus

Get an insight into the skills and creativity learned at AIE by viewing the work of graduating students.  http://www.aie.edu.au/graduate-showcase


JMC Academy: How to Get a Job in Game Sound Production



JMC Academy Internship Program

JMC is introducing an internship program for many of its courses from 2017 onwards. Find out how it can help land you a job http://www.jmcacademy.edu.au/news/how-to-turn-your-internship-into-a-job


Agrifood Careers & Rural Skills Australia website
Information for students, and parents, about the agricultural and horticulture industries and the careers in Australia. http://agrifoodcareers.com.au/


Become a Naturopath
Find out information about the field. What does a naturopath do, what skills are required, and why pursue a career in naturopathy.  http://blog.aias.com.au/index.php/careers/how-to-become-a-naturopath/


Mining, Oil and Gas Jobs – Year 10 Career Planning Guide

Career options for students considering entering the mining, oil and gas industries.


myfuture: Work Integrated Learning

Work Integrated Learning combines tertiary study with learning on the job. Find out more information about Work Integrated Learning and how you can incorporate it into your studies.  https://myfuture.edu.au/career-insight/work-integrated-learning



5 Steps to Become a Commercial Pilot

Students interested in becoming a commercial pilot should check this out. http://www.flightcourse.info/5-steps-to-become-a-commercial-pilot-in-australia/


A message to the Year 12 Class of 2016

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all the very best in your exams, and I look forward to seeing you all at Change of Preference time to assist and guide you onto the next step of your career journey. Whether that next step is to Uni, TAFE or Employment remember the wise words of Steve Jobs “The way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it."

Inquiry Learning

Oakleigh Grammar Year 2 and 3 students were invited by the Level Crossing Removal Project – Caulfield to Dandenong team to view a working model of the Sky Rail and be engineers for the day, by working in teams to build their own models following basic principles of construction and civil engineering.

Student reflections:

Zoe, 2P –  We got to build bridges and see how they are made strong. We had a contest and had to make pillars. It will take a long time to build the Sky Rail.


Arkie, 2P – We learnt how they are going to build the Sky Rail. There will be barriers holding up the bridge and a floor platform for the trains. We built a mini Sky Rail and our group needed 5 pillars to make it strong. My favourite part was seeing the model and finding the hidden passengers around it. It was really cool seeing Lego trains move.

Pas, 2C – The Sky Rail will be built from steel, concrete and glass. We saw engineers drilling the ground and a crane moving pieces to start the building of Sky Rail.


Mason, 2C – When you build a bridge it has to be strong and stable. We had to use a lot of bricks and connect them with pillars to the top platform.


Alekhya, 3A – I learnt that we had to make all of the pillars exactly the same size for the bridge to be sturdy.

Dean, 3A – At the station, the engineers were removing dirt to build the new Sky Rail. The old station is gone and the new one will take a long time to be built.




Head of Mathematics


Accelerated Mathematics Program

The focus of the Mathematics Strategic Plan is to continue differentiating classroom instruction in order to further support, extend and challenge every student. For the more capable students we aim to extend the concepts covered in the mainstream classroom with more complex activities with higher level of abstraction and higher-order thinking skills.


At the same time we aim to encourage and support students who require extra assistance with more scaffolding strategies to build their basic mathematics skills.

Oakleigh Grammar is now providing a further opportunity for high achieving students to take part in the Accelerated Mathematics Program. This will complement the existing mathematics classroom program and will be offered to students in Years 4-9 who have shown to consistently be scoring above the 90th percentile in standardised testing (Naplan, PatMaths, Mathematics Competitions) and internal testing. This program aims to support student learning and target Maths competitions such as the Maths Olympiad Competition, ICAS Mathematics Competition and MAV Mathematical Games.

The Accelerated Mathematics Program will provide an opportunity for students to discover and consolidate talent in mathematics; to further challenge and extend the skills of problem solving, logical and critical thinking in a small group setting.


They will be regularly meeting with the Head of Faculty to monitor their individual learning plan and progress.  It is designed for students that are at least 12 months above the standard expected in all areas of the Maths Curriculum at their current Year Level.

In exceptional circumstances, students whose cognitive ability is well above their chronological age, may be extended by taking part in mathematics classes one or two years above their current year level.

The Mathematics Department will also be running a Maths Club which will meet fortnightly, open to all interested students but in particular students taking part in the mathematics competitions.


Student Representative Council (SRC)



SRC Coordinator


On Friday 28 October 2016, we celebrated the anniversary of Commemoration Day in 1940. Year 5 Junior School students attended the Doxology Service in our parish church, Sts Anargiri. Students held Greek and Australians flags with pride. They were accompanied by Mr Dunsford, Miss Ball and Mrs Asderaki.

On the same day members of the SRC together with our Middle School Leaders, represented the School at St Eustathios Church in South Melbourne. Following the church service, we took part in a Wreath Laying Ceremony at the Shrine of Remembrance.

Congratulations to all students who took part in the significant celebration.

Parents' Association


Community Board

Raising Kids Together is hosting a conference on practical skills for early intervention, support and inclusion. See flyer for details.


Oakleigh Grammar News