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Philosophy’s Role in Society Observatory Opening The Philosophy Phenomenon Buddies Program New Analytical Science Hub Alumni News Class of ‘99 – 20 Year Reunion Class of ‘09 – 10 Year Reunion Notices Alumni Sporting Clubs Swipers Gully Feature Recipe Foundation News The ECCA Way ECCA News Embracing Global Opportunities From the Archives


JUL 24

ELTHAM in Action


think ELTHAM

AUG 16

ELTHAM in Action

AUG 30

Fathers Day Stall


Parent Social Event – A Night Out

OCT 11

Class of 1989 – 30 Year Reunion

OCT 23

ELTHAM in Action

OCT 26

Class of 1979 – 40 Year Reunion

NOV 12

ELTHAM in Action

NOV 15

Class of 2018 – 1 Year Reunion

NOV 22

Twilight Market in the Vines

Harold Mitchell Performing Arts Centre, 9.00am – 11.00am

ELTHAM College, 10.00am – 3.30pm

Harold Mitchell Performing Arts Centre, 9.00am – 11.00am

Information Technology Meeting Room, 9.00am – 2.00pm

Platform 3095, 6.30pm – 12.00am

Swipers Gully Training Restaurant, 6.30pm – 9.30pm

Harold Mitchell Performing Arts Centre, 9.00am – 11.00am

Swipers Gully Training Restaurant, 6.30pm – 9.30pm

Harold Mitchell Performing Arts Centre, 9.00am – 11.00am Swipers Gully Training Restaurant, 6.30pm – 9.30pm

Swipers Gully Training Restaurant, 4.00pm – 8.30pm



PHILOSOPHY’S ROLE IN SOCIETY Thinking critically is essential for a democracy, and it’s also essential to really effective learning. Several years ago, Harvard University started putting their first-year philosophy course, Justice, online for all to access for free. One of the most famous courses taught at Harvard, students delve into moral and political philosophy. The first lecture, ‘The Moral Side of Murder’, outlines a scenario in which a tram is out of control and headed for a group of people. The tram can change track and kill one person instead of the group of five. You have the choice – what do you do? Many people say they would change track to hit the one person. But it's a massive moral dilemma, because what happens if that person is just about to discover the cure for cancer? This quandary becomes more complex the more it is fleshed out. Early last year, a student in my Year 10 Beginner’s Guide to Ideas course found a video of a self-driving car. The video raised a number of questions as to how an automated car can be equipped to make moral judgements. Will self-driving cars have that kind of intelligence, or another sort?

Today’s young people are going to need to know and learn how to make ethical and moral decisions in a highly technical world. Just because you can do something with technology, should you? Thinking critically is essential for a democracy, and it is also essential to really effective learning. If you understand philosophy, you become an authentic thinker and have an authentic story to tell. You'll ask the big philosophical questions and those lead to understanding. For instance, are we the masters of our own destiny, is that something we can shape through our choices, or to an extent are our lives predetermined? Philosophical thinking leads young people to become more aware of how to interpret any information that's given to them, and that equips them with a different type of thinking. The telescope recently installed in the College Observatory enables students to ask really big philosophical questions about space. Our new Analytical Science Hub will have students considering the ethics of testing someone’s blood, or a strand of their hair. And the ‘My Generation’ discussion we had during Humanities Week encouraged students to think about what is important to them and why.

ELTHAM College is undertaking Harvard’s Project Zero, which was founded by philosopher Nelson Goodman in 1967. Dorothy Allan’s story ‘The Philosophy Phenomenon’ featured in this edition of Connections outlines what our involvement entails. This year we are also running a philosophy program for Year 5 – 9 students with support from The Philosophy Club. In the near future, I believe there will be growing demand for professional philosophers. Just like companies might have in-house accountants or business managers, there's going to be a greater need for professional assistance in ethical or moral decision-making. By learning how to think critically now, our young people will be equipped with this vital skill during their school years and well beyond.

Simon Le Plastrier Principal ELTHAM College





It was a perfectly clear and crisp evening when we officially opened the ELTHAM College Observatory on Friday 17 May. The event was the culmination of a crowdfunding ‘Giving Day’, which raised $204,296 for the new Observatory and its technologically advanced research-grade fully automated 17” telescope. We applaud all those who contributed to our Giving Day, from the individuals and associations that made pledges before the day, to the over 200 families, individuals and businesses who took part. The Observatory Opening was a wonderful celebration of this community endeavour and our commitment to providing daring adventures for our young people. Dr Megan Clark, CEO of the Australian Space Agency, officially declared the Observatory open, with guests from the Astronomical Society of Victoria sharing their expertise regarding the night sky. Darren Smith, our Head of Mathematical and Scientific Thinking, eloquently spoke of the amazing opportunities this technologically advanced facility will enable, while pondering the capacity of humankind to explore the immense nature of the universe. 2

Principal Simon Le Plastrier, Dr Megan Clark, Kyle Pilgrim (Class of 2017) and Darren Smith

The following is an excerpt of Darren’s speech: It is wondrous. It inspires wonder. It is wonderful. It fills us with wonder. And it also inspires us to wonder: to wonder how? Wonder why? To wonder what is actually out there in the seeming ‘emptiness’ of space that surrounds our tiny blue planet? What are those faint pinpricks of light? What is between them? Beyond them? As we stand here this evening it is not so hard to imagine our earliest human ancestors huddling together around the warming glow of their latest technological innovation, looking up into their night sky, gazing at the stars overhead and just wondering. And now we huddle here together around our latest technological innovation, looking up at our night skies … at those same stars and constellations … wondering ...

And ultimately this is why we rebuilt our Observatory. To give our young people the opportunity to look up at their night sky and wonder. To give them the means to see further, to observe more, to be curious, to find their answers to their hows, whys and whats. And to imagine … We look forward to sharing many more stories about the rich and varied learning opportunities our Observatory will facilitate as it captivates our imagination and challenges our intellect.

Emily Cavanough Director Community Engagement

Curiosity is a defining human characteristic. Our capacity to wonder about the nature of our surroundings has driven our species’ development and helped shape who we are. Excerpt of Darren’s speech




THE PHILOSOPHY PHENOMENON OUR DIRECTOR OF CURRICULUM, DOROTHY ALLAN, EXPLORES WHY PHILOSOPHICAL ENQUIRY IS SUCH A CRITICAL SKILL ACROSS OUR LEARNING LANDSCAPE. ELTHAM College is a community that believes most passionately in the value of intellectual curiosity. Encouraging students to ask questions, seek out alternative points of view and further information, and interrogate their beliefs and the evidence that supports those views is fundamental to learning and understanding. It is also fundamental to how positive change occurs in the world.


As the 21st century unfolds, it becomes increasingly clear that the challenges that lie ahead demand rigorous thinking, an open mind and a creative imagination nevertheless founded upon clear and rational methods of enquiry. We believe that philosophical enquiry can help students become discerning thinkers. Our staff have undergone training in the philosophical enquiry mode, and there is a pilot group across the Junior and Senior Schools invested in disseminating the thinking routines of Project Zero to our classrooms.

Project Zero, developed by Harvard University, features various frameworks and tools that enable teachers to look at their classroom practice analytically to create a culture of thinking. Staff are encouraged to create a collaborative environment where questions are valued; an environment conducive to analytical reflection on ideas and evidence, where other opinions and ideas are truly heard. Students learn to examine thinking and the process of thinking itself.

It is not only the thinking routines of Project Zero that encourage our culture of thinking. Michelle Sowey of The Philosophy Club works with groups of students from Years 5 – 9. Michelle and the College staff endeavour to ensure that our students (tomorrow’s global citizens and leaders) have the tools to navigate a world where new ways of “being” are demanded, and new ways of organising our society and our thinking are necessary. Humans have always had the tools required – open, enquiring, creative and collaborative minds. Minds where the rigorous process of philosophical enquiry encourages thinking that is discerning, courageous and promotes ways of thinking that encourages civility and respect. This thinking is not cold or clinical – it is passionate and lively. As one of our Year 5 students said about Philosophy Club – “That was mind-blowing! I could just feel that last question expanding my brain!" We want our classrooms to be places of debate. Our thinking culture is one in which we believe our students can truly recognise the joy of being alive, and the way that thinking can contribute to a moral engagement with the world around us. While technology is enormously useful, we cannot expect it to fathom the ethical dilemmas that are a part of being human.

Dorothy Allan Director, Curriculum




BUDDIES PROGRAM ELTHAM College’s Year 6 and Prep students have been engaging in a Buddies Program on Friday mornings. The purpose of the program is to promote and foster positive relationships, and it has helped the Preps to make a more confident transition to school. The Buddies Program enhances children’s cooperative learning behaviours such as taking turns, listening, sharing knowledge, praising another’s effort, helping one another and completing tasks. The Year 6 buddies are supported by staff to role model listening, negotiating and responding skills. They are motivated to do their best, and they also experience pride in their ability to be helpful. The Year 6 students also develop that highly important skill of patience. The Preps bond with their older buddy, and the friendships they have made flourish as the year progresses. Activities are generally STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics) based. These activities, whether it be making a marble run, a tin boat or LEGO projects, challenge both the Year 6 and Prep students and creates an atmosphere of teamwork. Buddies also listen to each other read, play games and simply engage in positive conversations – the conversations that can be heard between the pairs are beautiful. Not only do the Year 6 students support their Prep buddy each week in their learning, they support them outside in the playground during recess and lunchtime too. Most importantly they provide their little buddies with a friend they can go to for help or guidance.

Kelly Colson and Sandra vander Pal Junior School 6


Writer and Professor Isaac Asimov once said the most exciting phrase to hear in Science is not ‘Eureka!’ but ‘That’s funny … ’ – meaning that the discovery of something unexpected is what is truly exciting, rather than simply finding what you set out to find. A few years ago I was completing my PhD at RMIT University, designing magnetic nanoparticles that can be used for fighting cancer. I found the whole research process thrilling. I would start off in the lab, mix some chemicals together and watch them change colour. But it was only when I took my samples to the Physics department that I could analyse them to see if I had correctly made my nanoparticles or not. Quite often they would not behave the way in which I expected, and that was what was thrilling.

That’s what I love about the new Analytical Science Hub we have at ELTHAM College. Students as young as Year 5 can now experience the joy of research that I had to wait until university to encounter. Access to these instruments provides opportunities for open-ended learning, with students making their own discoveries. Our students will leave ELTHAM College knowing how to operate and interpret the information generated by High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC), Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) and Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) Spectroscopy – the main workhorses in most laboratories.

Most importantly, when our students use these instruments, they bring with them fresh eyes and young creative minds. Quite often I will begin to say “You’re not supposed to click that button yet” only to find that they have found a smarter way of using the software than I had. If our young people can learn to drive the software in a fraction of the time it takes me, what sorts of discoveries will they make when they have access to these instruments for the entirety of their secondary school years?

Dr David Tonkin Senior School Teacher




ALUMNI NEWS The ELTHAM College Alumni association continues to strengthen the ELTHAM College community. It is great to see so many past students returning to the College as tutors, mentors, career speakers and sports coaches, as well as supporting our music and performing arts department, attending reunions and most recently joining our Open Day as prospective parents.

Stay Connected There are many ways to stay connected with ELTHAM Alumni:

A great start to the year!

It has been a great start to 2019. One area we have been focusing on this year is strengthening connections with our current Year 12 students, supporting them in their last year at the College before welcoming them into the Alumni Association at their Valedictory Dinner. The Alumni Music and Performing Arts Group (ECAMP) launched in 2018 and performed this year at Open Day and the Year 7/8 Welcome BBQ. We look forward to seeing many more performances from ECAMP throughout the year. It was great to see so many past students from the Class of 2009 and Class of 1999 return to ELTHAM College for their reunions. The Alumni Association continues to sponsor the Research Eltham Collegians Cricket Club (RECCC) and Old Eltham Collegians Football Club (the Turtles).

• • •

• • • We made a significant contribution to the College Observatory redevelopment and would like to congratulate Kyle Pilgrim (Class of 2017) and Genevieve Callahan (Class of 2018) who passionately advocated for this rebuild. Kyle, a member of the Observatory sub-committee, was presented with a unique Australian Space Agency lapel pin from ASA’s CEO Dr Megan Clark. The multi-dot design on the lapel pin alludes to the light created from human life and industry; hidden within the dots are several significant Indigenous constellations that can be seen when looking up across Australian skies.

Attend a reunion/networking event Become a mentor Share your career journey with our current students Share a story or submit a wedding, birth or in memory notice for the next edition of Connections Join our Alumni Facebook page and LinkedIn group Join Research Eltham Collegians Cricket Club or Old Eltham Collegians Football and Netball Club Join our ELTHAM Alumni Music and Performing Arts group (ECAMP)

I extend an open invitation to any interested past students, staff or parents to attend a committee meeting or contact the Alumni Coordinator on alumni@elthamcollege.vic.edu.au if you would like to connect in any other ways. Onwards still striving,

Al Anderson (Class of 2009) President of the ELTHAM College Alumni Association

Alumni Association Meetings Conference Room, ELTHAM College, 7.30pm – 9.30pm AUG 6



facebook.com/ElthamCollegeAlumni alumni@elthamcollege.vic.edu.au

ECAMP performing at Open Day 8





Doug Hendrie – Class of 1999 I came to ELTHAM College in 1994 and graduated in 1999. I took Media and English in Year 12 with two dynamo teachers, and that really set me on my path. My dad likes to tease me about the fact that I got my worst results by far in Media, so of course I took that as a sign to study it. But so it goes. At ELTHAM I got involved in the student newspaper and loved interviewing and writing. When I went to uni to study Arts/Science (the classic degree for people who don’t know what they want to do), I naturally found myself hanging around the student paper. Fast forward a couple of years and I’d become one of the editors of the student paper and switched to Media and Communications. I’ve had what is politely called a portfolio career since then, meaning I’ve done plenty of different things. I worked in a Japanese kindergarten singing Wiggles songs to baffled toddlers. I worked for the local paper in Eltham, reporting on my old haunts. I was a freelance magazine writer for many years,

VALE – Dr David Warner 12 December 1945 – 11 February 2019

Dr David Warner was Principal of ELTHAM College from 2000 – 2013. During his tenure David passionately promoted a strong partnership between students, teachers and parents. David was recognised in 2010 with a National Fellowship Award from the Australian Council for Educational Leaders (ACEL). This prestigious award is a special category of membership given to those who have made an outstanding contribution to the study or practice of educational leadership.

VALE – Yvonne (Von) Canty 07 March 1939 – 15 June 2019

travelling to interesting places and writing articles to cover costs. I’ve done copywriting for a digital agency, PR for a friend’s app start-up, and taught journalism at university for almost a decade, and ended up with a PhD in Creative Writing of all things. My first book AmalgaNations was published in 2014. Travel is over for now, as my wife and I have three small children. I’m writing stories for a medical college based in Melbourne and trying to get more active on climate change. I came back to ELTHAM College recently for my twenty year reunion. There we all were, the same faces from high school. Same same, but different. I remember thinking how strange high school is – that we all leave, carrying small pieces of each other away (memories, snapshots, funny moments) and only at reunions does it all come back. Only in retrospect can you see how your path was laid down.

His book Schooling for the Knowledge Era (ACER Press, 2006) explored the belief that to succeed in the rapidly developing and changing global knowledge economy, students need to be innovative, self-directed and entrepreneurial. Much research conducted in intervening years has proven David’s assertions correct. David was a driving force behind the creation of our Hospitality Centre, which opened in 2004 and officially named in his honour in 2013. He gave the gift of voice, opportunity and trust to ELTHAM’s student body and  provided a collaborative environment in which exceptional teaching and learning took place. He made a lasting impact to educational reform in his lifetime, and his significant contributions to the College will forever be remembered as important milestones in our history. Our sincere condolences go out to David’s wife Deb, their children Jake and Madison, and extended family. We are saddened to advise our community that Von Canty, beloved Home Economics teacher at the College from 1979 to 1995, passed away on Saturday 15 June surrounded by her family. 9



CLASS OF ‘99 20 YEAR REUNION Saturday 22 March 2019

C A. Jo Tonissen, Melissa Garth-Jones B. Emily Day, Rachael Dere, Melinda Woods (Straw), Melissa Lee, Julian McCartney, Brooke Foenander (Wagg) C. Carla Reynolds, Ross Goddard, Mark Felstead, Doug Hendrie, Alex Brooks-Koochew D. Philip Quayle, Joanna Chan, Rohan Wadey, Cassie Douglas (West) E. Daniela Giuliano (Frattali), Michelle Grant



B 10


CLASS OF ‘09 10 YEAR REUNION Friday 24 May 2019

A A. Jessica Conte, Lauren Hill (Delacca), Larissa Payne B. Iain Douglas, Tim Stanbrough, Adam Wilson, Laura Karantgis, Rhys Beuthin C. James Owen, Bessie Grant, Simon Le Plastrier, Al Anderson D. James Wierzbowski, Georgia Butler E. Isabelle Mitchell (Dusting), Jessica Koutsoumidis, Elise Andrews, Kate Coen







E 11




Simon Webber (Class of 2007) married Leanne Parfett on 5 November 2018.

Ollie John Foo, born 25 October 2018, son of Ryan Foo (Class of 2001) and Ashlea Foo (Class of 2005).

Charlize Joubert, born 27 August 2018, daughter of Katherine and Neil Joubert (Class of 2004). A granddaughter for past staff member Charon Joubert.

Georgia Chambers (Class of 2011) married Chris Nevill on 9 March 2019 at the RACV Healesville Country Club.

Matt Weales (Class of 2007) married Nicole Levens on 9 February 2019 at Acacia Ridge Winery in the Yarra Valley.

Dianna Williamson (Homestay Mother), Bob Zhou, Lenon Zhang, Kinson Li, Yulia Cai, Joyce Chen, Venus Yang (all Class of 2013), and Franceen Challons (current staff member).

Warwick Draper (Class of 1994) married Sally Wright on 24 May 2019. 12

Isaac Thomas Lynch, born 1 May 2019, son of Nicole Stallard and Matt Lynch (Class of 2002).

Keep us in the loop! Please email us at alumni@elthamcollege.vic.edu.au if you have recently welcomed a new baby, celebrated a loved one or have a story to share.



ALUMNI SPORTING CLUBS TURTLES NEWS Season 2019 is well underway for the Old Eltham Collegians Football Club, and it has been an incredibly exciting and fruitful beginning. Pre-season (where we welcomed over 40 new players and their families into the club) has finished and the games have begun. Round One saw us welcome our closest neighbour and rival Panton Hill to the ‘Turtle Dome’. Record numbers turned up to watch two competitive games of football (and eat the canteen out of food three times!). The Reserves picked up the first win for the club in the Northern Football and Netball League, whilst the Seniors were far from disgraced against the flag favourites for the division. It was great to see so many new and old families, past Turtles and representatives of the league and College attend. That same weekend, our newest TURTLES Darcy French (Class team, the Old Eltham Collegians Netball team, of 2015) with senior captain Tim Woods played their first game. They have notched up a few wins and are building nicely into the season. RECCC G1 Senior Premiers including Chris Cunningham, Archie Cunningham (Year 8) and Daniel Hardy (Class of 2015)

RECCC NEWS On behalf of the Committee of Research Eltham Collegians Cricket Club (RECCC), I want to congratulate all club members, players, families and supporters on a fantastic season both on and off the field.

Since then it has been improvement after improvement for the club, with only inaccurate kicking stopping the Seniors from sitting at 2 – 2, whilst the Reserves sit third on the ladder with a 3 – 1 record. We have hosted three home games at the Turtle Dome (and only run out of food once since) and it has been a pleasure to showcase the facilities at our disposal to visiting clubs.

A huge thank you to our valued sponsors as well – without their financial support the club would not be in the position it is in.

“The best ground in the league to watch football” TURTLES Luke Bower has been overheard on many occasions from (Class of 2008) with senior visiting supporters. From a player perspective, captain Tim Woods College recruits Luke Bower (Class of 2008), Jackson Bevilacqua (Class of 2008) and Darcy French (Class of 2015) have been regular members of the senior team, with Luke in particular playing a major role in the development of our young squad. Alumni Zac Cole (Class of 2007), Bryan Galvin (Class of 2004), and Ryan (Class of 2001) and Jordan Foo (Class of 2003) have been instrumental off-field.

We look forward to continuing to build on this year’s achievements for the upcoming 2019/20 season and beyond.

If you would like to be involved in any capacity (both football and netball), please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Brad Purvis – President, Research Eltham Collegians Cricket Club

Ben Crellin – President, Old Eltham Collegians FC ‘The Turtles’

Research Eltham Collegians Cricket Club (RECCC) / Contact 0409 499 751 or visit researchelthamcollegians.vic.cricket.com.au

Old Eltham Collegians Football Club | Contact elthamturtle@gmail.com or visit facebook.com/ElthamTurtles

Thank you to all who have made valuable contributions, whether it be in the pre-season, in season, post-season, on training days, game day and at our Thursdays night events, whether that’s behind the scenes or by way of a financial contribution to the Research Park FFE Fund, and in so many other ways. It is due to these combined contributions that the club was able to achieve the successes and achievements we have.




PUMPKIN VELOUTÉ WITH CHICKEN WINGS RECIPE Ingredients Pumpkin Velouté 750g pumpkin (weighed after peeling) cut into 2cm cubes 150g parmesan 150g butter 450ml chicken or vegetable stock Salt and pepper Chicken wings 18 chicken wingettes (mid-section only) Olive oil 300ml chicken stock Method 1. Melt the butter in a saucepan. Allow the butter to foam and then add the pumpkin. 2. Sweat the pumpkin on a very low heat without colouring it. After 10 minutes, the pumpkin should be starting to collapse at the edges. 3. Now add the stock, allow to boil and simmer for approximately 10 minutes or until the vegetables are completely soft. 4. Stir in the parmesan and remove from the heat. 5. Puree the soup in a liquidiser or with a hand held blender and pulse until smooth. Taste and correct seasoning, and if the consistency is a little thick, thin out with some stock. 6. Keep warm until ready to be served. 7. For the chicken wings, preheat oven at 180°C. 8. Season the chicken wings with salt and pepper. Add a dash of oil to a hot ovenproof pan large enough to hold the wings and the chicken stock. Add the wings skin-side down and cook until the skin is a nice golden-brown colour 9. Add the chicken stock to the pan, bring to the boil and cover with a cartouche (parchment paper lid). 10. Transfer the pan to the oven for around 25 minutes, until the wings are soft and the bones will pull out easily from the flesh. Leave the wings to cool to room temperature in the stock. 11. When the wings are cool, remove from the stock and place on a chopping board. Using a sharp knife, top and tail each section of wing and very gently pull out the long bones that run through the centre. When you’re confident all the bone and gristle has been removed, reheat in the oven at 180°C for 5 minutes. 12. Place three wings in the centre of a warm bowl. Pour the warm pumpkin velouté around chicken wings and serve immediately. 14

This is a very simple recipe but it shows off the lovely flavour and silky consistency of the pumpkin perfectly. Velouté traditionally is made by making a roux and adding stock, but in this recipe – use parmesan instead of flour to give it a nice texture. Serves 6 people. Patrick Murphy

Hospitality Trainer TREAT YOURSELF AT SWIPERS GULLY TRAINING RESTAURANT For great food and excellent value phone 9437 2222 for bookings during the school term.



FOUNDATION NEWS LITTLE FLYERS .Following a fairly successful year in 2018, the

Eltham College Foundation was pleased to have been able to provide the College with a $500,000 donation, the services of a financial accountant, sponsorship of its Golf Day and to assist in the running of a successful College Open Day. Whilst planning to support the College similarly in 2019, through collaboration with the College Board, the Foundation has launched an ELTHAM College Foundation Award. Being one of the finest independent schools in Melbourne, we have a fee structure that supports the delivery of exemplary programs, however these fees can sometimes be outside the reach of some families. This award is set up to assist those families who would like to access (other than by scholarship) all that an ELTHAM College education has to offer, but are unable to meet the full fees. Subject to meeting the financial and academic criteria, and the College being able to enrol the student at the entry level sought, the Foundation is able to fund a proportion of school fees payable. The College has agreed to administer this award, which involves a thorough financial analysis of the families involved, on behalf of the Foundation. To facilitate this award, the Foundation has set aside an additional $300,000 of funding in 2019. Two families have been able to take advantage of this funding to date and we hope many others can throughout this year and into the future. In closing, the Board of the Foundation would like to congratulate the College for the high level of success achieved by students in 2018.

Iain Cowan Eltham College Foundation CEO





ECCA goes green

Students, staff and parents came together at ECCA events in Term One to welcome in the school year and connect with new and existing friends.

In Term One, the ECCA Committee voted to phase out single-use plastics at ECCA events in an effort to reduce the amount of waste we generate and reduce our consumption of plastic. This move, which is in line with the College’s overall aim to review sustainability practices, will take time but we are passionate about taking positive steps forward.

Our ‘Welcome Sizzles’ were a new initiative designed around parent feedback. On two Friday afternoons in February and March, parent volunteers and the Junior Leadership students cranked up the BBQ, families and teachers mingled and children enjoyed an extended play in the playground. The summer heatwave forced a re-think of the Year 7/8 BBQ which was rescheduled for a cooler and very pleasant Friday evening in March, complete with entertainment from ELTHAM College Alumni Koray Demir. At our AGM in May, we reflected on the previous year's efforts which included hosting 33 events in 2018 (ranging from committee meetings to the MASTERWORKS Art Exhibition), presenting $1000 in ECCA Achievement Awards to students, launching the ECCA book club which meets once a term, and contributing a little over $46,000 towards various College initiatives and programs. We also welcomed three new members to the ECCA Committee of Management for 2019, and look forward to another full and exciting year. If you have any ideas or suggestions for how ECCA can welcome, connect and support the ELTHAM community, please get in touch with us at ecca@elthamcollege.vic.edu.au


In practical terms, an example of what this means for you is that instead of drinking from plastic water bottles at ECCA events, we will encourage you to bring your own water bottle from home and refill it using our water stations. We will replace plastic cups, plates and cutlery with reusable or compostable items, and are investigating options for separating our waste. We appreciate your help as we aim to reduce our environmental impact. We encourage anyone with relevant ideas or suggestions to email us at ecca@elthamcollege.vic.edu.au

Jacqui Ward ECCA President



Staying connected ECCA aims to have two Social Reps in every year level to help welcome, connect and support the ELTHAM community. In 2019, we have 30 ECCA Social Reps from the Early Learning Centre through to Year 12. These are parent volunteers interested in helping build connections across the College. Our ECCA Social Reps organise opportunities for parents to come together and strengthen their connections throughout the year. Details of these events are communicated to parents through the newsletters and the College app.

Want to Help Out? Would you like to find out more about ECCA, share some ideas, get involved in planning our events or help out on the day? We’d love to hear from you. Email ecca@elthamcollege.vic.edu.au with your details. ELTHAM Community Association (ECCA) meeting Conference Room, ELTHAM College, 7.30pm – 9.30pm JUL 17

AUG 28

SEP 11

OCT 23

NOV 13

A Novel Bunch ECCA Book Club D D Davey Library, ELTHAM College, 7.30pm – 9.30pm AUG 20

NOV 12




EMBRACING GLOBAL OPPORTUNITIES One of ELTHAM College’s strategic aims is for students to be world ready and engaged global citizens. The College celebrates internationalism by strengthening our relationships with international schools through our studies of Chinese (Mandarin) and French, providing enrolment to both long-term and shortterm students from an increasingly diverse range of countries, and the facilitation of the bi-annual volunteer trip to Guatemala.


We have developed positive relationships with schools in Montpellier, Okinawa, Shanghai and Beijing. We also have affiliations with organisations that facilitate student and principal tours from Thailand and China. With close to 50 international students who come from a range of countries (including Japan, China, Vietnam, Thailand, France and Kazakhstan), our commitment to developing a truly global program is well established.

of a member of staff, students spend three weeks of their summer break working with a local community. Students collaborate to coordinate fundraising activities during the lead-up to the trip in order to purchase building materials. Students learn Chinese (Mandarin) from Prep up to Year 4. In Years 5 – 9, students can undertake Chinese and/or French, and students in Years 10 – 12 can elect to continue with their chosen language during their VCE studies. Our local VCE French and Chinese language students also have the opportunity to participate in a reciprocal exchange with students in Montpellier and Beijing, where students not only host overseas students during their time at ELTHAM College, but also become overseas students themselves.

It is important for both our local and international students to gain a global perspective and experience a range of different cultures, as the world they are growing into also becomes more globalised.

Having recently redeveloped our Observatory, we’re now able to further explore opportunities to collaborate with other schools, with particular advantages in sharing reciprocal ‘space time’ with schools in the Northern Hemisphere.

Each year, local and international students can nominate for the role of ‘Leader of Internationalism’. This role is responsible for seeking out opportunities for local and international students to interact socially and share cultural experiences, with events organised such as Chinese New Year Celebrations and a Harmony Day BBQ. The Leader of Internationalism also assists with short-term tours, orientation, adjustment of newly commencing students, and translation at overseas marketing exhibitions for prospective students and their families.

Local and international students both benefit from the College’s focus on developing and strengthening these relationships. Students gain a deeper understanding of other cultures, languages and ways of thinking – a vital part of becoming a global citizen.

To further strengthen our international ties and to expose students to a different culture, Senior School students have the opportunity to participate in building schools and houses for a local community in Guatemala. Under the direction

Franceen Challons International Liaison Officer






“What am I going to do with my daughter?” This question would be the spark that ignited what has become ELTHAM College as we know it. It was 1972 and architect Les Clarke, a founding partner of firm ClarkeHopkinsClarke, was chatting with his client and friend Bert Stevens, Principal of Essendon Grammar School. Les was expressing his concern about what he felt were a lack of options to educate his daughter locally. “Well, why don’t you start a school?” was the suggestion. Ha! That simple? Les placed an advertisement in the Diamond Valley News inviting people to a public meeting in the Eltham Youth Hall, asking for an expression of interest in the establishment of an independent school in the area. About 150 turned up, although not all were supporters of the concept!

B In 1973, he founded what was to become the first major independent secular school in Australia. Les Clarke was appointed Founding Chairman, Mr Desmond D. Davey was appointed the first principal, and building commenced. Classes at ELTHAM College started on Tuesday 12 February 1974 with 135 students, eight staff and one building. The College had more than one opening – it was first opened early in 1974 by Eltham Councillor Alistair Knox, with the Datum Point Sculpture by Matcham Skipper marking the occasion. Later in the year, on Saturday 5 October 1974, the College was officially opened by Dr K McKinnon, Chairman of the Schools Commission. The construction of many buildings followed, delivered on an annual basis, until fast forward to April 1977 and the ECCACENTRE was officially opened and the College was registered as a secondary school.

a Shire Councillor until 1988. In January 1992, he became a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in ‘recognition of service to the community through the design of schools which incorporate community facilities’. In 2016 Les Clarke retired from ClarkeHopkinsClarke after 56 years in the practice. The practice designed all the buildings at the College and established with Ivan Stranger the format of the College’s uniquely Australian informal landscape. Les remains a Life Member of ELTHAM College and a Life Fellow of the Australian Institute of Architects.

Esmae Boutros Archivist

In his spare time, Les Clarke became the Eltham Shire President in October 1973, and he remained

Photo captions A Les Clarke | B 1974 Art & Craft Centre with bricks aka mud hut | C First all school photo 1978 | D 25 October 1975. Datum Point Sculpture, Des Davey (far left) and Les Clarke (far right) supervise installation on day of opening | E Les Clarke today







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Connections Magazine July 2019  

We hope you enjoy catching up on just some of the exciting activities occurring across our community this year. You can explore what's been...

Connections Magazine July 2019  

We hope you enjoy catching up on just some of the exciting activities occurring across our community this year. You can explore what's been...