Secondary News

The last two weeks in the secondary had an amazing community feel about them with many activities that has brought large groups of the community together in such a positive way. Events such as our annual Cathedral Service in the city, Generations in Jazz at Mount Gambier, Open Morning at school, Years7 and 8 Mothers’ Day bowling and our Festival of Cultures Assembly to name a few.

Cathedral Service
On Friday 5 May we held our annual Cathedral Service at St Paul’s Cathedral in the city. This Service is one of my personal favourite days in our school calendar and this year was no exception. To have one of the most beautiful Cathedrals in our city dedicated entirely to Tintern, and then to fill it with our secondary school and other members of our community was a beautiful sight. The service itself ran for just under an hour and was filled with beautiful hymns and music from our choirs and individual vocalists, as well as a reflection from Australian Baptist Minister Tim Costello, AO former CEO of World Vision Australia. It is such a special occasion to have our entire secondary community together for such a service. Read the Faith Matters article

Open Morning
On Saturday 6 May, the forecast weather was cold and very wet! It threatened to disrupt our scheduled Open Morning that normally provides the opportunity for potential new families to see our school and to find out more information as they begin to decide on the school for their children. Despite the weather forecast (it actually turned out quite good), we were overwhelmed with the number of families that attended throughout the morning. Over 400 people braved the wet and cold to hear from our Principal, Brad Fry, about our school’s commitment to quality education and to care. They also heard a number of our choirs and musicians before being taken on a tour of different parts of the school. What was most impressive was the participation and involvement of our current students throughout the morning. We had over 100 students who willingly volunteered to give up their own Saturday morning to help out on tours or in different sections of the school. This says a lot about the way our students feel about school.

Years 7 & 8 Mothers’ Day Bowling
On Wednesday 10 May, our Years 7 and 8 mums were invited to join us at Forest Hill for our Mother Daughter/Mother Son bowling night. The night is a lot of fun and provides a great opportunity for the mum’s to socialise with each other and to also have some fun with their daughter and/or son. There was the occasional strike and a few very high scores, whilst also a significant number of gutter balls (and plenty of requests to put the bumpers up‼). It was such a positive evening with many families opting to take advantage of the time and venue to then go for dinner as part of an early Mothers’ Day celebration.

On behalf of the school I would like to express our gratitude to all the mums, and those who play this role for our students, for all the amazing commitment and effort that you provide your child/children. I hope you all enjoyed the actual Mothers’ Day on Sunday with the beautiful weather.


Festival of Culture Assembly
Our Festival of Culture’s Week is this week (Monday 15 May – Friday 19 May) celebrating the amazing diversity and strong sense of community Tintern has. The weekly celebration includes an appreciation to the high number of backgrounds our students have (over 24 different countries), as well as hearing traditional music from different countries and some beautiful food. At our Principal’s assembly on May 12, our international captains Helen Tan (Year 12) and Nick Zhong (Year 9) led the assembly through some fun games and activities that highlighted our diversity, whilst also listening to Enya Ouyang (Year 8) play a traditional Chinese instrument called the Guzheng read the music report. 


Over the coming weeks we have a number of key events approaching for different year levels:

  • Examination: Our Years 9 – 11 students have their examination in the week Monday 29 May – Friday 02 June.
  • Your Future Careers Expo Thursday 18 May. This event is in our CM Wood Centre at 7pm and has a large number of our Alumni and other volunteers providing time to talk to our students about possible careers and options that they have ahead of them.
  • Guiding your Future: On Tuesday 6 June we have our Guiding your Future evening for current Years 9 and 11 students and families. At this event we will be providing key information around VCE and VET including an understanding of VASS and VCAA. This will be followed with a Subject Showcase Evening in early Term 3 (Tuesday 18 July) in our Anderson Centre (Senior College).

Secondary Parent Communications Survey

We invite Secondary parents to take part in a survey on parent communications. This short survey will help us in a review of the frequency of communication to parents, from Pastoral Mentors, Year Level Co-ordinators and our Aspectus Newsletter. The survey will remain open until the end of May.

To complete the survey, click here:


Brett Trollope | Head of Secondary


A significant focus of the Pastoral Program in Years 7 and 8 is endeavouring to help our students feel good about themselves, physically and mentally. These years are crucial for them as young people, both in terms of continuing to establish themselves as secondary school learners, and as confident young people preparing for their next stage in life. Topics such as use of social media, self-esteem, bullying and stress management are among those covered in order to help develop our young people. GEM Day (Gratitude, Empathy, Mindfulness Day) for this term fully supported these topics in the Pastoral Program.

Enlighten Education 

Danni Miller – founder of Enlighten Education – presented to the Years 7 and 8 girls. Topics covered included decoding and evaluating messages we see in the media around a ‘perfect’ body, strategies to keep calm, journalling, gratitude, and healthy friendships. Feedback from our girls: 

‘Everything about today was amazing and extremely excellent! I loved how nice everyone was towards each other today and I have learnt a lot of useful life skills. I now know about equality, to be kind, how to manage friendships and to take deep breaths. Thank you so much for coming to us all the way from Sydney!’

Today was so great and I really loved every part of it, it was so inspiring! I really liked writing and receiving the little messages in the amazing journals we made! I learnt about mindfulness, how to deal with friend problems and the impacts that gender aimed things can have on kids.’

‘Today was out of this world! I loved learning about your life story and more! It was all so interesting. I learnt friendship tips, about women’s rights, the respect rules and how to journal. Thank you!’


Man Cave

Man Cave are a preventative mental health and emotional intelligence charity that empowers boys to become great men. They run a valuable program which was again of great benefit to the boys, encouraging them to communicate with each other and verbalise their feelings. The care, respect and compassion the boys showed toward each other throughout the day, and the feedback from the Man Cave facilitators, was heart-warming to observe. Both the facilitators and the boys were ‘buzzing’ at the end of the day and follow-up resources have been sent to further reinforce skills learned.

With confidence I can say this was a worthwhile day for our students, perhaps even more than they realise.


Anthea Watkins | Middle Years Leader

Virtual Reality Learning – exploring the body

Unit 1 Psychology classes immersed themselves in a virtual human body experience, using the six new VR Headsets and human anatomy software run in the STEAM Centre of the Senior Library. As a way of consolidating their understanding of brain structure and function, students donned the handheld joysticks with the VR Headsets, to dissect the layers of the brain piece by piece. The software allowed exploration and explanation of the right and left hemispheres, finding the specialised areas responsible for behaviours like speech production and movement. Incredibly, students were able to examine the many tiny structures of the brain, respiratory and nervous systems which are hidden deep within the body and commonly seen only as two-dimensional cross-sections in a textbook. Exclamations of joy were heard as they unfolded the complex systems in the software – “everything is in three dimensions Miss, I can touch it and turn it and see every angle of it – I’m literally inside it!”

The true power of digital learning tools will become more evident as their use increases, but students are hungry for and respond well to these incredible learning tools. Their understanding about complex structures like the human brain and the billions of neural connections involved in human cognition and behaviour can only be enhanced with next-level technology like this in our classrooms


Rebecca Infanti | Secondary Geography & Psychology Teacher



Round 3 of DAV debating was a most successful one for Tintern teams. While the Tintern 3, D grade team were not able to complete their debate due to a shortage of adjudicators on the night (due to illness), our results for the other debates were most positive. This team will be awarded full points, as will their opponents, so this counts as a win. The A, B and C grade teams all had secret topics to debate and Tintern won in all three debates. In D grade the topic was:

‘That the government should prioritise funding the arts over sports.’

Tintern teams 2 and 4 defeated Yarra Valley Grammar and Donvale Christian College, respectively, and Tintern 1 was defeated by Catholic Ladies College.

Our next debate is on Wednesday, June 7th, with secret topics again for A, B and C grades, and the D grade teams will be debating whether the government should raise the retirement age.

Lanna Derry | Head of Debating




Term Dates