Warrandyte High School House Athletics carnival

Warrandyte High School returned to Doncaster Athletics track in Thursday 4th May with a bang and ready for some tight events. The weather whilst overcast predominately remained fine to enable some great competition with a large group of enthusiastic, passionate and motivated students ready to try their best for claim house victory. 250 Warrandyte High School students descended Doncaster Athletics Track full of colour and with loud voices ready to run, jump, throw and cheer their houses to victory. The participation level was high with many track events requiring heats and field events being extremely busy. Many events were tightly contested with 4 new records being re-written. Congratulations goes to Joel Denny broke the 14-year-old 1500m record, Charlotte Williams who broke the 13-year Long Jump record and Jacob Close who broke the 17-year-old high jump and 200m sprint records. I am sure these records will be written in Warrandyte history for many years to come. It was a fantastic effort from all students involved gaining valuable points for their house. In the end it was a closely contested day with final results coming down to final events and relays. Stiggant were awarded House Athletics Champions for 2023. Congratulations Stiggant.

The final points tally was:

Stiggant – 1154
Newman – 899
Anderson – 879
Michel – 871

In addition, a House Athletics Champion Trophy was awarded to one student from each house. These students were recognized for gaining the most number of points for their house and for their eager participation on the day.

The House Athletics Champions were:

Stiggant – Joel Denny
Newman – Mia Fadel
Anderson – Adam Kamphuis
Michel – Rhianna Cummings

Students who won an event will now progress through to the Mullum Division Athletics competition being held later in term 3. We wish all these students the best of luck and am sure they will challenge themselves to give 100% and represent the school with pride. Hopefully some of these students can also put their names in the record books for the Mullum Division for some time to come to.

The day is not only about recognising athletic success but also about building house spirit, leadership and cross year level friendships for all students as well as students and teachers building relationship outside the classroom setting. As part of this students were awarded as being best dressed on the day. There were many students recognised for the amazing costumes of which some included homemade inventions, coloured hair and group themes. The eventual winners of the best dressed completion were:

The Mario team – Amber Gedge (Baby Mario), Gina Di Mauro (Luigi), Lahni Weeks (Yoshi), Ava Griffiths (Toad), Rhianna Cummings (Princess Daisy), Amber Robertson (Bowser), Lucia Rossi (Mario), Ellie Webster (Cloud Guy), Jayde McIver (Princess Peach) and Rebecca Nettleton (Sky Guy)

May the 4th be with you – Curtis Konynenburg (storm trooper) and Angus Evans (Jedi).

There were also some great costumes from a group of year 8 students all dressed as fairies (Chloe Minogue, Jess McDermott, Evie Patton, Giaan Vasie and Ruby Johnston) the Peaky

Blinder boys (AJ Murray, Sam Ferguson, Patrick Downie, Josh Spiteri, Cruz Robinson and Bo Breen).

A special mention must also be made of the year 12 students who went way beyond expectations with their costumes. It was fantastic to see so many of them involved both on and off the track and thoroughly enjoying their last house competition.

At the athletics sports students are not only recognised for their sporting abilities but also their contribution to their team and demonstration of leadership skills. The eight house captains must be commended on their efforts on the day to encourage all students. Students from all houses and year levels were also able to demonstrate their leadership skills by helping at events by undertaking roles such as racking, measuring, handing round snacks and warm drinks to staff running events and helping with timing. This enabled those students not as keen to participate in events to still gain valuable points to their house. A special thank you to all students who helped out at events on the day. Student helpers make the day run a lot smoother and the teachers were greatly appreciative of your help.

A big thank you also goes to all the staff who contributed to making the 2023 House Athletics Carnival a successful and enjoyable day. It was an extremely busy day for all staff either running events, recording results, marshalling students, supervising students or encouraging all students to do their best.

I look forward to seeing the students compete at the Divisional athletics and building on our house competition moving forward into 2024.

Katie Cook
Sports Leader

Year 10 “Be Wise” – Social Violence Session

A Coward Punch is a strike that is unprovoked and delivered without warning.

While out with his mates in 2016, 19-year-old Pat was punched in the back of the head while assisting a friend in danger. Two days later, his family had to make the decision to turn off his life support.

Year 10 students attended a Pat Cronin, Be Wise Education presentation and learnt about the impacts and consequences that social violence can have on people. The presentation explored anger and impulse control and used Pat’s story to show students the dangers of one impulsive or reactive behaviour can do to all involved. Students were encouraged to reflect on their own attitudes and beliefs about anger and violence, how to make safe decisions, and how to keep themselves and their friends safe.

Information covered in the session included:

  • Respectful behaviours.
  • Strategies to be a proactive positive bystander.
  • Understanding anger and ways to control it.
  • Ways to react less impulsively.
  • Personal safety

The One Punch Law Australia

The one punch law is that “A person who unlawfully strikes another person to the head or neck and causes the death of the other person is guilty of a crime” (section 314A of the Criminal Code).
To bring the charge the police need to establish:
there was a “striking”.

  1. it was unlawful.
  2. it was to the head or neck; and
  3. it causes death

Perpetrators of one-punch deaths can face up to 10 years in jail. The sentence will apply whether the death is caused by the punch, or by the victim striking his or her head in the fall. Being under the influence of alcohol and or drugs IS NOT an excuse or a defence.

The Wellbeing Team

Where are they now?

Profiles of Past Warrandyte High Students

In the first interview for the year, I contacted a past student from back in the 80’s, who had an amazing and award-winning career as a chef, before he decided to make a complete change for a job in the Police Force.
Matt Volk has worked in all areas of policing, and volunteers his time to support an important, but often overlooked, area of the community…read on and learn more!

1. Which years did you attend Warrandyte High?
I attended WHS from year 7 to end of year 11. I think that was 1983 to 1987.

2. Do you have any enduring/favourite or funny memory/memories of your time at Warrandyte High?
SO many funny memories of my time a WHS and many can’t be published here 😊
Going to music classes after lunch and the whole class had to lay on their back on the floor and focus on the roof while the teacher played a song by a band called the Police called “I’ll be watching you”.

Participating in the daily or weekly run around the school and getting in trouble for having one of my friends’ runners on and him having one of mine.
A new student coming into Home Economics classes saying he was only there as the class was 95% females. I wanted to be a chef, hence that being a great class for me.

Overall, it was a great high school to be a part of with so many fantastic teachers.

3. Do you recall some of your favourite subjects, and why you enjoyed them?
I think the classes I most enjoyed were largely due to the teachers at the time.
Their style of teaching and the way they treated students tended to set the tone for enjoyment of classes.

My favourites were PE and Business Maths (Ines Ulehla)
Home Economics was definitely a favourite
Can’t remember the class but the teacher was Mr Solomon.
These teachers had a passion for teaching and were invested in the students who showed an interest in the subjects.

4. What did you do after finishing school?
At the end of year 11, I obtained a full time position as an apprentice chef. It’s all I had wanted to do since year 9 and I had completed work experience at a local restaurant in the lead up to it.

5. Did you know what you wanted to do after leaving school? Was there a defining moment during your time at school when you realised what you wanted to do with your life?
There was no defining moment when I knew what I wanted to do, but from the start of year 9 I was intent on being a chef. I loved the industry and enjoyed some great experiences and success in cooking. From being named Apprentice of the Year for my employer, to winning cooking competitions and training with the Australian Culinary Olympic team, I had a great time. I travelled to Adelaide for a few years to work for Channel 9 at the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix. I occasionally cooked for the then Premier of Victoria, Joan Kirner at Parliament House.

Whilst still an apprentice, I started my own catering business and was busy cooking at weddings, funerals, 21st birthdays and everything in between.
I worked at an Italian restaurant 2 nights a week and also worked at the MCG cooking for the corporate suites. At one stage I had 4 jobs which was a very busy time. I was the executive chef for Esanda Finance in the city and ran their staff bistro, through to their function rooms and executive board rooms. It was at this location that I became a little bored and found that every day was becoming a ‘ground-hog day’ and I wanted a job where I didn’t know what would happen each day. That’s where Policing came in!

6. And what are you doing now?
In 1993 I joined Victoria Police as a recruit. I have had a fortunate career working in a diverse range of areas. Many of these have been in the criminal investigation areas.

I have worked at general duties police stations at all ranks, the Force Response Unit, Drug Squad, Fraud & Extortion Squad, Highway Patrol, and Crime Units.

In 2017, I was promoted to Inspector at the Sex Offenders Registry where I had state level responsibility to manage the approximate 4,500 registered sex offenders who live across the Victorian community. This was an exceptionally busy but rewarding role.

In 2020 I transferred to the Police Academy into the training environment where my team built the firearms, defensive tactics and tactical communication requalification courses which all 18,000 police have to attend every 6 months.
In July 2022 I transferred to my current role as the Local Area Commander of Monash Police Service Area. Here I manage around 170 staff across 4 police Stations within the City of Monash. Another busy but rewarding role.

7. What has/have been the highlights of your career to date?
There are too many to mention but I have always tried to reflect positively on my experiences within policing. I have arrested people for offences from using offensive language, to multimillion dollar frauds, to rape and murder. Being part of, or leading, investigative teams who have gathered sufficient evidence for a court to convict these offenders has always been very rewarding.

8. Was there any one thing or person that put you on the path to your success?
I feel like I was always a self-motivated person. There was no individual who put me on the path to success, but you are a product of people you surround yourself with. Good things happen when you surround yourself with good and positive people, and conversely bad things happen when you’re in the wrong crowd.
I had plenty of opportunities to go down the wrong path when I started hanging around with the wrong crowd but somehow, I started making better decisions which reaped many rewards. We all make mistakes in life but it’s how we respond that matters. This lesson is just as important now in adulthood as it was when at high school.

The other saying I’ve often said, is that “the harder you work the luckier you get”.

9. Were there things that your education/training did not prepare you for, and/or what would you recommend students look out for as they prepare to enter the world of work?
The reality is that nothing prepares you from being a full time high school student to being full time in the workforce.
Things that prepare you somewhat are doing some online or in person research, work experience (paid or unpaid), and having people in the industries you can talk to about what to expect.

In terms of what to look out for, first and foremost it needs to be about your wellbeing. Entering the work force from school is tiring, both physically and mentally. New duties, roles, environments, travel, knowledge and expectations are significant changes for you to deal with. Expect to be exhausted in every way for the first couple of months and expect to not know what you are doing for at least 6 months. Don’t beat yourself up for mistakes and take the time to acknowledge the good things you’ve done or contributed to.
Outside of work, stay active and connected with family and friends. Share your experiences and feelings with those you trust.

10. Interests/achievements outside of work?
For the last 5 years I have been heavily involved in a police-aligned charity called Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR) Victoria. I’m the current President of the organisation. LETR raises funds and awareness for people living with an intellectual disability, through Special Olympics Victoria who offer a wide range of sporting and leadership development opportunities for this vulnerable part of our community. Being able to make a difference to athletes living with intellectual disability is something I gain a great deal of satisfaction from.

Contributing/volunteering in your adult life is very important to me and always has been.
Prior to my LETR involvement I coached junior basketball and football for many years.

11. If you could impart a word of wisdom, what would be your message to current students at Warrandyte High School?
If you know what you want to do straight out of school that’s great. Go for it and be 100% ‘all in’.
If you don’t know what you want to do, it doesn’t matter but do something. Trial and error is fine. Many people have numerous jobs and occupations throughout their life so don’t be afraid to try new things. Don’t focus on what certain jobs pay as all the money in the world won’t make up for a job that makes you feel miserable. Work in fields you have a passion, or even just an interest in.

As a coach I have always said that ‘effort doesn’t take skill’. As a policeman I have always said that ‘attitude is everything’. This means that regardless of your skills and abilities, which are somewhat limited when you leave school, having a positive ‘can do’ attitude is the most important value to have and demonstrate throughout your working life.

gang gang

2023 Vaping Reforms

New actions to address the problems of e cigarettes and to help limit young people’s access to vapes will be implemented later this year.

The vaping reforms will see the importation of nicotine and non-nicotine vaping products banned in Australia. Access will be only through medical review and pharmacies. These actions aim to make it easier for people wanting to quit, to get a prescription and to understand the contents of the vaping products they then buy.

The reforms include:

  • Ban on single-use disposable vapes.
  • Banning the importation of all non-prescription vaping products, including those that
  • DO NOT contain nicotine.
  • GPs to provide scripts to patients to obtain vapes, where they need them.
  • Vaping products to be only available in pharmacies.
  • Pharmaceutical packaging with reduced flavours, colours, and nicotine volumes.
  • Investment in education and support programs to encourage people to quit.

Most people who currently vape in Australia are using non-regulated products, which means they have no idea what ingredients are in them, including the level of nicotine. Many of the non-regulated products sold as non-nicotine vapes, do contain nicotine, which means some people who vape, including young people, may be unknowingly consuming nicotine and forming a dependence.

Nicotine is highly addictive and can be difficult to stop using it. Withdrawal can result in irritability, anxiety, cravings, trouble concentrating, sleeping problems, and feeling sad or depressed.

These vaping reforms create an opportunity for parents / carers to bring up the topic with their children. It’s important for young people who vape, to be aware of the upcoming changes, potential signs of withdrawal, and the supports that are available. Attached are resources to assist in conversations with young people.

Fiona Keech – Adolescent Health Nurse


The Department of Education and Training promotes inclusive and respectful environments that are free from discrimination for all staff and students. May 17th, IDAHoBIT Day, is important as it promotes, educates, and raises awareness about LBGTQI+ people and importantly encourage respect and inclusion.

Jake Newton, WHS Wellbeing Coordinator presented to the Year 7,8 and 9 students in an interactive session that provided an opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of LBGTQI+ individuals and challenge any misunderstandings or preconceived prejudice that may lead to individual distress.

MacKillop Family Services

We are currently in desperate need of some carers. We have so many vulnerable children coming through our system, but not enough carers. If you or someone you know would be interested, please contact us.

Barista for Teens

The hospitality industry is full of opportunities, and Barista skills
will give you an advantage when applying for work

Our Barista for Teens program:

  • provides hands-on learning and experience
  • provides access to videos for future reference
  • is fun and interactive
  • has no exams or testing
  • class sizes are small

Tuesday 4th July 2023 from 9.30am-1pm
Cost: $90

Additional classes may be added if required

Register at:

Yarrunga Community Centre
76-86 Croydon Hills Drive, Croydon Hills VIC 3136
(03) 9722 8942 | info@yarrunga.org.au | www.yarrunga.org.au