From the Principal

Dear parents and carers

Our Year 11 students and an equally awesome group of teachers are edging closer to their Northern Territory experience which promises to be amazing. As part of this adventure, they will be immersing themselves in the wonders of Darwin, Alice Springs, Katherine, Uluru and King’s Canyon just to name a few of the amazing locations which they will explore. We wish them safe travels and a safe return.

The 3.54 Million we have received for Stage 1 capital works is really starting to become a reality. In the second half of the year, construction is due to begin. Our Art and Technology building will be getting completely upgraded as part of the Stage 1. In addition, two major student outdoor courtyard areas will be completely upgraded this year. This will provide new and exciting areas for our students to socialise during recess and lunchtime. Very exciting times!

Maths Tutoring is coming! VCE students tutoring junior students right here at Warrandyte High School! We have recently completed interviewing a delightful number of awesome VCE Maths students, all of whom expressed interest in becoming an afterschool maths tutor. Later this week they will be participating in a training session. Families with a junior (Year 7 -10) student wishing to participate in this exciting service will soon be invited to register their interest. What excitement I say!

In this edition, you will get to see so much more of the wonderful activities and opportunities happening at Warrandyte High School.

Joseph Caruana  – Principal (Acting)

Rachel Lynch

Introducing the new Principal

To the Warrandyte High School Community,

Our School Council has been working with the Department of Education and Training for some time to identify a new Principal to lead the Warrandyte High School community, following the retirement of Dr Stephen Parkin earlier this year.

It is with much pleasure and excitement that I announce the appointment of Mrs Rachel Lynch to the position of Principal of Warrandyte High School. Rachel will begin her role as Principal on the first day of Term 3, 2022.

Rachel comes to Warrandyte with much experience as an Acting Principal and is currently Campus Principal at Yarra Hills Secondary College.  Along with her experience, Rachel’s vision, enthusiasm, leadership and kindness will fit very well into the Warrandyte High School community.

Appointing a new principal is a significant responsibility and Rachel was selected after an extensive process.  Warrandyte High School Council is confident in her leadership of Warrandyte High School moving forward.

I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank Mr Joseph Caruana for his excellent work in leading our school over the last 2 terms as Acting Principal.

Kind regards,
Simone Spence – School Council President

Career Journeys

Past Warrandyte High student, Domenico De Rosa describes himself on as a Senior Manager in Brand, Motion and Design. Let’s find out a bit more about his journey in the marketing and creative design industries.

What years did you attend Warrandyte High?

During the noughties.

Do you recall some of your favourite subjects, and why you enjoyed them?

I really enjoyed VET Multimedia and Visual Communication. These subjects allowed me to freely experiment with motion design and build my passion for the craft. Theatre Studies/Drama and Art were other great avenues for artistic expression which all worked together in building strong foundations for my creative career.

What did you do after finishing school? Gap year? University/Apprenticeship…? Which uni/college?

After school I was accepted into a BA at RMIT, focusing on Design, Film and Animation. During the holiday breaks I’d search for more experience and knowledge, also studied abroad. I then started taking on freelance work and applying for competitions, grants and awards. These years were fundamental to learning more about the commercial aspect of design and getting comfortable in turning my creative passion into skills which drive income.

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?

When I finished school, I was a bit on the fence on whether to peruse acting or design/animation. I realised that film/animation heavily rely on the fundamentals of theatre and acting – so it made sense for me to choose motion design and film since it had great potential at the time of becoming a sought after skill in the commercial world. Glad I made that decision at the time.

And what are you doing now and/or at the peak of your career?

I’m now heading up a design team for a global payments company, working across brand, campaigns and marketing.

What has/have been the highlights of your career to date?

I’ve had the opportunity to consult hundreds of brands across all sectors. I’ve learned that the power of design can connect businesses with people and influence the way we perceive a product or service. Over my 10 years of experience in advertising and marketing I’ve been on video shoots around the country, had the privilege of leading multiple design teams and agencies across the world and recently worked on a global rebrand for a tech company.

Was there any one thing or person that put you on the path to your success?

There have been a lot of people who helped me along the way. My parents supported my artistic interest and also guided me to make the right decisions. I also want to thank Ms Bloom, Ms Pidd and Ms Bradbury who gave me the flexibility and freedom to experiment with design and motion by allowing me to create bespoke assignments tailored to my interests and passion.

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?

Get on top of your taxes and start your professional career as soon as you can; you will learn from mistakes early on, meaning you’ll have more time to get ahead and do what you love.

If you could impart a word of wisdom, what would be our message to current students at Warrandyte High School?

Be curious. Take advice from people who care about you, but also stay true to yourself and trust your gut. Learn from others’ achievements and failures, it will save you time and headaches as you work towards your goals. And it’s ok if you don’t know what to do yet with your career/future, you have time —though use it wisely 😉

Some of Dom’s amazing work – see more on


As I write, Year 10s are starting a week of work experience, our first in two years! I wish them all the best, and hope they get a lot out of the week, even if not undertaking their dream job. A big thanks to the many parents, relatives and family friends, who helped Year 10’s find a position. Some students undertook an early week, and others will be participating next term, which is fantastic. Hopefully, some students will achieve part time jobs through their work experience, and even if not, will be able to round out their beginning resumes. I can’t stress enough the importance of work experience!

VCE Changes

You may have seen the advertising for the changes to VCE-VCAL in 2023. We will be holding parent-student information sessions to explain the changes to Year 9 and 10s next term. In the meantime, you can read some of the basics on the VCAA website:

The VCE Vocational Major is the new two-year vocational and applied learning program that will be introduced in 2023 to replace Senior and Intermediate VCAL and offer a program that enables successful transitions into apprenticeships, traineeships, further education and training, or directly into employment. Staff involved in developing the new program at WHS are happy to follow up on any questions you may have.

Careers Website and Newsletters

Don’t forget to visit our Careers website:
There is a lot of information there, including the Careers Newsletter, which I point out with a Compass post each week. There are many tools in the student log in area, including simple templates for resumes, cover letters and e-portfolios. Student access is their school email, and if they have forgotten their password, a simple reset link is provided.
Students who have undertaken Morrisby testing in Year 9 and wish to revisit or download information e.g. to add to their careers portfolio, should get in touch and I can retrieve info for them.

Finally, I’d like to wish everyone a good break. Next term is a busy one as Year 12s navigate post-school pathways, Year 11’s confirm their final year, Year 10’s and 9’s consider VCE and VET options and even more!

Claire Bloom
Careers Leader



Cross Country

On Tuesday 31st May 45 students from year 7 – 11 represented Warrandyte High School at the divisional cross country. This is one of the largest teams the school has sent in the past few years with particular high participation from the 13 and 14 year old male and female groups. Whilst the weather forecast for the day was not great, all students were keen to do their best and this is exactly what they did. There were some great results on the day with Rafael Martini coming 2nd in the 16 year old male event and Atalia Kelly coming 3rd in the 16 year old female event. When the final results were released Warrandyte High School came in 3rd overall. A fantastic effort from all competitors. It was also fantastic to see the students across year levels encouraging members of the Warrandyte High School team as they completed the course. Approximately 7 students will progress through to the EMR Finals due to be held at Yarra Glen on Tuesday 14th June. We wish all the students the best of luck and well done to all those involved in the divisional competition.

Unlike the divisional cross country day the regional cross country met us with clear skies but cold again temperatures. 7 Students ventured out to Yarra Glen to compete against the best in the Eastern Region. All students gave their absolute best in the some difficult muddy conditions and represented the school with pride. A special congratulation to Joel Denny of year 7 who came in 6th in the 13 year old male event and now progresses to the State Finals in July. We wish Joel the best of luck at this competition as he goes up against the best 13year old runners in Victoria.

Click on gallery images to enlarge

Year 8 Soccer

Our two year 8 Soccer teams went through a gruelling and rigorous selection and training program to put together the cream of our charges into a formidable fighting force. Unfortunately, somewhere between our expectations and our games we lost a little of the glamour we deserved. Our girls team performed admirably and even though we placed a star-studded team on the pitch Heathmont had just a few more studded stars. Congrats on a classy campaign girls! With only one other girls team participating in the interschool sport day, the Warrandyte squad opted for a full length game against the Heathmont girls. Despite a fantastic goal scored by Elise Robertson, we unfortunately still lost the game. However there were some fantastic examples of sportsmanship amongst our girls and I was very proud of their comradery and ability to encourage each other.

Our boys team played 4 games and managed to improve with each outing. Their last game was a sizzling, gutsy and dogged affair. We were immensely proud of our champions’ improvement over the day. As usual, we behaved like champions with the referees commenting on our sporting etiquette. Well done all! The afternoon saw a friendly game between our Warrandyte boys and Warrandyte Girls, with everyone on the field (including the staff!) in a cooperative, fun and laughter filled afternoon. Well done on a fantastic day everyone

Senior Girls Netball Champions.

Congratulations to the Senior Girls A Netball Team who were the champions at the Mullum Division sports. The girls did a spectacular job on the day, having had minimal training leading up to the comp they performed like a well oiled machine. I have to commend each and every team member on their involvement throughout the day. At the conclusion of the day there were two top teams, Heathmont and Warrandyte, after calculating the percentage Warrandyte came out on top having scored more goals across the day. We are looking forward to the regional competition in August. Our B team also performed well on the day, with a mix of experienced an inexperienced players, the team demonstrated fantastic sportsmanship and improved significantly across the course of the competition. A special thanks to Fiona Dzur and Jordan Barton for assisting on the day; your help is greatly appreciated. 

Term 2 Interschool AFL

Term 2 has been busy for our AFL teams with the Senior boys, Intermediate boys and Year 8 boys all competing at the divisional competition. With late absences all teams went in undermanned however this did not stop the determined Warrandyte attitude. The senior boys played a total of 3 games winning the first game convincingly. Their 2nd game was a tough game against the eventual winner however the boys still went into their last game determined and also ready to have some fun. Unfortunately, injuries had hit the team hard and by half time the team was down to 15 playable players. The boys were still keen though and definitely showed their fighting determined spirit. I congratulate the boys and especially thank the year 12 boys for whom this was their last interschool sports day.

The intermediate boys had a hard draw with a total of 5 games and no subs. In all games the students put their head over the ball, tackled hard and tried their best. It was great to see them coming away with one win throughout the day and showing a lot of team comradery.

Finally, the year 8 boys’ team had their chance and with some fill in students from year 7 managed to pull together 17 players. The boys got off to a flyer showing great determination and teamwork skill. The 2nd game was tightly contended with the boys unfortunately going down by 2 points to the eventual winners. It was such a tight game throughout and was a highlight to see the boys developing as a team and backing each other up. The boys were keen to finish the day on a high and took to the field for their final game with a few players playing with injuries. This was not going to stop them. Lead by Mason Scott Bommert the boys pulled together to win their final game convincingly (even with a few players down). We thank the year 7 boys who were keen to play up the age group to enable us to enter a team. They should be congratulated on their efforts and the way they easily fitted in and made some amazing tackles and scored some great goals.

I congratulate all the boys on their efforts and look forward to seeing them progress next year.

Warrandyte High VET Sport and Recreation Students coaching grade 1&2 Warrandyte Primary School students

For four weeks, as part of their VET Sport and Recreation course, the Units 3&4 VET Sport and Recreation students visited Warrandyte Primary School to coach the grade 1&2 students the skills of soccer and AFL. It was a fantastic opportunity for the VET REC students to put into practice the theory they had been learning about coaching beginner level participants and was great to see the students developing their coaching skills over the four weeks. It was also terrific to see the relationships that were developed between the VET REC students and the primary school students and how the VET REC students worked with the primary school students individually, in small groups and as a large group to ensure all the primary school students had a good experience and learnt something.

Each week the VET REC students carefully planned sessions to enable students to develop the handballing, marking and kicking skills in AFL and kicking, trapping, dribbling and shooting for goal in Soccer. The feedback from the Sally (the Warrandyte Primary School PE teacher) was that she was extremely impressed by the high school students. They were very professional and worked extremely well with all the grade 1&2 students and even those students who usually sit out and don’t want to participate were getting involved. She only wished we could continue the program for longer and looks forward to continuing to work with our students in a multiple of ways.

Some feedback from the primary school students included
“They were very helpful and we learnt a lot from them” 
“They were good role models and they made it fun”
“I liked how we learnt something new”
“I enjoyed it because we got to meet new older kids, and I had fun”
“It was awesome”

As their teacher I was extremely impressed with the behaviour of all students and how much they developed over the period of time. All students took their roles seriously and were prepared for every session ensuring a positive outcome for all participants. I am sure the grade 1&2 students will be talking about their grade1&2 versus VET REC student’s octopus game for a long time to come. Congratulations to all VET REC students as you represented yourselves and the school with full integrity, respect and excellence.

Katie Cook

Taking the Challenge

Olympian guest speakers

This term Year 9 students in Taking the Challenge have had a range of opportunities to develop an understanding of themselves, assess their values, set goals and hear from some inspiring speakers. On Wednesday 4th May year 9 students were privileged to hear from an Olympic guest speaker. Olympic sailor Tess Lloyd spoke to the students and answered lots of questions for an hour sharing her journey from childhood to the Olympics. Tess discussed her incredible stories of persistence, perseverance and resilience to become the best athlete she possibly can be with key focus areas including determination, persistence, overcoming adversity, professionalism, elite thinking, measuring success, time management, creating and using opportunities and team work.

Tess’s story covered her journey which started at the age of five and has continued for the following 22 years with highlights including being involved in the Tokyo 2021 Olympics. She discussed her biggest setback where at the age of 16 she was involved in a collision where she was knocked unconscious which resulted in her receiving a fractured skull requiring urgent brain surgery and being in an induced coma for 14 days. Upon waking she was told she would never sail again and had to learn how to talk and walk again. Tess explained to the year 9 students that she did not let this diagnosis stand in her way and made her all the more determined to set goals and beat the odds and to everyone’s surprise ten months later she was back on the water sailing. At this stage her next goal was Rio 2016 Olympic Games however Tess faced another hurdle when a decision was made not to send the sailing team to the games which put her Olympic dream on hold. Tess explained to students that she has used each set back to reset and motivate her to keep going. Tess stated ‘if it was meant to be easy everyone would do it’. This positive mindset and mental strength that Tess spoke about resulted in her being selected for the 2020 Games which had further setbacks of being delayed due to COVID. Throughout her speech Tess continually reinforced to students that throughout life you will be faced with challenges, setbacks and disappointments however it is how you face them that dictates the result. She also spoke about time management, juggling training and recovery whilst also completing her VCE and some sacrifices she had to make to reach her dream.

Students asked Tess some great questions about her journey and new goals and came away extremely inspired by her story and with her key message that “Life battles don’t always go to the strongest or fastest men, sooner or later the man who wins is the man who thinks he can”.

We look forward to seeing the year 9 students use this information as they set their own goals going forward and understanding how to overcome any setbacks.

Year 9 Taking the Challenge – Latitude Excursion

At the end of term 1, year 9 students celebrated a great term 1 with an excursion to Latitude. During this excursion students challenged themselves to develop skills in trampolining, high ropes course, rock climbing and competing against each other to complete the ninja warrior course. It was fantastic to see all students facing their fears and challenging themselves to step outside their comfort zone. Students were also extremely competitive in the trampoline dodgeball pit, trampoline basketball dunking and trying to beat the warped wall in the ninja warrior cause. All students had a great time whilst also developing a range of different physical and social skills whilst facing many fears. I am sure they will take what they learnt from this excursion into many of the other challenges they face throughout the year.

Click on the gallery images to enlarge

Dragon Boat Festival Celebration

The Dragon Boat Festival (Chinese Halloween) is a traditional festival in China. It is on the fifth day of the fifth month of the lunar calendar every year and therefore is called “端午” (Duanwu). “端” means begging, and “午” means the fifth day. In China, it is originally a festival to commemorate Yuan Qu, a famous poet during the Warring States period in China since he suicided on that day because he was heart-broken due to his country being taken over by another country. The customs vary in different areas, but typically people participate in the dragon boat competition and eat sticky rice dumplings-Zongzi.

Apart from preparing some Zongzi for the international students, we celebrated the festival by holding an origami and colouring workshop schoolwide on the 2nd of June this year. Students from different year levels came to the library to listen to the story of Quan Qu and learned how to fold the paper Zongzi. All of them were excited to participate in the activities and enjoyed it very much. This is a fantastic opportunity to know another culture and tradition and integrate students from different backgrounds. Thanks to our librarian Mrs Smith and kitchen staff for their huge support!

Heidi Luo, International student coordinator

Library News

Returning overdue resources  

Warrandyte High School Library always welcomes returned resources!  

Recently, we were excited to receive a book that was most likely loaned out around 1995!

A long time in coming home, this book on endangered species created a buzz as the fates of the animals contained was researched. I am pleased to report that none of the species became extinct and some were even returned to sustainable populations through concerted efforts and government regulation.  

We still have quite a few resources on loan from the interrupted COVID period in the last two years. If you do find random Warrandyte High School books in your home, please don’t hesitate to return them to the school.  

We appreciate any resource returns! 

Ms Smith

In the Classrooms

Year 8 Art

Felting is one of the oldest known textiles dating back to the 6th Century BC. Some of the oldest pieces of felt have been found in tombs and burial grounds in Siberia, Scandinavia, and Germany. It has also been found in the year 8 Art classrooms of Warrandyte High School. Here are some photos of students starting off in their pursuit of this ancient craft as well as Ms Bradbury’s example of what they can hope to achieve. We are looking forward to pictures of the finished products in our next edition.

Ms Bloom’s Vertical Homegroup.

Among the many interesting and varied team building activities happening during home group was this tower building challenge in Ms Bloom’s Home Group. Patience, a steady hand and collaboration was required to successfully build a red cup tower!

Reward for positive behaviour!

Throughout Term 2 the student services team ran a competition to see which cohort could accrue the most points for positive behaviour and active involvement in the school community. 

Congratulations to the Year 10s who were the Term 2 winners! They were rewarded with pizza for lunch on Friday, followed by a film in the theatre during period 4. 

Well done year 10s! We hope you are aware that your positive attitude, behaviour and actions have not gone unnoticed. Whether it was showing initiative in class, assisting your peers or teachers, mentoring junior students or coaching a sporting team; we encourage you to keep up the great work!

We also wish you the very best for your work experience placements, which are to commence in the last week of term. 

A special mention to the peer support students who assisted with the set up of lunch. Your help was greatly appreciated! 

Ash Degering 
Middle School Leader 

Looking after our mates

The year 12 ‘Looking After our Mates’ presentation recently delivered to our students by a trained presenter from Road Safety Education-Victoria, is a drug and drink drive information session about responsible drinking, safe driving and looking after your friends. The hour long interactive presentation aimed to educate young people about the effects of alcohol and drug driving. It challenged participants to develop their own strategies to decrease the chances that they are not at risk of being impacted by crashes caused by alcohol and other drugs. The presentation encouraged young people to separate drinking, drugs and driving

What Was Covered?

  • Information about drug and drink driving as road safety issues.
  • Laws regarding drug and drink driving.
  • Strategies that can be used to avoid drug and drink driving.

Did You Know?

  • P-platers have more than double the risk of being involved in a fatal crash.
  • Alcohol is a major factor in road deaths in Victoria, with approximately 25% of drivers killed in road crashes having a BAC of 0.05 or greater.
  • At a BAC of 0.05, your risk of being involved in a road crash is double compared with a BAC of zero.
  • Random drug testing in Victoria shows that one driver in 48 tests positively to the presence of illicit drugs.

Community News