2020 Term 3 Week 1   |   22.07.2020

TAS Talks Term 3 Week 1

01. From the Head of School



Tribute to TAS from the McElroy Family

To the TAS Community on behalf of our family,

I wish to convey our most sincere gratitude to TAS and the wider community for what occurred last Friday for our son, Ben. His funeral and celebration of his life could not have occurred without the hard work of so many. My family would not have been able to face the world had it not been for the support of the TAS staff, students and families which make up the TAS Community. The depth of the community is the overwhelming component that is so hard to grasp. To see the support of over 400 people who travelled from all over the country and more than 800 watching online who were unable to attend, is a testament to that depth that seems to be infinite. TAS has shown my family, and I suggest many other families, that their focus is to approach all students as individuals, nurture and develop the skills in life which include academic, sporting, mate-ship, respect and compassion. All these were on display last Friday. As Rachael Edmonds said in her brave speech at the service, TAS welcomes all into the village where everyone learns to live with each other, look after each other and watch out for each other. That is the community TAS has created.

The service last Friday was beyond expectations and a day the McElroy family will never forget. What transpired could not have been achieved without the blessing of the TAS Board and the Head of School, Mr Alan Jones. Steering the ship of course was Rachael Edmonds whom I am at a loss for words suffice to say she and her family are now with us as one. The crew on that ship were also Pat Bradley, Ken Secker, Michael Cornford, Seonia Wark, George Frost, Chet Davis and their amazing teams.

As my family move on into unknown territory, we are safe in the knowledge, we have, and will always have the TAS community to support us. With Benny now with us at home, we can now start our new life without him wherever that takes us. With as much love as we can muster, from all of the McElroys, thank you so much for being there for us.

Mal, Karen, Danielle, Jaimie and Ben.

Notice Board

Medical Centre

Dear Parents - could you please return the Meningococcal ACWY Vaccination Consent Forms for Year 10 that were sent out at the end of last term.
Vaccinations will take place next Thursday 30 July.
Thank you,
Sr Jenny Murray

02. Calendar of Events

Week 1
Friday 24 JulyTAS Foundation AGM (5.30pm) Via Zoom – please see website for details
Week 2
Wednesday 29 JulyTAS P&F Meeting ( Maxwell Meeting Room at 7pm)
NCIS Netball – Tweed Heads (cancelled)
Thursday 30 JulyNCIS Netball – Tweed Heads (cancelled)
Friday 31 JulyGPS Athletics Championships – Sydney (TBC) No Spectators



03. From the P&F


Welcome Back

Well I hope everyone had a chance to spend some time with family and relax over the holiday break.  Fingers crossed that Term 3 isn’t too badly affected by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

New Executive for 2020/21

Our AGM had been postponed due to the ‘lockdown’ but was able to be held in person and on Zoom in the last week of Term.  All positions were declared open and a new Executive and Committee were voted in.

The people representing our parent community on the Executive for 2020/21 are:


Rachael Nicoll – President
David Lawson – Co Vice PresidentPaul Gaddes –
Co Vice President
Sophie Wright – Co SecretaryLisa Miller –
Co Secretary
Fiona Nash – TreasurerPip Benham –
Vice Treasurer


If you would like to find out more about the P&F or just say hi please feel free to email us on pandf@as.edu.au or catch one of us around school sometime.



Funding Meeting

At the end of Term 2 the P&F held a ‘small’ funding meeting.  Given the current situation our funds are a little thin on the ground so we didn’t seek proposals from all of school as we normally do.  However, we did agree to fund new basketball hoops and a scoreboard for the gym and a convection microwave oven for afternoon tea making in White House.  Whilst we spent a smaller amount than usual we still committed over $35,000 in funds which was amazing and reflects the great community we have at TAS.  So thank you to everyone who has baked, barbequed and otherwise helped us these raise funds – hopefully all of TAS will enjoy the new basketball set up in future.


P&F Meeting next Wednesday night 29 July

We will be having our first P&F meeting for Term 3 next Wednesday night at 7pm in Lower Maxwell Meeting Room.  Please feel free to join us, all are welcome.


TAS@DUSK 2020 Cancelled

At our last P&F meeting the decision was made to cancel TAS@Dusk for 2020.  Whilst TAS@Dusk is normally a highlight of the Term 4 TAS calendar the amount of lead time required in planning an event of this size and the current uncertainty around crowds of people gathering together due to the pandemic just made it too difficult to run this year.

Instead we are hoping to have small class or year group size get togethers for the rest of the year and fingers crossed we will be able to have a really big TAS@Dusk 2021.


Mrs Rachael Nicoll
P&F President

04. From the Director of Studies


Welcome back to Term 3. I trust everyone has had a restful break and all are ready for the term ahead. My thanks to all for their efforts throughout Term 2, both online learning and the return of face to face teaching. This has been a challenging and interesting time for all concerned; staff, students and parents. As we have moved in and out of online learning, our students have become much more skilled at online learning and I trust that the measures that were put into place during the online period ensured that students have returned to their studies feeling on track and prepared to continue their studies. As we move into Term 3, our staff will continue to support students with their learning and work with any areas that students may require support in. Below are a few items to note for the start of the new term.


New Timetable

We have begun Semester 2 with a new timetable for the whole school (T-12). This timetable is available for students online through Edval. Please ensure that students keep checking their timetables online daily, as slight changes may continue to be made.

Year 12 Trial HSC Exams

Year 12 students have been provided with a copy of the timetable for the Trial HSC Exams. The School has made the decision to move the trials back to Weeks 5 and 6, to accommodate the disruptions that have been experienced this year. This timetable takes into consideration other tasks that were due to occur in Week 6. We wish our Year 12 students all the best as they prepare for these upcoming exams.


Extended Day Program

The extended day program will resume in the The Hub for students in Years 11 and 12 only. A decision on other year groups will be made over the coming weeks.


Mr Luke Polson
Director of Studies

05. From the Director of Co-curricular


GPS Rifle Shooting

The TAS First VIII are competing in Day 2 of the GPS Rifle Shooting Championships at Hornsby today. Like most teams their preparation has been disrupted in Term 2 but a successful camp last week has buoyed their spirits for a good showing. A full report will follow next week.


CIS Football Knockout

The TAS First XI Football will play Carinya today in Tamworth for the right to progress in the CIS Football Knockout. We wish them all the best.


Events Update

In these uncertain times TAS Talks will keep you abreast of the current state of play in all our co-curricular activities and remind you of the protocols that will help protect both individuals and our community. (See attached – Training Schedule and Coaching Allocation and Protocols)

Term 3 2020 Co-Curricular Staff Allocation

Term 3 Sport Training Protocols

Winter Training Schedule Term 3 2020


  • NCIS Netball (withdrawn)
  • NCIS Athletics (event cancelled)


  • Choirs – there will be no choirs rehearsing for the first 2 weeks at which point the situation will be reviewed.
  • Hawkesbury Canoe Classic – Do not register yet! We are considering alternatives for this year and will confirm plans by Week 3.


Local Sport

  • Football – commences this Saturday 25 July.
  • Hockey -commenced last night and continues this Friday – Sunday, 24-26 July.
  • Netball – commences this Saturday 25 July.
  • Boys and Girls Rugby – commences next Friday 31 July.

All sports aim to minimise spectators and will require you to social distance, practise good hygiene and register if you do attend. Players and spectators are not to linger after their game. More details will be communicated directly to players and parents by MIC’s of each sport, including game times.

  • GPS Athletics is scheduled to run over two days, 1-2 August.
  • Jane and the Giant Peach will proceed this term as a videoed radio play with rehearsals commencing next week.
  • National Virtual Debating Competition will commence this term with TAS fielding four teams from Years 7-12 with a total of 15 debates over the course of the term.
  • Junior Strings, Camerata will begin this week with all other ensembles to resume in Week 2 with potential changes to venues.


Active Kids

Please click on the link below to apply for your second active kids voucher that can be validated when you complete your child’s registration for sport.

https://comms.sport.nsw.gov.au/pub/pubType/EO/pubID/zzzz5f11547305a98055/?aid=e1a861f41dd4b76c&#e1a861f41dd4b76c   Please do this before their first game.


Team App

Please remember to download TeamApp and sign up to Your Sport as this is the platform where the game times and other important information will be posted each week. We are happy for both students and parents to have access to this.

Here are instructions to do so:

  1. Download Team App from Apple or Google Play app store
  2. Sign up to Team App. You will be sent an email to confirm your registration
  3. Log into the App and search for “Your Sport – The Armidale School”
  4. Choose your applicable access group(s)


Mr Will Caldwell
Director of Co-curricular

TAS 1000km Solo Hard Core Challenge

We always knew that TAS students are ‘hard core’, the School’s Leadership, Service and Adventure program throughout the years has proven that. What perhaps many didn’t know, what just how hard they really are!

Despite the mad world of COVID-19, no organised sport or activity, 36 students, three parents and sixstaff embraced ‘the suck’ and chased 1000km on their own throughout Term 2. This equated to 125km per week, for eight straight weeks, all under your own steam. Participants could walk, run or ride their way to 1000km.

Whilst one should never be surprised by a child, you honestly have to be when a Year 8 student completes the 1000km in only three weeks, with a Week 3 total of 472km and they are only 14!!! Yes, this was Eryn Benham who set the benchmark early and stratospheric! From then on, it was on! In Week 4 it was Karen Baker (the girls leading the way) and in Week 5, Toby Inglis, Alice Bourne and Louis Ross joined the 1000km band. Mac Orr made it in Week 6 and Archer Starr (Year 6, our youngest in the group) passed his total in Week 7, along with Isabella Crawford, Matilda Cullen, Fred Kearney, Emily Buntine and Charlotte Brunyee. From there it was a steady progression of achievement, with the obvious mad rush in the final week.

The ‘older’ crew were not far behind, with Mr Chris Guppy reaching the 1000km a week before his son Max, Mr Steve Sewell and son Jack going hammer and tong (the judge is out as to who was first), whilst Mr Bryn Griffiths was able to get the bragging rights over son Oliver by threedays. It was wonderful to see the staff grasp this challenge, with Mrs Chick, Mrs Benham, Mrs Tutt, Mr Fawcett and Mr Keenan all chasing the 1000km mark.


Mr James Pennington

Among those students who completed the solo 1000km Challenge Term 2 were (back row, l-r) Toby Inglis, Benjamin Rowe, Oliver Griffiths, Fred Kearney, Louis Ross, Mr Jim Pennington, (second row) Isabella Crawford, Charlotte Craig, Charlotte Brunyee, Emily Palfreyman, Tempe Macarthur-Onslow, Emily Buntine, Karen Baker, Mac Orr, (front) Matilda Cullen, Charles Ross, James White, Andrew Brennan, Alice Bourne. (Absent Katie Allen, Eryn Benham, Marcus Braham, Bronte Garcia, Isabella Gooch, Maxwell Guppy, Tobia Hall, Miller Harwood, Jordyn Melville, Jack McCook, Bethan Palfreyman, Harrison Price, Clancy Roberts, Jack Sewell, Riley Simmons, Archer Starr, Nina Taylor.

06. From the Head of Middle School


Hello everyone,

This is a brief one from us because as I write this, we’re only ‘back on deck’ today. Despite a horrendous -8C degree start to it, the Middle School people were friendly and obviously exited to start a term with all of their peers. We had Year Group Assemblies because of Certificates of Merit that were presented. As such, these were formal assemblies and your children did you proud.

Mrs Donna Jackson and Mr Tim Hughes have thoroughly spoiled all of us with their excellent TAS Times editions for the whole of last term, all of which treated us to visual and audio presentations every week. So, I’m hesitant to assault your sensibilities with too much formality here. However, in addition to these few words, I want to include messages from two of our Year 8 students who’ve ‘penned’ their thoughts (unprompted / unassisted and unaided by any one of us!). I’m really happy these young people have returned.


Mr Mark Harrison
Head of Middle School



I’m really happy to be back at TAS for an exciting term 3. I am thrilled to see my boarding mates and day friends as I missed them over the COVID period. Boarders get to do weekend activities which I really enjoy – especially scooter/bike tips. All our sport is starting and I look forward to competing against other teams again. It is brilliant to be back with face to face learning and the extra support from my awesome teachers.

Lachlan Anderson


Welcome back to Term 3! It’s great to be back at school after the rollercoaster of last term and I’m sure everyone is enjoying the return to face to face learning and spending time with friends. Although nobody knows what this term will bring, I know we’re all looking forward to getting back to normal life at TAS. I also know I’m not the only one excited about sport, music and drama restarting this term. Stay well everyone and make the most of the term ahead.

Bella Fernance

IB Middle Years Programme (MYP)

I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself as the Acting Middle Years Programme Coordinator for Terms 3 and 4 as Mrs Rachel Piddington embarks on her maternity leave. I am very much looking forward to the busy and exciting academic term that awaits Middle School students. Some of which includes, Year 6 Visual Arts students exploring the process of storytelling through art, whilst Year 7 Design students begin the term investigating the ways in which sustainable, global development can be achieved through innovative systems. Over in Year 8, students will commence an under the sea exploration, discovering the interactions and connections of life below water. Amongst other things happening in Middle School this term, Year 8 will continue developing and researching their Community Projects that will be presented later this term. I look forward to working with students and families in the semester ahead.


Rachel Holford
Acting MYP Coordinator

07. From the Head of Junior School





Welcome back everyone for what is always a very exciting and busy term. In particular, a number of new students who have joined us in Transition, Year 3 and 4 and we know they will settle quickly into  their new routine and meet many new friends. We hope you have all had a relaxing break and have been able to recharge the batteries ready for another term, one where normality seems to be creeping just a little bit closer…..

From next week, a few minor changes will be possible – the main one being altering the departure times from school at the end of the school day. Letters outlining the new routines for arrival and departures was mailed to you all yesterday. Please let us know if this was not received. We are reducing the amount of class time lost by arriving slightly later at the departure points for each class. Please note that students will not be able to leave with parents until the times outlined in the letters. There are no other changes to the Term 2 routines at this time.

Sport training started for some this week and all sport will resume this Saturday (and training next week) and all Clubs are now up and running.

As you’ll see, TAS Bear is still reminding us about the safety and well-being of the TAS Community, which translate to the day to day health and safety requirements for all are unchanged. Please maintain a very vigilant and thoughtful approach to washing hands, social distancing and the limited access to adults to the campus. This, and staying away from school if unwell remains a very important strategy at this time. We will continue to strongly reinforce this throughout the term.

We welcome two new Gappies to our team this term, Jessie Kininmonth and Lucy Triantafilis who will be assisting our teachers and students this term. They join Linus Anari and Lizzie Richards who are well known to us and they all make a wonderful contribution to our classrooms and playground


Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday to Hugo Broun, Harry Brownlie, Matilda Polson and Ted Draney who all celebrate their special days this week.


Mr Ian Lloyd
Head of Junior School




Junior School 1000km challenge report

Before the world went mad with COVID 19, we would always hear people decry technology and its negative influence upon young people today. Technology however has proved its brilliance during this recent crisis, as it allowed education to continue from home. Furthermore we also witnessed that the youth have not been overcome by screens, rather this time around they have embraced the opportunity to get outside with tech as their aid and motivator. They were able to watch their numbers climb weekly, chasing their goals (and Mum and Dads) on the app, Strava.

This was displayed so clearly by those students, families and staff who undertook the eight-week Junior School 1000km challenge. The concept was to get out and about as a family unit, something that today’s busy world can be hard, as the demands that society puts on us, can at times render intrinsic relationships a second place. For those families who welcomed this opportunity, the feedback was immense. Despite many parents working from home and the financial pressures that some felt, the chance to engage outside with their children was simply priceless. A change from getting home late at night, making sure that your kids have done their homework and are fed, and maybe is there an opportunity to go outside with your son or daughter? Well this time, there was. Five teams, comprising more than 40 children and adults embarked on covering 1000km over the term. Team Chick/Wright/Coupland took the overall honours, completing just North of 3000km! I loved receiving the weekly updates from families and having students as young as 6 years participating, well that’s simply magnificent!

At times we are amazed at what our children achieve,  but we really shouldn’t be. For who really knows what the ceiling of any child is? Their abilities are unknown, and what we have seen over the past weeks of walking, running and riding, we you can engage alongside your child, there are no limits.

Mr James Pennington

Junior School Sport

Information re: Sport for Term 3

As we look forward to the start of our Winter sports season please note the following so you and your child will be ready for the commencement of games this weekend.

Football Registrations

Many families have not yet registered their child for games, which commence this weekend. Please do so before Saturday, so your child is eligible to play. Football uniforms are available at the TAS Uniform Shop. Your child will also need a set of shin-pads, which are compulsory.

The draw for games and locations will be sent out later this week when the association have finalised the draw. Your child’s coach should also be in contact with you before Saturday.

The link to register your child is below:

Please have your Active Kids Voucher details when registering.

Registration costs are:

Juniors – aged 5-10 $80

Juniors – aged 11-14 $90

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Ms Amanda Robins at: arobins@as.edu.au





Netball Registrations

Hockey Registrations

Mrs Tania Ball (MIC) will distribute more information later this week.

Netball players will have received information from Mrs O’Connor this week re: registrations, uniforms etc. Games will be commencing this Saturday.


Training will continue as per last term, with Footballers and Netball players training on Monday afternoons from 3:40 – 5pm and Hockey players training on Wednesday’s from 4-5pm.

Mrs Christine Wright
Junior School Sports Coordinator


Community Notices