2020 Term 3 Week 6   |   26.08.2020

TAS Talks Term 3 Week 6

01. From the Head of School


I would like to pass on my thanks to all staff, students and coaches who took to the field last Saturday in what can only be described as miserable conditions. The great consolation was that at least the students were able to run around and stay warm for the time they were on the field and I am very sure we are all looking forward to engaging in the various sporting activities this coming weekend in kinder weather conditions. This is the second week of our HSC trials and our Year 12s seem to be managing the rigours of the various trial exams as they have managed the difficult circumstances that they have been confronted with thus far this year. I can only commend them for their positive approach and attitude.

I am very aware that we are all a little bit sick of hearing about the new COVID protocols as they are released by NSW Health but it is important that I give you the following update which will mean we have to adhere to certain conditions till the end of this term with regard to illness in the school. If a boarding student demonstrates cold or flu like symptoms they will need to be tested and isolated in the medical centre. Parents will be contacted to come and collect that student. If absolutely necessary, if parents are unable to collect their child and staff are not able to stay in the medical centre – students will be isolated for the short term in the boarding house. This will be a very rare occurrence as we will have casual nursing staff rostered on during the evenings where possible.

If a day student demonstrates cold or flu like symptoms parents need to arrange to have their child tested either through their GP or through the Armidale Hospital drive-through and they will have to show the school the negative test result prior to returning and they must be symptom free in order to return.



The following advice has been released by the AIS (Association of Independent Schools) and we need to act accordingly as far as this specific advice is concerned.

  • Parents/carers must be reminded regularly that students must not come to school if they are unwell. Even with very mild symptoms.
  • Teachers should be vigilant in recognising if any students are exhibiting flu-like symptoms during teaching and learning activities. Where identified they must refer the student to the sick bay or other appropriate area where they can be isolated and the school must arrange for the parent or carer to take the student home.
  • If a student has been absent due to flu-like illness or develops flu-like symptoms while at school, they are not to return to school until they have a negative COVID-19 test and are symptom free.
  • The negative COVID-19 test result must be sighted and received by the school for both students and staff members before their return to school.
  • Schools should encourage the immediate COVID-19 testing for any student or staff member identified as being unwell.
  • Please stay safe and well.

I will be participating in an AIS webinar at 4.30pm this afternoon with Dr Kerry Chant, where I have put TAS specific questions to her hoping to get a response.


Alan Jones



Notice Board

Cadets - Passing Out Parade

Passing Out Parade
Friday 11 September 2020

Passing out Parade for all cadets shall be held on Adamsfield on Friday 11 September (Week 8) commencing at 2.00 pm.
The parade and rehearsal are compulsory activities for all cadets.

Uniform is DPCU Ceremonial – Slouch Hat and Black Belt. Uniforms will be ironed by the school laundry staff and stored at school. Undershirts may be worn, provided they are khaki/olive green in colour or not visible on parade.

Passing Out Parade Rehearsal & Preparation Schedule

Week 3
• Tuesday 4 August - Activities Briefing 10.35 am. C Coy & HQ uniforms to be handed into the laundry.

Week 4
• Tuesday 11 August – Assembly period, B Coy hand in DPCU uniforms to laundry.
• Friday 14 August – Activities Day No. 1. This will be a TAS-run activity. No DPCU cadet uniform to be worn. A Coy uniform to be handed in at laundry. Any remaining uniforms from HQ, B & C Coy to be collected at the laundry.

Week 5
• Wednesday 19 August – Afternoon 3.30 - 5.00 pm C COY only – Adamsfield (no sports training for C Coy). Cadet band 3.30-5 pm to the Music centre.
• Thursday 20 August – Sword Drill practice at lunchtime 1.25 – 1.55 pm for CUOs (excl. exams)

Week 6
• Wednesday 26 August – Afternoon 3.30 - 5.00 pm Whole Cadet Unit (incl band)- Adamsfield. No sports training.
• Wednesday 26 August – Sword Drill practice at lunchtime 1.25 – 1.55 pm for CUOs (excl. exams)

Week 7
• Tuesday 1 September - Sword Drill practice at lunchtime 1.25 – 1.55pm for CUOs
• Tuesday 1 September - Afternoon 3.30 - 5.00pm Whole Cadet Unit (incl band)- Adamsfield. No sport training for cadets.
• Wednesday 2 September - Afternoon 3.30 - 5.00pm Whole Cadet Unit (incl band)- Adamsfield. No sport training.

Week 8
• Monday 7 September - Afternoon 3.30 - 5.00 pm Whole Cadet Unit (incl band) – Adamsfield
• Tuesday 8 September – Afternoon 3.30 - 5.00 pm Year 12 passing out rehearsal – Adamsfield
• Wednesday 9 September - Afternoon 3.30 - 5.00 pm Whole Cadet Unit – Adamsfield. No sports training.
• Thursday 10 September - Afternoon 1.30 - 5.00 pm Whole Cadet Unit – Final rehearsal on Adamsfield.

No Pd 6&7 classes or sport training.

Friday 11 September - Passing Out Parade –– Cadet Unit – 11.40 am – 3.30 pm

Cadets required from 11.40am P4/5 for hat & belt issue, lunch and dress inspection – form-up at 1.35pm.
Parade commences at 2.00pm.

MAJ (AAC) Angus Murray
Commanding Officer

02. Calendar of Events

Week 6
Monday 24 August – Friday 28 AugustHSC Trial Exams continue
Week 8
Wednesday 9 SeptemberP&F Meeting (7pm)
Friday 11 SeptemberPassing Out Parade (Year 12 parents only)



03. From the P&F


Christmas Puddings - Brandy donations wanted!

The famous TAS P&F Christmas Puddings are still going to being made this year – At this stage Covid-19 won’t be stopping TAS families from enjoying a lovely Christmas Pudding on Christmas Day.

The pudding bake is coming up at the start of Term 4 and prior to that we need heaps and heaps of brandy to soak the fruit in – this is what gives the puddings that spectacular taste!!  If you can donate a bottle of brandy please either drop it in at Main Reception or contact Pudding Co-ordinator Camilla Dubois on pandf@as.edu.au

With the constraints of Covid-19 we will be selling Christmas Puddings online this year (more to come in the following weeks).  However, if you want to get in first so that you won’t miss out, you can put your name on the waiting list now by sending an email to pandf@as.edu.au

Contacting the P&F

If you want to know what’s going on in the P&F join us on Facebook!  We regularly post updates on what we are doing, what events are coming up and any other useful information that comes to mind.  We have our own Facebook page – use the keywords TAS Parents and Friends and then ‘like’ us.

Don’t forget each year also has their own Year Group Facebook Page… These are closed groups for parents to catch up on what’s happening… Please search for TAS Year 12 and then the year your class will graduate from Year 12. For example, this year’s Year 12 Facebook page is TAS Year 12 2020.

Finally, if you have anything you would like to raise with the P&F please either contact your Year Group Liaison Person or any member of the Executive or send us an email on pandf@as.edu.au


Mrs Rachael Nicoll
P&F President

04. From the Director of Studies


Year 11 Exams

Year 11 exams will be held in the week beginning 14 September. Students will begin to receive notifications about these exams this week and next. A timetable will be published to students on Monday and a copy will also appear in next week’s TAS Talks.

ICAS Exams

Thank you to those parents who have registered their students for upcoming ICAS Exams. The registrations for these have now closed and students across the school have been sitting these tasks. Next week is the final week of ICAS and students will be sitting the Maths and Spelling tasks. Arrangements to sit these tasks will be communicated with students.

HSC Minimum Standards Testing

Next week, Year 10 will be completing HSC minimum standards testing. Students need to achieve a minimum level of reading, writing and numeracy in order to achieve their HSC credential. We will be running these tests for the Year 10 cohort on:
Monday 31 August – HSC Minimum Standards Writing Test
Tuesday 1 September – HSC Minimum Standards Numeracy Test
Wednesday 2 September – HSC Minimum Standards Reading Test
Further information about the minimum standards testing can be found at:

Year 10 into 11 Subject Choices

Information has been sent to students and families this week about selecting subjects for Year 11 and 12. All of this information can be found on this website: https://publications.as.edu.au/year-10-and-11-subject-selection/

I look forward to speaking with families through a number of Zoom sessions scheduled this week and encourage you to book in for these through Mrs Vickey O’Brien vobrien@as.edu.au 


Mr Luke Polson
Director of Studies

05. From the Director of Co-curricular


Summer Sports Choices

All students, Years 5-11, will be selecting summer sports next week. Please read the information attached and discuss this choice with your child. We recognise how important it is for students to be involved in co-curricular activities and we are so grateful that we continue to have the opportunity to participate in sport. We will be hoping that this continues yet we recognise that some activities may be affected by COVID restrictions. We will remain flexible and ready to adapt to any situation and keep you informed of any changes.


Prefect Voting

All students, Years 9-12 will have the opportunity tomorrow to vote for 2021 Prefects. This is an opportunity to elect leaders who will inspire, empower and serve the students they lead. A voting form will be sent to each student’s school email account. They are required to complete their vote by Monday 31 August.


Please see attached the schedule for School Photos. This is an important historical record of life at TAS and I would urge all students to ensure that they arrive at Memorial Hall five minutes before the scheduled time. A description of what to wear will be emailed to all students with this schedule.

Photo Schedule 2020


Mr Will Caldwell
Director of Co-curricular

06. From the Creative Arts Coordinator


This Friday afternoon the TAS Technical Production team are presenting their ‘TAS SIDESHOW’ – a project centred around doing a bit of everything related to live performance. They have written sketches and are acting them out, operating lighting and sound and designing their sets and props. This has been a term and a half long project, and we’re all very excited to see the fruits of their creative labours!

The Junior School musical continues to duck and weave around the never-ending changes and restrictions arising because of COVID-19 but we are determined to push through. The cast is meeting each Thursday afternoon to start learning the show and we have a huge team of staff behind the project to ensure the enthusiasm and talent of our young performers can be enjoyed by all. At the moment it seems like opportunities for parents and friends to assist is limited but if anything changes we will let you know – for now, your encouragement and assistance with our actors learning their parts at home will be a huge help.

With the HSC Trial examinations wrapping up this week the HSC Creative Arts students are now busy preparing for submissions and performances in the coming weeks. In Week 7 Drama students have their Individual Performances, happening under very different conditions, and we wish them all the best with their final preparation.


Mr Andrew O’Connell
Creative Arts Coordinator

07. From the Head of Middle School


Blue (mood) Wet Weather Jackets

At the risk of repeating myself, possibly incurring a palpable sense parental wrath, I must (in deference to the sensibilities and sensitivities of all the staff with whom I work) reiterate a fact about the TAS sports jacket. Some students continue to wear it, despite clear, sunny days, not to mention undisputed directions to the contrary. As at the end of August, 2020, these jackets are not cold weather ones and the more students disregard school uniform regulations, the more likely they are to remain wet weather jackets – for the next century. Any Middle School students who wear these jackets (not many, I admit, but there are times when one or two can constitute one or two too many) on sunny days will be required to remove them immediately – this is non-negotiable. Students know this as I’m the one who, in Tuesday morning’s assembly, repeated this message (more firmly than the last time) to all of our people. Please will you help us to help them. Boarders are not able to wear them at school: day students are not allowed to wear them at school, either. If a student is cold on a sunny winter’s day in Armidale, then said student, until further notice, is to wear a school jumper and blazer.

Okay, that was the worst part of the Week 6 Assembly in Hoskins. The rest was as heartening as seeing people wearing regulation earrings and even grey socks, as a matter of fact. Mr Brauer and I met the Year 8 student representatives over the last week and it was this intrepid young group who conducted the whole assembly. They did so in as polished a manner as would make any one of us (families, peers and staff) proud to be associated with them.


I expect it’s not easy to speak to the whole Middle School when you share one potentially daunting thing in common with its students – the same age. But these people were good – again. It’s clear they were prepared, obvious they were rehearsed (not to the point of artificiality) and evident they were aware that the success of the venture was entirely dependent on them. COVID constraints notwithstanding, it was probably one of the most entertaining assemblies I’ve attended in a long time – the significance of this statement is reinforced by the fact that it comes from someone who has so often been responsible for past assemblies. In fact, so good was this assembly, these people will be hosting the one in Week 7. Since the introduction of the new-look TAS Talks and TAS Times last term, we may even be in a position to send you some assembly footage in the future.

Wattles are out, buds are appearing, yet winter’s still here – and even though it’s brought some wonderful rain, it’s been a bit brutal. It needs to move on – we’re beginning to will it to go. September starts next week. Here’s to spring and all it has to offer (minus sinus, hay fever and mosquitoes).

Stop Press: Mrs Rachel Piddington and her husband, Anthony, have a new family member: a boy. On everyone’s behalf, I congratulate them!


Mr Mark Harrison
Head of Middle School

08. From the Head of Junior School


What a Weekend?

If ever we needed a gentle reminder that we are not quite beyond the clutches of winter, last weekend was it. But what a buzz to see our families out and about braving the storm and making the most of every opportunity. What a shame so much sport had to be cancelled….our kids are certainly fortunate to have the chance to get out and run around unlike many of their metro counterparts. Thanks to all the parents and staff who made this possible.


Illness at School

TAS continues to be very cautious in the management of illness here at School. We have noticed a small but significant number of students coming to school showing the signs of cold and flu and it is very important to us all that we must remain vigilant. You will have noticed elsewhere in TAS Talks information from both the Head of School and the AIS which clarifies the situation for us all. In summary it states that no student should attend school if they feel unwell, or shows any signs or symptoms of flu-like illness. They should only return to school after they have a negative COVID-19 test and are symptom free.

Please contact Junior School Reception if there is any doubt about the health of either your own or other children in Junior School.


Happy Birthday

Again, we only have one Junior School student celebrating a Birthday this week so many happy returns to Ivy Rice for her special day.


School Spirits

Congratulations to the following students that received School Spirit Awards last week:

Patrick Kim, Sansa Ranawake, Oliver Maxwell, Toby Whysall, Thomas McKern, Rupert Newton, Lachie Wood, Jacqui DuBois, Casper Cook, Andrian Zhang, Izzie Glover, Rhidima Das, Peter Thompson and Xavier Leary.


TAS Bear





Mr Ian Lloyd
Head of Junior School




IB Primary Years Programme (PYP)

Year 2

Transdisciplinary Theme:

How We Organise Ourselves

Central idea:

Opportunity to communicate has evolved over time due to changing needs and technology

Content focus:

Children make inquiries into the ever-changing uses of technology and compare past, present and future technologies and how they are used to communicate.

In Year Two we have been very busy with our present UOI.  The children have loved having their STEM lessons with Mr Scott, in which they have focused on different types of communication, looked at various radios, phones/ mobiles, typewriters and created their own communication devices, as well as learning Morse Code.  We have also been fortunate to have Mr Secker provide a talk to the class about how technology has changed and evolved at TAS.  The children had a good giggle at the weight and size of some of the previous computers and projectors that were previously used.  We also Zoomed an Australian Army soldier who spoke about technology being used as a communication tool to assist the military.

The class have really valued the opportunities where they have been able to see and compare how technology has changed and make predictions as to what technology will look like in the future and how communication may change. One of our experiments was focussed on how cooking utensils, such as the whisk have changed.  As a class we conducted an experiment where the children had to make butter using a mason jar, vintage whisk, balloon whisk and an electric mixer.  I think we all appreciated the electric mixer after this activity!


Mrs Veronica Waters
PYP Coordinator

Junior School Sport

General Information about Summer Sports

(Available to Junior School students for Summer 2020/2021)

Junior School students will be choosing their summer sport next week. With this in mind, it is time to think about what summer sport you would like to participate in this year. We are trying to organise our summer sports to include as much participation and competition as possible. Please be mindful that changes could occur, beyond our control, in any of our summer sports between now and next term.

Year 5 students will be choosing from the Middle School Sports choices this term. More information for this group will be given directly to each student.


Junior School Policy re Participation in Sport

All students in Years 3 and 4 will participate in one summer sport in Terms 4 and Term 1, 2021. Students in Year 2 and below do not have to participate but are encouraged to do so. If students in Year 2 or below do participate, they will commit to the sport (including training sessions) for the duration of that season. Training times and sessions vary depending on the chosen sport.

Any exemptions from sport (Years 3 and 4) should be directed to Mrs Christine Wright    cwright@as.edu.au


Sports available for selection next week: 

  • Cricket (K-4)
  • Tennis (K-4)
  • Basketball (Years 3 and 4 only)
  • Indoor Hockey (Years 2-4)
  • Gymnastics (Years T-2)
  • Ball Skills (Years T-2)
  • Swimming (Years 2-4) Fitness only. Competent swimmers, not learn to swim.


More information on each sport will be in TAS talks next week.

Mrs Christine Wright
JS Sports Coordinator




Ryne Wilkinson was the standout this week in defence. He positioned himself well and was instrumental in defending our team. Saxon Muirhead and I were goalies this week. We obviously did a great job because the opposition didn’t score. Sam Ford and Harry Brownlie have continued to be awesome strikers together. Although they got a lot of great passes, they are still learning to stop the ball before hitting for accuracy. Levi Watts, our new player was a star this week. Quick on his feet and a great little passer. However, Levi is still learning short corners.

Finally, you have Cormac and myself again as strikers. I felt we passed great shots, however, we need to practice our hits.

The end result from this outstanding team was that we won 3 nil.


Hugo Broun


U8s Tornadoes

The band of U8 footballers ran onto the pitch amidst 5 degree weather in Uralla on Saturday but played stoically against our excellent opponents, the Uralla Bears. The game was a really good example of young players who are starting to spread out and look for space on the pitch. Ethan scored two goals – one a sneaky chip over the goalie’s head – and Will scored one of his own with a deep boot into the back of the net.
Congratulations to the whole team for their defence, positive attitude and tenacity. We called the game off part way through the second half when the sleet started settling on the players’ hair. Brrr…
See you all again next week.
Mrs Gill Downes


Unfortunately, this week the opposition were not able to field a team and our game was cancelled. With poor weather on the way the obvious choice was to go home and keep warm. However, the spirit of the under 9s took over and we soon found ourselves split into two teams and, with a handful of parents (and even Mr Lloyd in goal with a cup of coffee) we had a run around which was so much fun. There were too many outstanding performances to mention but everyone had a great time before we had to stop as it started to hail…

Mr Nexo


U10s Blues

On Saturday we played the DK Axes in Armidale. We were meant to have a bye this week but Toby’s dad, Mr Jeremy White, kindly arranged a game for us, which was awesome. It was a bitterly cold morning with sleet and rain. Despite this, all the parents braved the weather and showed their support. We sadly lost the game with a score of 3-1, but we played a great game. We were well matched teams. Special mention should go to Oliver Robb for his fancy footwork and great passes, Xavier Stephen for his amazing defence and Lucas Van Der Werf for his epic corners. Toby White scored a cracking goal, our first team goal for the season. All players showed great attacking skills and impressive dribbling up the sidelines. I feel that we still need to improve our positioning and try not to crowd the ball, which we have a tendency to do. Special thanks also to our coach, Mrs Hardin and Mr Lloyd, who also came to watch and support us.

Cam Carruthers


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