2021 Term 2 Week 6   |   26.05.2021

TAS Talks Term 2 Week 6

01. From the Head of School


The month-long massive undertaking that is the Armidale Eisteddfod begins this week and throughout this time TAS will be represented by individual students along with many of our ensembles. This week it will be the turn of our choirs to perform and it will be a busy time for both students and our Music staff. I thank them on behalf of our musicians for their work and wish them well for the remainder of the Eisteddfod.

Group singing is obviously alive and well at TAS particularly after the enforced COVID restrictions. This week alone the school will be represented by, and I will list them for you to emphasise the level of participation, the TAS 3-5 Choir, TAS Trebles, Year 5 Singers, TAS Community Choir, TAS Vocal Ensemble, TAS Singers, TAS Cantique, TAS Chapel Choir and last but certainly not least, the TAS K-2 Choir.

I would now like to mention a couple of matters that exemplify the character that we endeavour to produce in our students – these two stories come from two very different aspects of life at TAS.

Last weekend after our 15A rugby team were beating Scots 15Bs by quite a considerable score, the decision was happily made to mix the teams. At half time the boys lined up and half from each team swapped jerseys which resulted in a very even second half with only one try being scored by each team and a resultant very enjoyable half of rugby that exemplified true sportsmanship and what school sport is all about.

On Tuesday morning TAS was well represented at the 100th anniversary service of the Dangarsleigh War Memorial, where our Cadet Unit’s ceremonial guard has performed the Anzac Day catafalque party since 1979. Anouska Byrne, Essie Lindeman as well as our Director of Music Leanne Roobol performed as members of New England Singers, presenting ‘Gostwyck’, a work composed following the Anzac Service at Dangarsleigh a few years ago. Meanwhile the Cadet Unit was represented by SUO Lily Etheridge and Guard Drummer Hugo Catterall. All were wonderful ambassadors for their School at the ceremony and their participation was greatly appreciated by the Perrott family and members of the local community.

As you would have hopefully noted on the school website and in other publications, we are embarking on our second Regional Tour for the year beginning this week. I will be accompanying Dr Rachel Horton throughout and we will be travelling to a variety of towns in the North West and New England as advertised. There will be a number of functions where we hope to meet and greet prospective parents, current parents, past parents and alumni and I look forward to catching up with the many characters that have informed and influenced my time at the school.


Mr Alan Jones
Head of School


June Long Weekend charter coach bookings

The deadline is imminent for coach bookings for the Queen’s Birthday holiday.

The school is closed during this break so if you wish to take advantage of the free charter coaches provided by the Student Transport Scheme please complete the booking form using the link below by Friday 7 May to indicate your particular requirements.

Travel dates are: Friday 11 June and Monday 14 June.

This time continues to be the busy period for the TrainLink staff responsible for arranging holiday charters for all boarding schools in NSW, therefore please be patient.
Reminder that School Student Concession Cards are available for students aged 16 years and over If intending to travel on public transport in future from the Main Reception.

If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact Mrs Veronica Lucas on vlucas@as.edu.au

Regional ‘Goodbye, Hello Tour’

We are looking forward to having drinks with current and past boarding parents and alumni during the regional heartland ‘Goodbye, Hello Tour’ with Mr Alan Jones and Dr Rachel Horton over the coming month (same dates as the afternoon tea above).

If you haven’t already RSVP’d, please do so using the BOOK NOW! button located below.

Armidale and metropolitan events will occur next term prior to Mr Jones retirement at the end of Term 3.


Afternoon Tea with Dr Horton

NSW Regional Boarding families - do you have friends who are considering TAS for their son or daughter? If so, let them know they can meet Dr Rachel Horton, our new Head of School when she tours regional towns in the coming weeks.

Tuesday 1 June – Gunnedah
Wednesday 2 June – Tamworth
Wednesday 9 June – Walcha
Tuesday 15 June – Scone
Thursday 17 June – Inverell

Please encourage your friends to come for afternoon tea with Dr Horton at the venues listed here. Booking link below.

Boarders Travel

Please follow the link below to the online booking form for the end of term travel (Friday 25 June) and the start of term travel (Monday 19 July).

These chartered coach services are provided free to students travelling between their home and school – not interstate home destinations. Booking is essential and it would be greatly appreciated if bookings could be made by the due date Friday 21 May and on the form provided.

Cancellations can be made up to three (3) days prior to travel. Students should be mindful of the 2 suitcases (25kg each) limit. Arrangements can be made through a carrier for extra luggage.

Senior Concession ID cards are also available from Reception for students that are over 16 years of age. This ID card entitles students to travel at child’s fare.

If you have any queries regarding travel, please don’t hesitate to contact Mrs Lucas in TAS Reception.

Mrs Veronica Lucas


02. Calendar of Events


Week 6
Wednesday 26 MayThe Goodbye, Hello Tour – Narrabri
Thursday 27 MayYear 11 Parent/Teacher Interviews
Friday 28 MayRugby vs Joeys (Away)
Week 7
Monday 31 MayNSW Schools Titration
Tuesday 1 JuneThe Goodbye, Hello Tour – Gunnedah
Wednesday 2 JuneThe Goodbye, Hello Tour – Tamworth
Thursday 3 JuneSydney Careers Expo – University of Sydney
Middle School Production -Revolting Rhymes
Friday 4 JuneSydney Careers Expo – University of Sydney
Middle School Production -Revolting Rhymes
Saturday 5 June-Sunday 6 JuneNSW Shakespeare Carnival – Sydney


03. From the P&F


Upcoming Events

A reminder of some important messages for upcoming P&F related events. We really do need your support for both please; details below.


Upcoming is the Sydney Boys’ High School visit in mid-June. The P&F will operate a BBQ and Canteen on Saturday 19 June to feed the players, coaches and onlookers. More details to follow as we get closer to the event.

We are looking for volunteers to help on the BBQ, at the Canteen, and with setup/pull down. If you are able to spare some hours on that day, please email us at pandf@as.edu.au and let us know your availability and preferences.



Please join us to determine where the money we have raised in the past year should be allocated within the school for the benefit of the student life. Meetings are open to all parents.

Alternatively, if you wish to put forward a proposal for the use of funds please send these to Mr Jones as soon as possible so all proposals can be evaluated prior to the meeting.

Funding proposals should be costed, justified and seek to help a significant proportion of school. Any proposal should also be for things that are tangible, something that school wouldn’t normally pay for and on the ‘really nice to have’ list.  If you have any queries about the funding process, please contact me on pandf@as.edu.au



If you have anything you would like to raise with the P&F Executive, please send us an email at pandf@as.edu.au


Mr Paul Gaddes
P&F President


04. Academic News

Science Opportunities

Titration Competition

On 31 May Year 11 and 12 Chemistry students will compete in the RACI NSW Schools Titration Competition. The teams are training hard on Wednesday evenings from 4-6 pm and hope to make a strong representation. The competition is held at UNE in the chemistry laboratories of the Stokes Building.



The 2022 National Youth Science Forum dates have been released. Current Year 11 students are eligible to apply. Students from across Australia will attend a mix of digital and face-to-face STEM experiences between 10-25 January. The program costs $1900, however Rotary support may be available to qualifying students.

For more information, see:

In 2021, the course was restricted to digital delivery. You may wish to speak to Lachlan Hey of year 12 about his digital NYSF experience last January.


SANTOS Science Experience

Do you love science? Students in Years 9 or 10 are invited to apply to attend the Santos Science Experience. Conducted at university venues, the one, two or four day science experiences occur at a variety of different dates and with slightly different foci – chemistry, coding, physics, agriculture and more.

NSW venues and dates are:

Macquarie University, 7-9 July 2021
University of New England, 11-13 January 2022
University of Technology Sydney, 6-8 July 2021
University of Sydney, 12-14 January 2022

Costs range from $65 to $260 depending on duration.

For more information, see:

Coming Up

2 June  Year 9/10 Palaeontology Excursion to UNE Museum of Natural History


Mr Alasdair Hey
Science Coordinator

05. Round Square News

Round Square Conference at MLC, Sydney

Last weekend a delegation of eight Year 9 and 10 students travelled to MLC School in Sydney to participate in the first Round Square conference in over 12 months. Students from Round Square schools across NSW gathered together for a Service-focused conference, with presentations from the Big Issue, discussions on authentic service, a homeless experience trip through Sydney, and a number of other cultural elements as well. We’ll put the full trip report in next week’s TAS talks and thanks to Ms Chloe Prado who joined us on the trip to assist the delegation.

Before the end of the term we hope to have a few more Round Square Postcards or Digital Conferences, so keep your eyes on your emails for more information on those opportunities.

Mr Andrew O’Connell
Round Square Representative

06. From the Director of Boarding


Middle School Girls Boarding Expands

There was much excitement on Sunday afternoon as the Year 8 girl boarders moved across from Dangar House to Moyes to officially open the Dangar/Moyes precinct, cutting a ribbon of raffia to mark the occasion. Having this precinct fully operational allows continued growth in Middle School Girls Boarding, casual boarding opportunities for our girl day students across Years 6, 7 and 8 and access to more common spaces and amenities.

A big thanks to Ms Julie Crozier for all her work, much behind the scenes, to ensure this precinct was opened within our communicated timeframe. Julie was well supported along the way by our Business Manager Mr Pat Bradley, and our Maintenance and Cleaning staff led by Mr Chet Davis and Mr George Frost respectively.

We envision Dangar/Moyes remaining the home of our Middle School girl boarders for years to come and are looking forward to this precinct becoming the girls’ new home away from home over the coming weeks.


Mr David Drain
Director of Boarding

07. From the Director of Co-curricular


Sportsmanship at its best

I commend TAS coaching staff, managers and players who on the weekend in the 15s rugby fixture put sportsmanship and fair play above winning. The Scots College team (a depleted team due to their outdoor education program) were down by 40+ points at half-time. In response, the TAS players and Scots players mixed their teams and played the second half, which resulted in a try each.

We are often quick to admonish sporting indiscretions and have an opinion as to what should happen or how it could have been different, after the fact, but for all those players, parents and grandparents who witnessed or were a part of what happened at Centennial Park, Parade Ground 7 we are all the more richer and for that I thank you.

I refer back to what I wrote about in last weeks TAS Talks – Play hard, support each other, be humble in victory and gracious in defeat, respect the opposition and at the end of the game shake hands and thank your coaches and the referee. These ideals say a lot about who we are, remember that our behaviour matters. I encourage all students to continue to work on your character, do the best you can and make the most of your opportunities.

The Armidale Eisteddfod season begins this week and I wish all students well as they perform over the four weeks at OTC Auditorium and Lazenby Hall UNE. TAS has organised transport and logistics for these events only. All individual event entries are up to families to organise and should liaise with teachers and boarding houses in regard to event times and travel arrangements.

A link to the schedule can be found HERE.

Mr Huon Barrett
Director of Co-curricular

TAS joint winners of the Federation Cup

After three months of debates and preparations, the TAS Federation Cup campaign wrapped up on 13 May, with TAS finishing in equal first place. It was the first year of TAS being part of this competition against Calrossy Anglican School and McCarthy Catholic College of Tamworth.

TAS fielded five teams – one from Stage 6, and two each from Stage 5 and Stage 4, with our participation very much about giving any debater an opportunity to represent the School. Throughout the competition, rounds were held at all three schools, with prepared debates for the rounds, and an impromptu format for the finals. All TAS teams had wins and losses throughout the competition, in all winning 13 debates. With our Stage 5 and 4 teams debating each other in their respective divisions for third and fourth spot, there was great anticipation for the Stage 6 team, who had previously defeated Calrossy twice, but fallen to McCarthy College by just a point. However at the grand final in Tamworth it was again the tightest of losses, with the three adjudicators split in their decision but the debate ultimately going again, to McCarthy.

Reflecting the evenness of the competition, all three schools finished on equal points and were therefore joint winners. Our Stage 6 team didn’t come home completely empty handed but with the trophy that Captains of Debating Georgia Donoghue and Hudson McAllister presented to Mr Jones at Assembly on Tuesday.

My thanks must go to Mrs Ahern, Mrs Collett and Mr Harrison for their assistance with preparation, adjudication and support in the Federation Cup.

Meanwhile, the National Virtual Debating competition commences next week for our Year 9/10 and Year 7/8 teams; Middle School debaters will also be competing in the first round of the Tri-Schools Shield at PLC on 10 June, and inter-house debating will also take place in the final two weeks of term. A busy few weeks ahead!
Mr Tim Hughes
MIC Debating & Public Speaking



Georgia Donoghue and Hudson McAllister and some of their fellow debaters with the Federation Cup, jointly won by TAS, McCarthy Catholic College and Calrossy Anglican School


08. From the Creative Arts Coordinator


The Eisteddfod Begins

Last night saw the Eisteddfod return and properly kick off with the enormous Choirs Night. It was a fantastic showcase and a real celebration of the return of singing after rehearsal spaces and auditoriums remained silent for far too long. Special mention goes to the TAS Community Choir, which saw students have a ball of fun singing alongside parents, alumni and staff. Though the crowd favourite may have been the hilarious performance of ‘Thoroughly Modern Men’. Congratulations to all involved – particularly Ms Roobol and Mr Collett for all their hard work and countless hours preparing the many groups and items – and best wishes for all those participating in many different events in the Eisteddfod in the coming weeks.

Revolting Rhymes

Next week the Middle School stage adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes fills Hoskins with hilarity on Thursday and Friday night at 6pm. The students have been working furiously with Mr Wheatley to hone the ensemble work and Mr Cornford’s Technical Production Team have been adding their magic to the piece. We’re so excited for those students getting to do what they love in front of a supportive audience, so make sure you get your ticket post-haste. Tickets can be booked here


Mr Andrew O’Connell
Creative Arts Coordinator

09. From the Head of Middle School



I’d be an inveterate liar if I said to you that I didn’t find my job challenging; it is and it is so, regularly. Frenetic is the best adjective to characterise the pace of Middle School activity. But, boring this place is not – being so young, these girls and boys don’t fully realise the significance of real moderation and it won’t become significant till their Senior School years. To be honest, it shouldn’t either because younger students need to be gainfully employed and such employment requires youthful energy to fly towards the end of 2021’s longest term. Still, everyone gets tired and these ones will be weary when they come home, but I guess this is one of the reasons for the longer mid-year holiday and family time. So, it’s your job to ‘treat’ them to a good holiday. How are they busy here, you might wonder? In boarding they have the regular activities and now, are lucky enough to have afternoon activities with Mrs Benham (as ‘flagged’ in last week’s TAS Talks). They also have sports, Middle School production rehearsals, debated in the Federation Cup debating circuit, and some are about to embark on Tri-Schools debating very soon. These are just a few extras Middle School people can do to make their time worthwhile. They also have mid-year assessments – and of course these are important because they help us assess the extent of meaningful engagement in academic activity.

If your children have some difficulty completing tasks in the allotted time for prep sessions and assessment periods, be thankful that their awareness of this issue comes at Year 6, 7 or 8 level. What they need to do is let their Homeroom Advisor know and we’ll do our best to employ the strategies necessary to their easier management of same. Under our homework scheme and the MYP framework, it’s important that we’re aware of the fact that students are actually doing their prep over a number of nights, rather than at the ‘last minute’ as students in the past were wont to do. We’re much better at dealing with issues before they progress to the ‘problem’ stage. As teachers and parents our job is to encourage, assist where appropriate and monitor progress carefully so that all students can gain greatest benefit from utilising time available to them. I believe strongly that this clearly articulated schedule is beneficial for all, productive for most, daunting for some at times, but I know that without it, students’ awareness of their strengths, their capacity to manage challenge and knowledge of individual strategies employed to overcome such challenge just wouldn’t factor into their school lives until Year 11. I’ve been teaching long enough also to know that the onset of academic self-awareness for a sixteen-year-old can be far more a problem than it is an issue. I’ve been looking at John Dewey’s work again lately and a fragment of it is instructive here: ‘the teacher is not in the school to impose certain ideas or to form certain habits in the child, but is there as a member of the community to select the influences which shall affect the child and to assist him in properly responding to these. Thus, the teacher becomes a partner in the learning process, guiding students to independently discover meaning within the (selected) area of operation’.

I went to the Eisteddfod at Lazenby Hall last night: quite a few of our students performed – and they did so, well. I also spoke to some families – it’s always good to catch up with you people. Since the events will continue for some weeks, I guess we could catch up more.

Mr Mark Harrison


10. From the Head of Junior School


The Eisteddfod Commences!

I am very happy to report that our singers have performed beautifully at this week’s Eisteddfod. Even though our choral program was disrupted by COVID, I was very impressed with the enjoyment they have been demonstrating.  I have included a couple of links for you to see the wonderful progress of 2 of our choirs. I would like to thank our music staff for their continued hard work (and especially Miss Charlotte Low who, despite being very nervous when conducting publicly so early on in her teaching career, did such a wonderful job!)

You are able to view their performances by clicking on the links below.

TAS 3-5 Choir – Kusimama

TAS Trebles – Be Kind to your Parents


And in some breaking news…

The TAS K -2 Choir, under the direction again from Miss Charlotte Low were simply fantastic today in Lazenby Hall. In front of a large crowd, they looked smart and sang beautifully, obviously enjoying the pieces ‘My Dog Jed’ and ‘Chook Chook’. You will be able to see their performances by following the following links.


‘Kusimama’ – TAS 3-5 Choir

School Uniform

Last week we advertised the school uniform list for all students in Junior School. This week, we hope to simplify matters somewhat, by emailing you a copy of the (draft) Junior School Uniform Brochure; please let us know if you did not receive this. While we will be redoing some of the photos, it gives and accurate representation of the current, uniform requirements.

The links below list the uniform so if you do have doubts, please ring either Mrs Lasker or me. All clothing and belongings should be clearly marked with the student’s name and please, if you have purchased pre-owned items, please ensure they are renamed so they can be returned to you if lost. Clothing can be labelled by the Uniform Shop for 50c per label.

It is expected that all students wear clean and tidy TAS school uniform with no variations or additions and we thank you for your assistance with this.

Boys Uniform



Girls Uniform



Transition Uniform




Again, I write about the importance of understanding and adhering to the system for arrivals and departures from the Chapel St Turning Circle. Please note the following:

Arrivals:  Teacher supervision is provided to assist families from 8.15 am – 8.30 am. Where more assistance is required outside these times, please use the car park and walk your child to the Junior School playground at the Sports Centre gates. Please do not park or leave your car in the vicinity of the turning circle.

Departures:  Year 3 and below will be ready for collection from 3.20 pm, with Years 4 & 5 departing from 3.30 pm. This will apply on sporting afternoons as well with boys and girls in teams with Year 3 students and below will be ready to depart from 4.45 pm and those in Year 4 & 5 ready to depart from 5.00 pm. It is important that we stick to these times as much as possible. Those families with children in both groups should leave their pick-up until the later time to avoid waiting in the pick-up zone.  We aim to keep these two groups separate to diffuse the congestion.


Life Education Van

I am always pleased to hear the Harold remains a relevant part of our students’ education; so much so that our younger children stay at school even when somewhat under the weather, such is his popularity! Covering a good deal of the PDHPE curriculum in a supportive environment (especially when presented by an unfamiliar face) is very beneficial for our students and I am pleased to report that our students have been willing and polite throughout.


Speaking of all things healthy….

Mr Pennington has been in touch with some feedback from the PDHPE and Swimming Squad sessions currently being undertaken in our sports centre. A review of our swimming season resulted in a subtle change in focus for a small number of our PE lessons, acknowledging that swimming had become an area for attention. The PE Department and their staff have worked hard to arrive at a structure which allows our Year 3 to 5 swimmers to receive appropriate training and stoke correction during winter, which allows far greater access for less able swimmers to the Aquatics Unit, swimming, swim & survive and kayaking. The following links will give you a good taste of how successful these programs have become.




Kayak racing in the TAS pool



Having fun learning about kayaking


School Spirit

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

Daniel Ivannikov, Sabine Kiehne, Anna Trevaskis, Mishkah Alrdadi, Patrick Kim, Casey Tighe, Eva Cook, Daniel Mo, Ruby Rice, Evelyn Brownlie, William Dennison, Jose Ugwumba, Joshua Bourke, William Cooper-Fillios, Harry Fawcett, Pippi Goudge, Sophie Brett, Rhidima Das and Elsie Teng.

Happy Birthday

Mila Nexo and Jacqui DuBois celebrate this week so Happy Birthday to you both.


Mr Ian Lloyd
Head of Junior School


Week 6
Wednesday 26 May


Friday 28 May

Life Education Van

TAS K-2 Choir – Eisteddfod

Year 3 Assembly – Hoskins Theatre – 2.45 pm

Children’s Literature Festival

Week 7
Wednesday 2 JuneYear 1 Assembly – Hoskins Theatre – 2.45 pm

TAS Junior String Ensemble – Eisteddfod

TAS K-6 Ensemble – Eisteddfod

Week 8
Wednesday 9 JuneYear 4 Assembly – Hoskins Theatre – 2.45 pm
Transition 2022 Interviews
Thursday 10 JuneClasses conclude for Long Weekend
Friday 11 JuneStaff Day
Week 9
Monday 14 JunePublic Holiday
Tuesday 15 JuneClasses Resume
Wednesday 16 JuneYear 2 Assembly – Hoskins Theatre – 2.45 pm

TAS K, 1, 2 & 4 Choral Speaking – Eisteddfod

Friday 18 JuneActivities Day

Yr 5 Thalgarrah Excursion

Junior School Sport


TAS Tigers

Mr Secker’s voice was raspy before kick-off, belting out Frozen songs with Heidi and Scarlett on the road trip to Walcha this Saturday. The TAS Tigers took on the Super Rugby Walcha Brumbies in front of a sell out crowd at the John Oxley Sporting Fields.

It clearly wasn’t the third game of football for the Brumbies, as they relentlessly kicked goal after goal on the significantly smaller Tigers outfit. This David and Goliath battle didn’t end with an upset victory on the scoreboard, but the Tigers should be really proud of their courageous effort throughout the game. A special mention to George for his determination to stop goals by diving (which is a fundamental skill in football). We ensured we filled our water bottles with the local water, before returning home to the magical sounds of Elsa. We will rebuild at training this week and come out even stronger this Saturday at Rologas.

Go Tigers!

Mr Ken Secker


TAS Torpedoes

This week the TAS Torpedoes had another great performance with a 3-1 win over a strong North’s team. A disciplined defence proved difficult for the opposition to penetrate with Sahib again finding himself in the right place at the right time. Excellent teamwork was the key to success with quick passing and good positioning we were able to make the most of our chances. Goals in the first half went to Josh and Mila and William scored the only goal in the second half with an impressive long range shot.

Mr Christian Nexo


The Set Team really stepped up on Saturday to take their first win for the season, 2-0, against the Tigers! Anna and Mehleen scored goals, but it was a whole team effort, with improvement shown across the entire court. James and William displayed strong reflexes in defence, while Carla, Chloe and Mishkah were dominant in the centre court.

The Set players all demonstrated great enthusiasm and sportsmanship throughout the game as well. Special mention to the three players who also happily subbed for another team during their quarters off – Anna, Ivy and Ruby.

Mrs Anna O’Connor






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