2022 Term 1 Week 9   |   30.03.2022

TAS Talks Term 1 Week 9

01. From the Principal


What a wonderful way to end our summer sports season it was, watching some of our young men and women rowing in the postponed NSW Schoolboys and girls regatta in Sydney last Saturday. In addition to the incredible skill development these students have undergone over the season, they have all experienced incredible personal growth through their co-curricular involvement. This is a great example of why the School has such a broad co-curricular program as an integral part of a TAS education, rather than an extra-curricular program that sits as an optional extra. Congratulations to all our students for finishing their summer sports seasons strongly.

In the academic arena, this week TAS has welcomed teams from across the region to compete in the 2022 da Vinci Decathlon. The competition tests students as they compete in small teams across a range of different areas including science, code-breaking, poetry and ideation. With some last-minute changes, the TAS teams started strongly with a win on Day 1 from our Year 7 team. Tuesday saw our Year 5 and 6 teams compete with heart over the course of a fun-filled day. Good luck to the Year 9 and 10 teams who are competing today.

In staffing news, after an extensive search that attracted many excellent applicants, I am delighted to announce that Mr Tim Williams will join TAS as Head of Tyrrell House from Term 4. Mr Williams is currently Acting Head of History at St Joseph’s College Hunters Hill. A short biography of Mr Williams can be found in the boarding section of TAS talks this week. In the interim, I am also very pleased to announce that Mr Johnathon Woodbridge will take up the role of Acting Head of Tyrrell House for Terms 2 and 3.

The upcoming Easter break represents a good opportunity for younger students who have only received their first COVID-19 vaccine to get their second, or indeed for students who have yet to be vaccinated to start that process. While we are beginning to live alongside COVID-19 and the majority of those in our community who test positive have only mild disease, this has certainly not been the case for everyone. Ongoing infections also continue to cause disruption to school for our students. Vaccination is a very effective way to minimise these risks. If you would like advice on how to speak to your child about vaccination, it can be found here.


Dr Rachel Horton

02. From the Deputy Principal


Last Tuesday at Assembly, the next student-led service initiative at TAS was announced. The Prefects will be officially launching the ‘TAS Greatest Shave’ next week by selling raffle tickets to go into the draw to win the honour of giving Prefect Gus White a (much needed) haircut in Week 10. This will be a small taste of what is to come in Term 2. Between now and 9 May (Senior/Middle School Athletics Carnival), Students will be able to purchase raffle tickets to shave or cut the hair of our Prefects and some brave staff. While all in good fun, the focus to raise much-needed funds for Ovarian Cancer Australia is a worthwhile cause and I commend our student leaders on driving this. 

I would also like to congratulate all students for their passionate involvement in their respective summer sports this term. There were many outstanding teams and individual performances culminating with the amazing resilience and perseverance of our rowers who recently competed with success at their Head of the River events. There is growing excitement for the start of the Winter sports season with some trial matches beginning to take place this week and of course our TAS Rugby Carnival to finish the term. In addition to all the co-curricular activities taking place in the various sporting arenas, our co-curricular arts program continues to go from strength to strength. This Thursday we have our Twilight Concert and the much anticipated ‘Rhinoceros’ play is generating a buzz as we approach the official opening on 5 May. Obviously, none of these co-curricular activities could occur without our dedicated staff. I know the students appreciate the extra applause and encouragement from the sidelines, the hours of set design and rehearsals along with the relationships formed in standing side-by-side with our staff as they are able to extend themselves outside the classroom. 


Mr Ray Pearson
Deputy Principal


Cotton Field Trip

On Monday 21 and Tuesday 22 March, Year 12 Geography and Year 12 and 11 Textiles students participated in an excursion to Narrabri and Wee Waa to visit the Cotton Seed Distributors, a cotton farm, ginning facility, and cotton research centre.

Students were conducting fieldwork that was aimed at providing them with a holistic understanding of the journey cottonseed takes to becoming a shirt on the rack in a clothes shop to support their HSC studies.  Students gained insight into how cotton seeds are genetically modified to protect them from crop failure and pests at the Cotton Seed Distributors, how modern cotton farming techniques reduce the impact of cotton farming on the environment at Merced Farms, how the Auscott cotton gin operates, as well as the role of the Cotton Research and Development Corporation in supporting better environmental and humanitarian practices across the globe.

The hospitality shown by our hosts was incredible and gap year positions for next year were offered.  Australian Cotton is the best in the world, as proven by its market value and demand, due to the investment in state of the art technology and progressive thinking and corporate collaboration.  Thank you to our hosts including former TAS students the Kahl family of Merced Farms and current parent Dr Ian Taylor from the CRDC, for their generosity and ongoing support of this field trip and Ms Ingrid Steddy for being our chief navigator!

Mr Doug Fawcett
Geography teacher

TAS Regional Tour

Over the past month, we have been meeting families across regional NSW to discuss a TAS education for their children during the TAS Regional Tour attended by Dr Horton and senior staff.

During these visits, we have enjoyed hosting drinks for current and past parents and alumni in their home region.

Thank you to our Moree, Narrabri, Tamworth,  Gunnedah and Scone communities who have joined us to date. The next drinks event is in Inverell tonight, Wednesday 30 March, and we look forward to welcoming our TAS Inverell community.

Next week the tour continues, meeting prospective families in Coffs Harbour and Port Macquarie.


Mrs Jo Neilson
Enrolments Registrar



Please note that we currently have NO Casual Boarding vacancies in the Girls Boarding Houses.

Casual boarding can be for a single night or several weeks. It is proving to be increasingly popular. The cost of casual boarding is $80 per night inclusive of linen, dinner and breakfast.

Space is limited and may not always be available at the times required. Please assist us by providing a minimum of 24 hours notice and completing an online casual boarding application by using the link below or if you have any queries, please contact Mrs Veronica Lucas on (02) 6776 5800.

Uniform & Book Shop

Winter Uniforms
As we approach the end of Term 1 we would like to remind all parents about purchasing Winter Uniform for Term 2.

The Uniform Shop is open during the term with no appointments necessary. The shop is located through Gate 2 - in the cream weatherboard building behind The Hub (Library.

Additional opening days for Term 2 uniform: Wednesday 6 April & Friday 8 April.

Monday 10.00 – 4.00pm
Tuesday 10.00am – 4.00pm
Wednesday Closed
Thursday 10.00am – 4.00pm
Friday 10.00 – 4.00pm

Travel Bookings

A reminder that weekend travel bookings must be made before each Thursday prior to the weekend. All travel arrangements (except air travel) should be made with Reception. If you have any queries regarding travel, please don’t hesitate to Mrs Veronica Lucas in Reception.

School Photographs

Individual Photos Orders are ready for collection from:
Junior School - Ms Sandra Lasker
Middle School - Mrs Robyn Frost
Senior School - Mrs Veronica Lucas

03. Calendar of Events


Wednesday 30  Marchda Vinci Decathlon
TAS Regional Tour ( Inverell & Glen Innes)
Thursday 31 MarchTwilight Concert ( 6pm)
Sunday 3 AprilCoffs Harbour Ocean Swim
Monday 4 AprilTAS Regional Tour – Coffs Harbour
Tuesday 5 AprilTAS Regional Tour – Port Macquarie
Thursday 7 AprilTAS Cross Country

Year 6,8,10 and 12 Parent/Teacher Interviews

Classes Conclude

Friday 8 AprilYear 6,8,10 and 12 Parent/Teacher Interviews

School Holidays

Saturday 9 AprilTAS Rugby Carnival
Sunday 10 AprilTAS Rugby Carnival
Term 2
Tuesday 26 AprilYear 7,9 and 11 Parent/Teacher Interviews

Boarders Return

Wednesday 27 AprilClasses Resume



04. From the P&F



With less than two weeks to go, let’s make this issue all about the TAS Rugby Carnival.

TASRC – Volunteers

Thank you to all who have already volunteered to help the P&F at TASRC. We still need about 30 helpers on Saturday and 40 helpers on Sunday to assist with Canteens & BBQ’s.

Please visit the link to confirm your support TASRC Volunteer SignUp

TASRC – Baking

Much of the financial success of the TAS Rugby Carnival can be attributed to the TAS baking community. So once again, we are calling on your donations.

Baked items need to be:

  • nut-free
  • well-formed (such as slice) to keep shape when moved into individual bags
  • fresh for consumption until the Sunday of the carnival
  • accompanied by a list of ingredients
  • of a serving size suitable for a $2-$3 price point
  • Note that jelly cup contributions require the snakes/frogs left in the packet and not set into the jelly.

Sign up for baking: This year, we are asking donors to click on this link to nominate your baking commitment

TASRC Baking SignUp

Recipes are available at this link: TASRC Baking Recipes

Drop off baking: TAS Junior School Homework Centre (opposite the pool) on Thursday afternoon, Friday or Saturday morning.  Or leave with Reception.

Queries: Caroline Coupland 0417 52 44 92 or carolinekcoupland@gmail.com

TASRC – Emporium

The Emporium returns to the TASRC in the Hoskins Centre Foyer!

There will be over 13 stallholders; with items ranging from beautiful jewellery, scented candles, clothing and locally produced homewares and food items. Come along to browse & purchase. It’s sure to be worthwhile, pick up something for yourself or a gift, remembering that Mother’s Day is only just around the corner!

Contact the P&F Executive

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


Mr Paul Gaddes
P&F President

05. From the Director of Boarding


I am pleased to announce, after an extensive recruitment process over the course of Term 1, that a decision has been made on the new leadership of Tyrrell House to replace Mr Chris Cook from the commencement of Term 2.

Firstly, I can’t thank Mr Cook enough for his unwavering support and efforts in Tyrrell House since he commenced as the Head of House in January 2019. Mr Cook’s strong work ethic and genuine passion for all things Tyrrell will be hard to replace and I wish him and his family well on this next exciting chapter of their lives. It is a compliment to TAS and the boarding program we have in place that sees Mr Cook move into a senior leadership boarding role at Ballarat Grammar from Term 2.

As announced to the boys of Tyrrell House on Tuesday evening 22 March, Mr Johnathon Woodbridge will move into the Acting Head of Tyrrell House role for Terms 2 and 3 2022. Mr Woodbridge is familiar with the Tyrrell House boys, girls, and families as the Deputy Head of Tyrrell House since January 2021. Having Mr Woodbridge in this acting role ensures a smooth handover from Mr Cook and minimises disruption during what has already been a period of unprecedented change.

I am pleased to announce that Mr Tim Williams (Old Armidalian 2008) has been appointed the Head of Tyrrell House from the commencement of Term 4 2022. Mr Williams brings a wealth of experience to this role from his time working in boarding across Years 9 – 12 at St Joseph’s College Hunters Hill and in a senior boys boarding house at Dauntsey’s School in the United Kingdom. Mr Williams is also well-credentialed in the classroom teaching Senior Modern and Ancient History for nine years, holding a Masters in Ancient History from Macquarie University and the Acting Head of History at St Joseph’s College since the commencement of 2022. Mr Williams has also contributed greatly to the co-curricular program at St Joseph’s College having coached the 14As rugby team, the Second XI Cricket team, and athletics. Mr Williams’ interests outside of school include travelling, camping, history, and rugby having played over 200 games for the Eastwood Rugby Club.

The TAS Boarding community are looking forward to welcoming Mr Tim Williams and his wife Anneliese to TAS later this year.

Mr David Drain
Head of Boarding

06. From the Director of Co-curricular


After months of training, our senior rowers were finally able to compete in the NSW Head of the River at Iron Cove. On an unfamiliar course and competing for the first time this season, all 24 competitors performed admirably. At the end of the regatta, TAS finished with three bronze medals. Congratulations to the Girls First Quad (S. Paris, A. Byrne, J. Thibault, Z. Sherwood, c: E. Benham), Girls Year 10 Double Skull (I. Crawford, M. Cullen) and the Boys First IV (L. Ross, F. Kearney, S. Munsie, A. Zuber, c: E. Crawford). The ongoing discipline and determination were finally rewarded, well done!

For the past two weeks, I have watched the Boys First Hockey team play at UNE. A narrow loss in round one against the competition reining premiers was a sign of the potential of this young team. Last weekend the Firsts team recorded their first win of the season (6-4) against a fired-up United team. A great start to the season and I look forward to watching the girls play in the coming weeks.

As we move into the winter season, I remind all students that they must wear TAS sports uniform to and from their respective sporting venues. All students should have TAS tracksuit pants and a TAS jacket. Students who do not have the required uniform will be directed to the Uniform Shop.


Mr Huon Barrett
Director of Co-curricular

07. From the Head of Middle School


da Vinci Success

This week TAS has hosted the Northern NSW da Vinci Decathlon. With top three placings in eight of the 10 challenges, the TAS team was the overall Year 7 winner of Monday’s Decathlon. Well done to Richard, Peter, Sam, Nicholas, Jess, Sabrina, Izzy and Ned.


All of our students enjoyed a successful first Bivouac of the year. Whilst the weather wasn’t in our favour, all the activities proceeded as planned. I offer my thanks to all the staff who coordinated and ran the activities commend all of our students for their resilience and mature approach to the whole experience. We look forward to the next Activities Day to be held in Term 2.

Year 7 Camp – Coffs Harbour

At this stage, the Year 7 Camp to Coffs Harbour is going ahead. Any change to the arrangements will be communicated directly with Year 7 families. We have been in contact with the Coffs Coast Adventure Centre today and all is in place for our arrival on Friday.

What to bring

  • Travel on Friday is to be in Sports Uniform
  • Pillow and sleeping bag or similar. If you wish to bring a fitted sheet for under your sleeping bag, you can
  • Small day pack
  • Multiple changes of old clothes, including long pants, rain jacket, warm jumper
  • Close walking/hiking shoes, thongs for shower if desired. Closed shoes must be worn at all times
  • Old running shoes or water shoes for protection from rocks in the water
  • 2 x Towels and swimmers – a swimming shirt/rashie for sun protection is recommended. TAS Swimmers are to be worn
  • Sun hat, sunscreen and insect repellent
  • Water bottle – we recommended 2L
  • Toiletries
  • Medications should be placed in a zip lock bag, marked with the student’s name on it and handed to Mr Polson
  • Asthma puffers to be on the person at all times
  • Waterproof bag (or garbage bag) for wet/dirty clothing
  • Large plastic bag or similar for covering belongings in the case of inclement weather
  • Sun Smart clothing is preferred for all activities and shorts and shirts need to be long enough to allow for the comfortable fitting of safety gear and be practical for the outdoors
  • Clothing for Commando Course should be old clothes as they will get muddy. Shoes for canoeing will get wet so ensure you have another pair.

Do not bring

  • Mobile phones – any contact can be arranged through Mr Polson
  • Other electronic devices are not taken on the excursion
  • Chewing gum


Please remember that staff and students cannot attend school if they are showing any symptoms of COVID-19. These include fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, runny nose, loss of smell/ taste, muscle/joint pains, diarrhoea, nausea/vomiting, extreme tiredness, unexplained chest pain or conjunctivitis (eye infection).

If symptoms occur at any time, your child should not attend school and should undertake a rapid antigen test. If a rapid antigen test is positive your child should isolate as someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. If you cannot access a rapid antigen test, you can attend a PCR (nose and throat swab) testing clinic. Even if your child tests negative they must not attend school while displaying any symptoms. A reminder please that if your child returns a positive test result, or is currently isolated due to a household contact testing positive, please ensure you email me directly – lpolson@as.edu.au

If you have a need for any additional RAHTs for your child, please let us know at school.

Mr Luke Polson
Head of Middle School

08. From the Head of Junior School



I was very happy to be involved in the Northern NSW da Vinci Decathlon competition yesterday and to see the teams from around our region competing against each other in such a collegial and constructive manner. What a great way to come together and have fun while challenging yourself in the 10 disciplines…

Our Year 5 team shone, gaining places in the following sections – English (3rd), Science (2nd) Maths (3rd), Code Breaking (3rd) and Cartography (1st). The team was:

William Cooper-Fillios, Layla Abu-Assab, Jacqui DuBois, Tom Loxley, Kaitlyn Baker, Cecilia Price, Arabella Hodges and Sophie Banister and we congratulate them all.


Year 4 Assembly

The Year 4 assembly has been postponed for various reasons; primarily, because of the da Vinci Decathlon, there was no venue that could safely host it. So, it has been transferred to next week which allows them to have a venue that allows the opportunity for them to provide some exciting items. In its place today, be on the lookout for TAS Bear on video, as he joins me in handing out some really well-deserved School Spirit Awards instead. A link will be emailed to you.


Safety around Cars – Chapel St Turning Circle, Brown St and elsewhere

As you all know and understand, children arriving and departing creates a huge responsibility for us all. It is vital that we all do not take this lightly as any accident could have absolutely tragic consequences. Please understand that the Turning Circle requires patience and awareness; please do not allow yourself to be distracted. The attending teachers are doing a fantastic job (in all manner of weather) to provide this service and your cooperation and support is always appreciated. The Brown St entrance (Gate 2) and main driveway (Gate 1) is not to be used at any time and if your child is using another location, this must be discussed with us beforehand so that we have knowledge of their whereabouts at all times. Thank you for your ongoing support.

The TAS Dining Hall

I am happy to announce that the Dining Hall will again be available to students in Years 3, 4  and 5 in Term 2 and beyond. This offers a great alternative for our students at both recess and lunch at the cost of $6.30 per student.

Vacation Care

With the accreditation process continuing, the Vacation Care service will unfortunately not be operating these holidays. We apologise for this and hope that by the end of Term 2 it will resume with the great program as before

Uniform and Hair

Please note that the school uniform is flexible for the first two weeks of Term 2 in Junior School. Families can choose whether their child comes to school in either their winter or summer uniform depending on the weather. From Week 3 however, all children are expected to wear winter uniforms.

Again, this term, we are ensuring that all students wear the correct uniform, in a tidy and presentable manner. All hair should be tidy, well-kept and cut in a conservative manner. For girls, if the hair is longer than shoulder length, it should be tied with navy blue ribbon available at the TAS Clothing Shop.  If you have any questions about the uniform, please have a look at the website and/or contact me at school.


Uniform and Book Shop

Winter Uniforms
As we approach the end of Term 1 we would like to remind all parents about purchasing Winter Uniform for Term 2.

The Uniform Shop is open during the term with no appointments necessary. The shop is located through Gate 2 – in the cream weatherboard building behind The Hub (Library).

Additional opening days for Term 2 uniform: Wednesday 6 April and Friday 8 April.

Monday 10.00 – 4.00pm
Tuesday 10.00am – 4.00pm
Wednesday Closed
Thursday 10.00am – 4.00pm
Friday 10.00 – 4.00pm


School Spirits

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

Elijah Ng, Aarik Chakraborty, Macie Pearson, Theo Lees, Hassan Almokhtar, Bridei Stewart, Bronte Polson, Paddy Bourke, Toby Whysall, James Taylor, Will Dennison, Xander Dell, Kaitlyn Baker, Joshua Bourke, Nate Blair-Pevitt and Edward Gillman.


Happy Birthday

Wishing Umraj Nirmaan, Jose Ugwumba, Joshua Bourke and Emi Fawcett a very happy birthday this week.


Mr Ian Lloyd
Head of Junior School

Upcoming Events
Sunday 3 AprilJunior School Coffs Ocean Swim
Wednesday 6 AprilYear 4 Assembly (No parents – Live Streamed)
Thursday 7 AprilClasses Conclude
Friday 8 AprilJunior School Parent Teacher interviews (Additional if required)
Term 2
Tuesday 26 AprilStaff Day
Wednesday 27 AprilClasses Commence

Junior School Sport


The 2021/22 Basketball season wraps up this week – and what an awesome season we had. The 2021 season started with only 8 registered TAS players and finished with 29.

Due to COVID restrictions, the season didn’t really get started until the pre-Christmas basketball camp. From that moment, there was no limit for the TAS Juniors. Everyone trained hard, played fair, and really enjoyed themselves.

The season concluded with a party and inter-house games on Saturday. A great turnout with 30+ basketballers and their siblings, and parents.

Thank you to all the basketballers and their families for an excellent season.

See you next year.

Mr Ken Secker

Community Notices