- Principal's Welcome
- TASC Moderation - Student Free Day
- Evening of Excellence for 2019
- UNICEF Ambassador (ex-Don College student) Mason Wright Visits Don
- National Schools Constitutional Convention
- Congratulations to Maggie Sheehan
- Welcome to our students from Brazil
- Bus Timetables - Update
- Toast for Kids Charity Gala
- Tasmania Police's Newest Recruit
- Hospitality Forum
- Hospitality Café
- Fashion Design - VET
- Mobile Phone Use and Student Learning
- Ex-Don College Student - "AKarlie Designs"
- Support for Well-Being
- Chaplaincy at Don College 2020
- Careers @ Don
- Career & Life Planning - Year 12
- Your health and quitting
- Sport & Recreation
- Don College Schoolzine App - SZapp
We welcome all students, parents, guardians and carers to the Don College School Year 2020. Students have quickly engaged in quality learning experiences across our broad range of classes. Most courses in Years 11 and 12 are content heavy. There is a lot to learn and skills to develop. We know that attendance is a requirement for success.
Earlier this month we celebrated the achievements of 2019 students. We congratulate all of our 2019 graduates and wish them every success in the future (please see the article on our Evening of Excellence). One common characteristic of all of our award winners in 2019 was consistent attendance and participation. We encourage all students to make the best effort they can to attend all lessons and engage fully with the learning experiences on offer.
Parents, guardians and carers play a key role in supporting our students to achieve their personal goals. We look forward to working with you to realise the best possible outcomes.
10 Mar 2020
Moderation for Years 11 and 12 will occur on Tuesday March 10th. This day is a pupil free day and students are not required to attend college.
Please note that this day is unique to colleges. Primary and High Schools will operate as normal on this day.
Don College results clearly demonstrate excellence. The Don College median ATAR for 2019 is 81: half of the Don College students who attained an ATAR have performed in the top 19% of students around Australia.
We are not just about ATAR and EAs at Don College. We cater for a wide range of students with a wide range of goals, aspirations, interests and abilities…
Well over half of our students have completed Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualifications. We value the role that VET makes to the employability of individuals and overall life opportunities. We need to recognise and value all types of learning and we know that the success of any community relies on a diverse population group with a diverse range of strengths and skills.
Don College has established itself as the preferred training provider across a number of industries. We have developed clear pathways for students to transition from VET to Apprenticeships, Traineeships, employment or further education.
To students of 2019 - You will all be making significant transitions this year, moving in to year 12? Moving to employment? Taking a Gap Year? Travelling the globe? Studying at a University? Have confidence that your early educational experiences and years at Don College have prepared you for the future. Have confidence because you have grown up in a tight knit local community where we all need to respect each other and work together to move forwards.
Our teachers and support staff at Don College are fuelled by the success of individual students. Our staff are highly motivated to give all students the best chance of success.
You are an amazingly talented group of young people. Sadly we will say farewell to many of you…as many of you must leave to pursue your dreams.
Our mission is to provide a safe and inclusive learning environment where all community members feel they belong, are comfortable to take risks and flourish.
Congratulations to you all.
John Thompson - Principal
We would like to congratulate all our award winners and in particular:
UNICEF (United Nations International Children’s’ Emergency Fund) Ambassador Mason Wright.
Mason Wright recently returned to Don College in his role as a UNICEF Ambassador. In 2019, he was chosen as one of twelve young people from around Australia to become an Ambassador. It was the first time a Tasmanian had been selected.
Mason’s role is to visit schools in Tasmania to hear directly from students about the issues that affect them. As a result of the consultations, a major report will be collated and presented to Federal Parliament. Some of the issues that Don College students said affected them include public transport, moving away for further education and the cost to families, climate change and opportunity or lack thereof in rural and regional centres. The students appreciated the opportunity to be heard, with the assurance that their thoughts would be acknowledged by UNICEF and the Parliament.
Oscar Clark and Cooper Healy have been selected as two of five Tasmanian students to be delegates at the National Schools Constitutional Convention in Canberra from the 17th to the 19th March.
The students entered an essay writing competition, the topic of which was Federalism: the Constitution and Australia’s Water. The selection panel was impressed by the standard of all four essays submitted from Don. The selected students will meet up with 120 delegates from around Australia.
The program will include discussions, high profile guest speakers and visits to Parliament House, Government House and the High Court. The convention will be based at Old Parliament House which includes the Museum of Democracy. This will be a first visit to Canberra for these students, but may be the beginning of many more to come in the future if either chooses a political career.
Aotearoa Leadership Tour
United Nations Youth Australia aims to educate young people on global affairs and promote voices of Australian youth. The Aotearoa Leadership Tour provides the opportunity for sixteen delegates to travel to Sydney and New Zealand to engage in conversation and issues that are fundamental to relations between indigenous peoples and majority white states. Across two weeks in July, delegates will engage in consultations, interactive workshops, sight-seeing and events to gain valuable insight into indigenous rights, culture and reconciliation.
Maggie is one of sixteen Australian students who successfully went through the application process which consisted of two written components and a third-round interview.
Some written round questions consisted of commenting on international issues and solutions, including relations between Australia and New Zealand regarding refugee policy, as well as the US resettlement deal.
Don College is fortunate to welcome six exchange students from Brazil again this year. This is a great opportunity for all of us to get to know another culture and to appreciate our differences and similarities. Students noted how the Tasmanian school system was very different to what they are used to in Brazil. Their first impressions of Tasmania and Don College have been very positive.
When asked about what they thought of their new temporary home, here is what they had to say:
"It’s amazing… It is very different to my school in Brazil."
"I was surprised. We can only choose one class in Brazil. The rest is decided for us. We don’t have any options: no music, no cooking – just Science, English, Maths, Portuguese, Arts, History, and Geography."
"I am having a great time but it is very cold. Even summer is cold."
Make sure to say g’day or olá if you see them around campus, and welcome them to our community!
Please be advised there have been some timetabling changes for Merseylink Buses that service Don College.
The links below provide the updated details for routes, however if you would like a printed version, please check the Bus Timetable display at the Don College Administration Office.
27 – Shearwater & Hawley to Reece High, DHS, SBSC, Don College, NSPS & DCS - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s126/
33 – Parkers Ford Road, Squeaking Point and Sassafras to Devonport schools - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s111/
37 – Sheffield to Don & Devonport schools - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s134/
40 – Port Sorell to Reece High, D’port High, SBSC & Don College - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s125/
54 – Upper Castra to Devonport - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s135/
57 – Buster Road and James Road to all Devonport schools - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s113/
62 – Kimberley, Railton, Tugrah to Devonport schools - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s107/
63 – Tarleton Road, Spreyton Bus Interchange to all Latrobe Schools - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s115/
70 – Gunns Plains & Preston to Devonport (all schools) - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s110/
73 – West Ulverstone to Don College, Devonport - https://www.merseylink.com.au/school-bus-list/s129/
92 – Latrobe to Don College & SBSC - https://www.merseylink.com.au/s014/
The annual Toast for Kids Charity Gala is on Saturday 28th March 2020 at the paranaple convention centre. This event raises funds for 16 local public schools' (Kentish, Latrobe & Devonport municipalities) breakfast clubs, as well as Books for Babies.
We support this initiative in the promotion of getting children off to the right start through reading and healthy eating.
Reading to children at home and in school, particularly at a young age, has shown benefits in developing their literacy, imagination and curiosity along with listening, social and communication skills.
A big congratulations to ex-Don College student, Tiarna Rand, who was accepted as a Police Recruit in the early February intake. See the below post on Tas Police facebook.
Tiarna is the second female front row from the left.
The Certificate II in Kitchen Operations and Certificate II in Hospitality classes were involved in a hospitality forum on Monday the 10th February. Three industry experts: Tracey Martin, Lucas Edwards and Monique Bound, spent the morning networking with students and advising students on pathways and requirements for the hospitality industry. These industry networks and opportunities are a valuable learning experience within the VET department.
Below are 2 documents on mobile phones in a learning setting. The first is from studies about the impact on student learning from mobile phone use. The second is Don College's Mobile Phone Policy. Interesting reading...
Ex-Don College student, Arabella Gillies visited the Fashion Design class to explain her new online business called “AKarlie Designs.” She was a great inspiration. “You can do anything if you are brave enough to try!!” At Don College, in 2019, Arabella won two State titles in design and went to Melbourne to represent Tasmania in the Apex Teenage Fashion Awards. At the beginning of year 12 she thought she would never win anything!!! Arabella is now studying fashion design at Burnie TAFE and working part time at Latrobe Hill Street supermarket.
Well-being Corner: Support for Well-being
Support is very important to us at Don. We have access to many services and avenues of support to help our students through their time here.
Some of these include a full-time Social Worker and Youth Worker along with a Chaplain, who is here two days a week. Students can access these through the main office.
Headspace Medical at Don is on Thursdays from 9-12: Student can book with headspace Medical online at:
Additionally, students can access Centrelink services in the library each fortnight on a Wednesday beginning the 4th of March at lunchtime.
At Don College our Chaplain, Cathrin Boerma, is available to support all members of the college community by promoting physical, emotional, social and spiritual health and supporting student learning. The Chaplain is a valued member of the Don College student support team which also includes our on-campus Police Officer, Social Worker, Youth Worker, Teacher Assistants and General Practice Clinic. Cathrin acts as a point of referral to college support staff and some community programs such as the Learner-Driver Mentor program. Cathrin works Thursday and Fridays and is found in the student support office off the Southern Common Room.
The Don College Chaplain is employed through government funding and community funding via donations to Devonport Chaplaincy Inc. Before students access the Chaplaincy services we ask that written consent be given. Consent can be withdraw at any time. Letters of consent can be obtained from the main office and were also included in the enrolment information received at the end of last year.
Careers @ Don
This term has begun with the call for grade 12 applications for the Police Career Development Program that is to be run in the July and October school holidays. Applications for this program are due to Julie by Monday April 6.
During March we have a number of groups visiting Don College including the Australian Defence Force, Tasmanian Police Recruitment, and Lattitude Global Volunteering. Look out for notices in the daily memo and on our Don College Careers site at www.doncollegecareers.com.au
Also in March students who are interested in a health career (Medicine, Medical Research, Paramedicine, Human Life Sciences, Pharmacy, Nursing & Midwifery and Psychology) are invited, along with their parent, to a Health Careers Information Session at Mersey Community Hospital, 11th March from 6:00pm to 7:30pm, with a light supper provided.
Julie is available at different times throughout the week to work individually with students. Her timetable and booking sheets are next to the JOBs folder in the careers room.
Grade 12 Career and Life Planning
We have made a good start getting to know one another with activities (some quite competitive!) and discussions. In Term 1 we build an understanding of a decision making process so that when it comes to making decisions later in the year, these decisions will be considered and informed. Our particular focus for Term 1 is highlighted below; building an understanding of self and options.
It has been noted that there is a possible increase in the number of students smoking. Don College are serious in discouraging smoking and we offer support to assist quitting.
There are many ways to quit smoking.
For information and support:
- Approach our School Support Team
- call the Quitline on 13 7848
- visit Quit Tasmania
- Download MyQuitBuddy, a personalised app available for free from Google Play or iTunes
- Talk to a doctor or pharmacist about products that can reduce your cravings such as nicotine replacement therapies (find your options here) or medications (champix, zyban)
For young Tasmanians, visit Smoke Free Generation
SPORT & RECREATION EXPERIENCES
With the aim of raising the prominence of Sport and Recreation as a component of Don College culture, particularly at lunch times, the Physical Education staff are coordinating lunchtime tournaments involving sport and recreation students but also open to all other members of the college community.
Week one saw students head off to the Devonport Tennis Centre where Gray Hiller taught the basics of the game. Students also found out how to access these facilities in their personal time. Students then participated in Thursday and Friday lunch and tutorial time competitions at Don College. Some of the viewing rivalled the Australian Open.
Week two saw the introduction of the game “Schtick”, a fast moving Frisbee (flying disc) game of keepings off. Various skills activities and lead ups were held prior to the competition. Wednesday and Thursday lunchtimes saw some friendly competitions held amongst students.