A Uniting Church coeducational independent day and boarding school in Adelaide,
South Australia

Early Learning to Year 12

Head of Preparatory School - Edition 1 - 2019


On behalf of all staff across the school, welcome to all families to the 2019 school year.

After weeks of anticipation, the students have finally commenced. The classrooms look fantastic and the various changes and adjustments are completed. The students looked fantastic in their uniforms and polished shoes and the smiles on their faces indicated to me that while the holidays were enjoyable, they were also very pleased to be at school and spending time with their friends.

Welcome to Westminster!

We are delighted to welcome the following students to the Preparatory School and the Westminster Community.

Callan Armour (Abbey)
Bonnie Bainbridge-Marshall (Abbey)
Spencer Ellis (Wyvern)
Luke Harrington (Mace)
Korbyn Hearn (Abbey)
Tate Jackson (Charter)
Shivaa Jadav (Wesley)
Jack Kilsby (Wesley)
Estelle Kouzapa (Mace)
Isabella Lee (Abbey)
Horace Liew (Abbey)
Jessica Liu (Charter)
Victoria Ma (Mace)
Masri Khalid (Wesley)
Percy McIntosh (Wyvern)
Elias Nitschke (Crown)
Amelia Ou (Crown)
Lachlan Parsons-Burpee (Charter)
Maisy Pritchard (Charter)
James Qui (Mace)
Anabelle Ramsey (Wyvern)
Adwitiya Rasappagari (Crown)
Mihana Sakuma-Doering (Wesley)
Edward Sincock (Wesley)
Oliver Swalling (Wesley)
Charlie Tainton (Crown)
William Taylor (Crown)
Henry Tie (Charter)
Amaira Verma (Abbey)
Elle Weise (Wesley)
William Zhou (Wesley)
Year 1
Charley Bowler (Charter)
Keiran Dunsmore (Crown)
Callum Rice (Wesley)
Year 2
Hamish Darrell (Wyvern)
Henry Mableson (Wyvern)
Jude Maloney (Abbey)
Gabrielle Mills (Wesley)
Year 3
Arianna Chandra (Mace)
Jack Collier (Mace)
Sophia Hallam (Wesley)
Ruby Dispain (Charter)
Brooke Weatherald (Wyvern)
Elle Weatherald (Wyvern)
Year 4
April Brown (Abbey)
Talia Darrell (Wyvern)
Yashi Agarwal (Charter)
James Palmer (Crown)
Rachael Slay (Abbey)
Ava Styles (Charter)
Lara Weise (Wesley)
Year 5
Sienna Blewitt (Charter)
Amelia Collier (Mace)
Samir Dave (Crown)
Adelaide Elliott (Charter)
Connor Hunt (Abbey)
Lucas Heazlewood (Wyvern)
Alessandra Mayger (Mace)
Riley Schraa (Crown)
Aaron Slay (Abbey)
Ruby Tomlinson (Mace)
Janet Wang (Abbey)
Ben Wilcox (Wesley)
Aijay Willoughby (Charter)
Anwyl Wong (Crown)
Year 6
Armaan Chandra (Mace)
William Dispain (Charter)
Ella Green (Abbey)
Aman Kalro (Charter)
Xianjun Liu (Charter)
Jazmin McKay (Wesley)
Eliza Maloney (Abbey)
Year 7
Angus Castro (Mace)
Yilan Chi (Wesley)
Leo Cretan (Abbey)
Alex Grimley (Crown)
Drew Latta (Wesley)
Tianyou (Leo) Lian (Wyvern)
Caden McCully (Wesley)
William Nicolle (Abbey)
Emily Palmer (Crown)
Yogin Sigdel (Mace)
Abbie Solomon (Wyvern)
Lucy Weatherald (Wyvern)
Maddy Willoughby (Charter)
Summer Wong (Crown)
William Young (Wyvern)
Ruoyi Zhang (Wesley)

Staff Changes

2019 has seen a number of changes to our staffing in the Preparatory School.

Mr Tim Weatherald has joined us as Head of Sport in the Preparatory School. Tim has an impressive educational and sporting pedigree. He played football with distinction at Sturt, and coordinated sport at Prince Alfred College for many years, before spending the last four heading a high performance sport program at Essington School in Darwin. While some would rate his 2002 Magarey Medal as Tim’s greatest achievement, Tim might tell you it is his family, including his wife Marnie and his four daughters Katie, Lucy, Brooke and Elle, who also join us at Westminster this year.

Mrs Deb Cope has joined us as a Year 7 class teacher having worked at St Peters Girls for the past few years and a variety of independent schools before that. Deb has two children who have left school and she commutes from Hahndorf to contribute to the Westminster Community.

Mrs Lisa Benwell has joined our Stretch team three days per week. Lisa has a great deal of experience, most recently at St Patrick’s School.

Ms Victoria Sears is helping in the Library three days per week as our new Library Assistant

In addition to new staff, we welcome back Mrs Cassie Schreuder who has returned from maternity leave – albeit with a broken wrist! Mrs Sara Mori has moved from the classroom to a dual role in the Library and Stretch areas. Many other staff have changed year levels which adds a sense of excitement to the beginning of the year as new teaching teams emerge. This gives us all a chance to assist new colleagues to settle and always serves as a reminder of how fortunate we are to work at Westminster, as the new staff members express their delight at how well behaved the students are compared to some other places they have worked. As I say every year, I am excited about the prospect of this being the best year ever in the Prep School!

Code Camp and Vacation Care

Over the Summer break, Vacation Care has been running in both the Early Learning Centre and also in OSHC. The program involved a whole range of activities.

Prior to Christmas we hosted a Code Camp that was a huge success with over 40 children in attendance, including 20 from other schools.

Christmas Lights was also very successful – many thanks to families who attended and to Mr Walker who put his considerable creative talent to use to create the leadlight windows that looked fabulous.

House Leadership

One of the cornerstones of our pastoral care at Westminster is the House system. We have six Houses in the Prep School, and the students from Reception to Year 7 are assigned to a House. If there is a family connection the House is predetermined, but for new families joining us we allocate a House with the aim of achieving gender and number balance.

All staff are also assigned to a House, and there is a weekly meeting for each House where they get together to foster House spirit and get organised for special events. The affinity and connection that students feel for their House is phenomenal and a real credit to the system. Each House is coordinated by a House Head. For 2019 the House Heads are Mr Mather (Abbey), Ms Hyde (Charter), Mrs Schreuder (Crown), Ms Fitzgerald (Mace), Mrs Baldwin (Wesley) and Mr Dyer (Wyvern).

Meet the Teacher Trial

On Friday 25 January, students were invited in to meet the class teacher and check out their classroom before the school term commenced. The aim of this was twofold. It was my hope that it would help the children calm the nerves if they were able to come in and set up their books in the classroom as well as say hello to their teacher. It also provided the parents and the teacher the opportunity to meet informally and hopefully commence a strong and supportive relationship where the School and the home environments work together to help each student achieve their best.

This trail replaced the traditional information evenings for this year. Information was provided in a handout rather than asking families to come to the School on one or more evenings to hear about the year ahead. Feedback from teaching staff has been very positive about this new approach, but I would welcome hearing the thoughts of any families about the benefit or pitfalls of the change.

Traffic Flow

As we embark on the new school year I would like to remind parents to please be respectful when driving and parking on school grounds. The key times that seem to cause the most aggravation unsurprisingly are around 8.20 to 8.40 am and 3.20 to 3.40 pm. There are drop off and pick up areas outside of the Art room and Prep Office, these are not parking spaces during these times. I would ask that parents please refrain from parking in turning circles or stopping on the roadway to wait for children. It is important that traffic keeps flowing and blocking the flow to wait for children to arrive or load into the car is disrespectful to other road users. Members of the Westminster Community are very fortunate to be able to drive onto the school grounds, and it would be a shame if this access was denied as it is at most schools.

Student Leaders

Recently we inducted the Year 7 student Leaders for 2019. Congratulations to Captains of the Preparatory School, Charlotte Burt (Wyvern) and Jack White (Abbey). Our School Leaders are Jacob Frankel (Wyvern), Seb Ireland (Crown), Juliet Tainton (Crown), Charlotte Ward (Crown) and Chanelle Jayakody (Charter). Our House Captains are Nisha Sanap (Abbey), Maddison Willis (Abbey), Sophie Bradley (Charter), Isabella Maynard (Charter), Reilly Curran (Crown), Samuel Williams (Crown), Caitlin Dyer (Mace), Olivia Moody (Mace), Zara Papst (Wesley), Alia Peerbaye (Wesley), Nikolas Damato (Wyvern) and Alicia Mableson (Wyvern).

Our 2019 School Leaders and House Captains.

Student achievements

Over the holidays three Westminster students, Will Bell (Year 3 Mace), Jayden Brijmohan (Year 3 Abbey) and Piotrek Kowalczyk (Year 2 Crown), competed in the Australian Futsal Nationals in Sydney representing SA in an Under 9 age group. Although they played in an older age competition they acquitted themselves very well, displaying the enthusiasm and sportsmanship that we expect of Westminster students.


Cricket Success

During the school holidays Ethan Williams (Year 6 Abbey) and Lachlan Douglass (Year 6 Mace) represented the Adelaide Turf Cricket Association in the South Australian Metropolitan Cricket Association (SAMCA) Cup. To be selected for the team the boys had to be nominated by their clubs (both boys play for Brighton), and then had to go through a selection process where an initial amount of 45 nominated players were whittled down to 13 players, to play a four game, round-robin competition. The ATCA team dominated the competition - only losing 8 wickets in the four games. Both Westminster boys played a role with the ball and bowled extremely well, with Lachie taking 7/21 off 8.4 overs and Ethan taking 4/38 from 10 overs.

The ATCA team were undefeated in their four games and won the SAMCA Cup, which was the first time that ATCA Under 12s have won it.

Diary Dates

  • Summer Sport matches commence – Friday 8 February
  • Year 7 Camp – Monday 25 Feb to Friday 1 March, Canberra
  • JP Sports Day – Friday 8 March
  • Prep Sports Day Field Events – Wednesday 13 March
  • Prep Sports Day – Friday 15 March
  • Parent/Teacher Interviews – Week 8, commencing Monday 18 March
  • Westminster School Fun Fair – Saturday 23 March, Prep School Oval
  • Tenebrae Service – Sunday 7 April, 7.00 pm, Jeffries Chapel
  • End of Term – Friday 12 April, 1.00 pm finish
  • Start of Term 2 – Tuesday 30 April, 8.45 am

Grant Bock
Head of Preparatory School