College News


Dear Parents, Staff and StudentsHeaney Mark

On Monday evening, the Secondary Ensemble Concert took place in the Ivan Gibbs Centre and it was very heartening to see a large number of parents and friends on hand to experience what was a wonderful showcase of musical talent. The night certainly displayed the amazing musical groups that our College music staff and their talented students are producing. A special mention must go the hard working music teachers who are doing terrific work in assisting our students to develop and display their many diverse musical talents. The audience was entertained by an eclectic mix of performances ranging from the beautiful and evocative sounds of: the Senior String Orchestra, the Senior String Quartet, the Flute Ensemble, the Senior Concert Band and Saxophone Ensemble through to the more upbeat and contemporary sounds of the ‘fiery’ rock bands (Smoking Violets and Highly Flammable). The vocal performances were no less impressive with Bella Voce and a number of soloists entertaining the audience with their vocal abilities. From a personal point of view, however, the highlight of the evening was the outstanding rendition of Sweeney Todd by the brilliant Vox Collective, conducted by Mrs Celisa Urech. It is no surprise that the ensemble placed first, in their section of the Gold Coast Eisteddfod, earlier in the term.


Last Friday evening a group of eleven Senior Secondary Drama students performed at Emmanuel College as part of ‘Shake Fest 2017’, the Queensland Youth Shakespeare Festival sponsored by the Shake & Stir Theatre Company.
This drama competition provides a unique opportunity for students across Queensland to celebrate the works of William Shakespeare. The festival combines multiple art forms from across numerous competitive categories including Monologue, Duologue, Scene, Dance, Music, Design, Photography and Film.

Seven of the eleven competitors who performed in the “ShakeFest” regional finals won their categories and now progress to the State finals in Brisbane in October. There they will be vying for a spot in the top thirty performers - who will create a fully realised Shakespearean Production in a professional venue. Mrs Terry, our inspiring Senior Secondary Drama teacher, was greatly impressed with the students’ effort, attitude, energy and skill on the stage.  All of our performers were excellent, however, the seven acknowledged with individual awards were :

•    Bree Gulyas (dance)
•    Mckeira Cumming and Emily Cason (Duologue)
•    Andre Urech, Shaye Bardsley, Harrison Hanley and Jada Melhem (Scene)

As an English teacher myself, I am of course delighted with students performing the works of William Shakespeare to such a high standard. However, what is even more satisfying is the enjoyment that doing so brings to the student actors themselves. Not to mention the audience members who are fortunate enough to witness their wonderful talents.
On Thursday evening, the Senior Drama class performed their Gold Coast Drama Festival prize winning production of Bare Witness, in the Ivan Gibbs Centre to a small but appreciative audience. Once again, the many talents of the students were on display for all to see and they handled the at times controversial subject matter with sensitivity, passion and great skill.
Congratulations to Alyssa McCarthy for winning Best Supporting Actor, and to Mckeira Cumming for winning Best Actor. The Ensemble all got a Highly Commended Award, and their use of Multimedia and Stage Work, also gained them a Highly Commended Award. They can be deservedly proud of these excellent achievements.


On Friday evening, the combined China Study and Music Tour will be departing from Brisbane Airport for a twelve-day tour of China. The nineteen students and three staff will be visiting schools and taking in the usual tourist attractions. But most of all, they will be experiencing a very different culture and language which of course if the primary purpose of this educational excursion. We wish them a safe a rewarding journey.


Public submissions call to achieve educational excellence in schools

The Turnbull Government is seeking feedback from school communities in order to determine how best to fund schools so that teachers will have the support and resources they need to focus on the programs best suited to their students. The public submission process for the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools led by Mr David Gonski AC will be open until 13 October. Parents, teachers and students are invited to take this opportunity to help shape the future of Australia’s education system.
An Issues Paper is now available which frames the call for public submissions with key questions relating to the Terms of Reference for the Review.
The Issues Paper and information on how to lodge a submission are available from:

What has been a very busy and productive Term Three will end on Friday (tomorrow) and I wish all members of our College community a safe and happy family break. We look forward to seeing all of our students back on Tuesday 3 October.


Thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerly

Acting Principal - Mark Heaney

Tuesday, 12 September 2017 22:52


Congratulations to the 48 CAC students who competed last week in the South Coast Schools Athletics Championships. This was the most students that we have ever sent to these championships and the second most by a Hinterland School. All the students did very well with the following students placing in the top 5 in their events:


Anastasia Neumann
1st 13yrs 200m
1st 13yrs 100m

Rachel Pieszko
2nd 17yrs & over 800m

Haru Steel
4th 11yrs 800m
3rd 11yrs 1500m

James Murray
4th 16yrs 800m
3rd 16yrs 400m
4th 16yrs 1500m

Mackenzie Cullinane
2nd 15yrs 3000m

Alex Nguyen
1st 18yrs 110m hurdles

Nathan Perry
2nd 16yrs 110m hurdles

Ryan Schirmacher
2nd 13yrs 90m hurdles
4th 13yrs High Jump
3rd 200m hurdles

Taylor Smith
5th 17yrs 100m hurdles
1st 17yrs High Jump

Zoe Ayres
2nd 16yrs Triple Jump
3rd  16yrs Long Jump
3rd 16yrs High Jump

Vienna Farr
5th 15yrs Triple Jump

Brooklyn Lowe
4th 12yrs Shot Put

Tara Hall
2nd 14yrs Javelin

Baylie McLauchlan
5th 14yrs Javelin

Madeline Hall
4th 16yrs High Jump

William Smith
4th 15yrs High Jump
1st 15yrs Shot Put

Rohan Van de Merwe
3rd 15yrs High Jump

Imogen Noon
3rd 16yrs 400m

Dylan Devine
1st 12yrs 800m
1st 12yrs 1500m

George Dean
1st 10yrs High Jump

Riley Johnson
4th 11yrs High Jump

Mackenzie Hall
3rd 12yrs High Jump

Alannah Hopgood
5th 12yrs High Jump

At the completion of the carnival, the following students were selected to represent the South Coast region at the State Championships in October:


Mackenzie Hall
George Dean
Haru Steel



Rohan Van de Merwe
Zoe Ayres
Rachel Pieszko
Dylan Devine
Ryan Schirmacher
James Murray
Anastasia Neumann
Mackenzie Cullinane
Alex Nguyen
Holly Ayres
Imogen Noon
Adam Baxter
Saxon Want
William Smith
Taylor Smith
Baylie McLauchlan
Tara Hall


Congratulations to these students and to all the CAC Coaches especially Mrs Belinda Stephens for her wonderful coaching and support of these students.

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Tuesday, 12 September 2017 22:47


Congratulations to the following CAC teams who will be playing this week in the Winter Season Grand Finals:


CAC Boys U/11.2 (CAC Pistons)  
CAC Boys U/13.1 (CAC Spurs)
CAC Boys U/13.3 (CAC Heat)
CAC Boys U/15.2 (CAC Kings)
CAC Boys U/17.1 (CAC Jazz)
CAC Boys U/17.3 (CAC Hawks)
CAC A Grade Men


Game Times for the Finals:

Tuesday Night – September 12

CAC Boys U/17.1 (CAC Jazz) v SSC – 6.05pm – Court 1
CAC U/20 Men v Wildcats – 7.05pm – Court 1
CAC A Grade Men v Helensvale Hawks – 8.05pm – Court 1


Thursday Night – September 14

Games being played at the Coomera Sports Centre Indoor courts

CAC Boys U/11.1 (CAC Wizards) v. Wildcats – 5.30pm – Court 4
CAC Boys U/13.1 (CAC Spurs) v. Wildcats – 6.30pm – Court 6
CAC Boys U/15.2 (CAC Kings) v. Warriors  - 7.30pm – Court 4
CAC Boys U/17.3 (CAC Hawks) v. Wildcats – 7.30pm – Court 7


Saturday Night – September 16

Games being played at the Runaway Bay Indoor courts


CAC Boys U/11.2 (CAC Pistons) v. Warriors  -  8.30am – Court 4


Congratulations to these teams!

Monday, 11 September 2017 23:15


Coomera Anglican College and Golden South Jaguars Netball are pleased to announce our strategic partnership which will see the Golden South Jaguars based at Coomera Anglican College for the 2018 season and hopefully beyond.

The agreement will see the Golden South Jaguars training at the College and providing opportunities for our College netball players and coaches. There are already strong ties between us, and we believe that this arrangement is very beneficial to both parties and will go a long way in developing netball at the College and on the Gold Coast. This is very exciting!

The College will become the major sponsor of the Junior Jaguars team, and will also become a minor sponsor of all other teams as part of the agreement. The expanded training and coaching opportunities that will open up to our Netball Academy, will further enhance our Academy programmes.

The partnership with Golden South Jaguars, adds to the high quality stable of partners the College has with Gold Coast Football Academy and Helensvale Swimming Club.

Go CACAburras!!! Go Jaguars!!!

Cacaburras and Jaguars with students1


This week Coomera Anglican College is participating in the Alannah & Madeline Foundation’s National eSmart Week to show their commitment to cyber safety, wellbeing and digital inclusion. They enthusiastically accepted the challenge, with its students participating in a range of activities, including online quizzes to demonstrate their commitment to building online safety and wellbeing in their community.

Anita Ramsay, Head of Junior Secondary, says, “While the online risk taking behaviours of adolescents is nothing new to the parent of a teenager, the applications young people use to create and share content online are constantly evolving.  It would be naive of us to think that our students are not engaging in risk taking behaviour online and it is our job to provide education and support across all year levels.  The National eSmart Week is a perfect opportunity for us to highlight the importance of cyber safety and reinforce what Coomera Anglican College students learn through assemblies and the personal development programme.”

More than 1200 Australian communities took part in last year’s inaugural event and numbers are expected to increase significantly in 2017.  The Alannah & Madeline Foundation CEO, Lesley Podesta, said last year’s National eSmart Week initiative proved how important it was to Australian communities to protect young people online, explaining that Foundation programs such as eSmart were pivotal in educating people of all ages about cyber safety.

“The internet is a great place to learn, be creative and stay connected, but with one in seven young Australians found to have been cyber bullied each year, it is important that we invest in giving our communities the skills they need to be responsible and safe online.  The best way to educate Australians about cyber safety is through our children. We know that National eSmart Week gives us the chance to promote important themes and messages by running engaging activities for young Australians,” Ms Podesta said.

National eSmart Week is an initiative developed by the Alannah & Madeline Foundation, in partnership with Telstra Foundation.

Warren McMahon
eLearning Manager

Top Ten Tips for eSmart Week Page 1


Top Ten Tips for eSmart Week Page 2

Thursday, 07 September 2017 23:31

From the Principal's Desk - Week 9, Term 3 2017


Dear Parents, Staff and Students
Mark Sly1


By the time you read this I will be on my way to South Africa for a conference. The International Confederation of Principals (ICP) is meeting in Cape Town this year for their biennial conference. The theme is Brain Waves of Change, and I am looking forward to hearing from some excellent Keynote speakers with topics such as The Science of Seeing Differently; How Emotion Impacts the Brain’s Successful Learning; Leading the Waves of Change When the Tide Gets Tough; Self-Regulation and the Brain – Being the Change our World Needs; School Leadership in Challenging Contexts/21st Century Skills; and Strengths Revolution. For the workshops I have chosen to attend sessions about Educational Change and Growth; Empathy, Gratitude and Grit; and Practical Strategies to Empower Students to Take Ownership of Their Learning. It will be interesting to hear about these topics from an array of international speakers.


ICP provides an opportunity for Principals from all over the world to get together and discuss global issues, trends and opportunities in education. I am extremely grateful to the College Council for allowing me to attend this Conference. It is important to best serve the needs of our students, their education and our College by remaining aware of the global trends beyond the Gold Coast.


Last week the secondary campers all returned after their various adventures away from home. The main car park was a busy place on Thursday afternoon and I was grateful to parents who were so cooperative in allowing the buses to gain entry to deliver students. I was also very impressed with the stories of personal growth that emerged from each opportunity presented to the students. The Year 9 students who ventured west to Mitchell and Charleville seem to have made a big impression on the local communities. You probably saw the Facebook pictures and stories last week of the different activities. Children in local schools enjoyed meeting some ‘city’ students and hearing about some of the fundamental things that we take for granted that are not possible when you live in remote areas. Our students were treated like celebrities and appear to have embraced the opportunity to learn about life in Western Queensland, and I imagine there were many stories told over the weekend in the homes of our travellers and their new found remote friends. I am sure the Show Day holiday on Friday was very much appreciated by all who attended camps last week. An extra sleep in would have been highly valued.


Tuesday was the SRC run Gratitude Day. Students wrote letters of gratitude about something for which they are thankful. This initiative, where we have celebrated 30 days of gratitude, has been fabulous. For the last month, staff and students have had photos and messages about things for which they are grateful posted on the College Facebook site as well as the electronic sign in Days Road. In a world where we are told we need more and more, it has been great to encourage our community members to stop, reflect and give thanks for the many blessings we have already. We are indeed very fortunate on the world scale and have countless blessings every day that many in some countries could never envisage. Gratitude Day will also combine with white balloon day tomorrow. Students will tie white balloons around the College to symbolise a reminder about child protection against sexual abuse. It is important to remind our students and our community that this is a safe environment for children, where all staff are trained in student protection and there is nothing so bad that cannot be discussed with a trusted adult including one of our six Student Protection Officers across the College. Student Protection Officers are Mrs Jenny Rees (Early Learning Centre), Mrs Kerry Lowe (Primary), Mr Ben Campbell (Primary), Dr Lee-Ann Prideaux (Secondary), Mr Doug Seymour (Secondary) and Mr Mark Heaney (Secondary).


Congratulations to the SRC, assisted by Mrs Evison, for their great work with this gratitude initiative.



Thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerely

Mark Sly - Principal

Each week, we will feature a “Business of the Week” from our 2017 Family Business Directory, with details of special discounts or offers available for CAC Families. 

This week our Business is WMS Solutions. Call David Brims for business accounting and coaching, specialist tax consulting, financial modelling and forecasting and business evaluations. 


Details of all businesses in our Directory are available on the College App or website:


If you would like to list your family-owned business, please contact Lynne on 5585 9976.

Wednesday, 30 August 2017 03:28

Gratitude at Coomera Anglican College

Every language in the world has a way of saying “thank you.”  This could be because gratitude is an inherent quality that resides within each human being. Gratitude spans a multitude of boundaries—faith, age, vocation, gender, and nationality. It is difficult to define the idea of gratitude explicitly, but I like to think of it as acknowledging positive things that come our way which we have not actively worked towards, or asked for.  Gratitude is both an emotion which arises spontaneously within us and is also a choice we make – being grateful or ungrateful.  It is something we can work on and ‘train’ ourselves to become better at recognising.

Robert Emmons, a professor of Psychology at the University of California, suggested when speaking to the Centre for Christian Thought Conference in 2014 that gratitude “is an interior depth we experience out of which flows a profound sense of being gifted. As a fundamental orientation, gratitude lends significance and meaning to relationships, events, experiences, and ultimately, to life itself.”

But does exhibiting gratitude really make much of a difference? Science would appear to suggest it does. A study conducted by Emmons and his colleague, Dr Michael McCullough, of the University of Miami, asked all participants to write a few sentences each week, focusing on particular topics. One group wrote about things they were grateful for that had occurred during the week. A second group wrote about daily irritations or things that had displeased them, and the third wrote about events that had affected them (with no emphasis on them being positive or negative). After 10 weeks, those who wrote about gratitude were more optimistic and felt better about their lives. Surprisingly, they also exercised more and had fewer visits to physicians than those who focused on sources of aggravation.

Additionally, another leading researcher in this field, Dr Martin Seligman, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania, tested the impact of various positive psychology interventions on 411 people. When their week’s assignment was to write and personally deliver a letter of gratitude to someone who had never been properly thanked for his or her kindness, participants immediately exhibited a huge increase in happiness scores. This impact was greater than that from any other intervention, with benefits lasting for a month.

The idea of training our brains to become more grateful is something we will be undertaking as a whole College later this term in Week 9. All students will contribute to improving their wellbeing by writing and delivering a gratitude letter, or a variation on this theme. There will also be different incentives happening in the lead up to this day in the different College campuses – keep watching our social media channels for more!

In a fast-paced, busy world I am inspired to think that something as simple as practising being grateful can make a difference in all our lives. Ideas to encourage gratitude into everyday life which you can do at home:

  • Have your very own ‘gratitude journal’

  • Discuss things you are grateful for as you sit down together as a family (be it for dinner, to watch a football match, watching the news, or in the car on the way home among many common situations)

  • Encouraging each other to find *something* about which to be grateful, even on the days when it feels like only bad things have happened (these days are the most powerful)

  • Download Azasu app here:

  • Follow “the Gratitude Project” page on Facebook for regular encouragement and inspiration

To celebrate Science week, the UQ Science Ambassador for 2017, Jebranca Spies (Year 11) organised a scavenger hunt which took place at lunch on Wednesday in the Secondary campus. The scavenger hunt was based on the Science Week Theme for 2017 of Future Earth. This theme focusses on sustainability and the preservation of Earth’s resources for the future.

The competition was well supported with a total of fifteen teams of between three and six students competing from both Junior and Senior Secondary. Each team had to solve a clue to determine the location of each subsequent clue until all six clues and the bonus clue were located. All clues were related to sustainability based initiates of the College in line with the Future Earth theme. Hidden within the clues was a code to unlock the answer to the question “what is the most sustainable resource at CAC?”

Jebranca enlisted the help of fellow Year Eleven students, Chloe Young, Erin Dolesny, Kelly Lee, Imogen Colley and Mackenzie Pitt to staff the event. There were major prizes awarded to the first three teams to solve the puzzle and Jebranca ensured that every competitor left with a prize for their efforts.

Well done to Jebranca for organising such a wonderful event to celebrate Science Week 2017!

Science Week

In Dr Sly’s recent “From the Principal’s Desk” article in week 5, he mentioned in passing that he and a number of the College staff and Members of Council would be attending the Anglican School's Australia (ASA) conference over the following weekend.

I just thought that it was appropriate to highlight some additional perspective on what was a highly successful conference. This is an annual event that brings together Principals, Senior staff, Chaplains, Members of Council and Boards as well as the various State and Diocesan Bishops and Support Staff from all over Australia. We also had delegates from Fiji. There are around 150 Anglican schools and colleges across Australia representing more than 100,000 students.

The education of our children as well as their emotional, physical and spiritual development into effective, resilient and responsible adults is one of the most challenging tasks facing our society. Anglican Schools have made an important contribution to this task throughout our Nation’s history.

The conference theme was “Joy” and provided a backdrop of high-quality presentations, time to network with other conference attendees as well as reflect with our own people on “Where to from here”. We face a rapidly changing world with resultant significant changes in educational needs for our children as well as the constant need to equip them to cope with change.

Full marks to the Conference organising committee (Chaired by Dr Sly). It was also great to see a number of our staff at the conference including Deputy Principal Mr Mark Heaney, Chaplain Rev. Mary-Anne Rulfs, Mrs Natasha Materne and Mrs Jenny Rees. Thanks also to Rev Garry Smith for volunteering his time to join with me to represent the College Council.

The Conference material and advertising featured artwork from our Year 12 student Tayla Smith who won the competition to do so. This was very well received. She was also interviewed on stage during the conference about how her artwork bought her Joy. A number of conference delegates mentioned this as one of their highlights.

 Conference Logo

Some our Year 12 Prefects (Conor Bronson, Kate Tonkin, Carla Coetzee and Emma Knott) also participated in the procession of students from the 20 Anglican schools in the Diocese of Brisbane at the beginning of the Friday evening Worship service at St John’s Cathedral.

Cathedral photo

The ASA Annual General Meeting elected Dr Sly as its incoming President for 2018. This is a great honour for him. It will also give our readers some insight as to the esteem in which he is held in by his peers for the work he has done both here at Coomera Anglican College and also on behalf of the wider Anglican education cause.

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Photo - The Reverend Peter Laurence OAM, Chief Executive Officer - Anglican Schools Commission WA and Anglican Schools Australia with Immediate Past President Mr James Laussen
Principal, Overnewton Anglican Community College, Vic who handed the reigns over to the new President Dr Mark Sly Principal, Coomera Anglican College, Qld, and the new President-Elect Mrs Judith Tudball, Principal, St Michael's Collegiate School, Tas

We are indeed fortunate for the team we have here at Coomera Anglican College, as this is not the only example where our College staff are sought out for assistance and leadership in the delivery of high-quality education.
It is therefore very appropriate to be writing this article at a time when the College focuses on the concept of “Gratitude”.


Stephen Knott - Chair of Council


Dear Parents, Staff and Students
Mark Sly1


On Tuesday evening we held our third 7x7x7 session with a theme of Safeguard, Sustain, Support. The format of this session is seven speakers, seven topics, seven minutes each. While seven minutes might not sound like very long to talk, the amount of information relayed in that time can be significant. This was certainly the case on Tuesday evening. The seven speakers really embraced the theme and were very impressive with their message. Speakers and their topics were Josh Ball – Life Flight Rescue, Alissa Williams – Wellness and Wellbeing, Steven Powell – Solar Energy, Ben Callard – Saving Sport (mega trends), Steven Tapsall – Green Cleaning, Nicola Callard – Building Resilient Children and Belle McCarthy – Marine Research and Rescue. The evening was compered by past College Captain Anja van Aswegen and organised by Events Coordinator Lynne Tarlinton. Those in attendance were treated to a fascinating evening of excellent presentations. Thanks to Lynne, the speakers and the audience who came to participate in this event.

It was fitting at an evening themed safeguard, sustain, support, that I was able to announce the expansion of our solar programme.



We are pleased to announce that we are expanding our solar programme.  The College Council has agreed to a proposal to increase the existing 100 kW of solar by an additional 158 kW on the Secondary campus.  This increase will obviously be subject to approval by energy regulators. The total of 258 kW will come close to offsetting nearly 50% of the College’s total power consumption.  Stage 1 of our solar programme has been performing better than the original modelling, and we are very excited about the benefits that will result from Stage 2.  With electricity prices continuing to rise at an alarming rate, the financial benefits to the College will be substantial, over an extended period.  This will assist the College in keeping fee increases as low as possible.  We are also very excited about the positive environmental benefits that will flow from this project, with Stage 2 having an emission offset of over 210 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year.  Of course students will also get access to the monitoring system which will provide real time data to assist with their studies. This is a bonus and will enable students to gain a greater appreciation of the science and mathematics involved and our stance to reduce our carbon footprint at the College.


By staging these solar projects the College is able to take advantage of the latest technology, and ensure that in the future when systems need replacing that it can also be staged avoiding large one off payments, in potentially a different interest rate environment.  It is about being environmentally and financially responsible. We will continue to explore further solar and energy efficiency opportunities, with work already commencing on a potential Stage 3, which could include battery storage, in the near future.


The Camps have started this week with Years 5 and 4 leaving on Tuesday and Wednesday respectively. Camps provide a valuable experience for students to spend some time away from home in a different setting engaged in different activities. The social and emotional development of young children in this way is very important. Next week the secondary students from Years 8-11 will be off campus on their camps and service activities. Students always benefit greatly from the challenges they encounter when outside their comfort zone. The feedback after camps is always extremely positive.


While the students are on camp next week, Year 12 will be completing their Queensland Core Skills (QCS) Tests. This is currently the only external assessment completed by senior students, and it is used in the calculation of the final Overall Position (OP). Currently OP is the rank which determines University entrance. This year’s Year 10 students will be the last cohort through the current system before changes are made for Year 11 in 2019. In the meantime we are focusing on ensuring that all students are doing their best to maximise their potential.


Best wishes to Year 12 students for their QCS Tests. 


Thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerely

Mark Sly - Principal

Last Friday night, six talented young ladies graced the All Saints stage at this year’s Gold Coast Secondary Schools Drama Festival with their play “Bare Witness”, a compelling account of a war photojournalist’s journey through conflict zones around the world. I am incredibly proud to announce that Coomera Anglican College was awarded FIRST PLACE, taking home the coveted trophy that all 14 high schools were chasing. Their powerful performance impressed the adjudicators, so much so that we had the whole cast receiving Highly Commended certificates.

Drama Festival 2017


In addition, Alyssa McCarthy won Best Supporting Actor and McKeira Cumming received a Best Actor award! This is an exceptional achievement for these performers. Jasmine Warpenius, Brooke Guy, Alyssa McCarthy, Emily Cason, Jasmine Ruck and McKeira Cumming certainly deserve much congratulations.


It was an absolute pleasure to direct these fabulous, inspiring students to success.

Drama News

Mrs Kirsty Terry (Director)

Not one, but two Coomera Anglican College teams have emerged as the Gold Coast’s best debaters in the prestigious 2017 Gold Coast Debating competition.  The Junior A and Intermediate B debating teams won their respective grand finals, held at Bond University last night, while our Intermediate A team was awarded runner-up in a close decision.  


In addition, Eli Beckton was awarded best speaker of the night for the Junior A division and  Cambria Hunt was awarded best speaker for the Intermediate B division.

 Debating News 2


Huge congratulations to these students, their coaches and supporters for the incredible commitment they have made to debating since early in Term 1, making 2017 our most successful year in the College’s debating history.


Well done to all eleven of our debating teams on their efforts this year and a special thank you to all volunteer team coaches – Isabel Croker, Tegan Ward, Meg Beddows, Amy Stuart, Pip Macdonald, Sasha Ristic, and Lucy Sly.

Cathy Hallewell – Debating Coordinator


Junior A – CAC won
All Saints Anglican School (Affirmative) vs Coomera Anglican College (Negative)
Topic – You should say what you think

Shaye Bardsley
Jada Melhem 1st speaker
Eli Beckton 2nd speaker (speaker of the night)
Harrison Hanley 3rd speaker
Coached by Amy Stuart

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Intermediate B – CAC won
Coomera Anglican College (Affirmative) Vs AB Paterson College (Negative)

Topic – Today’s women are expected to do it all.
(This team did not lose a debate the entire competition)

Mikayla Melhem
Christina van Aswegen 1st speaker
Cambria Hunt 2nd speaker (speaker of the night)
Kyrra Wilks 3rd speaker
Coached by Pip Macdonald

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Intermediate A – ASAS won
All Saints Anglican School (Affirmative) vs Coomera Anglican College (Negative)
Topic - Today’s women are expected to do it all.

Kyle Chapman
Kendall Bronson 1st speaker
Baxter Dent 2nd speaker
Claire Wilson 3rd speaker
Coached by Sasha Ristic

  Intermediate A

On Sunday the College participated in the 35th annual Modern Language Teachers' Association of QLD (MLTAQ) and Griffith University language speaking competition. Talented Coomera Anglican College lauguage students from Year 4 to Year 10 participated with over 1000 other students from across Brisbane and the Gold Coast who learn a second language. The standard of competition is very high and our talented students competed with much skill and clarity. The College again this year faired very well returning with medals and awards.


Chinese Speech Collage


We would like to congratulate all the students who represented the College and in particular the following students who placed:


Year 4
Highly commended - Hayley Graham and Abbie Brims

Year 5
2nd, Poppi Brough

Year 6
3rd Place - Lindsey White
Highly Commended - Isabella Hauch, Blake Dobbie and Jasmine Mallard

Year 7
3rd Place - Jessica Stupples

Year 8
Highly Commended - Caitlin Brims

Year 10
1st Place - Genaya Bardsley


Dear Parents, Staff and Students
Mark Sly1


The usual cold westerly winds that accompany the Brisbane Exhibition have bypassed Brisbane and the Gold Coast this week and we have continued to bask in the sunshine, contented with where we live.


Congratulations to our APS Athletics teams who performed so well last week. The Primary team came third overall and fifth in the percentage trophy, while the Secondary team came fifth overall (just 9 points behind 4th place) and won the percentage trophy. The percentage trophy is calculated when the total points won at the carnival is divided by the Secondary student population, which means per capita our College was the best performing Secondary APS team. These are pleasing results and indicate the hard work and training that has gone into preparing the athletes. Additionally, we have 48 athletes going through to the South Coast Trials, the most ever for our College and more than any other APS school bar one. Congratulations to Mrs Stephen, the staff and coaches who have done such a fabulous job with our teams.


We also had two netball teams competing in the Vicki Wilson Cup on Tuesday at the Coomera Indoor Sports Centre. The Junior Team placed third in the South Coast Finals, while the Senior team placed second and have qualified for the State Finals in October. Congratulations to the teams and their coaches. This is a wonderful achievement.
We have certainly seen some pleasing development in our sporting results over the last couple of years.


Last night we had three teams in the Final of the Gold Coast Debating Competition held at Bond University. I am pleased to report the following results:

Junior A – We won
All Saints Anglican School (Affirmative) vs Coomera Anglican College (Negative) 
Topic – You should say what you think

Shaye Bardsley, Jada Melhem 1st speaker, Eli Beckton 2nd speaker (speaker of the night), Harrison Hanley 3rd speaker
Coached by Ms Amy Stuart


Intermediate B – We won
Coomera Anglican College (Affirmative) Vs AB Paterson College (Negative)

Topic – Today’s women are expected to do it all.
(This team did not lose a debate during the entire competition)
Mikayla Melhem, Christina van Aswegen 1st speaker, Cambria Hunt 2nd speaker (speaker of the night), Kyrra Wilks 3rd speaker
Coached by Mrs Pip Macdonald


Intermediate A – ASAS won
All Saints Anglican School (Affirmative) Vs Coomera Anglican College (Negative) 

Topic - Today’s women are expected to do it all.
Kyle Chapman, Kendall Bronson 1st speaker, Baxter Dent 2nd speaker, Claire Wilson 3rd speaker.
Coached by Mr Sasha Ristic

Congratulations to all involved for this fabulous result.


At this time of year we undertake our budgeting and planning for 2018. Staff are also asked about their intentions for next year. I like to hear of the ambitions of the staff and how we can best utilise their areas of passion. It would be wonderful to be able to do everything conceived by staff but there are some constraints of course related to compliance, cost and facilities. There are so many priorities to consider alongside our teaching and learning programmes and the development of our campus, including the sports precinct, extension of our solar panels and The Pod. I am pleased that our teachers have been working on ways to fully utilise the teaching opportunities that will arise with the opening of The Pod for 2018. This building will be a technology rich environment that provides space to do some wonderful things. The Primary staff have been working hard on their planning for this space, and I look forward to seeing some of their ideas trialled later this year. I know both staff and students will be so excited to get into this building. It is taking shape nicely, especially now the roof is almost complete.


I recently heard about a website called It is a fascinating website that enables you to check on the likelihood that your current job will become automated one day. While this is not a definitive certainty it is nonetheless interesting to see these predictions for the future of current jobs. It is important that we are aware of the changing nature of the future of work in order to appropriately prepare our students for whatever lies ahead. This is the whole thrust behind our 2030 approach. We know the future society for our students will be different from the society in which we live today.


Thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerely

Mark Sly - Principal

Friday, 11 August 2017 02:26

APS Athletics Success

The APS Athletics carnivals held this week produced some outstanding results for our teams. The Primary team had a fantastic day and were rewarded for their efforts by placing 3rd in the Aggregate Trophy and then placed 5th in the Percentage trophy.

The Secondary APS team also achieved some fantastic results by placing 5th place in the Aggregate trophy, just missing fourth place by 9 points. Following on from last year’s results, the team was also awarded the Percentage trophy once again showing that the College is the strongest Athletics school based on population.




Major Highlights

The major highlights for both teams include:

  • Zara Courtney (U/9 Girls) placing 2nd in the Age Champion medal in her age group
  • Connor Hopgood (U/9 Boys) placing 2nd in the Age Champion medal in his age group
  • George Dean (U/10 Boys) winning the Age Champion medal in his age group
  • Ryan Schirmacher (U/13 Boys) placing 2nd in the Age Champion medal in his age group
  • Adam Baxter (U/14 Boys) placing 3rd in the Age Champion medal in his age group
  • Rachel Pieszko (Open Girls) placing 2nd in the Age Champion medal in her age group
  • Primary Boys team placing 3rd overall
  • Primary Girls placing 3rd overall
  • Secondary Girls team placing 3rd Overall
  • The 11 Years Boys placing 1st in their Age Group
  • The 9 Years Girls placing 2nd in their Age Group
  • The 10 Years Girls placing 2nd in their Age Groups
  • The Open Girls placing 2nd in their Age Groups
  • The 9 Years Boys placing 3rd in their Age Group
  • The 10 Years Boys placing 3rd in their Age Groups
  • The 16 Years Boys placing 3rd in their Age Groups
  • The 16 Years Girls placing 3rd in their Age Groups
  • Tara Hall (14yrs Girls) awarded the most outstanding field event performance for girls 15yrs & under with her record in the Javelin
  • Anastasia Neumann (13yrs Girls)  breaking records in the 100m and 200m events George Dean (10yrs Boys) breaking the record in the High Jump.
  • George Dean (10yrs Boys) breaking the record in the High Jump


A big congratulations to all the College Competitors who competed in both carnivals and special thanks to Mrs Stephens and her team of talented coaches who helped train our students in the lead up to these carnivals.
Well done, The College is proud of you! #cacgratitude

Friday, 11 August 2017 18:17


We invite you to tee off with us for the 10th Annual Coomera Anglican College Corporate Golf Day and enjoy a fantastic day of golf complete with on-course games & challenges, and great prizes up for grabs.

Held at Gainsborough Greens Golf Club on Friday 20 October 2017, this is a 4-ball Ambrose event with a 12noon shotgun start.  Not a golfer? Not a problem!  Golfing experience is not essential and beginners, hackers and scratch golfers alike are assured of an enjoyable afternoon. -  Click here for full information flyer


Included: electric cart; green fees; packed lunch; gift bag for every player; 2 drinks vouchers; business card draw; buffet dinner post-round; entertainment; prize pool; raffle and live auction; full use of Golf Club facilities.


Register yourself, your team of 4 players, or take advantage of one of the limited sponsorship packages and showcase your company to an exclusive audience.  


EARLYBIRD DISCOUNT: all registrations received with payment by 1/9/17 qualify for the earlybird discounted rate of $135 per player or $540 per team


For all the details and player registration form, please click on the link below
or contact Lynne on 5585 9976:




Thursday, 10 August 2017 03:38

Centrecare Community/Family Programmes

Centacare has a number of upcoming programs for young people and parents. Please click the logo below or here to go to website for more information


Post Separation Joint Kids Program and Parents Program

Run at the same time- Children attend Children’s first and parents attend Keeping Kids in Mind.
Child Age:  7-11years
Date: 5 weeks starting 16th August 2017
Time: 3:30pm- 5:30pm
Cost: $10


3 day Holiday Empowering Girls Program

Self-esteem, body image, healthy relationships, communication skills, stress. Includes Yoga and Self-defence.
Age: 11-14 year olds
Date: 20th 21st 22nd September 2017
Time: 9:30am- 4pm
Cost: $40


3 day Holiday Children First Program

Children whose families have experienced divorce and separation. Normalising and exploring the feelings and changes associated with separated and blended families.
Age: 7-11 years
Date: 27th 28th 29th September 2017
Time: 9:30am-3pm
Cost: $40


Dannielle Trainor - Child and Family Practitioner | Gold Coast Region

Wednesday, 09 August 2017 23:13

Mathematical Mindsets Conference

“I just don’t have a maths brain” is so often said as a matter of fact, as if there is something about our brains that prohibits us from connecting with the skills required in a mathematics classroom. The idea that we are pre-programmed to be either good at maths or not good at maths is deeply embedded in our culture and is, in reality, a myth handed down from generation to generation.

Recently Ms Beeforth, Mrs Tremellen and I were fortunate enough to attend the Mathematical Mindsets conference on the Gold Coast.  The conference was presented by Dr Jo Boaler, a Professor in Mathematical Education at Stanford University.  In her book, Mathematical Mindsets Dr Boaler addresses the clear disconnect between a Growth Mindset approach to mathematics and the reality of an everyday student’s attitude towards their mathematical education.

Dr Boaler went on to outline some key educational strategies for mathematics classrooms to promote engagement, enjoyment and reflective thinking.  She also presented current research findings on a range of mathematical interventions and the effects that these can have on our brain as we learn. Critically though, the most prominent message is that natural giftedness at mathematics does not exist.  It is true that this may seem to be the case but this perception of a natural aptitude for mathematics is usually a mixture of mathematical confidence and momentum by that particular learner. Whilst it is important to accept that all students will need different learning pathways and timeframes, she is convinced that everyone can succeed in maths.

I am excited to begin applying some of the ideas and strategies that have come out of Dr Boaler’s research.  I would also recommend that everyone read Dr Jo Boaler’s book Mathematical Mindsets or read some of her thoughts online at  If you are interested, there is also an online student course entitled ‘How to learn math’ which is free and available at

Mathematics remains a critical skill in a large proportion of careers and in leading successful and happy lives. I look forward to engaging with the Coomera Anglican College community to continually improve how our students engage with mathematics.


Gareth Manson - Head of Maths

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