Mr Andrew Neal
Qualifications: B. Arts (Hons), M. Ed (PoL & Admin), M. Ed, M. Ed (RE), Grad. Dip. (Theology), Grad. Dip. (Learning & Teaching), Adv. Dip. (Local History), Grad. Cert. (Mental Health), FRGS, FRSA.
Mr Neal grew up mostly in the then semi–rural area between Frankston and Cranbourne, attended Haileybury College and commenced his tertiary studies at Melbourne University in 1978.
He began his working career in 1983 in the first cohort of graduate trainees in the Victorian Public Service and later worked in policy development related to health and water.
Mr Neal started teaching in 1988 when he gained a position at Trinity Grammar, Kew. Over the next 10 years he taught Geography and Religious Education and held a number of administrative positions. He spent his last few years at Trinity as Director of Curriculum and as a member of the School Executive during a period of considerable change and development at the school.
In 1998, Mr Neal was appointed Principal of Bacchus Marsh Grammar, a position he has held since. Under his leadership, he has seen the School grow from just 300 students from a limited catchment to one with three campuses serving 2300 students from across western Melbourne.
Mr Neal has formal qualifications from Melbourne, Monash, and the Australian Catholic universities, and the University of Divinity and Oxford.
He is member of the Board of the Victorian Ecumenical System of Schools and, as its treasurer, he deals with significant Government funding distributed to 15 schools. Additionally, Mr Neal has served on a number of Boards in the welfare and education sectors including time as Chairperson. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and the Royal Geographical Society.
With a shared passion for life-long learning, Mr Neal’s wife Phillippa is a teacher of French and History at a Geelong school. The couple has two adult daughters, Stephanie and Antonia, who both attended Bacchus Marsh Grammar for their primary and secondary education. The Neals live in Bacchus Marsh with Polly the cat and Pepper the dog.
Mrs Elizabeth O’Day
SENIOR DEPUTY PRINCIPAL – PRIMARY SPECIALIST
Qualifications: B. Ed., Grad. Dip. Teaching (Primary)
Mrs O’Day has been involved in education since 1976, initially working in Catholic education and moving to the Independent sector in 1993. She holds a Diploma of Primary Teaching and Bachelor of Education. She is a Primary School specialist, teaching Prep to Grade 6 and has experience in Special School environments.
Mrs O’Day has been a member of IPSHA since 1997.
She was appointed Head of the Junior School at Bacchus Marsh Grammar in 1996 and Deputy Principal in 1998.
The O’Day family has been part of our School since its inception in mid-1987. Through his involvement in School Council, husband Peter was instrumental in the development and establishment of Bacchus Marsh Grammar. Four of the five O’Day children were foundation students in 1988 with the youngest commencing Prep in 1990. The O’Day children all completed their education at Bacchus Marsh Grammar, two being awarded Dux of Year 12. Currently Mrs O’Day has five grandchildren at our Primary School and two attending our Early Learning Centre.
As Senior Deputy Principal, Mrs O’Day has responsibility for the Woodlea Campus project, including enrolment, curriculum and staff development.
Mr Kevin Richardson
SENIOR DEPUTY PRINCIPAL – HEAD OF SCHOOL OPERATIONS
Qualifications: Dip. Teaching (Technology), Grad. Dip. (Mathematics Education)
After completing a trade apprenticeship, Mr Richardson completed his Certificate and Diploma of Teaching Technology at Hawthorn Institute of Education, an affiliate of The University of Melbourne. He began teaching at Portland Technical School in 1988 and was Year Level Coordinator for two years before moving to Melbourne.
Mr Richardson joined the teaching staff at Keilor Downs Secondary College in 1991, completing a Graduate Diploma of Mathematical Education. He was Interschool Sports Coordinator at Keilor Downs before moving to Taylors Lakes Secondary College in 1997 as Learning Area Coordinator – Technology Studies.
At the beginning of 1999, Mr Richardson commenced at Bacchus Marsh Grammar, teaching Mathematics to years 7 through to 12. In 2000, he was appointed Deputy Principal, Head of the Senior School. He held this position until the beginning of 2018 when the role has changed to Senior Deputy Principal, Head of School Operations Prep to Year 12 at the Maddingley Campus.
Mr Richardson’s son, Cameron, attended Bacchus Marsh Grammar, commencing in the 2003 Prep Reception class. Cameron thoroughly enjoyed his time at our School, taking advantage of the many wonderful opportunities the offered, including studies in Music, Science and Mathematics. As School Captain, Cameron graduated in 2016. He is currently undertaking studies for a Bachelor of Science at the University of Melbourne.
Mrs Jennifer Jovanovic
Qualifications: B. Ed. (Mathematics, Home Economics, Textiles)
Mrs Jovanovic has a Bachelor of Education degree majoring in Mathematics, Home Economics and Textiles. Throughout her teaching career she has taught in all of these subject areas from Year 5 through to VCE.
Prior to joining Bacchus Marsh Grammar in 2009, Mrs Jovanovic held positions of leadership in curriculum, management and welfare areas which included Head of House, Head of Mathematics, VCAA assessor in Mathematics, Head of Technology, Year Level Coordinator at various levels, Assistant Head of Administration, Head of Pastoral Care, Head of Senior School and Assistant Head of Campus.
Mrs Jovanovic’s current role is Deputy Principal – Head of Student Management and Welfare. The social and emotional welfare of both student and staff has been central to Mrs Jovanovic’s professional work both in the private and public sectors for over 30 years.
Specialist Assistant Principals
Mrs Jan Loftus
Qualifications: B. Ed. (Primary – Physical Ed., Australian History)
Mrs Loftus completed her Bachelor of Education degree at Deakin University, majoring in Physical Education with a minor in Australian History.
Since commencing at Bacchus Marsh Grammar in 1990, Mrs Loftus has taught across a wide range of year levels from grades 3 to 6 and has also been a specialist Physical Education teacher.
In 2003 she became Coordinator of grades 5 and 6, a position she held for a number of years.
Mrs Loftus has been an Assistant Principal for four years and was made Child Safety Officer in 2016.
Mrs Nici Deller
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, HEAD OF JUNIOR SCHOOL
Qualifications: B. Ed., M. Ed. (Management)
Mrs Deller completed her Bachelor of Education in 2001 in The Netherlands where she was born and raised. After migrating to Australia, she worked for the Department of Education where she became a fully qualified Reading Recovery teacher.
In 2009, Mrs Deller joined the Independent sector where she has taught at various year levels from Prep to Year 7. After taking on numerous leadership roles, Mrs Deller returned to study and in 2012 she completed her Masters of Education (Educational Management) at the University of Melbourne.
In 2015, Mrs Deller became an Assistant Principal in the Junior School at Bacchus Marsh Grammar. Her core priorities included a review of the curriculum, implementing change initiatives and building staff capacity in various curriculum areas. The new School structure saw Mrs Deller take on the role of Head of Junior School where she continues to focus on improving student learning outcomes.
Mr Dean Pepplinkhouse
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, HEAD OF MIDDLE SCHOOL
Qualifications: B. Ed. (Physical Ed./Science) (Hons)
Mr Pepplinkhouse began his teaching career in 2001, and has significant experience in both the Independent and State sectors.
Since joining Bacchus Marsh Grammar in 2009 he has taught Mathematics, Physical Education, and Science. He has held leadership roles as Head of Houses, Year 7 Coordinator and Director of Daily Organisation.
His current role as the Assistant Principal, Head of Middle School for the years 6 to 8 program, has involved establishing and developing the vision, curriculum and organisational structures for the Staughton Vale Campus.
Mr Pepplinkhouse believes that effective Middle School teaching and learning stems from an engaging and challenging curriculum which focuses on strong, positive relationships between students, teachers and parents.
Mrs Rosalind Pittard
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, DEPUTY HEAD OF MIDDLE SCHOOL
Qualifications: B. Ed. (Visual Arts), Post Grad. Dip. Ed. Studies (Student Welfare), Grad. Cert. (Mental Health), Grad. Dip. Ed. (Primary)
Mrs Pittard brings a depth of experience and skills to the position of Deputy Head of Middle School. Since beginning her teaching career in 1996, she has taught in both the Independent and Catholic school sectors.
Mrs Pittard has held leadership roles in student welfare and management. She has been Year Level Coordinator at years one, seven, eight and nine and worked extensively on the development of Pastoral Care curriculum and programs.
At Bacchus Marsh Grammar, Ms Pittard has taught in the Junior, Middle and Senior schools, sharing her expertise in Visual Arts and Technology, as well as being a Junior School classroom teacher. She also has several years of experience as a school counsellor, working with individual students in need of specific support.
Mrs Pittard has a Bachelor of Education and a Postgraduate Diploma in Educational Studies (Student Welfare) from the University of Melbourne. To further enrich her skills and understanding of learners, she has also completed a Certificate in Mental Health for Teaching Professions at Monash University. Additional study to attain a Graduate Diploma of Education (Primary) from Federation University offered the opportunity to develop an even deeper understanding of the learner through their entire school journey.
Mrs Pittard believes that each student must feel valued and connected to their school community in order to become a confident, successful learner.
Mrs Debra Ogston
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, HEAD OF SENIOR SCHOOL
Qualifications: B. Ed. (Physical Ed., Outdoor Ed., Mathematics)
Mrs Ogston is Assistant Principal, Head of Senior School. She began her secondary school teaching career more than 20 years ago after graduating from the University of South Australia. She holds a Bachelor’s degree of Education in Physical Education, Outdoor Education and Mathematics.
Having taught in both the State system in country Victoria and the Independent system interstate, Mrs Ogston joined Bacchus Marsh Grammar in 2002. During her time at our School she has held the positions of Coordinator of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award program, Year Level Coordinator (Year 9), Assistant Director of Physical Education and Sport and Assistant Principal, Pastoral Care and Student Management.
Mrs Erin Thornton
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, DEPUTY HEAD OF SENIOR SCHOOL
Qualifications: B. Arts (Politics, Criminology, Literature), Dip. Ed. (Commerce, Humanities, English), MA (School Leadership)
Ms Thornton studied a Bachelor of Arts at Melbourne University majoring in Politics, Criminology and Literature. She then completed a Diploma of Education at the University qualifying as a secondary school teacher in the disciplines of Commerce, Humanities and English. After teaching for six years Ms Thornton completed a Masters in School Leadership at Melbourne. This degree focussed on leadership and governance in education. Ms Thornton is also a fellow at Federation University.
Ms Thornton has enjoyed many varying roles at Bacchus Marsh Grammar, from tutor teacher, classroom teacher of Commerce subjects, Year Level Coordinator for both years 11 and 12, VCE Coordinator and Head of the Commerce Department.
Currently Ms Thornton is Assistant Principal – Deputy Head of Senior School. In this capacity, her focus is the development of the academic ability of students and helping support them through their senior years of schooling.
Mr Leigh Park
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, LEARNING AND TEACHING
Qualifications: B. Arts (Psychology), Dip. Ed. (Secondary), M. Ed. (School Leadership), Grad. Cert. (Outdoor and Environmental Education)
Since commencing at Bacchus Marsh Grammar in 2000 Mr Park has provided leadership in roles including Head of House, Year Level Coordinator and Head of Department. In 2017 he was appointed Assistant Principal, Teaching and Learning.
Mr Park maintains a strong emphasis on the implementation of engaging and effective learning and teaching strategies.
He leads a range of teacher development programs across the school to support teacher enhancement and growth while making learning engaging and achievable for all students.
He has held a variety of curriculum and assessment roles with the VCAA including assessor and state reviewer.
Mr Park has presented at state, national and international teacher conferences and has authored textbooks for both Psychology and Outdoor and Environmental Studies.
His children attend Bacchus Marsh Grammar due to his firm belief in the benefits of a calm and structured approach to learning and the holistic education we provide.
Mr Ben Davie
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, DIRECTOR OF STUDIES
Qualifications: B. Sc. (Chemistry) (Hons), Post Grad. Cert. Ed. (Science), MRSC, Cert IV (Training and Assessment)
Mr Davie graduated with Honours from Leeds University, before completing his teacher training at the University of London. After working in London for two years he moved to Australia, working at a Special Needs school and running an outdoor education centre for children with special needs.
Since joining Bacchus Marsh Grammar in 2005 he has held a range of positions. His achievements have included establishing our VCAL program as its first coordinator, implementing a new reporting system as Director of Assessment and Reporting, together with his roles as Director of Daily Organisation and Data Management and Assistant Principal, Timetabler. In 2017 he was appointed Assistant Principal, Director of Studies.
Mr Davie’s children attend Bacchus Marsh Grammar, testimony to his belief in the School and all that it represents.
Mrs Wendy Green
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, EDUCATION SERVICES
Qualifications: Dip. Ed., B. Ed., Grad. Dip. (Spec. Ed.), M. Ed.
Mrs Green graduated with a Diploma of Teaching from Ballarat College of Advanced Education (Ballarat University) in 1981. After completing her first degree, she was particularly interested in working within the area of Special Needs. Over the next few years Mrs Green taught in various State schools in Gippsland, as well as taking up an appointment at Maffra Special Developmental School.
After moving back to Ballarat to teach and complete a Bachelor of Education and a Graduate Diploma in Special Education, Mrs Green was appointed to the Ballarat Specialist School. She was then appointed to the Ballarat Regional Education Office as a visiting teacher for vision impaired students and then for those with physically and health impairments. She worked with students from kindergarten through to secondary school across the Central Highlands Wimmera Region.
In 1991, she was awarded a Department of Education Travel Scholarship and spent six weeks looking at the Special Needs programs in Sweden.
Upon her return, she was appointed Senior Project Officer for the region, working with secondary schools and universities supporting rurally isolated and disadvantaged students in post-secondary options.
After a four-year break from teaching and now with a young family, Mrs Green was appointed to the Katherine Regional Education Office in the Northern Territory as the Executive Officer, Student Services.
In 2000 she returned to Victoria to teach at Ballarat and Clarendon College.
In 2006 Mrs Green accepted a position at Bacchus Marsh Grammar, completing her Master in Education and continuing her work in the area of Special Needs.
Woodlea – Heads of School
Mrs Danielle Copeman
CO-HEAD OF CAMPUS – CURRICULUM
Mrs Copeman completed her Bachelor of Education degree at Victoria University in 1999, majoring in Outdoor Education and Health.
The majority of Mrs Copeman’s career has been with the Department of Education and Training, where she has taught and held numerous leadership positions. Mrs Copeman first became an Assistant Principal in 2008 in a large Primary school. She has lead different Sub School areas as well as Curriculum areas.
Mrs Copeman joined Bacchus Marsh Grammar in 2018, where she has been appointed Deputy Head of Woodlea – Teaching and Learning. This position encompasses her belief in all students can achieve success and all students need to experience some level of challenge to reach success and achievement.
The growth of students will be an ongoing focus of Mrs Copeman’s work in all areas of the Curriculum.
Mrs Copeman’s children attend Bacchus Marsh Grammar, testimony to her beliefs in the school’s structures, policies and opportunities offered.
Mr Luke Symes
CO-HEAD OF CAMPUS – ADMINISTRATION
Mr Symes has been a member of Bacchus Marsh Grammar since 2014 and is currently in charge of coordinating Woodlea classes.
As well as time in Victorian schools, Mr Symes has had extensive experience teaching in the United Kingdom and Europe, in particular Sweden.
Mr Symes has excellent organisational and administrative skills vital for the new campus in Woodlea.