Student Wellbeing Services

Brookside College’s Student Wellbeing Services primary responsibility is to promote the academic, personal, and social development of all our students. Brookside College works with the school community as well as other services and agencies to support our students in being responsible and productive citizens. We pride ourselves on having a positive and supportive learning environment which focuses on the development of the whole child. We are able to offer support to students and their families through involvement in a range of individual, group and family support work.

Student Wellbeing Services has a dual focus, addressing both educational support as well as therapeutic needs. Student Wellbeing Services are provided by professional staff with qualifications and expertise specific to the area of wellbeing and service may include a range of group-based and individual support, student capacity building and the provision of specialised services.

Student Wellbeing Services are provided to students and families by the Student Wellbeing Team. This team consists of Kate Newitt (Assistant Principal Student Engagement and Wellbeing), Gretel Van Wyngaarden (Leader of Engagement and Wellbeing P-9), Liam Ryan (Leading Teacher P-6), Chloe Karras (Leading Teacher 7-9) and a Wellbeing team consisting of onsite school counsellors Kristienne Martin, Reginald Zafra, Valentina Zevallos and Emma Meissner overseeing MHIPS.

If you require any further information regarding any of the student wellbeing services offered at Brookside College, please do not hesitate to contact a member of the wellbeing team.

School Values

Our school believes and practises the following values which are aligned to our School Wide Positive Behaviour Support Framework:

                                                                                  Rights     Respect    Resilience    Relationships

School Wide Positive Behaviour Support (SWPBS)

Is a broad range of systemic and individualised strategies for achieving important social and learning outcomes in schools while preventing problem behaviour. The key attributes of SWPBS include preventive activities, data-based decision making, and a problem solving orientation. At Brookside College our SWPBS matrix is based on our 4 school values. The matrix outlines the behaviours we expect in each of our school settings and assists to improve social, emotional, behavioural and academic outcomes. When students are seen to be displaying these values they can be recognised by staff on the spot and awarded a 4R Superstar award.


4R Superstar Awards

4R Superstar awards are based on our 4 school values; Rights, Respect, Resilience and Relationships.

When students are spotted displaying an expected behaviour from our school matrix they may be awarded a 4R Superstar card by any member of staff. There are 4 different types of cards and each card has all the expected behaviours for each values listed on the back. The teacher will tick the behaviours and acknowledge the student by explaining why they have received the award on the spot and they will also log this on Compass for both data collection purposes and to notify families via automated email.


Behaviour Protocols

At Brookside P-9 College we understand that managing behaviours is essential for creating a conducive positive learning environment. Our behaviour protocols emphasise the importance of context-dependent responses, ensuring that follow up actions are fair and appropriate. By adhering to these protocols, we aim to cultivate a culture of respect, responsibility, and accountability.


Respectful Relationships

The Respectful Relationships Program is a whole school approach that requires the support and involvement of students, parents, families and staff. Respectful Relationships curriculum promotes respect, positive attitudes and behaviours. It teaches our students how to build healthy relationships, resilience and confidence. Across years P-9, students take part in teaching and learning that focusses on each of the following eight topics: – Emotional Literacy – Personal Strengths – Positive Coping – Problem Solving – Stress Management – Help Seeking – Gender and Identity – Positive Gender Relationships.


Student Leadership

We aim to contribute to the development of people who are equipped to participate in a dynamic society, are able to take responsibility for themselves and have an appreciation for lifelong learning. Brookside P-9 College Student Leaders are passionate about:

• having an impact on the quality of student life, ensuring all students are connected to the school community,

• being active role models in the wider community and making strong community links,

• advocating for social justice issues, and

• contributing to creating a whole school culture where everyone belongs and feels safe.

At Brookside P-9 College, the student leadership model operates within two separate frameworks: the Student Voice Council (one representative and one vice representative per class Years 3-9) and House Captains (1 Captain Year 7-9 per house, 1 Vice Captain per house Years 3-6) working under the College Captains.

Student Voice Class Representatives

Students will have the opportunity to apply to be a member of Student Voice Team. One student captain will be elected per class and one vice captain. Students will be required to complete a written application and interview. Students from Grade 3 – 9 are eligible to apply. House Captain and House Vice Captain House Leaders will be selected by a 3 stage process. Students will complete a written application, present a speech to their house group and the students in the house will vote for their preference of House Captain and House Vice Captain. Applicants will then be interviewed by a panel and the final decision will be based on all 3 stages of the election process.


Hands On Learning (HOL)

Hands on learning is an innovative education program that caters to the different ways young people learn. It is a practical wellbeing program that supports the social and emotional development of young people and the different ways they learn. At Brookside College we offer 3 different programs across years 4-9 which involves artisan teachers working with small groups of students. The College runs three different programs; trade, landscape and café across years 4 -9. These programs provide a platform for students to engage, grow confidence and achieve success at school. It also assists them to engage with their education and develop social and emotional skills to thrive at school, at work and throughout life.


Study Club

Study club is a weekly group held on Wednesday afternoons in the Northern Building. The club provides a space for students to work collaboratively on projects, complete homework or classwork with additional help if required. Breakfast Club Breakfast club runs daily from 8:00 till 8:30 am in the Northern Building food tech room. Staff volunteer their time to supervise the students.


Lunchtime Clubs

A range of student and teacher driven clubs are run at Brookside College. Clubs change year to year based on student and staff interest. Clubs involve themes such as sustainability, singing, art, K-Pop, gaming club etc.


Attendance & Absence

‘Every Day Counts’! Attendance at school is compulsory, and students should avoid taking unnecessary days away from school. When students are ill they are expected to remain at home, however recent research indicates that many students are missing up to a year of school over their school career.

Each absence must be accounted for by a phone call, a note signed by the parent and sent on the first school day following the absence, or an ‘approval’ via Compass. Student absences are monitored by the school, and a school Leader will contact Parents/ Guardians if absences are frequent. Student Absence is also monitored by DET and can be audited at any time.


Brookside College whole school and Student Wellbeing Service Programs:

  • Individual Counselling
  • Group Work
  • Restorative Practices
  • Transition Programs
  • Student Leadership opportunities
  • Student Voice Council
  • Lunch time activities
  • Hands on Learning
  • After School Study Clubs
  • Breakfast Club


Where possible, the home group teacher should be the first point of contact at the school.

If parents have a concern about a wellbeing issue they can contact their child’s year level leader or relevant leadership:

  • Prep –  Shey Obremski
  • Year 1 – Jelena Colak
  • Year 2 – Denay Sesto
  • Year 3 – Kassandra Gauci
  • Year 4 – Melissa Bowker
  • Year 5 – Aaron Payne
  • Year 6 – Alysha Kelly
  • Year 7 – Ash Gunn
  • Year 8 – Daniel Cooper
  • Year 9 – Caitlin Pretty
  • P-6 Engagement & Wellbeing – Liam Ryan
  • 7-9 Engagement & Wellbeing – Chloe Karras
  • P-9 Engagement, Wellbeing & Inclusive Practice – Gretel Van Wyngaarden
  • P-9 Inclusive Practice – Crystal Ambelas

For more confidential issues please contact a member of  the executive team:

Karen Jackson (Assistant Principal Curriculum P-9)

Brooke Gillis (Assistant Principal Curriculum P-9)

Kate Newitt (Assistant Principal Student Engagement, Wellbeing & Inclusive Practice P-9)

Dale Thompson (Acting Assistant Principal Student Engagement & Wellbeing P-9)

Violeta Dellidis (College Principal)

Support for families

Brookside College appreciates that families may sometimes experience financial difficulty in meeting payment requests and have arrangements in place to assist families experiencing financial hardship. A number of support options are available to parents who have difficulty making payments including instalment arrangements, buy/swap/sell sessions for uniform/text books, State Schools Relief and the Camps, sports and Excursions fund (CSEF).

Camps, Sports & Excursion Fund (CSEF)-for Concession Card holders

The Camps, Sports and Excursions Fund is provided by the Victorian Government to assist eligible families to cover the costs of school trips, camps and sporting activities for their children.

School camps provide children with inspiring experiences in the great outdoors, excursions encourage a deeper understanding of how the world works and sports teach teamwork, discipline and leadership. The Camps, Sports and Excursions Fund ensures that every student will have the opportunity to join their classmates for these important, educational and fun activities.

The Camps, Sports & Excursion Fund is a new Victorian Government initiative aimed to assist eligible families to cover the cost of school trips, camps and sporting activities.

If you hold a means-tested concession card such as:

  • Veterans Affairs Gold Card,
  • Centrelink Health Care Card (HCC)
  • Pensioner Concession Card (PCC)
  • or are a temporary foster parent

For concession card holders, CSEF eligibility will be subject to the parent/legal guardian’s concession card being successfully validated with Centrelink on 29 January 2024 and/or 15 April 2024.

The allowance will be paid to the school to use towards expenses relating to camps, excursions, or sporting activities for the benefit of your child.

The annual CSEF amount per student will be:

  • $150 for primary school students
  • $250 for secondary school students

How to apply:

Contact the general office to obtain a CSEF application form or download a copy from Compass (under School Documentation > Camps Sport and Excursions fund). Once completed, please return to the office with your concession card so that a photocopy can be taken. Applications can not be accepted without the original card being sighted.

SSR provides a uniform package each year to all Prep and Year 7 families/carers eligible for CSEF funding.

State Schools’ Relief (SSR)

State Schools’ Relief is unique. No other Australian state or territory has a similar organisation.

Since 1930, State Schools’ Relief has been providing anonymous support s that students receiving our assistance can do so with dignity. It’s our belief that every student deserves the opportunity to participate in their education without barriers.

State Schools’ Relief provides support to any Victorian student attending a government school, on the advice of the school.

Applications for assistance from State Schools Relief are made by the College on behalf of the family. Please contact the College’s welfare team on 7379 1555.

State School Relief Information


Instalment arrangements

The College offers payment plans for families experiencing financial difficulties. Please contact our Business Manager on 7379 1555 if you wish to discuss a payment plan.


Other financial assistance 

Parents can seek financial assistance and support from other agencies. A list of agencies that may be able to offer assistance follows. Parents should contact the agencies directly.

(Community based no interest loan scheme)

Phone: 136457
Small interest free loans supported by Good Shepherd Microfinance..

Student Scholarships

Enquiries: 9637 3137
Applications open late November 2017 and close end of January 2018.

Smith family – Learning for life

Phone: 1800 024 069 / 1300 326 459

Good Shepherd Youth & Family Services

8312 8800

St Vincent De Paul

1300 305 330

Brotherhood of St Laurence

Savers Plus – a matched savings plan for education costs.
Phone 1300 610 355
SMS your name and postcode to 1300 610 355
Email saverplus@bsl.org.au