Welcome from the Principal

Welcome from the Principal

At a recent Open Morning, during which students take prospective families on a tour of the Kew campus and we meet around the cakes and cups of tea afterwards, I was asked while in the centre of a circle, ‘What do you expect of a Trinity student?’ It is a great question. It is a positive variation on questions around a point of difference or why choose Trinity. I suppose that there are many answers that could be offered – think great citizens, high achievers, good people or any variation of those – but my immediate thought was one that I had experienced years earlier when the prospect of me coming to Trinity was first suggested. But more on that later. 

If you note the lift out education pages in the mainstream papers that appear every six months or so, you tend to see picture after picture of smiling children in different uniforms. Understanding the spirit, intent and value of a school setting can be a challenge for parents, and articulating those elements can be challenging for schools. Similar schools to ours are, like us, aspirational. They seek to give their students a really good run up at life across all of their pursuits. Academic success is prized, authentic opportunity to compete on the sporting field is valued and performance opportunities are cherished. Insight into cultural and spiritual understanding is sought after. It can feel like it is a crowded marketplace.

Since our inception in 1903, we have been notable for a more understated manner than other prominent schools and we have reflected Headmaster Frank Shann’s words from 1929 accurately: ‘Trinity differs from other independent schools chiefly in one particular. The aim has been to emphasise the value of moral training as distinct from merely intellectual.’ Our enrolment data reflects this idea keenly. Trinity people place creating good people as our most important work. 

In January of 2013 when driving towards a new life as Principal at Cathedral College Wangaratta, my wife asked me if there was a school I would come back to Melbourne for. My response was, ‘Trinity’. When pushed on why, I told her that I felt like it was the school at which I felt I could absolutely be me. A number of years later I can say that I was right. And I can also say that is the best answer to the question I received during that Open Morning. What I expect of a Trinity student is that they can feel, and be, themselves. The best version of themselves. 

Adrian Farrer