The Hedge
Week 1, Term 1 | Thursday 1 February 2024 A weekly snippet of what’s happening ‘behind the hedge’ at Mercedes College...

Welcome to 2024...

What a wonderful energy our community brought to the beginning of a new school year! I enjoyed watching our students and their families fill the campus yesterday, and I look forward to continuing this positive energy this Term.

This year will be a big one for Mercedes College as we celebrate 70 years of education, and the legacy of our founders with The Year of Mercy. This important anniversary year will see the Official Opening of our new Arts and Sports Precinct early in Term 2 - we will have more news about the Opening, and other exciting activities to celebrate this new addition to our campus.

We also have an exciting range of events planned to bring our community together, including our Food and Wine Fair on Thursday 22 February, 3.30pm to 7.30pm. This will be an evening of Paella, Pizza and Pinot, and everyone is welcome. Stay straight after the school bell, or join us when you can for an early dinner. We will send out more booking details early next week and I look forward to seeing you all there!

Andrew Balkwill

School ID photos

Students are reminded that their official school ID photo will be taken tomorrow, Friday 2 February.

All students need to wear their full summer uniform for these photos. Please ensure that our uniform standards are followed, including wearing long hair tied back, small, simple jewellery (maximum one earring in each ear), and blazers for Year 3 to Year 12 students.

Students with PE

Middle and Senior School students who have PE will need to change into their formal summer uniform for their ID photo.
Junior School students (Year 3 to Year 5) can remain in their formal uniform for the day, but please bring your sports shoes to change into for PE.

Year 12s

Year 12 students will also have their cohort photo taken tomorrow. This photo will be available to order later in Term 1, when class photos are arranged for all year levels.

Become a Year Level Representative

We are inviting all parents to consider becoming a 2024 Year Level Representative (YLR).

Each year level needs 2-3 representatives to be a contact point for the year. A voluntary role (that is not too onerous), our YLRs coordinate great opportunities for building new friendships, and help spread news about College events and volunteering opportunities. As a YLR, you would connect with new and continuing families, and offer occasions that bring people together. This could be as simple as a playdate in the park once a Term, or casual drinks in a local beer garden - relaxed and informal ways to keep in touch with families in your Year Level.

Our Communications and Engagement Team works closely with Year Level Representatives to share ideas, provide updates on relevant information for their Year Level, and help encourage participation at our events - especially this year, as we celebrate 70 years.

If you are interested in becoming a YLR for one or more Year Levels, please email with your contact details and the Year Level/s you’d like to represent by Tuesday 6 February.

When all nominations are in, we'll arrange for everyone to meet, and contact families about joining the Year Level contact lists.

We have a fantastic year ahead of us and would love you to be involved and share the joy with your Year Level families.

Looking forward to hearing from you soon!

College Musical

We are thrilled to announce that in 2024 we will perform our first Year 7 to Year 12 College Musical!

Students can get more information at lunchtime tomorrow, in the John McDonald Performing Arts Centre (MD301), where they can also register for an audition.

The fantastic show will allow our students to showcase their talents in performance, music, dance, and stage production, and will be our first major show in the new Gleeson Theatre - opening soon as part of our 70th anniversary celebrations.

Stay tuned for more exciting news as details are confirmed!

Design meets Tech in the Middle School

We are excited to share that we have introduced Design Technologies to the curriculum in the Middle School, for our Year 6, Year 7, and Year 8 students. We are bringing together various technologies with design of offer a range of new learning opportunities. This addition brings together both disciplines of the IB world and SACE together and we are looking forward to seeing what our Middle School students come up with in this creative technological space.

CEA nominations closing soon

Nominations for the 2024 Curriculum Extension Activities will close at 9am Monday 5 February.

Don't miss your chance to participate in a sport, the performing arts, or a club or society this year, nominations can be made through your Edval account - call us on 8372 3200 if you need guidance with this.

Arts in our Junior School

This year, we are introducing a new structure for the Arts in the Junior School, to include Visual Arts, Music and Dance. Run in Semester blocks, different disciplines will give our Junior School students the opportunity to try a wider range of creative pursuits, and there will be chances throughout the year to showcase their work through exhibitions and performances.

More information is coming soon – check out the CEA nominations which include Arts Club, Choirs, Ensembles and Dance. We're looking forward to an exciting and creative year in the Junior School!

Student successes over the holidays

Congratulations to Fyn, Year 11, on winning the Gold Medal in the Under 17 Slalom at the recent Australian Junior Masters waterskiing championship! Fyn will compete with the Australian Waterski team in Whanganui, New Zealand, and later represents Australia at the 2024 Moomba Masters International Invitational on the Yarra River in Melbourne.

On a recommendation from their Mercedes College Tennis Coach, and after a rigorous selection process, Alexander, Year 7, and Isaac, Year 8, were selected to be Ball Kids at the recent Adelaide International Tennis Tournament. A first time for both boys, Alexander was even asked to attend a night match on Centre Court, which is a huge honour. Congratulations to you both!

Parent Engagement Group (PEG)

We love hearing from families throughout the year, and a great way to do this is via our Parent Engagement Group (PEG).

Every member of our community is a member of PEG. We hold meetings once a term and everyone is welcome. The idea behind PEG is for the College to share information and upcoming activities with families and seek their insights, ideas, and thoughts. It is a way for us to seek your input and get together to discuss happenings around the campus. Our next PEG meeting is on Thursday 8 February, 8.40am – 9.30am in the Parlour at Strathspey House. We will also stream the meeting online for those who can’t attend in person.

Register your attendance in person or online to let us know to expect you. We look forward to catching up!

College bus services

In addition to regular Adelaide Metro services in the area, Mercedes College students can access northern and southern suburbs, and the Adelaide Hills through our College bus service.

The north-eastern route services Urrbrae, Myrtle Bank, Glenunga, Glenside, Rose Park, Norwood and Kent Town.

The southern route services Torrens Park, Lynton, Belair, Glenalta, Blackwood, Coromandel Valley, Aberfoyle Park, Flagstaff Hill, and Craigburn Farm. This service has availability in the mornings, but is currently at capacity in the afternoons.

The new Adelaide Hills route services Oakbank, Balhannah, Hahndorf, Bridgewater, Aldgate, and Stirling.

For more information, or to join our waitlist, please send an email to

Coming up...

  • Friday 2 February | School ID photos, Year 12 cohort photos
  • Monday 5 February | Community Prayer, 8.35am, families are welcome to stay and join us
  • Thursday 8 February | Parent Engagement Group (PEG) Meeting
  • Friday 9 February | Year 6 - Year 12 Swimming Carnival
  • Monday 12 February | Middle School Family Information Sessions
  • Tuesday 13 February | Junior School and Senior School Family Information Sessions
  • Thursday 22 February | Food and Wine Fair