As we have now entered Stage 4 lockdown, we have a very select number of School based apprentices and trainees who are part of the essential services sector. We wish these trainees and apprentices a safe experience and look forward to welcoming them back to school. To those that have gained private employment congratulations and the message is the same as above.

In the previous newsletter I mentioned no Penola student should be out on  Structured Workplace Learning or work experience. This statement was recently enforced by the Victorian state government.

If you have any questions around what the future may hold in this space please feel free to e-mail myself at

We will update you as the circumstances evolve.

On another note I would like to actively encourage all Year 12 students who are seeking employment in any way shape or form for next year to commence registering with employment websites. You may book an appointment with myself on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.

The COVID crisis is what it is, however you will create your own luck, and opportunities may come sooner than you think.


VCAL @ Work

Gibson Street -Lygon Street

The Dimattina group are well known when it comes to fine cuisine. A prestigious group they have welcomed VCAL Intermediate student Thomas Borg with open arms. Thomas has been fortunate to gain a placement and ultimately employment at Il Gambrero restaurant. Acquiring a mask in the initial stages of being asked to was proving quite a task for people.

Thomas has been immersed in the culture of Lygon Street this year, despite the compromised nature of trade has been able to gain invaluable experience in this industry.

Thomas’s future prospects in the hospitality industry appear to be warming up.

Well done Thomas!

Creating our own Personal protective equipment.

It is in my role to visit students on site, fully aware of this I managed to get hold of multiple pairs of new socks from the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation.

During a Work Related Skills class, present students Sandra and Melissa created multiple masks for themselves, myself, other staff and their own families to utilise immediately.

Thanks to both young ladies.




Winging it

Year 10 VCAL student and KFC employee Jason Brikha was looking forward to work experience to enhance his year. Unfortunately due to COVID 19 this didn’t happen.

Jason wants to be either an Electrician, or Barber and has his sights set on gaining experience in both fields.

Using his initiative Jason remains committed to developing his interest of cutting hair. Jason is continuing to do this for those in his household, and remains hopeful of creating a small business in the future.

Demonstrating entrepreneurially flair Jason has setup an Instagram account @jaycutz7_  , as he explained this is a digital diary of his work.

However all is not lost for Jason as he retains his employment at Fast food giant KFC.

Jason explains his role in the kitchen is to prepare and cook chicken for customers.

Jason enjoys his work and is grateful to have a job during the COVID pandemic.