Our Executive are a team of highly skilled and experienced professionals, committed to ensuring that our vision is central to all we do at SMĀĻ°ķ. Responsible for the overall management of the school in all its key areas of operation, the Executive provides a firm foundation for the strategic and practical implementation of our mission to provide a Christ-centred, biblically grounded, culturally engaging and academically rigorous education for the students in our care.


Melissa Brown

Bachelor of Arts; Master of Educational Studies

Melissa Brown has been involved in Christian education for nearly 30 years and considers it a joy and a privilege to be working with a Christian community dedicated to providing education that is Christ-centred, biblically grounded, culturally engaging and academically rigorous. She joined SMĀĻ°ķ Christian School as Principal in 2020, having spent the previous 19 years at Orange Christian School as Secondary Coordinator and then as Principal.

Melissa is passionately committed to Christian education, and to the goal of developing positive parent partnership in the home/school relationship. Current research has identified positive parent engagement as being a key factor in children’s educational, social and emotional improvement in school. She considers it is blessing to be in a school where this is already a part of the cultural fabric, and looks forward to seeing how SMĀĻ°ķ can continue to build on the strong foundations already in place.

Business Manager

Andrew Lowry

Chartered Manager; Diploma in Hotel & Catering Administration; Advanced Diploma in Business; Justice of the Peace

Andrew joined SMĀĻ°ķ Christian School in 2006. In his role as Business Manager, he provides key support and assistance to our Board, Principal and Executive in fulfilling the strategic direction and plan of our school. With a commitment to Christian education and the vision and mission of our school, Andrew plays a crucial role in the oversight of the business, finance and property segments of our school.

Deputy Principal

Tim Smithies

Bachelor of Arts; Diploma in Education

Tim is an educational leader and administrator with over 20 years of teaching experience. He joined SMĀĻ°ķ as a Secondary English and history teacher in 2001, and soon took on roles within the Secondary student wellbeing team. Tim's experience and skills in administration led to his appointment as the Director of School Administration in 2017, giving him oversight over the administrative and organisational processes of our school. Tim became the Deputy Principal in 2023, bringing a wealth of knowledge about the school and its people to the role.

Head of Junior School

Heidi Stead

Bachelor of Arts; Diploma in Education

Heidi has had a long and wonderful history with SMĀĻ°ķ, having begun as a student in 1978. She returned as an experienced classroom teacher in 2014, also taking on the role of K-6 Curriculum Coordinator. As an exceptional communicator, administrator and natural leader, Heidi stepped into the role as Head of Junior School in 2022. She brings empathy, wisdom and fun to the role, as well as a sincere desire to partner with parents in their children's education to demonstrate the lordship of Christ over all things.

Head of Secondary School

Sam Glassock

Bachelor of Arts; Bachelor of Education; Master of Education (Gifted and Talented)

Sam has over 20 years experience as a leader in education. With previous roles as English Coordinator (2006-2011), Extension and Enrichment Coordinator (2012-2020), and Director of Teaching in Learning (2020-2022), Sam has played a crucial role in shaping our culture of teaching excellence at SMĀĻ°ķ. Known as an exceptional communicator and driver of educational excellence, Sam was appointed as Head of Secondary School in 2023. With extensive HSC marking experience and knowledge of HSC standards, Sam is passionate about maintaining high academic standards whilst remaining committed to Christian educational practice. Sam is highly regarded by both peers and parents, bringing wisdom, enthusiasm and humility to her role.

Director of Teaching and Learning

Silva Mekerdichian

Bachelor of Arts; Diploma in Education

Silva is a highly experienced Mathematics teacher and leader, with nearly 20 years of experience in teaching and leadership roles. After being our Secondary Mathematics Coordinator from 2011-2020, Silva stepped into the brand new role as Director of Co-Curricular in 2021. She had a vibrant vision for our new Co-Curricular program, wanting all students to develop and nurture their God-given gifts and abilities. With a strong understanding of how curricular and co-curricular programs complement one another, Silva was ready to move back into the curriculum space. She took on the role of Director of Teaching and Learning in 2023, excited to impact the educational outcomes of our students at an organisational level. With a passion for data analysis, Silva is looking forward to working with our school community to effect quality teaching and learning practices.

Director of Student Wellbeing

Dan Apin

Bachelor of Science (Maths); Bachelor of Education

Dan started at SMĀĻ°ķ as a passionate Mathematics teacher in 2012. His natural leadership style and heart for student wellbeing led him to a role as a Pastoral Care Coordinator until 2020. Dan took up the role as Director of Wellbeing in 2021 where he oversees student wellbeing across the school (Prep through to Year 12). This involves assisting student development, learning engagement and student behaviour – to support our students’ emotional, physical, academic, social, vocational and spiritual wellbeing throughout their school years.

Director of Co-Curricular

Alison Vander Straaten

Bachelor of Commerce; Graduate Diploma in Education

Alison stepped into the role as Director of Co-Curricular in 2023, excited to provide opportunities for our students to explore and develop their interests, passions, and God-given gifts and talents outside the classroom environment. Since starting as a Geography and Business Studies teacher in 2013, Alison has always been involved in co-curricular activities at SMĀĻ°ķ, including coaching netball and triathlon, leading on camps and our Duke of Edinburgh program. She brings exceptional administrative and communication skills to the role, and is excited to work within a diverse team to continue to grow the co-curricular space at SMĀĻ°ķ.

Human Resources Manager

Trevor Punnett

Diploma in Market Research; Diploma in Marketing; Bachelor of Arts (Hons); Certified Practitioner of HR

Trevor joined the team at SMĀĻ°ķ in 2019. His role as Human Resources Manager is to oversee the organisational capability and culture of our school. This incorporates aspects of workforce design and planning, advocating for transformation, innovation and change, mentoring and coaching leaders in our school, as well as providing vital support to our staff so that our school continues to uphold our vision and mission.


Wendy Boase

Advanced Diploma in Secretarial Studies

Wendy joined SMĀĻ°ķ in 2007 as the Registrar. She is an administration professional with over 25 years involvement in Christian education. Wendy provides a crucial link between our school and both prospective and current families. She has the joy of sharing the vision and mission of our school with parents who are seeking a Christ-centred education for their children. Having firsthand experience in the value of partnering with a school that was committed to a distinctively Christian worldview in all aspects of education and school life, she is perfectly placed to walk alongside parents considering this for their children.

Executive Assistant

Karen Auckett

Diploma in Business Management

Karen was appointed to the role of Executive Assistant in 2005 having commenced at SMĀĻ°ķ two years earlier. Her experience, and administrative and organisational skills are essential to the Executive team. Karen's primary role as Executive Assistant is to provide timely and confidential administrative assistance to the Principal, Executive and Board. She counts it a privilege to work alongside the staff at SMĀĻ°ķ to fulfil the school's vision and mission.

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