Martyn Smith, writing about Wesley College

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Tony Conabere ends at Glen Waverley
The Glen Waverley Story
TONY CONABERE BEGINS AT GLEN WAVERLEY
(1977, for 'The Lion' magazine)

Whilst not quite so hair-raising a tractor trailer ride a-la-Lormer, remembered with varying degrees of fondness by nineteen years of Wesley boys at Chum Creek, the new Headmaster of the Junior School, Tony Conabere, has shown his own prowess at the wheel of the school's tractor in recent weeks as he has led the charge in a tree-planting and path-laying program by the boys out at Waverley.

With Bill Schuster as adviser and planner  -  what Third Form general scientist who has faithfully copied those immaculate blackboards of botanic drawings could disagree with that choice  -  Tony has helped with the plantings, and now, at weekends, with the help of the Conabere offspring, can be seen doing his fair share of the watering roster.

With similar enthusiasm, dressed in workshorts and singlet, the Headmaster also turned foreman of a 25-strong gang of lads when they laid a new path in 34 degree heat during the final Club Activities Day this year.

Tony Conabere has an enormous capacity for work, whether the task is doing the housework and minding the kids on Saturday while his wife, Mim, hostesses for a range of Display Homes, or whether it is the preparation of a detailed submission to Council and the Commonwealth Government for an innovations grant, a scheme for the offering of free places or the installation of closed circuit TV.

Educated at Scotch, he brings to the Junior School at Wesley his own empathy with spaciousness, beauty of environment and imaginative use of resources.  This, with an active mind which foresees the vast potential challenging the Wesley constituency at Waverley and a knowledgeable respect for the school's tradition, leads him to a firm commitment to the welfare and development of the school in the exciting years ahead now that the Council appears to have drawn a clear blue-print for Wesley's growth in the latter quarter of this century.

A cricketer of some note and a "Thirds" footballer who remembers with some awe Woodlock's, Lucas' and Johnson's Wesley teams, Tony Conabere has latterly turned to tennis to supplement his four lap of the Junior School jog each morning.  Barely a week will go by in fine weather without a keenly fought doubles or singles match with members of his staff on the courts adjacent the Headmaster's fine old residence in High Street Road.

Whilst this forms one escape from educational duties to committees within and without Wesley, preparations for the opening of the new Primary Complex and the multiplicity of other Headmasterly functions, one parent of a more recent old boy will testify that, even in the Northern Stand of the MCG, supposedly "getting away from it all", the teaching goes on; that Ellice, Marcus and Sophie Conabere, and two of their friends, received detailed and precise tuition in the appropriate eating of an Australian meat pie and sauce!!

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Tony Conabere ends at Glen Waverley
The Glen Waverley Story

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