Greg Lee – HSC Physics, Chemistry, Maths 2 Unit, Maths Extension 1 & 2, Engineering -

Greg completed a BSc majoring in mathematics at UNE (Armidale) 2001.

He previously studied Science at Griffith University (Brisbane) 1990-91and ANU (Canberra) 1992. Also studied Electrical Engineering at Wollongong University 1975-77.

Greg has thirteen years’ experience in tutoring maths, physics, chemistry and engineering studies at The Education Centre. Maths includes extension 1 and extension 2 in Y12.

His other interests include sailing and railway history.

Col Graham – Maths Year 7 to HSC General - Maths Teacher, Year 7 to Year 12 General Maths

Col has been with The Education Centre for over 10 years and has n ow retired from teaching at Coffs Harbour High School (Jetty High).

He has 35 years experience as a teacher of children in the subject areas of Mathematics and Science. He is , and has always been, heavily involved in the Welfare of Students.

His other passions are his family and sport where he has coached in the national Touch League and is qualified as a National Selector.

He currently is involved in local football, being President of the local Referee’s Association for several years and is an active referee.

Previous to coming to Coffs Harbour, he has taught at James Cook Boys High, Kogarah, Ashford Central School and Katoomba High School.

Rose-Marie Sercombe – Senior English Y11-12 - English Teacher Year 12 English

Rose-Marie Sercombe is an experienced HSC English teacher who has taught for over 30 years in high schools on the North Coast. Graduating with a BA, Dip Ed from UNE, she has a love of literature, especially Shakespeare!

High level reading and writing skills are essential for success at the HSC and Rose-Marie can help students with transferring their ideas into essays and other text types.

Alan Merritt – All aspects of Literacy to HSC, History Modern to Y12, Legal Studies to Y12 -

Alan Merritt has been a teacher, Head Teacher and Deputy Principal in a wide variety of public schools over a 30 year period teaching in many subject areas. He has also been a lecturer in Education and History at both the University of New South Wales and New England University for a number of years.

He has also been employed by the Board of Studies as a Senior  Education Officer to write the History 7-10 syllabus, the Modern History syllabus as well as providing units of work for NSW teachers in these subjects as well as Ancient History, Legal Studies and Aboriginal Studies. In addition, he has been a Marker and Senior Marker of HSC Modern History and one of the Co-ordinators of the HSC marking process.

Alan has authored a number of books on Australian society, World War 1 and world history as well as specific books for HSC students and teachers. Alan has graduated with Honours as well as completing a Masters degree and further post-graduate work.

Wendy Woodland – Primary and Early Secondary – Maths, English and Science -

Originating from Sydney, Wendy has loved teaching for over 31 years and finds it an area in which she excels. She believes that tutoring is the most rewarding type of teaching as you are working for direct goals and you can see these goals being achieved.

Having been based at one main school for 25 years, she has seen the need for staff support, cooperation and rapport. Wendy works as a team member, sharing ideas with other staff members and following the Centre’s guidelines and practices.

Wendy feels effective tutoring occurs when children feel respected, interested in, well cared for and safe. When they are challenged and inspired to learn. Children should be valued as individuals and their needs for attention and approval should be supported. Wendy tries to achieve this in her tutoring. She tutors so that children can be helped to acquire a strong foundation in the knowledge and skills needed for school success and success in life.


Kirby Drew – Primary and Early Secondary Maths, English and Reading -

Mandeep Rai Rana- Primary Maths, English and Reading -

Mandeep completed a Bachelor of Education – Primary at Southern Cross University and currently works as a casual teacher in local schools. She tutors both Primary Mathematics and English and also works with ESL students. Mandeep has been working as a tutor at The Education Centre since 2012

“I believe every child deserves an opportunity to be educated regardless of their academic abilities. The tight and busy schedules of school teachers do not allow students to have sufficient individual time with a teacher to go through the skills that are being taught. Tuition allows students to have the one-on-one time with a teacher so they can grasp learning skills before moving on to new topics. This opportunity to review topics with a teacher helps students to do well and boosts their self esteem.”

  Mandeep Rai

Anita Cassidy-Bowman – HSC, Year 11 & 12 English, Extension English, ESL English -

Anita is a casual teacher who has been tutoring secondary English and ESL students for over 4 years at The Education Centre, focusing largely on Years 11 and 12. She also has experience preparing adult learners to take the IELTS proficiency test (International English Language Testing System).

She has a Graduate Diploma in English and ESL, a degree in languages, a passion for music and drama, and over 17 years’ of experience guiding adults in traditional Indian sound therapy.

“I have always loved stories – whether spoken, written, visual or musical – so the current educational engagement with multi-modal texts for exploring and communicating diverse human experiences is particularly rewarding for me!”

Astri Sjoberg – Maths K to Year 12 Extension 2 -

Maths, Kindergarten to HSC Extension 2 and beyond

Astri is a Mathematics Tutor with a PhD in Applied Mathematics. She has an interest in dyscalculia and loves a challenge.

Astri has been tutoring at The Education Centre for 2 years and has 6 years of tutoring privately and 14 years of teaching experience at University of Johannesburg in South Africa.

Besides Mathematics she has also taught Modern Dance and has the ability to teach using a variety of methods to suit a range of different types of learners.

Greg Hitchenson – Special Education Tutor, Mentor -

Leanne Stewart – Maths Y5-12 General -

David Mitchell – HSC and Secondary Maths General, 2 Unit, Extension 1 & 2, Biology, Chemistry -

Taylor Parrott – Primary -

Leanne Chrisopoulos – Primary, Maths, English, Science Y 7-10, Art -

Leanne has a Bachelor of Education in Primary Teaching and a Bachelor of Education in Early Childhood Education and she is a casual teacher in Primary schools around the Coffs Harbour area.  She is passionate about the welfare and advancement of our younger generation, knowing that they are our future leaders.

Leanne comes from a banking and corporate background, working in administration, accounts and personal assistant roles.  She travelled and worked overseas for four years, visiting Africa, UK, Europe, Middle East, Pacific Islands, and USA.  She owned and operated her own Video rental and Bookkeeping businesses before getting her Bachelor of Education degrees.

Leanne has a calm, supportive manner, respecting every individual and believing that every child has the capacity to learn.  It is her challenge to see each child, find how they learn, and what they already know so that she can tailor lessons to suit each student.  “That is the beauty of tutoring, I can really make a difference to individual children when I can work with them one on one and design individual lessons for each student.  I love that moment when they finally understand something they have been struggling with at school.”

Vivien Rink – Art to Y12 -

Vivien is born and lived in Germany, where she did her Master degree in Product design. Moving to Australia in 2006, she did her certificate IV in small business as well as certificate IV TAE in teaching. She started her own business in toy design and manufacturing in 2010 called Toys of Wood, “The love for wood started in my grandfather’s workshop, watching him create beautiful furniture and I loved the smell of wood shavings. He gave me some of his tools, which I still use today.”

In 2012 she was teaching furniture design at Coffs Harbour TAFE for 1 year and since then she gives workshops for any age in art and design. Drawing down an idea is the easiest way to understand, what you are about to produce.

“Drawing, painting and collaging has always been a big part of my life and I enjoy passing on my knowledge to others. I believe that everyone has a creative side in themselves, you just have to practice and nurture it.”

She is very excited and look forward working with children and adults at The Education Centre; tutoring drawing the way she learned it once to understand three dimensional objects and their structure.

Andrew Sercombe – Primary -

Sue Siwinski – Biology Y11-12, Science Y7-10, Chemistry Y11-12, Preparation for High School -

Sue has been with The Education Centre for 4 years and teaching science courses for over 30 years. She has experience teaching in a variety of state, catholic and independent secondary schools. Since moving to Coffs Harbour to join the staff of Bishop Druitt College, she has completed 20 years as Head of Science there, specializing in teaching senior Biology. From 2016, Sue retired from her position at BDC to pursue other interests, such as tutoring, running science programs for young children, working as an author and reviewer for a major textbook publisher and travel. She has been writing textbook material for the new Biology syllabus being introduced in 2018.
Many of her former students have continued on to University for study in science-related courses and are now qualified. The list includes physiotherapy, medicine, nursing, marine biology, environmental science, teaching, medical and genetics research.
She holds a first-class honours degree in Science (Zoology/Biochemistry) and a post-graduate Diploma of Education, both from the University of Adelaide. More recently she completed a Diploma of Management.
“I have found it very effective and satisfying to work with individual students in my role as a tutor. Within a short time, it becomes possible to understand the student’s needs and tailor my tuition to support them. After 15 years of teaching the current NSW Biology syllabus and 4 years of HSC marking, plus contributing as an author to Biology textbooks, I have mastered the content and am able to predict the areas where Biology students are most likely to need help. I am also effective in helping younger students discover and improve in the general science area.

Rachel Barwick – Primary, Science to Year 10 -

Leon Petrohelis – Maths Up to Y12, Physics Up to Y12, Engineering Up to Y12 -

Leon Petrohelos is a chartered civil engineer and has been working in the civil engineering industry for the last 10 years.

Leon is also currently studying a Masters in Teaching secondary school with specialisations in Mathematics and Physics. He also tutors the preliminary and HSC engineering studies course. Leon has an interest in keeping fit and healthy and recently completed the Olympic length Coffs Harbour Triathlon.

Nicola Fox – Primary, Secondary Maths Y7-Y10 -

David Dunn – Mandarin and Spanish, History Y7-10, Society & Culture Y11/12, ESL -

Jeff Tillitzki – Ancient History to Y12, Modeern History to Y12, Legal Studies to Y12, Religious Studies to Y12, English to Year 10 -

I have had an extremely varied professional life – sportsman, police detective, university lecturer and government investigator. It has been a wonderful…, and, at times, a ‘wild ride’! My academic interests are equally broad – yet, my subject knowledge expertise lies in ancient Greek, Roman, Persian, Church history, and ancient literature and numismatics.

Literature is my passion; History is my life’s calling. My teaching experience stems from successive stints at University of Newcastle, Macquarie University, the New South Wales Police Academy and the University of Shiraz (Iran). My qualifications involve a Bachelor of Arts Honours (Class 1) and a University Medal. I continue to research and write contributing to my long-term Ph.D. thesis aim, dealing with the Roman emperor, Trajan Decius (reigning 249-251 A.D.)

Purely without co-incidence, there is a striking resemblance between us…!? 🙂

Wayne Taylor – Chemistry, Biology Up to HSC, Physics, Maths Y7-10 -

Jeff James – German Y 7-12 -