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Day 19: Return To Norwood

Norwood Secondary College sits amongst acres of residential housing along Mullum Mullum Road, not far from the creek of the same name. This is Ringwood, just up the road from the giant Eastland shopping complex, and the centre of the electorate of Deakin, the Melbourne electorate held by the slender margin of 1.4% by the Labor Party’s Mike Symon.

It’s familiar territory for me. I taught here over twenty years ago. Returning today, I wonder whether the oval still floods when it rains. I note the familiar buildings, some now with assorted improvements and extensions. Students at recess mingle in groups, some sitting on the concrete outside the library, others leaning against fences and buildings. The atmosphere is calm and orderly. Norwood was always a “good school”.

A small number of former colleagues still work here. Mick Wilson, a 35-year veteran of the school, jokes that’s he found my unwashed coffee mug in the cupboard above the staffroom sink. Rosemary Homersham greets me a kiss. I scan the staff photo for familiar faces and then chat to a young English teacher who would have been in kindergarten when I was last here. [Read more…]