The Founders

Co-Founder and Principal: Sophie Fenton

NEiTA ASG Australian Teacher of the Year, 2013.FullSizeRender 2
MEd (School Leadership) and MA (Int Politics), Monash // BA (Hons), LTU // Dip Education (Secondary), ACU

In 2012, Sophie was awarded a National Excellence in Teaching Award (NEiTA) and Australian Scholarships Group (ASG) State and Territory Inspirational Teaching Award for Victoria. In 2013, Sophie was awarded a NEiTA and ASG National Teaching Award for Excellence in Innovation. She went on to be named NEiTA ASG Australian Teacher of the Year 2013, and was ASG’s Australian Education Ambassador at the International Space Camp in Alabama, 2013.

Sophie has been involved in education and learning for the past 20 years, both as a university lecturer and teaching in secondary schools. In her role as Head of Professional Learning, Sophie has worked to redefine teaching practice and teacher training. As Chair of Humanities, Sophie has developed innovative and dynamic curriculum that invites internally motivated learning in an environment that supports learning from failures and thriving on inquiry in a real-world context.

Sophie is an experienced VCAA Examination Assessor and Reviewer, whilst also serving as a board and committee member in a range of educational organisations. As a Co-Founder and now Principal of Sandridge School, Sophie leads our community efforts in creating an educational environment that generates innovative teaching and students who will be the transformational citizens and entrepreneurs of the future.


Co-Founder and Principal Emeritus: Jeanne Shaw

PhD and MEM, Uni Melb // BA (Hons) and Dip Education, Monash

Prior to the completion of her PhD in 2012, Jeanne enjoyed a twenty-five year career as a passionate teacher and school administrator, most recently working as a Deputy Principal and Acting Principal. Throughout this career, she worked in government and independent schools, and in both single sex and coeducational schools.

Drawing on a rich experience as a classroom practitioner, Jeanne has recently worked in consultancy designed around supporting both beginning teachers and their school-based mentors. She has been engaged as a researcher and consultant with DET projects and as a presenter for the Victorian Institute of Teaching.

She is the co-author of the teacher resource book, Teach Positive and conveyor of the International Conference on the Great Teacher. Jeanne has presented at various international conferences and is a regular presenter on education matters on ABC Radio.

She believes that she just old enough to have an astute knowledge of what has happened to the teaching profession in past four decades. As a Co-Founder and the original founding Principal of Sandridge School, Jeanne played an instrumental role in establishing an innovative school that champions the essential elements of great contemporary teaching and learning. Jeanne is now retired from Sandridge School and remains an active member of the Williamstown community.