COVID-19 UPDATE – 3rd JUNE 2021

Hi Learners,

Thank you all for your understanding over the last week during the snap lockdown.

The Victorian government has announced that for regional Victoria some restrictions will be eased or lifted from 11.59pm on Thursday June 3 in response to the latest Coronavirus outbreak.

Part of this announcement is that higher education such as the courses and programs that SGAE provides to you will resume face to face learning from Friday June 4. You do however have the choice to return to classes or continue remote learning.  Please advise SGAE on if you are choosing to continue to learn remotely so that we can put the appropriate supports in place.

SGAE are receiving regular updates from the Department of Education and Training in regard to adult education delivery under COVID-19 restrictions. 

If you are ill or feeling unwell, please stay at home. Masks are compulsory for staff and learners, unless you are exempt. Hygiene practices will continue to be put in place by SGAE.

If you have any questions, please contact our head office on 1800 810 393, speak with your trainer or email us at

Thank you for your patience during this time and we are looking forward to seeing you again.

Yours sincerely,

Erin White
Executive Officer | SGAE


Hi Learners,

The Victorian Government has announced new restrictions for all of Victoria to apply from 11.59pm on Thursday 27 May (tonight) until 11.59pm on Thursday, June 3 in response to the latest coronavirus outbreak.

Part of this announcement is that higher education such as the courses and programs that SGAE provides to you will be done remotely during this time.

Your trainer will be in contact with you to make arrangements for remote learning activities.

If you have any questions, please contact our head office on 1800 810 393, speak with your trainer or email us at

Our main priority is for your health and safety and to continue to support you in your learning.

Yours sincerely,

Erin White
Executive Officer | SGAE


We invite you to attend the Annual General Meeting of Southern Grampians Adult Education Inc. which will be taking place on:

DATEFriday 28 May 2021
TIME12 noon start
VENUE39 Hammond Street, Hamilton VIC 3300
RSVPby 5pm Friday 21 May 2021 to Reception on 1800 810 393 or

Guest Speaker: Maria Peters, Chairperson, Adult, Community and Further Education (ACFE)

Light lunch provided.
Joining by Zoom is also available by request.


Annual memberships are now due. 
Interested in becoming a member and part of our SGAE community? Members are entitled to news and information from SGAE, participation in the governance of the organisation (including voting opportunities) and invitation to events.     

Forms can be obtained from SGAE Reception or by clicking here.

Covid-19 Update – Term 1 at SGAE

Hi Learners,

As we find ourselves in lockdown, SGAE’s campuses will be temporarily closed until Thursday 18th February, 2021. This is in response to the Victorian Government’s recent announcement of state-wide COVID-19 restrictions.  

If you are currently training with us, your trainer will advise if classes are postponed or if you will be provided remote learning.

Staff will still be available by phone or email if you need assistance during this time.  We are continuing to take enquiries, applications and enrolments.

Please contact us on 1800 810 393 or email if you have any queries.

Yours sincerely,

Erin White

Executive Officer | SGAE


BEHIND THE SCENES: MEMBERS of 314 ACU (from left) Lt (AAC) Michael Byrne, Capt (AAC) Frank Zeigler, SGAE chief executive, Erin White, Lt (AAC) Warwick Dent, (AAC) Baxter Byrne and The Spec staff.

The Australian Army Cadet Unit (314 ACU) will be operating their new community-based unit at our Hamilton Campus!

Continuing to enhance the support of young people in the region, we will be hosting the Army Cadet Unit at our Hammond Street site by offering office space, teaching areas, a Q-Store, and the large carpark at the back as the parade ground.

Lieutenant (AAC) Michael Byrne said they had “a lot of interest” across a broad range of schools covering the Greater Hamilton region.

“I’ve been really overwhelmed with the interest and community support, it’s been really exciting with lots of people keen to sign up and get involved in the unit,” Lt Byrne said.

“We’ve also had good interest from parents who are ex-service people that are keen to get involved and help out which is great.”

The 314 ACU incorporates both Hamilton and Warrnambool detachments and is not school-affiliated, meaning anybody can join.


Pictured: L-R BACK – Erin White, Executive Officer, Southern Grampians Adult Education (SGAE); Mark Fidge, Chief Executive Officer, South West TAFE; Raoul Wainwright, Chair, Adult, Community and Further Education (ACFE) Board; Wendy Williams, Chair, SGAE; Minister Gayle Tierney MP; Lee-Anne Fisher, Executive Director – Department of Education & Training; Charles Tapper, Deputy Chair, SGAE.
L-R FRONT – Andrew, Student of SGAE; Karen, Student of SGAE; Yvonne Biasol; Educator at SGAE.

Southern Grampians Adult Education and its learners are reaping the rewards of a new campus located in Hamilton’s Hammond Street.

Skills and training minister, Gayle Tierney was on site to officially open the campus on Wednesday the 18th of November, and said it was a “momentous” occasion, not just for SGAE but the entire community.

“It’s great to be here on such a momentous occasion and I have to say, what a campus,” Ms Tierney said.

“It’s very exciting opening a new campus and it goes to show when there are a series of collaborations in communities these sorts of things can happen.”

Ms Tierney spoke about the role adult education played in the community and the importance of its development.

As people develop at different rates and ages, we never stop learning and she said SGAE showed exactly that through its continues support of adult learners.

“The adult education space is about life-long learning,” Ms Tierney said.

“It’s about respect and honouring where people are at any given point in their life and being able to provide those opportunities.”

Amazed by the SGAE’s new campus, Ms Tierney said she believed the facility had no limits and created amazing opportunities.

The Hammond St building will continue to be utilised by South West TAFE, with some courses facilitated in the building.

Source: Hamilton Spectator


Hi Learners,

We trust this finds you well and enjoying the start of Spring!

We are pleased to advise that as of Term 4, the week commencing Monday 5 October 2020, all SGAE campuses will be returning to face-to-face classroom learning.

Those attending onsite at any SGAE campus must follow public health directives  including wearing face coverings (unless exempt), physical distancing guidelines and other hygiene measures.

A reminder that to follow the following guidelines:

  • Keep your distance – stay 1.5 metres away from others
  • Practise good hygiene including washing your hands
  • Stay at home if you are sick
  • Follow the directions provided to you

Our classrooms will be set up to help adhere to physical distancing, and will have hand sanitiser and face masks supplied.

Temperatures will still be taken and if you are presenting with any cold and flu-like symptoms you will be asked to go home until you feel well again.

We look forward to welcoming you back to the classroom.

Kind regards,

Erin White

Executive Officer | SGAE


Hi Learners,

We wish to advise you of some immediate changes we are making to the way your learning will be delivered for the remainder of Term 3. This is in response to the Victorian Government announcement regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and that regional and rural Victoria will be moving to Stage 3 restrictions as of 11.59pm Wednesday 5 August 2020.

These changes take effect from, and including, Wednesday 5 August. All programs will commence remote learning from Wednesday 5 August.

We apologise that this time round it is very short notice – but we need to act immediately to all do our part to keep each other safe and well. You can find attached to this post Our COVID-19 Safe Plan document for your reference.

Our trainers and support staff are well prepared for remote learning again in Term 3 and will be in contact with you regularly to provide learning materials and support. SGAE is committed to you and we will do all that we are able to do to ensure your learning experience continues and your individual needs are considered.

If you require support due to internet issues, equipment or resources to be able to undertake remote learning, please let us know.

We realise this may be a time of stress and worry and it is important to look after your mental health. Support is available – please see a range of options here.

With these changes, a number of our staff will also be working remotely and our campuses will be closed to the public, except by appointment only. Anyone who has an appointment to enter a campus, must be wearing a face mask, complete our campus entry form and have their temperature taken.

SGAE staff will be calling you shortly to ask some questions about how we can improve your remote learning experience. We encourage you to be open and honest with your answers so that we can help adapt our training delivery to best meet your needs.

SGAE looks forward to continuing to support you on your learning journey.

Please contact our head office on 03 5571 9900 or email if you have any queries, concerns or compliments.

Yours sincerely,

Erin White

Executive Officer | SGAE


Southern Grampians Adult Education Inc

Annual General Meeting

DATE :           Friday 31 July 2020

TIME  :           12.00pm – 1.00pm

VENUE          via ZOOM

RSVP :           by 5pm Friday 24 July 2020 to Reception on (03) 5571 9900 or

ZOOM meeting details:

Please register in advance for this meeting:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.


Nominations close Friday 17 July 2020 and forms are available from SGAE by contacting Reception on


Annual memberships are now due.   Membership is $5 and forms are available from SGAE by contacting Reception on

UPDATE – 25 May 2020

Dear Learner

Thank you for your continued dedication to your learning during what is a challenging time for all of us. We also thank you for your patience and support during the current changes to our training delivery. 

SGAE continues to remain vigilant for the health and safety of our staff, students and communities.  

The Department of Education and Training (the Department) has been working closely with the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Victorian Chief Health Officer to monitor and respond to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Throughout this time, adult training providers have been advised to provide online or remote learning where possible, until further notice.   Face to face training is only to be provided where absolutely necessary and social distancing protocols, including people per room limits, and strict hygiene practices must be adhered to.

Management of SGAE have decided that in the best interests of all concerned, we will introduce a gradual return to face to face learning on an as-needs basis only, as determined by our qualified trainers. 

As of the week commencing 1 June,  there will be a staged reintroduction of individual face to face sessions.  This is on a limited basis only for students who have been identified by our expert trainers as requiring short one on one, face to face sessions to maintain their level of learning.   This is at the discretion of our trainers who will discuss this with you.

All government and health guidelines will be strictly enforced for all staff and students to adhere to.  SGAE believe this approach is in the best interests of everyone and we hope to be able to see a further easing of restrictions on due course.  We will update you of any changes as soon as possible.

If you have any questions, please contact our head office on (03) 5571 9900, speak with your trainer or email us at

We congratulate you all on your learning journey so far.

Yours sincerely

Erin White
Executive Officer

RECIPE: Lemon and Elderflower Cupcakes with Caramel Crowns

Lemon and elderflower cupcakes with caramel crowns courtesy of Better Homes & Gardens

Cupcakes with crowns for the queen of the family!

Lovely trainer Vicki from our Garden to Plate program has dug up this special recipe for the ultimate Mother’s Day indulgence – serve these up and Mum will definitely feel like royalty! 👑

Prep: 30 Minutes
Cook: 30 Minutes – Medium
Serves: 12


  • 140g unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus 75g extra
  • 140g caster sugar
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 free-range eggs
  • 1 free-range egg yolk
  • ½ cup almond meal
  • 1½ cups self-raising flour
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 Tbsp elderflower cordial, plus 1 Tbsp extra
  • 150g icing sugar mixture, sifted

Carmel Crowns

  • 2 cups caster sugar
  • 2 Tbsp glucose syrup
  • Raspberries, to decorate
  • Edible gold glitter, to decorate (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 160°C fan-forced (180°C conventional). Combine butter, sugar, lemon zest and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium speed for 5 minutes until light and fluffy. 
  2.  Beat eggs and egg yolk in a medium bowl, then add to mixer on low speed in a steady stream until combined. Fold in almond meal. Fold in flour and milk, alternating, in batches, then cordial. 
  3.  Pipe batter into a 12-hole 1 /3 cup capacity muffin tray lined with paper cases. Bake for 25 minutes until golden. Set aside to cool completely on a wire rack. 
  4. Combine extra butter with icing sugar in bowl of electric mixer and beat on high for 5 minutes, until very light, scraping sides. Reduce speed to medium, add extra cordial in steady stream, beating until smooth. Spread over cakes. 
  5.  To make caramel crowns, heat caster sugar and glucose syrup with ½ cup water in a small heavy base saucepan over high heat. Cook until syrup reaches a deep brown colour (135°C), then dip the base of the saucepan in cold water to stop the cooking. Sprinkle the back of a small ladle with cooking oil, then drizzle caramel over to form a crown. As soon as the caramel firms up, twist to remove and set aside. Repeat to make 12 crowns 
  6. Place a crown on top of each cake and put raspberries in the middle. Decorate with gold glitter

Lemon and Elderflower Cupcakes with Caramel Crowns recipe and image source credit Better Homes & Gardens.

ACTIVITY: How to Make a Bookmark Gift for Mother’s Day

Our lovely Make it for Market trainer Yvonne has made a video of how to make Mum a personalised bookmark for Mother’s Day!

This is a thoughtful gift anyone can from home with the right materials which are available from Trev’s Bargain Emporium in Hamilton or Lincraft or Spotlight for our Warrnambool & Horsham learners.

Have a go and send us a photo of your finished product to 😀


Lest we forget

History of the Anzac biscuit

During World War I, people on the home front often sent comfort parcels to the Anzacs in Egypt, on Gallipoli and in Europe. Gifts of food from home supplemented the plain Australian Imperial Force (AIF) diet of tinned bully beef and hardtack, also known as the ‘Anzac wafer’ or ‘Anzac tile’. Care packages often included home-made biscuits of rolled oats, golden syrup and flour. These biscuits had high nutritional value and kept well while being transported overseas.Now known as ‘Anzac biscuits’, they’re still popular in Australia today.


  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 2 tablespoons golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda dissolved in 2 tablespoons boiling water
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup plain flour


  1. Heat oven to 160°C.
  2. Melt butter (or margarine) and syrup.
  3. Add dissolved bicarbonate of soda and water.
  4. Mix dry ingredients in a bowl, add the liquid mixture and stir.
  5. Place small balls of the mixture (about 1 teaspoon) onto a greased tray.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until lightly brown.
  7. Lift biscuits onto a cake cooling rack and wait for them to cool.


RECIPE: Good Friday Baked Fish Parcels

The perfect winter warmer for fish-only Good Friday from our very own Garden to Plate program!

Download your print-friendly version here and take to the supermarket to grab all your fresh ingredients:


1 Fresh flake fillet per person
1 Tsp olive oil per fillet
2 Tbsp parsley or shallots, chopped
1⁄2 Lemon per fillet
Salt and pepper to taste

From the Pantry

1 A4 sized sheet of tin foil per fillet


  1. Wash and dry hands!!!
  2. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  3. Place tin foil sheet onto a baking tray, lightly spray with olive oil.
  4. Lay the fish fillet on the foil and add sliced lemons and parsley or shallots on top of fish.
  5. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
  6. Make an envelope parcel
  7. Cook parcels in oven for 15 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven, and serve on top of roasted vegetables and quinoa.


* Recipe is per serve.

UPDATE: A Message from our Executive Officer


Erin White

Hi Learners,

We hope you are enjoying the holiday break although it might be a very different style of ‘holiday’ than what you might be used to!

We wanted to let you know some of the changes we are making for your learning during Term 2 to deal with the temporary impact of Coronavirus – COVID-19.

You might be seeing a lot of news items about this currently and wondering what it means for your learning with SGAE.

As much as you can, we encourage you to use these holidays to rest. Your health and wellbeing are a priority not just now but all of the time.

As this situation is changing week by week, we are ensuring that we are making decisions that are in your best interests and are informed by Government. Please remember that we are considered an ‘RTO, Learn Local and TAFE sector’ which is not necessarily the same as schools.

Our plan at this stage for Term 2 is as follows and we envisage this will be in place for all of Term 2:

– A delayed start to Term 2; instead of starting the week of 14 April, our courses will commence the week of Monday 20 April or thereafter. Your trainer will be in contact with you to confirm your date.

– You will receive regular contact from our trainers; your trainer will be in contact with you over the next week to confirm your class start date and to make sure you are OK.

– Your classes will be delivered a little differently; until further notice and based on government advice, most of our training will be provided via flexible and remote distance learning. That is, workbooks or activities will be posted to you in hard copy and your trainer will schedule phone calls with you to provide you with instructions, support and one-on-one phone training sessions. For some of our courses, webinars or video conferencing may be available but this is tailored to particular courses and our learners. Your trainer will advise you exactly how your training will be provided and will be based on your individual needs. We will continue to put support measures in place to ensure you receive adequate and appropriate quality training. As an adult education provider, we have been encouraged to deliver our training differently where possible. Whilst in some instances, we may be able to have small numbers of learners come to our campuses; we will make decisions on this on an individual basis. Please discuss this with your trainer.

By limiting face-to-face contact, we are playing our part in slowing the spread of the virus and helping to flatten the curve. Our classrooms in Hamilton and Warrnambool can accommodate limited numbers of students if we are able to hold any learning face-to-face. Our Bendigo campus is currently impacted due to being located at a place of worship.

We are planning to mail your learning resources to you, just the same as you would be given in the classroom. You can start working on the resources when you receive them or you can wait and talk to your trainer about them.

You will receive a weekly timetable showing when your trainer will contact you to assist you with your learning.

You might like to talk to the people around you about the topic of your learning and do some research as well, so that when the trainer calls you, you can tell them about what you have been doing.

Please be assured that we are still here for you! Please call us on 03 5571 9900 or email us on and our friendly staff are more than happy to help you.

Please also stay tuned for updates on our Facebook page ‘SGAE’ and here, on our website via The Learner Loop.

Take care,

Erin White

Executive Officer


Hi Learners,

We wanted to share with you some temporary changes to Hamilton office hours amidst the constantly evolving COVID-19 situation.

Firstly, please be assured that we are still here for you!

Instead of physically visiting our office during the school holidays, you can call us on 03 5571 9900 or email us on and our friendly, smiley staff (see below!) are more than happy to help you.

On a serious note, at SGAE we are committed to the health and wellbeing of our staff, our learners, our partners and our community. We must do our part in supporting people to stay at home during these times. So this means that we have decided to temporarily close the office to the public during the school holiday break so that we can best prepare for Term 2 and make some updates to how we can bring learning to you and best meet our learners individual needs.

Please stay tuned for updates here on Facebook page and here on our website via The Learner Loop.

From all of us at SGAE – take care of yourselves and each other 💓


Information current as of 23 March 2020.

At Southern Grampians Adult Education, the health and wellbeing of all our learners and our staff is our first and foremost priority.

Given the challenging and changing circumstances, SGAE has made the decision to cease classes at the end of Monday 23 March.   This is to help slow the spread of the virus and limit potential risk. Many learners have already made the decision to stay at home. 

No classes will run Tuesday 24 March through until Tuesday 14 April.   At this stage, we have no further notification about Term 2 start, so until notified otherwise, we are still planning for a return to classes after Easter.  We will continue to communicate with you during the holidays to provide further updates and advice.

For any students that have already been absent, or for any future adjustment to how we need to deliver classes,  trainers will be in contact with learners to arrange work that can be done from home and any future catch up sessions that may be required.   Please be assured that we will work with our learners to help support them and we don’t want people to worry.  

We encourage all learners and their families to use the school holiday break to rest and recharge and continue to practice social distancing and good hygiene.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water (for at least 20 seconds), especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitiser that contains at least 60 per cent alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow.  Ensure the used tissue is disposed of in an enclosed bin (a bin with a lid).
  • Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces regularly.
  • Stay home if you are sick and don’t expose others.
  • Get vaccinated for flu (influenza) when available in April
  • Stop shaking hands as a greeting.

From Tuesday 24 March and during the holiday break, SGAE staff will be mostly working from home and our office will have reduced opening hours being 10am to 3pm Monday to Friday.  At this stage there has been not further directive to close and this is subject to the advice of the Australian Health Principal Protection Committee.

If you have any questions at any time, please contact our office on 5571 9900 (if it goes to message bank, this will be monitored and your call returned as soon as possible), via email on or contact the Executive Officer, Erin White, on mobile 0447 003 831. 

We will also include general information and updates on our new website – and Facebook.

We thank you for your understanding.

Yours sincerely,
Erin White
Executive Officer

NEWS: Working Together to Improve Adult Education

Pictured: L-R – Maria Peters, Chair, Adult, Community and Further Education (ACFE) Board; Erin White, Executive Officer, Southern Grampians Adult Education; Mark Fidge, Chief Executive Officer, South West TAFE; Hon. Minister Gayle Tierney MP

Learners in the south west will now be better supported in their adult education pathways thanks to a partnership between Southern Grampians Adult Education and South West TAFE.

The Minister for Training and Skills and Higher Education Gayle Tierney recently attended the signing of a new memorandum of understanding between Southern Grampians Adult Education and South West TAFE which will see the two organisations work together to improve adult education and learner pathways throughout the region.

The partnership will mean learners are better supported to achieve higher education, qualifications and move into employment.

The Victorian Government released a ministerial statement on the Future of Adult Community Education. One of the statement’s goals is for every local government area to have adult community education provision that is strongly connected to the local community.

This is a significant milestone for both education providers and supports the government initiative to engage and support adult learners.

The memorandum of understanding between Southern Grampians Adult Education and South West TAFE was launched in the presence of the Minister and confirms each parties commitment to strengthen, address and optimize accessible adult education in our region. This commitment will support and enable the successful coordinated delivery of education and training to improve learner pathways throughout South West Victoria.

This partnership broadens and builds on SGAE’s existing MOU agreed to last July that supports SGAE’s delivery of pre-accredited programs at South West TAFE’s Warrnambool campus.