Replied to ‘Like Sovereign Hill on steroids’: Meet the Victorian Historical Mine Shaft Chasers by Rhiannon Stevens (ABC News)

Nobody knows exactly how many thousands of old mines pockmark Victoria, but this group is happily spending hours underground trying to find out.

Growing up, my step-father’s family had a bush property near the old mining settlement of Whroo and the Balaclava Mine. As a young child, my siblings and I would clamber through the old shafts, ignorant of any risks. I wonder how many other sites there are and the dangers that might lurk.
Replied to An isolated grain town has been transformed into an international tourism hot spot (ABC News)

When selfies taken on a salt-crusted depression 6km outside the tiny town of Sea Lake started popping up on Chinese social media, the proud local farming community saw an opportunity.

I lived in Swan Hill for a few years, but never visited Lake Tyrrell. It is funny how we can so easily miss what is in our own backyard.
Bookmarked Parks Victoria – Fossicking and prospecting (
I took my daughters fossicking. Ms. 8 has a new found passion for geology stemming from her newfound love of Minecraft. She therefore wanted to go to a goldmine. I found a list of sites in Victoria where you can go searching for gold. The closest spot was Steiglitz Historic Park. We parted the car at The Pines Carpark and explored the remnants of the New Chum Mine.

The girls loved strolling through the bush and simply following the lay of the land. They explored the various rocks (no gold) and wondered about nature. It reminded me of an experience on school camp from a few years ago and the power and potential associated with outdoor education.

Bookmarked Would an eruption in Melbourne really match Hawaii’s volcanoes? Here’s the evidence by Heather Handley;Jozua van Otterloo;Ray Cas (The Conversation)

Melbourne lies at the eastern end of a volcanic province, but when’s it going to blow? Understanding the geology of Melbourne and comparing it to Hawaii is really helpful in calculating risk.

Heather Handley, Jozua van Otterloo and Ray Cas respond to a news claim that what occurred in Hawaii could happen in Melbourne. I remember growing up with the message that all the volcanoes in Australia are extinct. This investigation instead suggests that the Newer Volcanics Province is dorment, with no activity for 5000 years.
Liked 'Pools with moveable floors': the private school arms race intensifies by Henrietta Cook (The Age)

The data, released by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority and an accurate snapshot of spending in the nation’s schools, shows the state’s independent schools shelled out $552.8 million on capital works in 2016.

This compares with $326.9 million for Victorian state schools, which educate 63 per cent of all students, and $343.7 million for Catholic schools.

Liked Why are the Liberals so terrified of our schools? by three anonymous teachers (The Age)

We have had nearly 10 years of Labor’s MySchool website, which encourages parents to play the school system like the stock market. Low scores are punished with low enrolments, as privileged families flock to high-performing schools, and the least socially mobile remain at schools with the least resources to support them.
As a result, when public schools in Victoria have received meagre funding increases, these are too often wasted on programs that principals think will boost scores and reputation – even if they undermine real learning. Despite plenty of evidence that streaming actually reduces student achievement, select-entry programs are breaking out like algae plagues around the state. As are uniform policies that mimic private schools in pettiness and pricing.