Tombolo Academy is a specialist school delivering a rich educational program for students with a unique combination of abilities and challenges. These students are often known as twice exceptional.


We imagine a time when all our students recognise their boundless potential, embrace their differences and are accepted for their uniqueness.


Every day we deliver a rich educational program that emphasises the strengths, gifts and talents of our students while building the skills necessary to be successful throughout their lives.


At Tombolo Academy, we are committed to sustaining a positive environment in which all students and adults can flourish in an inclusive setting where all members of the community feel safe and valued.

We bring these values to life through:


  • Respect ourselves.
  • Respect each other. 
  • Respect our community and the world around us. 
  • Value and support diversity.


  • Remain humble despite our personal achievements, strengths, and differences.
  • Take responsibility for our actions.
  • Make informed choices and be considerate of others and our community.
  • Grow with dignity and integrity. 


Are brave when faced with challenges.
Positively adapt to change in a variety of contexts.
Show commitment, and apply ourselves until the end.
Build confidence to solve problems and connect failure to learning.


  • Find the joy in learning. 
  • Have a sense of adventure and are willing to try new things.
  • Develop an awareness of our place within the global community. 
  • Develop a sense of interest and wonder.


  • Work with others to achieve success. 
  • Foster strong partnerships between students, teachers, and others in our community.
  • Acknowledge that by working together in a positive and constructive manner enables us to achieve collective outcomes.
  • Take collective responsibility for the success and wellbeing of all learning in our community.


  • Treat others with care and compassion 
  • Consider the feelings of others before we act or react.
  • Understand and appreciate the cultural diversity of our community.
  • Develop an awareness of how we might impact the feelings of others.

Our School Board

Mark is smiling widely, he is wearing a deep-blue suite, with a light blue shirt, and a mid-blue and white-striped tie.

Mark Northeast  – Chair

Mark is an accountant by background and was previously a partner/executive director at Pitcher Partners from 2002, stepping down in 2015 to free up more time to devote to community and charitable activities.

Now, he divides his time between being an accountant and serving on several boards, both professionally and in a voluntary capacity.

For Mark being a part of the establishment of Australia’s first school for twice-exceptional students has and continues to be an exciting challenge, honour and privilege. 

Outside of Tombolo, Mark enjoys being outside, either riding his bike or paddling in the bay on an ocean ski.

Deanne is smiling widely, wearing dark-blue, white-striped blazer and dark-blue shirt, in front of a blue-green background.

Deanne Cannizzaro 

Deanne has a strong professional background within the Australian and UK secondary and tertiary education sectors. She is currently Head of Project Delivery and Professional Services at a global SaaS provider of GRC products and solutions and consults Australian schools in meeting regulatory and compliance requirements. Deanne is also undertaking doctoral research studies into educational leadership.

As a teacher, Deanne has always been passionate about providing the best opportunities for learning for students. This is something that the Tombolo Academy community embodies, and it was something she could not resist being a part of. Her role on the Tombolo board is an opportunity to bring her knowledge of education to the team and continue to provide (indirectly) opportunities for young people to flourish.

Charlotte Rendle Short 

Charlotte has more than 40 years’ experience in schools as a teacher, senior leader, Principal and as a system leader. She qualified as a teacher in Victoria and also holds a Masters of Educational Administration (New England University) and an MBA (Durham University). 

As a senior executive she was responsible for developing, leading and managing independent schools and academies within United Learning, one of the largest not-for-profit educational organisations in the UK.  She has 25 years’ experience of mentoring and coaching Principals and their leadership teams, with a particular focus on school culture and organisational structures. 

Her recent work in Victoria includes: 

  • Executive coaching and workshops for school leaders and leadership teams in all sectors, across Australia and internationally 
  • Strategic Review of the Senior School, Haileybury College, Melbourne (2022) 
  • Design and delivery of the Effective Mentoring Program (2018 – continuing) training mentors of early career teachers within all 3 sectors and in early childhood education on behalf of DET and VIT 
  • Policy development for ISV’s CompliSpace website 

Charlotte has been Deputy Chair of the Early Childhood Management Services Board for 9 years and is a Director 

& Company Secretary, Windsor Community Bank®, Bendigo Bank  

Emma Grey – Secretary

Emma is a professional economist with a passion for better understanding and tackling issues of inequality.

The completion of a joint Honours Degree in Econometrics & Business Statistics and Economics at Monash University, Emma has spent eight years building and applying her economic skills across a wide range of topics in private economic consulting roles.

Emma has twice-exceptional family members, which has sparked her interest in understanding how school education can be a more inclusive environment.

She has been a Director on Tombolo Academy’s board since its inception and is looking forward to supporting the school’s continued growth and provision of an engaging educational environment for more students.

Wayne is smiling, wearing a black suite, white shirt and a cream and white-striped tie.

Wayne Saunders 

Wayne is a retired career professional who has worked in corporate and consulting roles. Prior to retiring from full-time work at the end of 2011, Wayne was acting Executive General Manager of Corporate Services and Chief Information Officer at Australia Post.   

Wayne has built a career as a chief information officer and strategic consultant, specialising in business and IT alignment and IT transformation. He has more than 40 years of experience in the Information Technology industry across a broad range of large global and domestic organisations. Significant program management and governance disciplines have been featured throughout his career.

Wayne enjoys a number of sports to stay fit and healthy, including golf, swimming, kayaking, cycling, and walking. He enjoys reading, gardening, and reading in his downtime.