The Frank Dando Sports Academy opened in 1980, aiming to provide an education for boys 11 to 17 years of age who, although intelligent, were not succeeding in mainstream schools.

We are a small school enrolling approximately 26 students with a staff of five teachers and two part time specialist staff.

The school provides a supportive, predictable and consistent educational environment where intensive physical education is superimposed into the academic curriculum. Our students develop positive behaviours in the class room and at home.

Equal time is given to academic subjects and physical education, with both programs being taught in the same way by the same teachers.

With a focus on maths, reading and written expression, our low teacher : pupil ratio enables students to quickly progress to higher than normal standards.

Camps are an integral part of the school's curriculum as they enable students to explore and extend their learning in a non-school setting. They also facilitate development of social skills as well as build resilience and confidence.

Typically, after one or two years students can return to mainstream schools with increased self-esteem, strong core academic skills and improved health resulting from intensive physical and outdoor education activities.



Frank Dando began teaching as a student teacher in 1948, graduating from Melbourne Teachers' College in 1950. In 1956 he took a year of leave from the Department of Education to travel to Japan where he obtained a 2nd degree black belt for judo.

In 1964, as principal of a primary school, he was given an Education Department scholarship and finished an honours degree in English and Japanese at Monash University.

As an experienced educator he was able to observe the impact of physical education on children’s academic development which became the focus of his Master's degree thesis in remedial education at Monash University. Soon after founding the school he undertook further research at U.C.L.A in 1984 with Professor Bryant Cratty.

Frank always sought to set an example to his students: he is a 7th Dan for Judo and a noted coach, an expert down hill skier, a trained scuba diver and a keen horseman.

Frank retired as Principal in March 2021 at the age of 90. He continues to be involved with the school as a member of the school council.


B.A.(Hons), M.Ed., T.P.T.C., M.A.C.E.
7th. DAN Judo, Two years at Tokyo Kodokan



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M. Ed. B. App. Sci (Human Mvt, Psych). Dip.Ed, Grad Dip RE, AES, AEP








B.Sc (Chem. Eng.), B.Ed (Hons)



Teacher  Aide

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Activities Manager

B.Sc. Dip.Ed.

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Jane Dando

Business Manager

B.A.(Hons), Grad.Dip.Bus (Bkg & Fin), M.Bus


Term Dates - 2021

Term 1

Staff return:

Monday 1 February


Students return:

Wednesday 3 February


Daylesford Camp:

Monday 1 March – Friday 5 March


Labour Day Holiday:

Monday 8 March


Last day of term:

Thursday 1 April

Term 2

Staff return:

Monday 19 April


Students return:

Tuesday 20 April


Survival Camp:

Monday 3 May – Thursday 6 May

Friday 7 May – No school for students


Queen’s Birthday Holiday:

Monday 14 June


Last day of term:

Friday 25 June

Term 3

Staff return:

Monday 12 July


Students return:

Tuesday 13 July


Ski Camp:

Sunday 15 August – Friday 21 August


Last day of term:

Friday 10 September

Term 4

Staff return:

Monday 4 October


Students return:

Tuesday 5 October


Cup Day Long Weekend:

Monday 1 November – Tuesday 2 November


Surf Camp:

Monday 22 November – Friday 27 November


Last day of term:

Thursday 2 December



The following documents are available for download.  Documents in PDF format can be read using Adobe Reader.

Policies and Procedures Information Handbook