Farewell Mr Tockuss

It is my privilege to pay tribute to Mr Tockuss and his many years of service at Calrossy Anglican School. 

Mr Tockuss first started at Calrossy as a parent in 2001 and started teaching at the School the following year. In his time teaching at our School, he proved himself to be a dedicated, enthusiastic and passionate teacher, colleague and friend. 

He shared his love for the environment, singing, gardening and chickens with students, parents and staff alike. 

I spoke to some current and past Calrossy students to see what they loved most about Mr Tockuss. As you can imagine, having taught here for more than 20 years, these students range from quite young up to adults with children of their own. 

Spending time in the chook pen and painting the chicken’s toenails featured highly. They also mentioned chess, the veggie patch, singing to the guitar, being bubbly, reading and being super when they beat you at chess. 

One of the students said that they loved having Mr Tockuss in Year 4 because you got to have a pizza party if you learned your times tables. 

And see, that is the real strength of Mr Tockuss. He is willing to do whatever it takes to encourage students and help them to learn and grow. 

This could be as simple as 

  • Reading the Ahn Do books for himself so that he could talk to his students about what they were reading. 
  • Or dressing up as a giant teddy bear for the Kindergarten Teddy Bears Picnic. 
  • Or organising a scarecrow competition and having Costa Georgiadis from Gardening Australia come to the school to judge it. 
  • Or coming in every day in the holidays to tend the veggie patch and look after the chickens so they were ready when the children came back to school.
  • Or laying on his tummy on the floor in the classroom teaching kindergarten students how to play chess. 

On top of all those amazing things he did, every person I asked described him as nice or kind. And that kindness and caring nature is what we will miss the most about not having Mr Tockuss at School every day. 

Mr Tockuss, we are sad about your departure from Calrossy but at the same time happy to know that you are not retiring ‘from something’ but ‘to something’. Now you get to use that endless energy on your own pursuits. On spending time with your lovely wife, your children and little grandsons, driving your tractor and growing your own veggies and flowers. And we know it will all be done with the same dedication, enthusiasm and passion you have shown as a teacher, colleague and friend for all these years. 

Thank you.

LInda Wilson - Junior School Teacher, Calrossy Anglican School