Academic Excellence ensures that all of our staff members are extremely professional and qualified tutors, offering the highest possible level of exclusive and undivided attention in education. Our excellent tutors are all-too familiar with the enduring pressures of high school, albeit emotionally, physical or academically. We therefore aim to establish a unique program best suited to your child, allowing them to grow and develop in reaching their full potential. The tutors are either qualified teachers, or have received tremendous results post-HSC – achieving high Band 6’s in the subjects that they teach.

All tutors bring to our team a passionate zest and enthusiasm for education, providing an enjoyable and nurturing environment for your child.


Alida Markovics

Head Tutor

As the founder of Academic Excellence, Alida is a former K-12 Principal, Senior HSC Examiner and has been an educator for almost thirty-three years. She has a Bachelor of Education and Honours in History, with her main focus areas in Special Education, English and History.

Alida is passionate in aiding children with special needs or learning difficulties, and as a mother of two, she is extremely empathetic to those students who are often overlooked in the current education system. Alida is an extremely supportive educator, who intends to create a balance for your child’s emotional, psychological and intellectual needs as they enter high school and progress into adulthood, providing them with the foundational building blocks to begin their lives following their graduation.

Her total dedication and experience is mirrored in her holistic approach to learning. Alida strives to encourage all students to not only fulfil their academic potential, but to recognise it within themselves, equipping each child with the confidence to set goals, aim high and strive to achieve their personal aspirations.

Alida has a welcoming and approachable demeanour, fostering a close relationship with each student. She provides an innovative and safe learning environment, allowing all high school students to both independently and collectively grow as individuals.

Subjects of Expertise:

  • English (Standard, Advanced, Extension 1 and Extension 2)
  • History (Modern, Ancient and History Extension)
  • Business Studies
  • Legal Studies
  • Studies of Religion (1 and 2 Unit)
  • Society and Culture

Joel Aaron


Joel graduated from Emanuel School in 2019 achieving 6th in NSW for Geography. In 2021, he is looking to study a Bachelor of Commerce doubled with a Bachelor of Creative Intelligence and Innovation at UTS. His passion lies in helping others learn and sharing the knowledge he gained over the course of school.
Joel tutors:
– Maths (2U & 3U)
– English Advanced
– Economics
– Geography

Jamie Conlon


Jamie graduated from Reddam House in 2018 and is currently studying a Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Computer Science.

Jamie tutors:
-Maths advanced and Extension 1

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Celina DiVeroli


Celina graduated from Emanuel School in 2019 and is undertaking in 2021 a degree in Medical Science at the University of Sydney. Celina is passionate in fostering self-confidence and enthusiasm in her students, allowing them to reach their personal best. As a past student of Academic Excellence, Celina encompasses all the core values and ideals that Academic Excellence strives towards.

Celina Tutors:

  • English
  • Junior Maths
  • Biology
  • Chemistry

Zoe Doutreband


Zoe graduated from SCEGGS Darlinghurst in 2014 and has just completed her Bachelor of Arts Degree, Majoring in English and History. She is going on to do a post-graduate study in education and is eager to develop her teaching skills and help her students. Zoe teaches all levels of English and History.


William Duke


William graduated from The Scots College in 2018. During year 12, William studied English Advanced, English Extension, Mathematics, Mathematics Extension, Ancient History, History Extension and Chemistry. William is now studying English Literature and Film Studies at Sydney University; he plans to move onto a graduate directing course at NIDA. He has been recently accepted into the Dayell Scholars program at Sydney University – a program that aims to foster academic leadership and intellectual curiosity. His charming personality and love of teaching make him a great tutor and friend to all students.


India Fay


India graduated from Ascham in 2019 and is currently studying a double degree of Bachelor of Business and Arts in International Studies. She is passionate about teaching and enjoys getting to know her students and discovering their academic strengths.

India tutors:
– Junior Mathematics
– Mathematics Advanced (2 unit maths)
– Commerce
– Modern History


Jessie Fraser


Jessie graduated from St Catherine’s in 2016 and is now completing a Bachelor of Science at the University of Sydney, double majoring in Biology and Physics. She is passionate about Science and Maths and the critical thinking and problem solving skills they develop.

Jessie tutors Mathematics.

Lucy Fraser


Lucy Fraser


Lucy graduated from St Catherine’s School in 2016 and is currently undertaking a double degree of Biomedical Engineering and Medical Science at the University of Sydney. Her passion for maths and science generates an engaging learning environment, motivating her students to achieve their best results and reach their full potential.

Lucy teaches; Junior mathematics, General Maths, 2 Unit Maths and Biology


Wayne Grafton


Presently on leave from his position as Headteacher Creative and Performing Arts (Armidale Secondary College), Wayne holds a Bachelor and Master of Education and has deferred study in a Doctor of Education having moved to Sydney.

Wayne brings 32 years of secondary teaching experience from across NSW and the UK together with supporting Primary Schools and students in his field. Wayne has a very positive, empathetic and engaging demeanour. He has developed a wide range of techniques and stimulus to help foster a balance of rigour and enjoyment of the learning process. Wayne enjoys engaging young people’s minds through explicit teaching and creative problem-solving.

Subjects of expertise:

-All levels of literacy

-Visual Arts and Visual Design

-Photography and Media

-Drama and Theatrecraft


Angus Horton


Angus graduated from The Scots College in 2019 and is planning to study Commerce and Advanced Computing at the University of Sydney. Throughout the HSC, Angus studied Modern History, 3 Unit Mathematics, Advanced English, Physics and Economics.

Over the course of 2019, Angus developed a strong passion for learning and engaging with others that he developed as a student at Academic Excellence and through his lighthearted yet determined approach to academics, he hopes to share this passion with students to give them a more positive outlook on school and learning as a whole.

Being a strong believer in the triumph of hard work, he hopes to give confidence to all students undertaking the HSC and to set them up for a work ethic that extends beyond their highschool endeavours.

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Dean Kalas


Dean graduated from Sydney Grammar School in 2018, and received an All-Round achiever award. He is currently studying a double degree of Law and Commerce at the University of New South Wales. He is passionate about fitness and music in addition to academic studies. Dean tutors:

– Mathematics – 4 unit, 3 unit and 2 unit
– Physics
– Geography
– Economics

James Kalas


Rachel graduated from Moriah in 2015, achieving a Top All Rounder Award. She is currently studying a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) at the University of Sydney. Rachel tutors Maths (junior and senior), English (junior and senior) and History (junior and senior).


Harriet King


Harriet graduated Kincoppal Rose Bay in 2018 and is currently studying a Bachelor of Economics at the University of Sydney. She is passionate about learning and hopes to share this with her students.
Harriet tutors:
Primary school
Senior school Drama
Senior school Religion
Year 7 – 10 English
Year 7 – 10 maths

Jade Laidlaw


Jade graduated from Kincoppal Rose Bay in 2016, receiving an All-Round achiever award. She is currently studying a double degree of Commerce and Computer Science at the University of New South Wales.  Her hobbies include playing and umpiring netball, and computer programming. Jade Tutors:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Modern History
  • Studies of Religion
  • Legal Studies

Chloe Lees


Chloe graduated from Reddam House in 2019 and is doing a double degree Bachelor of Commerce and Advanced Studies at the University of Sydney (deferring 1 year) under their prized Dalyell Scholarship program.

Chloe tutors in Business Studies, English Advanced, Drama, Mathematics and Art.

I am very excited to be part of the Academic Excellence Team where I can assist younger students to thrive in their chosen areas of study and thus maximise individual success leading up to the HSC. Academic Excellence evidently prides themselves with their friendly and nurturing environment, all whilst instilling a passion for learning, hence why I cannot wait to join the team. Business Studies was also my favourite subject during school and I am keen to pursue future teachings in it.

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Deirdre Mair


Deirdre graduated from Sacré Coeur in 2013 and has just completed a Bachelor of Engineering and Bachelor of Arts majoring in Economics at the University of Sydney. She enjoys sharing her love of learning with others. Deirdre tutors maths and economics.

Ariane Notaras


Ariane graduated from Kambala School in 2018, and is currently studying a dual degree of Commerce and Information Systems at the University of New South Wales. Ariane encompasses a passion for fostering confidence and enthusiasm in her students, so they can reach their ultimate potential. She truly embraces a genuine interest in both learning and teaching, and believes in directing her students towards a well-rounded and effective approach to their studies.


Ariane tutors:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Modern History
  • History Extension

Isabella Pongrass


Isabella Pongrass


Isabella graduated from Ascham in 2019. Throughout the HSC, Isabella studied Advanced English, Modern, Ancient and Extension History, Visual Arts and German. 

Isabella tutors:

Junior History

Junior English

Modern History

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Gabriela Sacks

My name is Gabriela and I recently graduated from Moriah College in 2018. I am currently studying a Bachelor of Commerce/Media at UNSW. I thoroughly enjoy social sciences such as legal and business studies as well as math. I currently tutor:
– Business studies
– Legal studies
– Maths
– Commerce



Jennifer Sacks


My name is Jen and I tutor English, History and Drama. I am currently studying Psychology with a major in English at the University of Sydney. I am passionate about studying texts and reading books, which has leant to my love of these subjects and ability to help others with them.

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Tanya Schneider


Tanya Schneider is a Visual Arts, Photography and Film educator with more than 20 years experience in teaching in the top 20 prestigious schools in Sydney.

She has experience in teaching students of all age groups: K-12, University and Colleges as well as adults.

Tanya has delivered superior results from students at HSC level in Visual Arts and Extension English. Her students consistently achieve Band 5 and 6 results. Many of her HSC Visual Arts students have either been nominated or accepted into the prestigious ArtExpress Exhibition held at major art institutions such as the AGNSW. Currently, Tanya is the Visual Arts Convenor for the Association of Independent Schools, where she organises major Visual Arts conferences for teachers across NSW. Additionally, she has also taught students at Illinois University, Chicago since 2014 and continues to do so.

Tanya has also had extensive experience in the area of Art Therapy where Fine Arts education and Wellbeing has become an integrated concept.

Her credentials are as follows: Bachelor of Fine Arts COFA UNSW, Master of Fine Arts COFA UNSW and Diploma of Education, Sydney University.


Zoe Sigalla


Zoe graduated from Kincoppal Rose Bay in 2014 and is currently studying Arts/Law at the University of Sydney. She is an extremely vibrant and enthusiastic tutor, with a die-hard passion for English Literature and Criminal Law. Of her time as a student at Academic Excellence, Zoe says: “When I was a year 12 student, I was tutored at Academic Excellence. I am honestly so grateful and appreciative of my learning experience here, as both Alida and the staff have truly helped me emerge confidently into post-HSC life: emotionally and intellectually. Academic Excellence has developed my open-mindedness and positive self-assurance in my academic capabilities. It is this personal experience that has allowed me to connect and relate with my own students, striving to ensure they achieve this same outcome.

Zoe tutors:

  • English (Standard, Advanced, English Extension 1 and 2 Units)
  • History (Modern, Ancient, and Extension History)
  • Legal Studies
  • Studies of Religion (1 unit)
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Alexander Swan


I am Alexander Swan and graduated The Scots College in 2019. I achieved an atar of 96.9 and a band 6 in Modern History, Physics, Advanced (2018) and Extension 1 Mathematics. I also received a HSC examination Extension 2 mark of 90. I am currently enrolled in UNSW studying Data Science and teach all levels of High School and HSC mathematics (including Standard).


Gemma Wilson


Gemma graduated from SCEGGS Darlinghurst in 2013. She has a Bachelor of Medical Science (majoring in Immunobiology) with First Class Honours from Sydney University. She is about to begin her PhD researching breast cancer at the Westmead Institute of Medical Research, part of Sydney University Medical School.  

Gemma tutors Chemistry, Biology and Junior Mathematics. 


Casey Writer


Casey is a keen social sciences tutor currently completing a Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Education dual degree at the University of New South Wales. He graduated from Cranbrook School in 2013 with a passion for economics and business. Casey is eager to develop his creative teaching skills to improve his abilities as a teacher in training. In his own time, he enjoys surfing and coaching basketball.