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From the Executive Principal

Staff Garth Wynne

Garth Wynne
Executive Principal

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As the year concludes, it was a great pleasure to conduct the final assembly and Senior Prize-giving for boys in Years 11–13 and to look forward to this same event for boys in Years 9–10 following their camp and community service week, respectively, on 2 December. Ending the year in any school always has its challenges because, as we wrap up, we also seem to be planning for the future as we are trying to finish well.

As we are all aware, it has been another extraordinary year when it comes to planning ahead. Things move from ‘levels to lights’ without much notice and impact on what we think we can do into the future.

This is certainly the case with regard to how the school was assuming vaccination status would impact on enrolment from the start of 2022. However, it is now clear that schools are specifically excluded from setting any entry requirements for students based on their vaccination status and, therefore, our soon to be sent request to parents for information relevant to their son’s vaccination status is a matter of statistical collection for the Government as we prepare for the new year. It is pleasing to let the community know that there has been overwhelming support for the education workforce vaccination mandate within College. It is evident though that ease of engagement in all school activities – given that so many of these impact on the wider community – will be facilitated by being fully vaccinated. I therefore encourage as many students as possible to take the option of vaccination.

Many legacies will be left by our retiring Chaplain, Rev. Bosco Peters. One that I think will be much acknowledged is the creation of a unique Christ’s College school lesson based on the Parable of the Good Samaritan. As I encourage you to read Bosco’s final submission for In Black & White, I also suggest that you take the time to view the specially created video explaining our school lesson that can be found here.

At the start of this year, Christ’s College began a journey into its past as a consequence of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Abuse in Care. That journey has led to a significant number of Old Boys being in touch with us. Each and every one of these Old Boys has had a direct response from, or contact with, our Board Chair, Hugh Lindo. This has been an exceptional commitment from Hugh and as the year concludes, we can do so with the soul of our school much strengthened by our willingness – led by him – to address the past in an honest and open way. Hugh’s commitment to this task has allowed us to move forward with a greater sense of integrity and our entire community owes him a great debt of thanks.

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End-of-year events

Staff Darrell Thatcher

Darrell Thatcher
Deputy Principal – Planning & Co-curricular


  • Junior Prize-giving Thursday 2 December, 11am live-stream
  • Somes House Prize-giving Thursday 2 December, 4.30pm live-stream
  • A Festival of Lessons & Carols Friday 3 December, 7pm live-stream

Year 9 Camp and Year 10 Service Programmes

24–26 November and 29 November–1 December.
These programmes will be held.

Thursday 2 December – Junior Prize-giving (uniform of the day – suits)

All boys are to be at College by 10am. No classes on Thursday.


Rehearsal for prize winners in the Assembly Hall


House roll calls


Junior Prize-giving (Chapel) – Years 9–10 students only


End of school year for Years 9–10 (Please note some cricket games will take place on Saturday 4 December)

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A Festival of Lessons & Carols

Staff Robert Aburn 0247 SQ

Robert Aburn
Director of Music

Launch of The Christ’s College Hymn

Coinciding with Chaplain Bosco Peters’ final service at Christ’s College before his retirement, a new, specially commissioned hymn will be sung in the Chapel at A Festival of Lessons & Carols at 7pm on Friday 3 December via live-stream.

With Covid-19 lockdown restrictions curtailing the original celebratory event planned to mark Bosco’s contribution to College, A Festival of Lessons & Carols instead will be live streamed to the College community.

Rounding out the service will be the first public performance of The Christ’s College Hymn, a purpose-written work whose text is by Marnie Barrell, a noted New Zealand hymn writer. The tune is the well-known Dambusters March by Eric Coates.

So, sadly, while it won’t be possible to hold a Carols on The Quad event this year, the whole community is invited to join in the live-stream of A Festival of Lessons & Carols to hear the traditional Christmas readings and listen to the familiar carols, along with the new hymn.

This will be a very special event for the Chapel Choir, which has been learning the new hymn over the past few weeks and will teach it to the wider school in the new year.

The idea is that the whole school will be able to sing the hymn from memory and that it will become a regular feature of Chapel life, and be sung frequently at significant College events.

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Boarding Matters

Staff Ben Vink 8793 2222 SQ

Ben Vink
Deputy Principal – Student Care

Covid-19 – places of interest

We can see how Covid-19 Delta continues to spread throughout the country. This is happening at the time our boarding students now move between home and school more frequently because of NCEA exams. We want to highlight the importance of keeping us up to date regarding possible places of interest that the boys may have visited. We have already had one case where parents have contacted a Housemaster to let us know that their son has been at a place of interest in their local community. In this instance, the parents managed the situation well and we were able to follow the guidelines in tandem. It highlights that, as a boarding community, we need to know if your son has been at a place of interest, as well as the guidelines recommended for that place. We can then work with you and your son on a plan based on their individual requirements.

Activities Programme

While the response to the Boarding MMG Survey earlier this year has been very positive, one of the areas highlighted for possible change is how the ‘Boarding experience has assisted in student development’. In response to feedback, we will endeavour to take those ideas on board. As we progress, I will keep you up to date with those changes.

First, we will review the Activities Programme for boarders. While the boys find the current programme positive, we recognise it was created five years ago and that it is time for a refresh. We need to cater to the demands of our boys in 2022, and students will be part of the discussion. For example, we will consider what the boys want to do at weekends – perhaps more activities with St Margaret’s College and Rangi Ruru Girls’ School. We will also consider the activities boys enjoy most. Can we offer more courses, such as on agriculture, barista training, learning to drive and forklift driving? This will help us regenerate the programme and boost student enjoyment and participation.

I will be personally writing to you, sharing more of the key findings of the MMG survey and our pathway forward.

What's for dinner?

Click here to view the Dining Hall menu produced by the talented team at Spotless.

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Curriculum News

Staff Nicole Billante

Nicole Billante
Deputy Principal – Teaching & Learning

Learning from experiences outside the classroom

Junior students have finished their classes and now head off over the next two weeks to learn in a variety of contexts outside the classroom. These give our boys experiences that challenge them, make them look at – and beyond – themselves, and help develop them into the young men we wish to exemplify the College virtues. Whether it be doing ropes courses on camp, or giving back to the community through their labours, every day will give our boys a different perspective. I encourage the boys to see the big picture of these programmes and reflect on their good fortune as they do so.

It will then be time to welcome the boys back for their prize-giving, when we celebrate all their achievements throughout the year. I cannot help but think ahead a year, when the current Year 10s will receive their College Diplomas at prize-giving as our first graduates of the new courses. Our opportunities to recognise an even greater range of strengths of achievements will add to a lovely celebration. This year, it will not be the same without parents in the audience to cheer the boys on. However, I am sure many of you will join us virtually through the live-stream.

Meanwhile, the seniors will be in the midst of NCEA exams. I have seen several students on-site during study leave. It fills me with confidence that most boys are approaching this important time with the diligence it requires. Because of the extended exam season, these will continue for some time after our juniors have received their prizes and headed off for summer break. Our teachers will have started their well-earned breaks, too, so I encourage our seniors to make the most of their teachers over the next two weeks. Those of us supporting the running of their exams will, of course, remain here and be available as needed.

In my final thought for this year, I wish you all a relaxing, restorative, and blessed holiday season. Boys, enjoy time with your family and friends and maybe even a few books along the way, too. I look forward to welcoming all the returning years in January.

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Hannah Clarkson IBW

Hannah Clarkson
Director of Drama

Talented youth turn out for Fame

Energy, exuberance, enthusiasm, action – this was Fame, as performed by the juniors of Christ’s College and Rangi Ruru Girls’ School.

College’s Director of Drama, Hannah Clarkson, gave a cohort of Years 9–10 students the chance to shine – and a lifetime memory – in the making of this well-known musical.

Audiences were restricted because of Covid-19 Alert Level 2 constraints, but the buzz of energy from the stage through the Old Boys' Theatre meant everyone was on the journey with the students of the New York High School of the Performing Arts. Whether dance, acting, or music majors, or the teachers, the cast of the latest joint production brought commitment and joy to their roles. And it was clear from the outset that these students were all going to achieve their moment of fame. From the Fame theme song, through all the other vocal challenges, the cast captivated the audience with its musicality, physicality, and sheer energy. And the finale didn’t disappoint. The show was only 1hr 15min long and over all too soon.

One happy spectator said “the fun was palpable” and “the students were obviously well trained by talented staff”.

Fame Production 6310
Fame Production 6404
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Wellbeing & Positive Education

John Quinn IBW

John Quinn
Director of Wellbeing & Positive Education

Emily Baird 2019 eb6d6da52e7e324adc545c15fc6d7f50

Emily Baird
Director of Wellbeing & Positive Education

Wellbeing in the time of uncertainty

As we approach the final weeks of College life for 2021 and farewell our Year 13s who are destined for new adventures in 2022, let us take time to celebrate and reflect on the highs and lows of the year.

Our boys, their families, and the wider College community demonstrated resilience and courage during lockdowns this year. Students coped remarkably well with disruptions to classroom learning, the cancellation of sports and field trips and not being able to socialise at times.

Despite Covid-19 looming all year, we are proud of how well everyone has come together and taken care of one another in challenging times. Our patience has been tested, yet the character strengths of our boys continue to shine bright in uncertain times.

This year has highlighted the importance of continuing to foster the wellbeing of our students, staff, and College families. A lot of work and effort have been put into enhancing our wellbeing programmes. The development of the new wellbeing curriculum for 2022 brings excitement as dedicated teaching time will further develop students’ ability to manage difficult and uncertain times and build the character attributes that, we believe, will enable our College graduates to flourish.

We would like to say a big “thank you” to students for your ability to keep going despite the difficulties, and to the teachers and staff who adapted and modified their teaching and workload to meet the needs of students and to our families for your continued patience as we navigated yet another year of uncertainty and moving to online presentations during Alert Level 2.

We encourage you to take a moment to reflect on something you appreciate from the year, and one thing you have learnt. Be kind to yourself and remember a random act of kindness can make an enormous difference to someone’s day.

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Christ's College Old Boys' Association

Lizzie Dyer The Quad

Lizzie Dyer
Alumni Manager

From the Chaplain

A final farewell from the Chaplain

This is my last contribution to In Black & White. It is an honour, as I head into retirement, to be receiving feedback about my time here – from current students and whānau, and from earlier times. I very much appreciated the invitation to speak at Senior Prize-giving and hand out prizes. The Leavers’ Service, in this strange Covid-19 world, was also especially memorable, as was the strong haka for Nick Coxon – who is also retiring – and for me. I look forward to Junior Prize-giving.

As I said at Prize-giving, I seek forgiveness for where I have fallen short and missed the mark. And I reiterate my giving glory to God and my thanks to all who have supported my time serving as Chaplain at Christ’s College: the Warden, Board, Executive Principal, staff, students and whānau, and, in particular, to Helen, my wife.

This Covid-19 context is an unusual, unanticipated way to end here, and to conclude my “working life”. This bizarreness is true, as I have said, for the leaving students also, as it is for many, many others in different situations – plans for a gap year, or going to an overseas university or other institution, have had to pivot. The demands for a variety of jobs have shifted.

For those who have asked, I do not know what retirement will look like – especially in this unforeseen new context. Helen (who teaches kindergarten) is also retiring. “Retreat” has grown in our English language to have a more positive understanding – people have retreats in order to advance; companies organise retreats to plan for a useful future. “Retirement” has not, to my ears anyway, been reworked into such a positive understanding. “Retreat” began as a spiritual concept and has now been appropriated by others – including the business community.

The Greek for “retirement”, ἀναχώρησις (anachoresis), still retains a spiritual dimension and history. Because it sounds so obscure, anachoresis may help me – it has much more of the sense that a retreat once held. In any case, I hope my anachoresis will help balance my life a bit more away from “human doing” to “human being”. We shall see.

Without Chapel services, I have been unable to launch, as planned, a “Christ’s College Lesson”. So, I leave you with my reflection on the Good Samaritan here, and writing about it here.

A Festival of Lessons & Carols – this year replacing our usual Carols on The Quad – will be streamed live here at 7pm, Friday 3 December, 2021.

I know you will welcome and support the Rev. Cameron Pickering as he takes up the Chaplain’s role next year.

I also wish you all a blessed Christmas, special time with friends and whānau, and all the best for 2022.

Yours in Christ,
Bosco Peters

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Staff Chris Sellars

Chris Sellars
Careers Advisor

Upcoming careers dates

10 DecemberUC applications to enrol due
10 DecemberVictoria University of Wellington applications due
10 December

University of Otago applications due

11 FebruaryLincoln University applications due
11 FebruaryLincoln University liaison visit, Year 13
18 FebruaryAra Institute of Canterbury liaison visit, Year 13
21 FebruaryLincoln University lectures start
28 FebruaryLincoln University enrolments close
4 MarchUC liaison visit, Year 13
29–30 MayUniversity of Otago Open Day

Christ's College CareerWise

The Christ’s College careers website, CareerWise, is a rich source of information about all things related to careers. Check it out and sign up for weekly alerts here.

I hope many of you signed up to the CareerWise website this year. As you are aware, Career Advisors can put their own information on this site. Tertiary providers can post information on a hub which we can view, and submit to the College site. You receive an email each week on Sunday with the new postings. This resource is a must for senior students if they are to keep up with current news and events.

StudyLink – student loans and allowances

If boys intend to apply for a student loan or allowance, they need to register and apply online through StudyLink. As this process can take time, it is best to get under way sooner rather than later.

Student Jobs Guide

Many students will be looking for a summer job. MoneyHub has produced a comprehensive Student Jobs Guide, with tips on how to make an application and where to look for student jobs. For more information, go to MoneyHub.

School Leavers' Tool Kit

For information on financial support for tertiary education, moving out of home, taking care of myself and others or getting a job, click here.

2021 leaver statistics

Below are the statistics – as of November 2021 – for College boys leaving at the end of the year, with 83% intending to study at tertiary institutions next year and 17% planning to either work or do an apprenticeship.

The following percentages apply to those attending tertiary institutions in 2022 and their intended place of study (107/127).

40% University of Canterbury
23% University of Otago
11% University of Auckland
10% Lincoln University
7% Victoria University of Wellington
3% Australian/USA universities
2% Massey University
2% Polytechnics – Ara/Otago Polytechnic
1% AUT
1% Defence Forces

Of the 2021 leavers attending tertiary institutions in 2022, the following percentages indicate the intended areas of study.

23% Commerce/Commerce & Law/Commerce & Science
15% Science/Science & Law
11% Arts (BA)/Arts & Law/Criminal Justice/Global Studies
11% Engineering
9% Design/Product Design/Architecture/Landscape Arch/Naval Arch
7% Health Sciences
5% Bachelor Arts & Science
5% Sport Coaching/Management/Development
4% Agriculture – BAg/BAg Sci/Dipl Agriculture
4% Music
3% Property
2% Communications
1% Army

In Black & White – Careers

In Careers news, I like to present information that is relevant both to the boys and their parents. I am aware not all boys read it, so I hope parents will use the information provided as a springboard for investigation, discussion and inspiration to help their sons as they consider their future. I feel the future of work will continue to be an interesting topic for all. Thank you for reading the Careers section. I welcome and appreciate your feedback and look forward to bringing you further careers information in 2022.

Chris Sellars

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From the Archives

Jane Teal

Prize-giving – 1871 and 1921

As we made our rearrangements for a slimmed-down Prize-giving in 2021, I wondered what it was like 150 and 100 years ago. I had to turn to Papers Past to obtain a full report. Quite simply, the Christ’s College Register did not exist in 1871 and the 1921 report in the April 1922 Register was short on detail about the Headmaster’s report.

There were 115 boys on the roll in 1871. The photograph that is closest in time is this one for 1869.

QUAD 1869

There were morning and evening services in the Chapel and prizes were distributed in Big School at 7pm for History, Geography, Recitation of English Poetry, Divinity, Classics, Mathematics, Mechanics, English, French, Music and Drawing.

The Press noted the “Masters Bell whom it will be perceived carried off a large number of prizes, receiving quite an ovation on coming forward”. Indeed, Arthur Wilbraham Dillon Bell (378) was awarded a Senior Somes Scholarship and received Mr Gould’s Prize for History, and College Prizes for Divinity, Mathematics, English and French. His brother, Edward Hutton Dillon Bell (377), was given Mrs Godley’s Prize for the English Essay on Colonisation, Mr Gould’s Prize for Mathematics, and College Prizes for Classics and Mechanics. Ernest Tancred Dillon Bell (379) received College Prizes for Divinity, Music and Classics.i

Unfortunately, the Warden, Bishop Harper, was “almost entirely inaudible from the noise of visitors coming in and taking their seats” as he spoke about the history of College and the fact that “while it brought out the whole of his intellectual abilities, it also cultivated and fostered the moral and physical qualities”. He also drew attention to the recent death of the Bishop of Melanesia, John Coleridge Patteson.ii

Following the distribution of prizes, there was a programme of glees and recitations. These included portions of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, as well as recitations from Terence and Aristophanes. The choir performed the part song Coming through the Rye, and the glees See our Oars and Oberon in Fairyland.

Fifty years later and 100 years before today, the College roll was 404 and this included boys who were in the Lower School as The Cathedral Grammar School did not return to its pre-1895 separate existence until 1923. Coming through the gates, it is clear that School House and the Hare Memorial with the laboratories have been added to the College buildings.

CCPAL 16 22a 025

Photograph Album CCPAL16/22a Christ’s College Archives.

Ernest Courtenay Crosse had recently been appointed as the 10th Headmaster and, in his speech, he referred to his need to balance tradition and “the vitality of the new”.

The Warden, Bishop Julius, said that “an education worthy of the name touched the whole man” and that the aim of the College “was to turn out men well equipped to take their place in the world”.iii

There was good news on the bequest front. William Wood (407) had left money to build a boatshed and the relatives of Conrad Nalder Denham (1630) had made a gift for the foundation of a prize for English Literature.

The subject list for prizes had expanded since 1871. There were Form Prizes as well as prizes for English, Divinity, French, Latin, Greek, Mathematics, Science and Drawing. Tancred Prizes for Literature and History, the Warden’s prize for Divinity, the Tyndale Prize for Divinity and a prize for Speaking, and a Chapel Choir Prize were also awarded. John Quentin McWilliam (3295) and Brian Tyrwhitt Wyn Irwin (3008) had accumulated enough Stars for work sent to the Headmaster to be awarded prizes.

The proceedings “were enlivened by the playing of the College Orchestra” and, at the conclusion of the proceedings, the College Song and the National Anthem were sung.

Tancred Smith 1921

Victor Aubrey Smith (3114) was given Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen for 1st place Tancred Literature Class D and With the Russian Pilgrims to Jerusalem by Stephen Graham as the Tyndale Divinity Prize Class B. These prizes are in the College Archives Collection.

i The Christ’s College School List lists EHD Bell as the Academic Head of School in 1870, 1871, and 1872. This does not quite match with the Form Lists and the places in the class of AWD Bell. See Press 15 December 1871.
ii Press 15 December 1871
iii Press 16 December 1921

Architectural Drawings of Christ's College

Architectural Drawings of Christ's College by Sir Miles Warren + Alec Bruce (Quentin Wilson Publishing), $45, is now available. Order your copy here.

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Latest News & Events

Senior Prizegiving Leavers 8048

Fond farewell for leavers

Year 13 students officially ‘left’ College on Thursday, with a pared-back Senior Prize-giving and Leavers’ Service signalling a special end to a challenging year.

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Science story

College scientists in 2021 Challenge Virtual Research Incubator

While College boys catch waves and party in the coming summer holidays, four keen scientists led by Tim Wang, will be taking part in this year’s Space for Planet Earth Challenge.

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Upcoming Events

3 December

A Festival of Lessons & Carols, 7pm live-stream

25 NOVEMBERChristchurch YOBs


18–20 February 2022Reunion Weekend


College photographs now available

To view photos please visit our events website click here

Once you have created an account and logged in, you will need to click the Access Gallery link and enter the access code below:

Access Code: v102cc21

Please note that access to the galleries is restricted to those with this Access Code only. The general public using the site cannot see the pictures. If you wish to let others view the pictures, you must give them the Access Code.

Butchers Apron
Stadium Cushion
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