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From the Executive Principal

Staff Garth Wynne

Garth Wynne
Executive Principal

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The past weekend was a celebration of all things Old Boys at College. It was a pleasure to host more than 400 Old Boys from multiple generations at Friday evening’s Cocktail Party (following the CCOBA AGM), and then welcome 300 back on Saturday for lunch.

It is one of those undeniable truths that schools like College develop lifelong camaraderie among students – that has been the most significant observation of the weekend. We, as a community, can be very proud of that truth. Particular thanks for the success of this weekend must go to the key organiser, Alumni Manager Lizzie Dyer, along with other members of the Advancement team, and Old Boy year group coordinators. Reunion photos can be found here.

It augurs well for all when we come together as an entire community for our 175th celebrations in 2025.

Connecting Year 9 parents

All Year 9 parents are invited to share their contact details with other parents from the same year group via our Year 9 Parent Community Connection form.

This contact list will be invaluable over the next five years, enabling stronger ties with the school community and enriching your College experience. It will connect you with parents in your son’s year group and House, and also the parents of his friends, so please take some time to complete the Year 9 Parent Community Connection form.

The contact list will be shared with those Year 9 parents who have chosen to opt in.

Boarding spaces for existing dayboys

We know that boys are busy, with multiple sporting, co-curricular and, of course, academic commitments. With this in mind, and with some recent refurbishment, we are offering a very limited number of spaces in our boarding Houses in 2023 to our Years 10–13 dayboys on a permanent or casual basis.

For some boys, boarding at College may help ease the weight of competitions, rehearsals, and lengthy training sessions. It is also an opportunity for our senior boys to prepare for moving away from home – perhaps into tertiary accommodation or simply living in another city – in their post-College lives. Year-long boarding and short-term spaces are available for Year 13 students and in selected year groups.

As we only have very few places available, please contact Registrar Sarah Fechney as soon as possible if your son wishes to be considered for a boarding space.

Independent Schools of New Zealand parent survey

As our wider community is aware, College is a part of Independent Schools of New Zealand (ISNZ). This association represents, and advocates for, independent schools nationwide. College, like many schools, supports ISNZ in several ways. When the Committee of Heads existed, I was a member prior to the reorganisation of governance. We, through our staff, have made various contributions to professional learning opportunities and think tanks over the years.

ISNZ now seeks our help to plan for the future and, with this in mind, it has sought our participation in a national survey of parents. ISNZ has commissioned McCrindle Research, an independent research company, to conduct this survey. McCrindle is an internationally recognised research company, conducting research for the education sector in New Zealand and Australia. Your responses will be anonymous. The survey will remain open until Friday 10 March.

The survey will take about 10 minutes to complete and can be accessed here.

Athletics Day

This Friday, our Ngā Puna Wai-based House Athletics Day looms as a wonderful event and I know that boys and staff are excited by this new venue and the opportunity to compete and celebrate their House identities. Much of the camaraderie of Old Boys is created at events such as this. We look forward to seeing parents, families, and supporters on the day.

Read on

Athletics Day

Staff Darrell Thatcher

Darrell Thatcher
Deputy Principal – Planning & Co-curricular

The annual Christ’s College Athletics Day will be held this year at Ngā Puna Wai on Friday 24 February. We welcome all parents, families, and supporters.

Plan for the day:

  • Boys will be expected to be at College by 8.15am for a normal roll call.
  • Boys can be dropped off at Ngā Puna Wai and/or collected if parents had completed the previously sent form confirming this (please note there will be no staff supervision of the boys at the venue prior to 8.30am).
  • Boys can arrive at school in their House athletics gear (singlet and shorts) but must wear their House jersey over their singlet. If the forecast is for cooler weather, then College hoodies and trackpants can also be worn. NO casual clothing is to be worn. Please ensure boys bring hats, warm clothing, and sunscreen.
  • Boys will be travelling to and from Ngā Puna Wai by bus.
  • Any absences on the day MUST be communicated to the school in the normal manner.
  • The Athletics Championships begin at 9am and conclude at 3.35pm. View the Order of Events here, along with a map of the venue here.

Please note:

  • Boys must stay on-site ALL day.
  • Boarders will be provided with morning tea and lunch, distributed by House staff at the venue.
  • Dayboys will need to bring their own food. However, the cafe will also be open at Ngā Puna Wai.
  • NO lunches will be provided for dayboys who normally receive a boarder’s lunch at school.
  • Boys must be sun smart by using sunblock that will be available around the field and keeping hydrated. They need to bring a water bottle. There are plenty of water taps at Ngā Puna Wai, so boys can top up their bottles.

For parents and supporters planning to attend the championships, you are welcome to bring your own food and drinks. However, the Ngā Puna Wai cafe will be open. It offers “pies, sausage rolls, fresh sandwiches, toasties, paninis, rice balls, slices and much more”, along with “hot drinks, cold drinks, and ice drinks”.

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Boarding Matters

Staff Ben Vink 8793 2222 SQ

Ben Vink
Deputy Principal – Student Care

Cyclone Gabrielle

We offer our thoughts and love to those families in our boarding community who have been affected by Cyclone Gabrielle. As you will be aware, we have families who live in the Gisborne and Hawke’s Bay regions. We are pleased to hear that they are all safe. However, we know that the impact of a natural disaster on local communities can be extensive. I know I can speak on behalf of the whole College community in support of you and your communities.

Start of the boarding year

A lot of our work within College boarding is centred on the social and emotional wellbeing of our students. As students return after a long break and our Year 9s settle into boarding life – often for the first time – we focus on building relationships with the boys so that they feel safe and comfortable in our environment. The compulsory weekends in boarding give the boys the chance to get to know their peers in their own year groups, boys in various other year groups, and each other, as well as the boarding staff. They are designed so that the boys can have fun and mix and relax.

Boarding activities

Over the last fortnight our boarders have been keeping themselves busy with a range of activities – from mini golf to the driving range, enjoying fish and chips on a day trip to Hanmer Springs, a night at the movies, and a return visit to Aqualand.

2023 04 boarding activity feb
2023 05 boarding activity feb

What's for dinner?

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

Effort, Respect, and Individual Learning – a work in progress

At the end of next week, we will distribute, via Schoolbox, our first Interim Progress Grade (IPG) reports for 2023. These reports provide a snapshot of how boys are working in classes. They also indicate to the boys, parents, and pastoral team whether a boy is tracking as we hope. IPGs are completed two to three times a term and each covers the period since the previous IPG report. IPGs can offer the first signal that a student is taking his foot off the gas with their learning while there is still time to rectify the situation.

Three areas are captured in the report – Effort, Respect, and Individual Learning Progress. The latter is a measure of whether a boy is progressing compared with his previous point. Obviously, early in the year, progress is relative. Parents should not be dismayed to find your son is ‘acceptable’ near the start of the year. As learning and work increases throughout the term, so too does the ability to more accurately measure progress.

For our students in Years 10–11, these IPGs are also directly related to the Academic Engagement element of their Christ’s College Diploma. As I mentioned to the Year 11s last week, trying their best in class will reap the rewards of a Gold Award in this area. It really is that simple. Too many ‘usuallys’ over ‘always’ will result in a drop to Silver. Failing to meet our expectations in the classroom will mean a boy fails to meet the basic Black and White benchmark and puts his overall Diploma award in jeopardy.

Regular updates on progress towards this element will be posted through the ‘Achievements’ area on Schoolbox. I encourage students and parents to review these when posted to reflect on whether boys are truly striving to be at their best.

We hope that this quick measure is a good starting point for discussions between boys and teachers, as well as at home.

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Round Square exchange

Staff Rob Donaldson 0778 SQ

Rob Donaldson
Deputy Principal

Round Square exchange to Tasmania opportunity for Year 9 students

Scotch Oakburn College in Launceston, Tasmania, is offering a two-week exchange with Christ’s College boys in Year 9 (Year 8 in Australia).

Up to three College students will spend two weeks at Scotch Oakburn College. They will be either hosted by a school family (if they are a day student) or stay in the Boarding House. The exchange will take place in Terms 2 or 3, with the aim to arrange dates that are the least disruptive to the boys’ school programmes.

In return, our students will be expected to host a Scotch Oakburn student for two weeks.

Under the exchange, parents will cover the cost of a return airfare and some spending money for their son. School fees are not affected. The successful College applicants will travel together to Tasmania, via Melbourne, unaccompanied, and be met by Scotch Oakburn College Round Square staff at Launceston Airport.

I have already emailed all Year 9 boys about the exchange, asking that they discuss the opportunity with their parents if they are interested. Boys must email me to express their interest by 5pm on Monday 27 February. I will then formalise the application process by sending those boys an application form. Please note, I would like boys to contact me directly via email to express an interest, rather than parents contacting me.

More information about the exchange can be found here.

Rob Donaldson
Round Square representative

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        Christ’s College Cricket Tour

        Staff Andrew Levenger 34578 2195 SQ

        Andrew Levenger
        Cricket 1st XI Manager

        Christ’s College Cricket Tour to England

        In April this year, 26 boys and four staff will head overseas to play 14 cricket matches over 25 days. The games will be played in a variety of formats and conditions, including the humidity of Singapore and Malaysia, as well as the spring conditions of the United Kingdom.

        In England, the boys will play in – and around – London, Oxford, and Brighton, including matches at some of the most prestigious schools in the country. If any Old Boys or family members, want to support the tour in person, the schedule can be viewed here.

        As part of our fundraising for the tour, the traditional tour dinner is being held on Friday 3 March in the College Dining Hall. It will be a wonderful evening with former New Zealand captain – and Old Boy – John Wright in conversation with Garth Gallaway, followed by former New Zealand cricketer and well-known commentator Jeremy Coney who will entertain guests before a live auction of getaways, cricket gear and coaching, wine, and art evenings, alongside other items. The dinner includes canapes, dinner, and drinks.

        You can book a dinner spot or table by clicking on the banner below. If you have any questions, please contact Andrew Levenger at

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              Wellbeing Education

              Staff Caroline Black 6072 SQ

              Caroline Black
              Director of Wellbeing Education

              Love is in the air

              In the past week, there has been the celebration of Valentine’s Day at College, with mascot Maggie Bear and senior students from St Margaret’s College, along with our own senior students, recording sweet Valentine’s Day messages for their peers.

              With a ‘Happy Valentine’s Day from SMC’ banner floating from the Hare Memorial window, it was clear that love was in the air.

              It might surprise you, as it did most of our students, that ‘Love’ was the most commonly shared, top, signature Character Strength in our students in 2022. And 2023 is shaping up to be the same. Love is one of the 24 Character Strengths identified by the VIA (Values in Action) Classification of Character Strengths and Virtues.

              American psychologist and educator Dr Martin Seligman’s purpose of the VIA Character Strengths is to promote wellbeing and flourishing by identifying and utilising our strengths in our day-to-day lives. In the VIA framework, love is defined as the ability to form and maintain close relationships with others, including friends and family. It involves a deep sense of caring and compassion for others, as well as a willingness to support and help them in times of need.

              The Character Strength of ‘Love’ is important to teenage boys because it can help them develop healthy relationships, emotional regulation skills, resilience, and improved wellbeing. By recognising this strength, teenage boys can develop into more compassionate, empathetic, and resilient young men and yet some students struggle with the notion of love. It can be viewed as soft, weak, and even unmanly and some students are openly confused when they see it as their top signature strength.

              Social media and reality TV have influenced their view of love by promoting unrealistic and often superficial depictions of romantic relationships. They have also contributed to the normalisation of toxic behaviours, such as jealousy, possessiveness, and the objectification of partners, which can negatively impact on their understanding of healthy love. We can counteract the damaging impact of social media and reality TV on this view of love by promoting education on healthy relationships, fostering open and honest communication, and prioritising empathy, respect, and mutual understanding in our own relationships.

              From our VIA results, love is clearly a strength that is valued in our school community. Perhaps if we celebrate love more visibly – and not just on Valentine’s Day – how our students perceive the reality of love may change.

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                From the Chaplain

                Staff Cameron Pickering 1608 SQ

                The Rev'd Canon Cameron Pickering

                Lent – a time to reflect and repent

                Tēnā koutou katoa.
                Peace to you all in the name of God.

                It was delightful to be joined in Chapel on Sunday by more than 100 Old Boys attending reunions across the weekend. Generations have come to find something beyond the material in our worshipping community, and it has been heartening to see boys of 13 alongside those aged 13, 71 years ago.

                We are reminded that Chapel at College is not an event, but rather as natural to us as reading maths or English. However, it was special to have the Bishop of Christchurch – attending his own reunion weekend – as our preacher. Bishop Peter Carrell (Corfe House 1973–77) – incidentally also the Warden of Christ’s College – will also give our Ash Wednesday service address this year.

                As Lent begins across the Christian world, we are reminded of our need for God, and one another. Lent can become, for some, an ascetic guilt trip. Others still decry the concept of saying sorry and making everything right. Repenting actually means to turn away, to change direction, to offer not only an apology but, in contrition, strive to live better today than yesterday. If we have never thought we could be less prejudiced in our thoughts towards neighbours and those who differ from us, or wanted to reduce the waste and pollution which will inevitably cause environmental concern for those who follow us, then we might bat on. However, in my conversations with students and parents alike, I hear a different tune – Lent is about hearing that voice and responding.

                I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church to the observance of a holy Lent, by self-examination and repentance.

                May God bless you all this week,

                Yours in Christ,
                The Rev'd Cameron Pickering

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                Latest News & Events

                2023 04 coast to coast

                College trio powers up in Coast to Coast

                A multi-talented College trio has raced away to claim 2nd spot in the schools division of the Coast to Coast and finish 11th overall (out of 102 teams) in the two-day teams event.

                Read full article
                2023 css tennis champs

                College aces Canterbury tennis rivals

                Top College seeds Liam Barrett and Jack Hansen-Ratter have taken the title honours at the Canterbury Secondary Schools Tennis Championships at Wilding Park.

                Read full article
                2022 NZQA Scholarship students landscape

                Outstanding Christ’s College scholars

                College 2022 leavers Isaac Heap and Bruce Chen have been named Outstanding Scholars by NZQA while Yusef Elnahas has been recognised as New Zealand’s Top Scholar in Japanese

                Read full article
                2023 03 assembly t1 w2

                Gillette Cup champions return to school crease

                Members of the 2022 Gillette Cup-winning 1st XI cricket team have returned to College to share their trophy with the whole school.

                Read full article

                Upcoming Events


                Thursday 23 FebruaryWelcome to Christ's College – Year 9 parent registration
                Register here.
                Thursday 23 FebruaryYear 10 Welcome back to Christ's College

                Register here.

                Sunday 26 February, 10amJoe Studholme Memorial Vintage Classic Car Day

                Book now.

                Tuesday 28 February, 6pmWaimakariri Community Visit

                Book now.

                Wednesday 1 March, 7.30pmParent Education Evening – In your skin – Relationships and Sexuality Education

                Book now.

                Thursday 2 March, 6pmNorth Canterbury Community Visit

                Book now.

                Friday 3 March, 6pmFrom Hagley to Lord's

                Book now.

                Saturday 4 March, 12pmCCOBA Yacht Race

                Register here.

                Monday 6 March, 7pmDiploma Information Evening for parents of Years 10–11

                Book now.

                Thursday 9 March, 6pmSouthern Lakes Community Visit

                Book now.

                Thursday 9 March, 7pmNCEA Information Evening for parents of Years 12–13 students

                Book now.

                Thursday 23 March, 7pmParent Education Evening with Lea Stening – Sports nutrition for teens

                Book now.

                Sunday 26 March, 2pmCCOBA vs College Hockey

                Register here.

                Saturday 20 May, 8amYear 11 Mother and Son Breakfast
                Book now
                Read on


                Staff Chris Sellars

                Chris Sellars
                Careers Advisor

                Upcoming careers dates

                28 FebruaryVictoria University of Wellington liaison visit, 1pm, Year 13, W101
                2 MarchUniversity of Canterbury (UC) liaison visit, 8.15am, Year 13, Fine Arts building
                9 MarchUniversity of Otago liaison visit, 8.15am, Year 13, Fine Arts building
                15 MarchUniversity of Canterbury (UC) liaison visit, 10.15am, Year 12, during Congers
                19 AprilArarau UC | UC Possibilities – Discover the Bachelor of Arts
                7–8 MayOtago Tertiary Open Day – College to take group
                11 MayCareers Expo, 9am, Year 12, Christchurch Arena
                17 MayLincoln University, 10.15am, Year 12, during Congers
                24 MayNZ Defence Force, 10.15am, Year 11, during Congers
                26–27 MayUniversity of Waikato Hamilton Open Day
                8 JuneAra Institute of Canterbury Open Day
                3 AugustMassey University (Manawatu) Campus Taster Day
                25 AugustMassey University (Wellington) Open Day (TBC)
                25 AugustVictoria University of Wellington Open Day
                26 AugustAUT Live Open Day (TBC)
                8 SeptemberUniversity of Canterbury (UC) Open Day
                29 SeptemberLincoln University Open Day (during school holidays)

                Christ's College CareerWise

                The Christ’s College careers website, CareerWise, is a rich source of information about all things related to career information. Check it out and sign up for weekly alerts by subscribing here.
                Below are recent postings on the College careers website:

                Below are recent postings on the College careers website:

                Otago Tertiary Open Day

                I will take up to 20 boys to Dunedin for the University of Otago and Otago Polytechnic Open Days on Sunday and Monday, 7–8 May. It is an opportunity for the boys to see Dunedin, attend lectures or information sessions, and look at accommodation options. This is a school trip. Boys cannot drive their own vehicles with other students, but parents can travel to Dunedin with their son, independently, if they choose. The boys will be given booklets to help plan their day. Boys need to express their interest in attending by 10 March.

                School subjects and career opportunities

                Discover where your school subjects can take you. Careers NZ has put together posters featuring career opportunities. Boys can learn more about career options based on subjects they enjoy.

                University of Otago podcasts – Young people’s journeys

                Produced by University of Otago school liaison officer Prajesh Chhanabhai, these podcasts cover the journeys that young people have taken to get to where they are, or where they are headed. Find out more here.

                University scholarships for Year 13 students

                MoneyHub, a consumer finance website, has published a guide to scholarships for students planning to start university in 2024. The guide includes scholarships offered by every university, as well as those specifically available to local students. Applications close throughout the year. MoneyHub has included tips for scholarship success. For more details, visit the MoneyHub Scholarship page.

                Korean Scholarship Trust

                The Korean Scholarship Trust is registered with the Charities Commission. It awards scholarships to secondary school students of Korean ethnicity in their final year in the Canterbury region. The scholarship programme has been running for 24 years and the scholarship is called the Canterbury Scholarship. It has been awarded to 124 students to date.

                The scholarship programme has three categories:

                • Academic
                • Leadership
                • Arts, sports, and performing arts

                The scholarship is usually awarded in the following year in the first week of February after NCEA results are announced.

                UC – Open Day

                Visiting the University of Canterbury campus on Rā Tōmene | Open Day provides students with an excellent experience. It is held on Friday 8 September, BEFORE applications to the halls of residence are due, therefore, students can submit their accommodation preferences after their campus visit. The closing date for accommodation applications is Wednesday 27 September. If students are unable to attend, they can book a guided campus tour during the year.

                In Black & White – Careers

                I share a range of relevant information with parents and boys via In Black & White. However, I am aware that not all boys read the school newsletter, so I hope parents will use the information provided as a springboard for investigation, discussion, and inspiration to support their sons as they consider their futures. Please contact me with any suggestions regarding careers, or if you require any career-related advice for your son.

                Read on

                From the Archives

                Jane Teal

                The Lady Jane

                The origin of this race, which was for many years part of the Athletic Sports, has been lost in the mists of time. It is hoped that by resurrecting the facts, someone, somewhere, will be able to add more information and fill in the gaps.

                In 1911, Lionel Brettargh Pearson (1766) wrote that, he believed, the handicap race was first run in October 1899, and that he was the winner, followed by Patrick Lindsay (1611). He could not suggest why the race acquired the name ‘Lady Jane’, although “it might have been a brilliant inspiration of some school wag of those days”. More seriously, he recorded that the race was always run a week before the annual sports and that it was obvious that the winners of the Mary Jane Stakes, as it was then known, were placed by the handicappers on the back marks of the 200 yards handicap race run at the time of the Athletic Sports.i

                The Register of December 1921 has a slightly different version of the story. It claims that ‘Mary Jane’ was Pearson’s nickname and that a later generation raised the status of the race – due to its popularity – to ‘Lady Jane’.ii The same source relates that the creation of the race was a result of a “brainwave” by the 1899 handicappers to “get the strength of the various competitors, especially in the sprints”. However, a search of the Games Committee minutes failed to find proof of this claim. It is also claimed that as the first winners were Bussites, they spent their prize money – 10/- for 1st place and 5/ for 2nd place – at Broadways, the refreshment rooms in Cathedral Square.iii

                What is crucial to the story is that in both 1911 and 1921, there was an attempt to gather the names of the winners, and, in both instances, the attempt failed. Even the promise of a challenge cup from William Brettargh Brydges Pearson (3612), the son of LB Pearson, in 1921 did not bring the names out of the woodwork.

                In 1941, it was decided to combine the 200 yards handicap with the Lady Jane and retain the name as it was “too picturesque to be dropped”.iv It does not appear as a named race until 1943, when it is attached to the Mr G Harris Cup and Duncan Rutherford Memorial Prize. In 1965, the Lady Jane Handicap was abolished.v The cup that was presented from 1953–1964 has survived, with the names engraved on

                Lady Jane Cup CCCUP/92 Walker & Hall, Sheffield.

                In that the race is not mentioned every year in the Register, this is the list so far.vii

                • 1899 Lionel Brettargh Pearson, Patrick Lindsay
                • 1907 WJ Mansell, [?] Moore, EJ Cook
                • 1908 EJ Cook, [?] Moore
                • 1910 RG Westenra
                • 1911 B Todd
                • 1914 O Craddock, C Dampier-Crossley, GD Scott
                • 1915 GD Scott, O Craddock
                • 1917 P Grant, E Curry
                • 1920 GL Falck
                • 1922 MW Airey, AT Poulton
                • 1924 DW Bishop
                • 1943 EP Wait & JS Heard 1st equal, RW Peers
                • 1944 DV Cobcroft, EP Wait, IM Baird
                • 1945 RE Reid, SA Froude, AC Bridge
                • 1946 KR Uren, JG Hutchison, GA Heard
                • 1947 GD Wills, WR Peers,
                • 1948 PJ Fleming, AC Deans, JH Westenra
                • 1949 PJ Fleming, RJ Christmas, AB Harman
                • 1950 PJ Heyward, HB Johnstone, RC Middleton
                • 1951 D Lamb, J Elworthy, C Treahy
                • 1952 RJ A Payne, EW Unwin,
                • 1953 JM Bamford, JG Speight
                • 1954 RP Jones, A Dunlop
                • 1955 JW Davies, J Reeves
                • 1956 AB Robinson, PE Bulfin
                • 1957 CC Croft
                • 1958 RDKC Thorp
                • 1959 HJ Armstrong
                • 1960 JDL Davis, M van Staveren
                • 1961 CJW Barton, R Elworthy
                • 1962 ITN Watson, GH Fulton
                • 1963 CP Fitchett
                • 1964 GB Sherratt
                i Christ’s College Register December 1911 p225. Christ’s College School List 1850–1950 p692
                ii Christ’s College Register December 1921 p554
                iii Bussites were those in Worthy’s House. Broadways was in Hobbs Building, close to the site of Turanga. Prize money came from the one penny entrance fee.
                iv Christ’s College Register December 1941 p131; Games Committee Minute Book CXLIII dated 20 July 1941
                Christ’s College Register December 1965 p 111; Games Committee Minute Book 16–17 September 1965
                The first name in the list (1953–1964) is engraved on the cup. Additional names are from the reports in the Christ’s College Register.
                The names are listed in 1st, 2nd, 3rd order, where this has been recorded.

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