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From the Executive Principal

Staff Garth Wynne

Garth Wynne
Executive Principal

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One of the great dilemmas for schools is balancing the soft and the hard of discipline and accountability for all community members. This is an ongoing matter for any school community.

Usually when such things are considered, we immediately start thinking about how school rules relate to students – how 'black and white' we should be on haircuts and shoeshine, how quick to 'exclude' or 'suspend' when a behaviour may warrant it. Staff behaviour and parent interactions with the school also come into this domain. What we are really addressing when we speak of such things is relationship dissonance.

While I have been a Principal, my fallback on such matters is always the unique cultural framework set by the school virtues. I have been fortunate to only work in Christian schools where these expectations are Gospel inspired. This does not make the challenge of decision-making easier but provides a frame of reference that helps us – as we use our virtues – to guide our thinking. How fortunate we are at College, when dealing with the complexity of issues we face, that we can choose as students, staff members, and parents/caregivers to put foremost in our mind honesty, compassion, respect, and justice.

New Corfe Housemaster – Arthur Wood

I am pleased to announce that Arthur Wood has been appointed as the Corfe Housemaster from the start of 2024.

A hard-working team player, Arthur is committed and passionate about continuing to develop and maintain a safe, structured, and stable environment that will enable the boys of Corfe to be caring young people of character. As College's Diploma Awards Coordinator, he has also developed a good understanding of the curriculum and is an innovative and solution-focused thinker.

Staff appointments

Sandra Riley

An experienced school administrator and customer relations officer, Sandra Riley has been appointed to the role of Sport Administration Assistant.

Responsible for administration, finance, and reception at her previous school, Sandra will work with College Director of Sport Benn McBrearty. Previously, she has held customer service roles in private business and banking, including SBS Bank and Westpac.

Rose Calvert

Holder of a New Zealand Diploma in Library and Information Studies, Rose Calvert has been appointed to the position of Library Assistant.

Experienced in dealing with multiple requests in a timely manner and having undertaken an extensive customer service role in the United Kingdom, Rose also holds a Certificate of Digital Media and a Bachelor of Nursing with Honours. With her friendly, engaging manner, Rose is looking forward to helping the boys in the library.

Year 13 compulsory sport

From the beginning of 2024, the opportunity and encouragement for our Year 13 students to play two or even three (if they can manage it) of the sports we offer will continue. However, only one sport commitment will now be compulsory. The change reflects feedback from our parent and student community over a number of years regarding enabling greater choice for our older boys as they mature, and also ensuring the best way to balance our resources.

Winter Tournament Week

We are fortunate to have several teams participating in Tournament Week around New Zealand from 28 August–1 September. During the next week, MiCs will be in touch with all the relevant families to outline the details of each trip and the cost. Please note, as per the 2023 fees communication, all costs for trips outside the Christchurch area are to be covered by parents.

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Boarding Matters

Staff Ben Vink 8793 2222 SQ

Ben Vink
Deputy Principal – Student Care

Combined Boarding Houses Parents' Function

The House Plays featuring the three boarding Houses will be held this Thursday, 10 August. Prior to the House Plays, we will meet for drinks and canapés in the Dining Hall at 5pm. It is a wonderful chance to catch up with the wider boarding community, so please register here to attend our Combined Boarding Houses Parents' Function in the Dining Hall.

Boarders skiing

This term, staff member Hunter Wilson will travel with boarders to Mount Hutt on Sunday 20 August, and Sunday 3 September for a day of skiing. Hunter will remain on the mountain throughout the day and stay in contact with the boys.

Parents or boys can book seats on Snowman Shuttles. The boys and Hunter will be picked up from the main College gates on Sunday morning. Once the boys have booked their Snowman Shuttles seats, they will need to let Mr Vink know so that staff can order an early breakfast and takeaway lunch.

Head knocks and concussion

As can be the case with winter sports, our boys may suffer head knocks and concussion. I am very pleased with our communication between parents and boarding staff in this area, but there is always room for improvement.

Please follow these steps:

  • When your son is under your care and has had a head knock or concussion, please ensure they are checked by a doctor following their game and/or watched closely – under your care – for any signs of deterioration.
  • When they return to boarding on Sunday, and it is medically appropriate for a boy to do so, please notify staff of the incident and any concerns.

Your son’s health and wellbeing are our priority, so we need to be informed of any sports-related issues stemming from their activities.

Mystery tour

Our boys have enjoyed a fun-filled mystery tour to Methven. Check out the great photos as the boys relax in the hot pools and try their hands at archery.

2023 01 mystery trip
2023 02 mystery trip
2023 03 mystery trip
2023 04 mystery trip

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

Considering all options

Thank you to all the parents and boys who attended the NCEA Options Evening last week. It was great to have the opportunity to speak to so many parents and help clarify matters regarding the subjects of interest to boys.

Option choices are due to be submitted by Monday morning (14 August), so please contact the respective teachers if you need further information.

A reminder to our Years 9 and 10 parents to sign up for the Diploma Options Evening this coming Monday (14 August). We will start the evening with a brief overview of the Diploma’s academic element. Parents will have the same opportunity to speak to representatives from all our departments about the courses on offer as part of the Christ's College Diploma.

Choice is at the heart of the Diploma, so it is a great chance to understand the many different courses that are available to the boys. Please register here.

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Wellbeing Education

Staff Caroline Black 6072 SQ

Caroline Black
Director of Wellbeing Education

Supporting diverse minds

Understanding that each individual’s brain functions and interacts with the world differently leads to diverse learning and communication styles. While most young people are neurotypical, some exhibit variations in brain development, such as ADHD, autism or dyslexia, making them neurodivergent.

At College, embracing neurodiversity means accepting, celebrating, and supporting neurodivergent adolescents without trying to change who they are. To effectively embrace neurodiversity, we must use respectful language, challenge unhelpful attitudes, avoid assumptions, and actively promote inclusivity.

By learning more about neurodiversity, we can develop effective communication techniques, educational strategies, and compassionate approaches tailored to the specific needs of our neurodivergent students.

Acknowledging the unique ways neurodiverse young people learn and do things, and then adapting tasks and activities to ensure their full participation, will encourage them to develop strategies that feel natural. It will help improve their mental health, wellbeing, and sense of self. By recognising and nurturing their strengths, teachers, parents, and whānau can contribute to building an inclusive and compassionate school community where all our young people can thrive.

The latest SchoolTV edition focuses on Neurodiversity, with experts – including Dr Emma Woodward, Professor Tony Attwood, Dr Chris Wever, Dr James Cusack, Brooke Trenwith, Rich Rowley, and Kristy Forbes – sharing their knowledge, experiences, and insights into neurodiversity and how we can best understand and support our young people. The topic resources and key points summary are especially helpful.

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    Staff Robert Aburn 0247 SQ

    Robert Aburn
    Director of Music

    Uniting choirs and bands in concert

    Christ’s College will showcase the many musical talents of our students and those of students from fellow independent schools during performances in August and September.

    Schola Cantorum sings at the Knox Presbyterian Church Service

    Saturday 26 August at 10am at Knox Church

    As part of the College choral programme, the College choirs join various groups in the community to share in their worship services. Scholar Cantorum is delighted to join Knox Church and sing throughout its worship service.

    Christ’s College and Rangi Ruru Girls’ School Contemporary Music Evening

    Wednesday 6 September at 7.30pm in the Assembly Hall

    While many bands at both College and Rangi Ruru Girls’ School enter the annual Rockquest competition, they often have few opportunities to perform and enjoy listening to each other. For the first time, bands from both schools will rock the Assembly Hall. Under the direction of Anna Howat and Nolan Hungerford, the bands will present a lively and entertaining evening of original music-making.

    Encore Choral Festival – Combined Independent Schools

    Wednesday 13 September from 7–8pm in the Assembly Hall

    Set up five years ago as a performance opportunity for junior students in our independent schools, this event has gained momentum. More than 300 students gather to perform massed items, along with each school presenting individual pieces. It is an opportunity for students to learn from one another and also collaborate under the direction of Helen Charlton (Rangi Ruru) and Robert Aburn. This year, the students will present a new waiata, a traditional song, Zum Gali Gali, and an upbeat spiritual, Praise his Holy Name.

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    From the Chaplain

    Staff Cameron Pickering 1608 SQ

    The Rev'd Canon Cameron Pickering

    Giving a voice to change

    Tēnā koutou katoa.

    Peace to you all in the name of God.

    I write having just spent a week in conferences, including the Association of Anglican Schools Australia conference. The scale of its Anglican schools network, as you may expect, is vast compared with Aotearoa New Zealand. Some 175,000 Australian students attend Anglican schools.

    One of the many reflections in my mind is how Australia, like many countries, continues to grapple with the effects of colonialism and the impact on indigenous peoples, in particular. As a proud New Zealander of English and Irish descent, it matters to me how people can work together cross-culturally. It matters to God, too, because people matter to God, in the person of Jesus Christ.

    Later this year, Australians will vote in a referendum on ‘The Voice’ to the Australian Parliament. Born out of a statement drawn up six years ago, the vote asks whether Australians will endorse an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voice to Parliament. The Voice seeks to enshrine in the constitution advocacy on social issues for Aboriginal peoples, who, for all their history on that mighty continent, are negatively represented in almost every social indicator – from incarceration to life expectancy.

    It is a long way from co-governance, a live issue here, but much of the media in Australia, in what ought to be familiar ways to our own, peddles less than accurate information, fearmongering, and soothsaying by degree. Present polling shows a likely ‘No’ vote to The Voice.

    I watch on, an interested spectator with no right to vote, as no doubt others will watch our elections later this year, because it effects people – and people are my business. People are our business. People were Jesus’ business. It is contrary, to my mind, when we suggest the Church or Christians should stay out of politics. Politics – being about people – is exactly where the Church ought to be seen and heard. The Association of Anglican Schools Australia has, although not unanimously, endorsed a ‘Yes’ vote in the referendum.

    Yours in Christ,
    The Rev'd Cameron Pickering

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    Latest News & Events

    2023 07 karaoke

    Celebrating the diversity of Round Square

    Round Square International Week has brought together the school in a celebration of diversity across a range of entertaining events.

    Read full article
    JJ Wada Oxford Uni

    JJ Wada gains Global Essay short-list spot

    Year 10 student JJ Wada has been short-listed for the prestigious John Locke Institute 2023 Global Essay Competition.

    Read full article
    Exchange Students 2023

    Exchanging school places across the world

    Unlocking opportunities for students to connect internationally, Christ’s College has welcomed four students from Australia, Germany, and the United States this term.

    Read full article
    2023 10 bball alumni game

    Old Boys steal late win in basketball game

    The College Old Boys team has extended its unbeaten record to four wins, overcoming the College A team by one point in the annual basketball clash at Christ’s College.

    Read full article

    Upcoming Events


    Thursday 10 August, 5–6pmCombined Boarding Houses Parents' Function

    Book now.

    Thursday 10 August, 6.30–9pmREACTION House Plays Festival – Night Two, Assembly Hall
    (School, Flower's, Richards, Corfe, Rolleston)
    Monday 14 August, 7–8.30pmDiploma Options Evening for parents and boys of Years 9 &10

    Register now.

    Thursday 17 August, 5.30–7.30pm

    Business Banter with ANZ Chief Economist Sharon Zollner
    Register now.
    Sunday 20 AugustChapel Service – Choral Eucharist
    Saturday 26 August, 10amSchola Cantorum at Knox Presbyterian Church Service
    Wednesday 6 September 7.30–9pmRock on – A rock concert featuring bands from Christ's College and Rangi Rangi Ruru Girls' School

    Thursday 7 September, 7pm

    Combined Orchestra Concert with St Margaret's College

    Friday 8 September, 10.15am–12pm

    Grandparents' Day
    Book now.
    Friday 8 September, 7–10.30pmChrist's College Parents' Association
    Spring Bling
    Book now.
    Saturday 9 September, 8–9.30amYear 9 Father and Son Breakfast
    Book now.
    Saturday 9 September, 7.30–11pmCollege Senior Ball, Te Pae

    Book now.

    Sunday 10 September, 7pmChapel Service – Choral Evensong
    Wednesday 13 September, 7–8pm

    Independent Schools Encore Choral Festival, Assembly Hall

    Friday 15 September, 3–4pmDiploma Q&A for boarding parents
    Register now.
    Wednesday 4 October, 6pmTokyo Community Visit
    Register now.

    Saturday 7 October, 6pm

    Thailand Community Visit
    Register now.
    Wednesday 18 October, 10.15am65 Years On Reunion
    Register now.

    75 Years On Reunion

    Register now.

    Wednesday 18 October, 12pmGentlemen's Lunch
    Register now.
    Wednesday 25 October, 6–8pm

    South Canterbury Community Visit
    Register now

    Thursday 26 October, 6–8pmAshburton Community Visit
    Register now.
    Tuesday 31 October, 6–8pmBlenheim Community Visit
    Register now
    Wednesday 1 November, 5–7pmNelson Community Visit
    Register now.
    Tuesday 21 November, 6–8pmWanaka Community Visit
    Register now.
    Friday 24 November, 12pmChristchurch Long Lunch

    Register now.

    Wednesday 29 November, 6pmChristchurch Young Old Boys (YOBs) Event
    Register now
    Read on


    Staff Chris Sellars

    Chris Sellars
    Careers Advisor

    Upcoming careers dates

    AugustOtago residential colleges, applications open online
    AugustUC residential colleges, applications open online
    9 AugustUC information session for Year 12, 10.20–10.50am
    10 AugustUniversity of Otago course planning, 8.15am
    15 AugustUniversity of Otago, closing date for entrance scholarships
    15 AugustUC scholarship applications due
    15 AugustLincoln University scholarship applications close
    15 AugustUniversity of Auckland scholarship applications close
    17 AugustUniversity of Otago course planning, 8.15am
    17 AugustVictoria University (Wellington) course planning
    21 AugustQueenstown Resort College, Rydges Latimer, 6.30–8pm
    24 AugustAra-specific dual enrolment event, 5.30–7pm
    25 AugustMassey University (Wellington) Open Day (TBC)
    25 AugustVictoria University of Wellington Open Day
    26 AugustAUT Live Open Day
    26 AugustUniversity of Auckland Open Day
    31 AugustUC course planning, Fine Arts block, 8.15am
    8 SeptemberUC Open Day
    15 SeptemberCommon Confidential Reference Forms (CCRF) due
    27 SeptemberUC accommodation applications close
    29 SeptemberLincoln University Open Day (school holidays)
    30 SeptemberUniversity of Otago residential colleges applications due
    30 SeptemberUniversity of Auckland first-round accommodation applications close
    OctoberHalls and scholarship offers made
    1 OctoberUC applications to enrol open
    1 OctoberUniversity of Auckland applications to study open
    DecemberStudyLink applications due
    10 DecemberUniversity of Otago and UC enrolments due
    10 DecemberUniversity of Auckland applications to study close
    JanuaryFormal offers of places to universities

    School subject selection – Term 3

    Boys choosing their subjects this term – for 2024 – can check out these best preparation links to aid their decisions regarding university and polytechnic study

    Exam preparation

    Check out the NCEA resources to help attain the best grades and prepare for upcoming internals and externals.

    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:

    Victoria University of Wellington – 2024 accommodation

    Applications for halls are open, with students encouraged to get their applications in early as places will be offered from mid-September.

    School of Landscape Architecture – Lincoln University

    The School of Landscape Architecture at Lincoln University offers a range of specialised programmes. Landscape architects create landscapes within urban, rural, residential, or public environments and are involved in the management and conservation of natural and heritage landscapes. A career in landscape architecture may suit those with an interest in the environment, science, culture, art, technology, and wellbeing.

    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 can take time, it is best to get under way sooner rather than later.

    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

    A mystery half-solved

    Inside the front door of School House is an item of furniture. There is a rumour that it is an altar that arrived in Canterbury on one of the first four ships. A search of the ledgers for the Canterbury Association – held in the Christchurch Anglican Diocesan Archives – has no mention of an altar on the first four ships or on any of the Canterbury Association ships.

    A plaque on the item of furniture reads:

    These versions of
    Holy Scripture
    were presented to
    The Rev’d Samuel Charles Wilks MA
    By the
    British & Foreign Bible Society.
    This cabinet was presented by
    the Congregation of Hampstead Chapel, Middlesex AD 1834

    So, let us work our way through the clues:

    • It is a cabinet created to hold Bibles
    • The Bibles were presented by the British & Foreign Bible Society
    • The recipient of the Bibles and the cabinet was Samuel Charles Wilks
    • The cabinet was presented by the Congregation of Hampstead Chapel.

    The centrepiece in the story is obviously Samuel Charles Wilks (1789–1872). He has proved to be a little elusive but, in summary, Samuel Wilks:

    • Matriculated at St Edmund’s Hall, Oxford in 1810 and completed a BA in 1814, followed by an MA in 1816
    • Was ordained a deacon in 1813 and a priest 1816 by Richard Beadon, Bishop of Bath and Wells
    • Was appointed to curacies in Somerset and Devon
    • Was the editor of the Christian Observer 1816–1849
    • Retired to Nursling in 1847 near Southampton, where he ministered until his death.

    There are two important clues in this summary – St Edmund’s Hall and the Christian Observer.

    The Christian Observer – an evangelical periodical that appeared from 1802–1874 – was associated with the Clapham Sect or Clapham Saints. The most well-known member was William Wilberforce, who lived in Clapham, then a village in south-west London. This group was concerned with the abolition of the slave trade, the reform of the penal system, and missionary activity at home and abroad. Many of these reformers were associated with St Edmund’s Hall. It was Wilberforce who suggested that Samuel Marsden cut short his studies at Magdalene College, Cambridge. Marsden was then appointed assistant chaplain in the newly established convict settlement of New South Wales. By 1800, he was chaplain and magistrate and remained in contact with the Clapham Sect.i

    Now to turn to the British & Foreign Bible Society. It was founded in 1804 in London, as a non-denominational society to “encourage the wider circulation of the Holy Scripture without note or comment”.ii In New Zealand, and more widely, the society helped established missions increase their publication of translations. Indeed, after an apprenticeship with a Cornish printer and working with the society’s printer, Richard Watts and Co, William Colenso was sent to New Zealand in 1854.

    Then there is the question of the Hampstead Chapel. Research indicates that there are two choices, based on the name on the plaque. It was either a nonconformist chapel, or a chapel of ease for the parish church. What is known is that Hampstead had a Bible Society that was an auxiliary of the British & Foreign Bible Society.iii

    So that is as far as the research has been able to go. It would be good to write an update on this story. However, more information is needed. It was a large piece of furniture to bring to New Zealand, so how did it get here? How and when did School House acquire it? What is the connection with Samuel Wilks and the British & Foreign Bible Society? Any help in untangling the other half of the mystery would be appreciated.

    i Newman, K. 2010. Bible and Treaty. Penguin Books p26
    Lineham, P. J. 1996. Bible and Society. The Bible Society in New Zealand Daphne Brasell Associates Press p1
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