Principal's Message

Principal’s Message – End of Term 2, 2018

In his end-of-term message, Dominic Killalea reflects on the rich diversity of events that have flourished at High this term, and wishes you all a relaxing break.

End of Term 2 2018

Kia ora koutou

Term 2 is such an exciting time at High. Winter sports come to the fore and we have an increasing number of students involved in a wide range of sporting activities including badminton, basketball, football, hockey, netball, rugby, and underwater hockey. You may have read previously in these updates that one of our junior boys’ badminton players, Anthony Cater, recently won the Wellington junior singles’ badminton tournament. Well done Anthony, a fine achievement!

The term started with a couple of overseas trips returning from Nepal and Europe. The Nepal trip is our annual trek led my Bharat Pancha to the challenging Himalayan environment and our Europe trip is a biennial Senior Classics and Painted Word trip to England, France and Italy. Students returned from both with new stories of inspiring journeys.

Our annual Shakespeare Society production followed soon after. This year it was Much Ado About Nothing; I mean the play, not the performance. Directors Niamh Vaughan and Arie Faber did a great job at extracting some excellent and funny performances from a very willing cast who continue this great tradition in our school.

Feeder school visits and our open evening became our next focus as we opened ourselves to our community to have a look at a sample of the wonderful activities at High. It was invigorating and exciting to see the very happy faces of our intermediate and primary school visitors as they emerged from their ‘taster’ classes. I particularly want to thank all the students who showed prospective parents and whānau around the school on our open evening. It is often remarked upon that these students are our best advertisements for our school on these evenings which of course they are.

Throughout the term numbers of different students entered and had success in film competitions, visited the Transmission Gully bridge construction site, wore pink shirts in support for a bullying free environment, co-constructed an art exhibition at Te Papa, participated in a climate challenge conference, volunteered at Ronald McDonald house, met with the mayor on behalf of Amnesty International, spoke at Ngā Manu Kōrero, and entered Robocup. Meanwhile other students tramped, acted, debated, played, cooked, swam, studied, and fundraised. And hopefully all of them found some time to relax and smile and enjoy being with each other in the many, varied opportunities on offer.

Our Young Naturalists’ team have recently left to travel to Tbilisi, Georgia to defend our world title and I wish them the best. I also want to give a special mention to our International Young Physicists, Zuni Preece, Sai August and Luke Roeven and their wonderful mentor, High Physics teacher Kerry Parker, who are all travelling to Beijing in the latter part of the holidays with the New Zealand Physics team to compete on the world stage.

This last week has seen two wonderful events: our annual International students’ leaving dinner, a veritable cultural fest; and the first of our biannual music evenings. Both of these were held in our great hall, the Riley Centre, and both continued their rich traditions. The music evening is always a highlight with an exhilarating, sometimes moving, somewhat eclectic range of acts on show. If you haven’t experienced one of these evenings you really must see and hear the sheer talent of our large group of musicians.

Finally, I want to mention our Deputy Principal, Andrew Savage who will be on sabbatical in term 3. Andrew is a tireless, calming, inspirational figure in the school and he will be missed and I wish him well and look forward to welcoming him back in term four.

I hope you get to spend some good time with your young person(s) in the holidays and I hope they can enjoy some time out from the sometimes hectic pace of school life. I look forward to seeing all the students recharged and invigorated for the challenges of the rest of the year.

Ngā mihi nui


Dominic Killalea