Newlands College

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Newlands College
Newlands College Logo 2017.png
68 Bracken Road


New Zealand
Coordinates41°13′5.59″S 174°49′25.83″E / 41.2182194°S 174.8238417°E / -41.2182194; 174.8238417Coordinates: 41°13′5.59″S 174°49′25.83″E / 41.2182194°S 174.8238417°E / -41.2182194; 174.8238417
TypeState secondary
Years 9–13
MottoMe Whakamātau
"We Work Hard To Achieve Together"
EstablishedFebruary 1970
Ministry of Education Institution no.268
PrincipalGrant Jones[1]
School roll972[2] (August 2018)
Socio-economic decile9

Newlands College is a state coeducational secondary school located in the Wellington, New Zealand suburb of Newlands. Opened in February 1970, the school has a roll of 972 students as of August 2018.[2]

The current principal is Grant Jones.[1] The current deputy principals are Deb Mills, David Pegram, and Deb King.[3] John Murdoch, former deputy principal, is now the current principal of Taitā College. The school colours are white, red and blue.[4] The school also offers community education for adults.[5] The school offers several art, sport and recreation options, along with each student belonging to a house.


Newlands College opened on 3 February 1970 with a starting school roll of 68 students. The land had been owned at different times by the Hogg, Moore and Tunley families, and had been farmed by Bill Hunter.[6] The foundation principal was Rex Sage, who was also the foundation deputy principal of Tawa College, followed by Paul Richardson and from 2000 Grant Jones.[7] However, the school was not complete yet, with the site land causing problems. The first term classes took place in two classrooms at Raroa Intermediate School (which was being built at the same time). The site itself was finished by April, and on 27 April 1970, students and staff shifted to the modern day Newlands College site at Bracken Road. A block, the first and only permanent building was unfinished at the time. The hall was finished in 1973, and the Recreation Centre in 1985.[8]


The language and visual art block

Newlands College of the Nelson 2H design, like most New Zealand state secondary schools built between 1960 and 1970. The Nelson 2H is distinguished by its two-storey H-shaped classroom blocks, with stairwells at each end of the block and a large ground floor toilet and cloak area on one side.[9] The college has two of these blocks: A block and B block.

Throughout the years, the college has grown substantially, having 1000 students in 2010. B block was built with similar architecture to A block. C block is substantially smaller, with only two classrooms and a storage room. H block has the school hall and a classroom primarily for drama. D block was also built to accommodate the learning support programme. However, in 2009, the building was demolished and rebuilt, while being renamed to the Learning Support Centre. L Block was built in 2006 for languages and visual arts. The Te Ao Marama is a Whare Kura, primarily for teaching Maori and hosting meetings. There is a large P.E. department building, hosting the largest gymnasium in North Wellington, a mezzanine classroom, a room for meetings and drama performances (formerly the cafeteria), and a cafeteria. The college also has a large administration area and staffroom. There is a pavilion that overlooks the sports fields for classes, meetings and seating for sports events.

Ethnic composition[edit]

The New Zealand Education Review Office (ERO) provided the following statistics for the month June 2010: European 47%, Asian 23%, Māori 12%, Pasifika 5%, Other 13%.[10] On the International Languages Week of 2009, it was reported that the school was composed of 42 different backgrounds.


The school has four houses, are assigned to form classes. They are Kowhai, Matai, Rimu, and Totara[11] which are named after native New Zealand trees. Each house can earn points in inter-house events such as the annual Tabloids sports day, and the House that has accumulated the highest number of points is awarded the Inter-house Cup at the end of the year. The house emblems are placed in order from left to right (first to fourth place) in the school hall for the current status of the standings. Each Tabloids sports day is generally on the last Friday of February.

Name of
Colour Tree
Kowhai      Yellow Sophora microphylla
Matai      Blue Prumnopitys taxifolia
Rimu      Red Dacrydium cupressinum
Totara      Green Podocarpus totara


The school is heavily involved in the arts, with several opportunities available to students.

Annually hosted is the school Variety Show which consists of a variety of performances (as the name suggests) such as Kapa haka, solo singing and drama performances. Almost every year, the school is involved in a production which students and teachers alike can sign up for. Examples are Guys and Dolls (2007), Les Misérables (2009), Grease (2010), The Wizard of Oz (2013), Spamalot (2014), All Shook Up (2015), and Hairspray (2016). Along with the school production, the Year 12 and 13 Drama classes must produce a production separately. The latter was performed from 18–21 May. The school also partakes in a competition known as the Sheilah Winn Shakespeare Competition.

The school has a building specifically for the Visual Arts and languages, the Language and Art Block. This was available at the start of 2006. The school also has a Whare Kura which was named the Te Ao Marama.[12] This was opened on 10 May 2007. At the end of 2008 to the beginning of 2009, the school rebuilt the Learning Support Centre, the A Block toilets and the cafeteria.

Each year, Media Studies classes participate in the production of short films. These short films are edited with Final Cut Pro X and the most appropriate (with Excellence or high Merit marks) are submitted for the NOSCARS (the Newlands College Oscars) after being classified by the OFLC. If the Office gives a restricted rating, it cannot be screened at the NOSCARS. The NOSCARS were previously held at the Wellington Paramount Theatre, they are now annually held at the Embassy Theatre. The last NOSCARS event was on 27 September, 2017. Similar to the Oscars, there are awards and prizes.


Newlands offers a wide range of sporting options to its pupils, 22 in total, with summer, winter and all-year-round sports. Sports that are available include Badminton, Cricket, Soccer, Hockey, Golf, Rugby, Netball, Orienteering, Smallbore rifle shooting, Softball, Squash and Underwater Hockey. The uniform code for sport is also present, with most sports needing standard Newlands College P.E. gear.

In 2010, the Newlands College Boys' softball team won the National Secondary School Softball Championships without conceding a defeat.

In 2015, the Newlands College Boys' basketball team reached the finals of the College Sport Wellington Pohlen Cup. The team ended up being defeated by Onslow College 78-65.[13]


The 2009 Peer Support camp

The school has an annual Peer Support camp[14] at El Rancho (Waikanae Christian holiday park), which was first held in 1975. The camp is for newcomers to the school, along with final year students. For year 9s, the camp is to settle into the school with friends and a good knowledge of who is who, before setting foot into the classroom. For year 13s, the camp is to learn new leadership skills and sociability. Students are involved in a variety of activities including kayaking, rock climbing, go karts, and team initiative activities. Peer support training is held for year 12s after the NCEA examinations, and the actual camp is held in early February, usually near Waitangi Day. The annual tradition however, was broken for the first time in 2011,[15] but resumed in 2012.

Other camps include the year 12 and 13 Geography trips to the St. Arnaud/Lake Rotoiti region and Tongariro National Park.

Recreation Centre[edit]

The Recreation Centre was founded as the Newlands Recreation Centre for the community, as a joint venture between Newlands College and the Wellington City Council. The school now has full ownership over it. The facility contains a gymnasium, one set of male and female changing rooms, a large foyer area, P.E equipment sheds, a reception area, P.E department offices, a kitchen, squash courts and a classroom.

Snapchat Geofilters[edit]

The 2016 Newlands College Geofilter

On 7 June 2016, the Newlands College Geofilter was activated by Snapchat. This allowed anyone using Snapchat within the vicinity of the Newlands College boundaries to be able to have access to a unique image that can be placed onto their snaps which they can send to other users. The Geofilter is still active as of 29 December 2016.

Newlands College was one of the first schools in Wellington to have an active Geofilter, along with other schools such as Onslow College, and Heretaunga College.

Newlands College Geofilter used in a photo of one of the school vans

Notable alumni[edit]

  • Te Amo Amaru-Tibble - New Zealand netball and basketball player
  • Jodi Brown - former Silver Fern
  • Phillip Burrows - current New Zealand Men's Hockey captain
  • Vaughan Coveny - Former All White Soccer player and has currently scored the most goals for All Whites
  • Jenny Duck - New Zealand Women's Hockey representative
  • Jake Gleeson - All White Soccer player currently playing for the Portland Timbers in Major League Soccer. (Attended 2004-2008)
  • Nick Grigg - Scottish International Rugby union player, Scottish International Rugby Sevens player & Glasgow Warriors rugby player. (Attended 2006-2010, First XV Rugby 2008,2009,2010)
  • Kyle Pontifex - New Zealand Men's Hockey goalie
  • Michel Tuffery - internationally celebrated artist, made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the Queen's Birthday Honours List 2008, for services to art.
  • Ross Verry - former Wellington cricketer
  • Luke Woodcock - New Zealand T20 cricket representative and New Zealand Black Caps


  1. ^ a b Jones, Grant. "Principal's Message". Newlands College. Retrieved 11 March 2009.
  2. ^ a b "Directory of Schools - as at 13 September 2018". New Zealand Ministry of Education. Retrieved 22 September 2018.
  3. ^ "Staff List". Newlands College.
  4. ^ "bannerpic01.png". Newlands College.
  5. ^ "Newlands College Community Learning Centre". Newlands College. Archived from the original on 16 March 2009.
  6. ^ "Newlands College History". Newlands College.
  7. ^ "Tawa College History". Tawa College. Archived from the original on 2 March 2012.
  8. ^ Robertson, Lawson & Louise (2012). Up in the Breezy Hills: The History of the suburb Newlands-Paparangi. Wellington: Robertson. p. 94. ISBN 978-1-877572-48-7.
  9. ^ "Catalogue of Standard School Building Types" (PDF). Christchurch: Ministry of Education. August 2013. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
  10. ^ "Education Review Office Newlands College Report". Archived from the original on 24 September 2015.
  11. ^ "House System". Newlands College.
  12. ^ "Newlands College- Whare Kura". Peryer Construction. Archived from the original on 14 October 2008.
  13. ^ "CSW Results Page" (PDF).
  14. ^ "Special Programmes". Newlands College.
  15. ^ "2011 Peer Support Camp". Newlands College.

External links[edit]