Rotorua Boys' High School

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Rotorua Boys' High School
Rotorua Boys' High School
Pukuatua Street


New Zealand
Coordinates38°8′19.59″S 176°14′17.25″E / 38.1387750°S 176.2381250°E / -38.1387750; 176.2381250Coordinates: 38°8′19.59″S 176°14′17.25″E / 38.1387750°S 176.2381250°E / -38.1387750; 176.2381250
TypeState single-sex secondary, years 9–13
MottoLatin: Ad Astra Per Aspera

Māori: Whaia Te Iti Kahurangi
(To the stars through hard work.

Search for great things.[3])
Ministry of Education Institution no.152
PrincipalA. Chris Grinter
School roll1089[1] (March 2021)
HousesNgongotaha (Drake), Te Akitu (Frobisher), Rotorua-nui-a-kahumatamoemoe (Nelson) and Utuhina (Raleigh)
  Red and Blue
Socio-economic decile3G[2]

Rotorua Boys' High School is a state school educating boys from Year 9 to Year 13. It is situated just outside the Rotorua CBD at the intersection of Old Taupo Road and Pukuatua Street in Rotorua, New Zealand.


Rotorua Boys' High School had its beginnings as the Rotorua High and Grammar School, founded in 1927[4] to replace the earlier Rotorua District High School (1914–1926).[5] By 1956 it had a roll in excess of 1200 students. The Intermediate Department was closed when Rotorua Intermediate School was established in 1957. The Rotorua High School was further split to make room for a growing population of the district and its educational needs when, in 1959 Rotorua Girls' High School was opened. Rotorua High School was then established as Rotorua Boys' High School and commenced to function as a state secondary school for boys with a roll of 640 pupils in February 1959.[6]


Rotorua District High School
  • John Warn (1914–1915)
  • Francis Wood (1915–1919)
  • Thomas Tanner (1916-1918) (While Wood was serving in World War I)
  • William Lewins (1920–1926)
  • George Barber (1926)
Rotorua High and Grammar School
  • Aby Ryder (1927–1931)
  • Bill Harwood (1932–1959)
Rotorua Boys' High School
  • Neville Thornton (1960–1962)
  • Ted Hamill (1963–1979)
  • Geoffrey Cramond (1980–1991)
  • Chris Grinter (1991 – present)

A book about Rotorua Boys' High School's history was published in 2007 and can be bought in bookstores around Rotorua.


From 1927 till 2020, Rotorua Boys' High School's four houses were known as Drake, Frobisher, Nelson and Raleigh, after great British explorers and seafarers. At the end of 2020, in a climate influenced by the American Black Lives Matter movement, and supported by evidence that each of the four British namesakes had varying levels of involvement with slavery, the houses were given new names. These new names, which were also felt to be more relevant to the pupils of today, came into effect at the beginning of 2021:[7]

  • Ngongotaha — red, formerly known as Drake
  • Te Akitu a Raukura — yellow, formerly known as Frobisher
  • Te Rotoruanui-a-Kahu — blue, formerly known as Nelson
  • Utuhina — green, formerly known as Raleigh


Rotorua Boys' High School officially opened the Tai Mitchell Hostel, a new onsite boarding facility, in 2005 at a cost of $3.5 million. The facility is designed to accommodate 104 students which represents over 10 percent of the school roll.

The Ministry of Education appointed a limited statutory manager late in 2009 to investigate alleged mismanagement, inappropriate drug-testing and financial issues regarding the school hostel.[8][9] In June 2010 the limited statutory manager reported that, following his investigation, he had found that the school had no case to answer.

Families whose children have been excluded from the school's Tai Mitchell Hostel complained about unfair treatment. They believed their sons were targeted for inappropriate drug test procedures and inappropriate action taken after drug tests were performed.[8] The statutory manager appointed by the Ministry of Education to look into the school's procedures, Dennis Finn, told The Daily Post he has cleared Mr Grinter and Mr Whata and had full confidence in them. Mr Finn said the report and its findings were only a small part of the bigger picture. The real issue was the serious breach by students of the rules of the school or hostels, he said. "Drugs; whether use of, in possession of, or supply of, will not be tolerated or accepted." Mr Finn told The Daily Post he held a meeting between the mother and Mr Grinter and believed the issue had been resolved. The boys had since been reinstated at the school.[10]

Notable alumni[edit]

The Arts[edit]





  1. ^ "New Zealand Schools Directory". New Zealand Ministry of Education. Retrieved 27 April 2021.
  2. ^ "Decile Change 2014 to 2015 for State & State Integrated Schools". Ministry of Education. Retrieved 12 February 2015.
  3. ^ School newsletter, September 2006
  4. ^ Stafford, Don. "Raukura". Retrieved 30 November 2015.
  5. ^ Lyall, Kevin. "Rotorua's Plume: A History of Rotorua Boys' High School" (PDF).
  6. ^ Rotorua High and Grammar School, Rotorua Boys' High School History and Register of Pupils by Kevin J Lyall
  7. ^ Kevin J. Lyall (2021). "Rotorua Boys' High School---An Historical Introduction" (PDF) (7 ed.). p. 19.
  8. ^ a b Grunwell, Rachel (28 February 2010). "School's drug test 'torture'". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 5 November 2011.
  9. ^ Daily Post. "Manager appointed to Rotorua Boys' High".Daily Post Rotorua, 4 February 2010. Retrieved on 2010-07-07.
  10. ^ Taipari, Greg (2 July 2010). "Mother wants 'heads to roll' over drug probe". Rotorua Daily Post.
  11. ^ "The pain behind Israel Adesanya's rise to the UFC". Sporting News. 2018-02-09. Retrieved 2018-02-09.
  12. ^ a b c d e "The Olympic success story of Rotorua Boy's High School". Sunday Star Times. 29 August 2008. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
  13. ^ "RBHS 'Old Boy" Ben Sandford makes the skeleton finals at the Sochi Winter Olympics" (PDF). Rotorua Boys' High School. February 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 December 2014. Retrieved 19 December 2014.
  14. ^ "Isaac Te Aute latest addition to All Blacks Sevens squad". Māori Television. 8 September 2015.

External links[edit]