Takapuna Grammar School

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Takapuna Grammar School
210 Lake Road
Auckland 0622
New Zealand
Coordinates36°48′04″S 174°47′19″E / 36.8011°S 174.7886°E / -36.8011; 174.7886Coordinates: 36°48′04″S 174°47′19″E / 36.8011°S 174.7886°E / -36.8011; 174.7886
TypeState Co-educational Secondary (Years 9-13)
MottoPer Angusta Ad Augusta
"Through endeavour to greatness"
Ministry of Education Institution no.36
PrincipalMary Nixon
School roll1709[1] (August 2018)
Socio-economic decile10Z[2]

Takapuna Grammar School is a state coeducational secondary school located in the suburb of Belmont on the North Shore of Auckland, New Zealand. Established in 1927, the school mainly serves the eponymous suburb of Takapuna and the entire Devonport Peninsula. A total of 1709 students from Years 9 to 13 (ages 12 to 18) attend the school as of August 2018.[1]


The foundation stone of Takapuna Grammar was laid on 6 April 1926 [3] with the school opening officially in 1927. Takapuna Grammar School was the first co-educational school under the auspices of the Auckland Grammar Schools’ Board, and established its own Board of Governors in 1955. The school retained the Auckland Grammar Lion and the motto "Per Angusta Ad Augusta" ("Through endeavour to greatness").[4]

In 2012, the school controversially attempted to ban sandals in an attempt to improve public perception of the school.[5] The decision was abandoned, however, after a group of students led by Abraham Coombs protested against the decision. The school subsequently surveyed students, parents, and teachers. The results of the poll (89% in opposition to the contentious decision) led to reinstatement of sandals in 2013.[6][7][8]

In mid-2015 the school introduced a fortnightly vertical form class of around 15 students, where students were expected to engage with each other across year levels and help each other with their study. The move was controversial among students, however, as they saw it as leading to full-time vertical form classes and eventual abolition of horizontal forms. Sure enough, starting in 2017, the roles were reversed with vertical form classes doubling in size and becoming almost every morning, meanwhile horizontal forms became only a fortnightly occurrence.


In the 2000s, a $6.4 million ministry-funded three-stage upgrade began at TGS. The three-level building houses social science classrooms, a new library, and student service and social support centres were completed in the second term of 2009.[9]

In late 2015 it was announced that $26 million redevelopment of the school's main block was to commence the following year. The main block, which was initially built in 1927 upon the school's establishment, was described by local MP Maggie Barry as an "appalling sight." The redevelopment of the main block coincided with similar work being done on the school's science block which was completed mid-2016. The work on the main building, described as one of the most expensive in New Zealand's history, is currently underway and expected to be completed early to mid 2019.[10]


Like many secondary schools in Auckland, Takapuna Grammar School operates an enrolment scheme to help curb roll numbers and prevent overcrowding. The school's enrolment zone, in which students residing are automatically entitled to be enrolled without rejection, covers the suburbs of Devonport, Narrow Neck, Bayswater, Belmont, Hauraki, Takapuna and parts of Milford.[11] Students residing outside the zone are accepted as roll places allow per the enrolment scheme order of preference and secret ballot, with siblings of current students getting first preference.

At the August 2011 Education Review Office (ERO) review of the school, Takapuna Grammar School had 1420 students, including 195 international students. Fifty-three percent of students were male and 47 percent were female. Sixty-five percent of students at the school identified as New Zealand European (Pākehā), nine percent as British or Irish, five percent as Māori, five percent as Korean, and three percent as Chinese.[12]


As a state school, Takapuna Grammar School follows The New Zealand Curriculum. Students in Year 11 complete the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) level 1. In Years 12 and 13, students can continue with NCEA levels 2 and 3, or complete the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme.[13]

Notable students and alumni[edit]


Notable former staff[edit]

  • Ruth Aitken ONZM - 1980-1990 - English teacher - coach of the Silver Ferns 2001 - 2012
  • Jack Kelly - Headmaster 1970 - 1985, member of 1953-1954 All Black touring team
  • Graham (Red) Delamore - Deputy headmaster mid 60s until early 70s, member of 1949 All Black touring team[17]
  • Bessie Christie - painter, art teacher between 1935 and 1940


  1. ^ a b "Directory of Schools - as at 13 September 2018". New Zealand Ministry of Education. Retrieved 22 September 2018.
  2. ^ "Decile Change 2014 to 2015 for State & State Integrated Schools". Ministry of Education. Retrieved 12 February 2015.
  3. ^ "Local History Online — Shore landmarks : [Takapuna Grammar School]". Localhistoryonline.org.nz. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
  4. ^ "Takapuna Grammar School | charter". Takapuna.school.nz. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
  5. ^ Liz Willis (9 August 2012). "Auckland School Wants Sandal Ban". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
  6. ^ Marnie Hallahan (7 March 2013). "Plan to Ban Sandals at Takapuna Grammar Fails". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
  7. ^ "Local History Online — North Shore Newspapers Index — Browse". Localhistoryonline.org.nz. 14 September 2012. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
  8. ^ "Ad Augusta - December 2012 - Prestigious Dux Award" (PDF). Takapuna.school.nz. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
  9. ^ "Student Services, Social Sciences and Library". Retrieved 11 December 2008.
  10. ^ "Multi-million upgrade for Takapuna Grammar School". Stuff. Retrieved 2 March 2017.
  11. ^ "Enrolment Zone Map". Takapuna Grammar School. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
  12. ^ "Takapuna Grammar School Education Review". Education Review Office. 30 September 2011. Archived from the original on 25 February 2015. Retrieved 25 February 2015.
  13. ^ "Curriculum". Takapuna Grammar School. Retrieved 25 February 2015.
  14. ^ "Rude but harmless - the real Mr Asia". The Dominion Post. 22 May 2010. Retrieved 16 November 2011.
  15. ^ Burnes, Campbell (26 November 2014). "College Sport: Trampolinist and pole vaulter scoop top honours as school athletes' wide talent recognised". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 12 March 2016.
  16. ^ "Ad Augusta - The Ralph Roberts Student sErvies Centre" (PDF). Takapuna.school.nz. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
  17. ^ Red Delamore, New Zealand ESPN. Retrieved 8 July 2017.

External links[edit]