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Tawa College is a coeducational school (year 9 - year 13) situated in Tawa, New Zealand, and its principal is Murray Lucas. The Tawa College magazine is called Tawahi (pronounced tawa - he). There are currently around 80 teaching staff and 20 support staff. Tawa College was officially opened in July 1961 and has always maintained a close involvement with the life of the local community, particularly through music and sport.
At the September 2012 Education Review Office (ERO) review, Tawa College had 1417 students enrolled, including nine international students. Forty-six percent of students were male and 54 percent were female. Fifty-seven percent of students identified as New Zealand European (Pākehā), 16 percent identified as Māori, 14 percent as Asian, 12 percent as Pacific Islanders, and one percent as another ethnicity.
Tawa College has a socio-economic decile of 8 (step P), meaning it draws its school community from areas moderately-high socioeconomic status when compared to other New Zealand schools. The school was recategorised from decile 9 (step Q) in January 2015, as part of the nationwide review of deciles following the 2013 census.
The traditional colours of Tawa College are blue, red and yellow, as seen in the school uniform, sports strips and crest. The uniform skirt for the girls is a kilt made of Duncan tartan. The college has special permission from the Scottish clan, to whom the tartan belongs (as intellectual property), to use the tartan in its uniform.
Tawa Recreation Centre
The Tawa Recreation Centre (informally known as "the rec centre") is a joint venture between Tawa College and the Wellington City Council. The facility contains two gymnasiums, two sets of male and female changing rooms, a large foyer area, P.E equipment sheds, a Wellington City Council Office and reception area, P.E department offices, and a classroom on the mezzanine.
Tawa College provides a wide range of extracurricular actives, especially musical ones. Notable groups include:
- The Dawn chorus- A 200 strong all comers choir, nationally known for their high standard of performance.
- Acafellas- An auditioned male barbershop chorus. Have been given the pleasure of competing at a national level every year since their first entrance into the National Barbershop Competition.
- Maiden Tawa- An auditioned girls chorus, with about 70 members. They were national barbershop champions for 6 consecutive years, up until the 2008 National Barbershop competition, in which they were awarded fourth overall. Despite this, they, and the male barbershop choir, are not disheartened, as their main reason for entering is to have fun and enjoy the experience of competing.
- Amplify- Tawa colleges student run church, with its roughly 90 members meeting once a week
- Astronomy Club- Meets every Friday evening on the field. The school has its own telescope.
- Jazz Band- This notable band, currently led by Ze'ev Dikvert, has a number of members who enjoy their weekly practices, including Chris Wratt.
Tawa College also has many successful sporting groups, debating groups, and other extracurricular activities.
The school is well known for its achievements in the arts, notably singing, including several national and international barbershop quartet and chorus champions, such as the Musical Island Boys (national barbershop champions, 2004; international collegiate quartet champions, 2006; Barbershop Harmony Society International Quartet Champions, 2014).
They also have a big reputation due to their very successful wrestling team, TCW. They are two times National champions.
In 2009, Mr Lucas (principal) and approximately 38 year 13 chemistry students beat the Guinness world record for the most hours of consecutive teaching with their 28-hour chemistry teach-a-thon. This was put together as a fundraiser for World Vision, and through it they raised over $3,000.
Notable alumni include:
- Jerry Collins - All Blacks captain
- Sophie Devine - Women's Black Cap
- Taito Phillip Field - former Member of Parliament
- Mark Gillespie - Black Cap
- Blair Hilton, Black Sticks Men, national field hockey representative and 2010 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist
- Nick Leggett - 4th Mayor of Porirua
- Murray Mexted - rugby union commentator, former All Black
- Kerry Prendergast - former Mayor of Wellington
- Lee Tamahori - film director
- Louis Fenton - Member of Wellington Phoenix Football Club, All Whites
- Musical Island Boys, 2014 Barbershop Harmony Society International Quartet Champions
- 1961–66 – Alan Mackie
- 1966–81 – Eric Flaws
- 1981–89 – Brian Walker
- 1989–2002 – Bruce Murray
- 2002–present – Murray Lucas
- "Directory of Schools - as at 2 August 2016". New Zealand Ministry of Education. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
- "Decile Change 2014 to 2015 for State & State Integrated Schools". Ministry of Education. Retrieved 12 February 2015.
- "Tawa College Education Review". Education Review Office. 19 November 2012. Retrieved 20 March 2015.
- "The longest lesson". Education Gazette New Zealand. 88 (10). 15 June 2009. Archived from the original on 25 June 2009.
- "Former MPs - Taito Phillip Field". Parliament of New Zealand. Retrieved 30 August 2009.