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Term 2 Friday Mail Out

Term 3 Friday Mail Out

Japan Trip 2017

Our 2 weeks in Japan had gone by so fast, and before we knew it, the trip was over. 12 students, 6 boys and 6 girls from our school were lucky to have the opportunity to go to Tokyo, JAPAN for 2 weeks. It was a very exciting and interesting experience. During our first week we visited Narita San (shrine), explored the city, visited the primary school (years 1-6) and also met our host families there! None of us had any idea who our host families were, we all sat in the classroom nervously, with a group of homestay families all around us, from which one of them was our family? It was nerve-wracking but very exciting. After meeting our host families and being with them for 2 weeks we didn’t want to leave! They were so kind and like a real family to us, on the last day there were some tears too. They welcomed us into Japan, showed us what Japanese culture is like, took us places, made us Japanese food, and it was the best! The primary school was also very interesting and fun, each of us had a class and we studied together with the cute and energetic primary students. The primary school was different to New Zealand, the students set out the lunch (which was made in the school), the lunch was usually rice, salad, soup, milk and meat. They also cleaned up the entire school just before lunch everyday! After a few days at Minami Oya primary school and a long weekend, it was the second week in Japan already, we went Disneyland, Kamakura, Daibutsu (big Buddha) and so much more! It was an enjoyable and thrilling week and we all did A LOT of shopping and eating. Every day was a new experience, every day we saw more of Japan, and learnt and had so much fun in the Japanese culture. We will never forget this experience and our host families and friends! On behalf of the 12 students that went on this trip, thank you to Minami Oya primary school, our homestay families, MRGS Languages Department and Ms Kojima and Mrs Cave who gave up so much of their time to make this amazing experience possible!

Aruni Ramalingam

Senior Prize Giving

Senior Prize Giving – a time to celebrate the successes of our senior students.

  • Wednesday 1st of November
  • 6pm in the Butler Hall

Year 12 Drama Camp

In Week four, the Year 12 Drama class embarked on a first ever mission to Devising Camp. A weekend away with Drama students of Hobsonville Pt Secondary School to create Drama in the wilderness! The weekend was loads of fun and students learned about elements of conventions of Drama, as well as Brechtian and Physical theatre. They engaged in early morning dance calisthenics and cooked/cleaned for each other the whole weekend. The students both schools became fast friends and enjoyed evenings of karaoke and a camp show with skits and a talent quest. The students were a credit to the school, their teamwork and enthusiasm for their learning was infectious. We can’t wait to return to Karanga Campsite again, and look forward to the future collaborations with Hobsonville Pt School so that we can continue to make great Drama together.

Biosecurity Day

On Wednesday 23rd August MRGS had a visit from three officers working for the Ministry for Primary Industries who presented to our Biology Year 13 and 12 classes as part of understanding Biosecurity in New Zealand with reference to the biological curriculum content and linking to careers in the future.

The M.P.I. officers were in school for a whole day. Each class period had two parts – (1) Biosecurity presentation with some interesting hands on specimens and (2) MPI Detector dog programme demonstration.

Kids Voting Programme

The 906 class took on the political world in Social Studies by participating in the nationwide Kids Voting programme and hosting an exclusive Q&A with Puketepapa Local Board Member and ex-MRGS student, Shail Kaushal. The Kids Voting took place on Tuesday 12th September in the library where every member of the class had a role and the entire process involved authentic participation that replicated the real elections. Each student was enrolled on the Kids Electoral Roll and ticked off as they entered the polling area, they were then given authentic voting papers that showed every MP running for the Mount Roskill electorate as well as the full list of parties of the 2017 NZ election so students could give their 2 ticks. Once they had completed their vote in the privacy of the carefully made voting booths students put their voting paper in the ballot box and received a sticker to say they had voted. The votes were confidentially counted, double-checked, and then announced very dramatically by Yuv Chandra. The 906 election resulted in a Labour and Michael Wood win and we are eagerly awaiting to see where we place with the rest of the Kids Voting in NZ. On her involvement in the Kids Voting, Areeba said, “It was a different ex-perience because as the younger generation we aren't entitled to give our opinions to the world” and Tina also commented “Overall, this election was a big success and allowed us to get a taste of how our parents vote”.

To follow up on our Kids Voting, we also invited Shail Kaushal, Local Board Member for Mt. Roskill to speak with our class. Shail was a Mt Roskill student himself ten years ago and was thrilled to come back and share his experiences and knowledge of how his role as a Board Member has helped shape the Roskill community. Students were excited to hear that light-rail train and double-decker buses are planned to pass through the Dominion Road Mt. Roskill shops making it easier and faster to commute to the city and airport. The students had some unique questions that Shail admitted were a first for him and enjoyed answering, such as “What does success mean to you?” and “How would you define your leadership style”. Students loved hearing about his journey and inspiration going into local politics as well as taking selfies with the very charismatic Puketepapa Board Member.

Tournament Week Results

  • Under 15 boys Basketball - 13th Upper North Island Secondary School tournament
  • Senior Girls Netball - 16th Upper North Island Secondary School tournament
  • 1st XI Girls Hockey – 13th Upper North Island Secondary School tournament
  • Senior Girls Basketball – 12th Zone 1 national qualifying tournament
  • 1st XI boy’s hockey – 8th Upper North Island Secondary School tournament
  • 1st XI Girls football team - 7th Upper North Island Secondary School tournament

Boys Basketball U15A Champions

For the first time in five years, MRGS entered an U15 Boys’ Basketball team into the U15 Premier Grade. The Boys had an excellent year in terms of results and player development, finishing the season with 13 wins from 14 games. The Boys won both the Auckland Central West Competition and the Greater Auckland Competition. These result meant that we could proudly call ourselves the best U15 Basketball team in Auckland.

More Basketball News

Basketball U17B Boys - Auckland Central West Champions 2017

The U17B Team went through their season undefeated winning all 10 games. The final was played against MAGS, with MRGS coming out on top in a close game.

Basketball U19A Boys - Auckland Central West Champions 2017

The U19A Boys Team competed in the Auckland Central West Open grade competition. The Boys won this grade and progressed onto the Auckland Champs, where the top 8 teams from the wider Auckland area competed. The boys unfortunately came up one game short, losing by 2 in the final and finishing runners up to Birkenhead College. This team is looking strong for next year, with the majority of the side returning.

NZSS Gymsports

Over the weekend of 9th and 10th of September we had our most successful results ever at New Zealand Secondary Schools Gymsports and the largest team who qualified to attend. The athletes represented the school with pride and built their resilience performing their routines in front of large crowds, which is not an easy task. Day 1 : Artistic Gymnastics and Day 2: Tumbling and Trampoline teams.

Level 1 Artistic Gymnastics 2017 results:

Medals to:

  • 2nd Anna Greaves
  • 3rd Kaitlyn Booth
  • 1st team : Anna Greaves, Kailtyn Booth, Chantal Deverell and Chelsea Ellis
  • 2nd Team Alyshia Harper, WaiYan Relph, Rebecca Zhao, Dhavni Patel.

Level 2 Artistic Gymnastics:

  • 4th Kate Bonnici
  • 3rd Team MRGS Kate Bonnici, Zara, Deverell, Vivian Cai Yun Chew

TUMBLING

B Grade Womens

  • 6th Kaitlyn Booth
  • 3rd team : Kate Bonnici, Kaitlyn Booth, Zara Deverell

B Grade Mens

  • 2nd Abhishek Ravichandran
  • 3rd Shivesh Lal

C Grade Womens

  • 2nd Alyshia Harper
  • 3rd = Chelsea Ellis
  • 1st team : Alyshia Harper, Chelsea Ellis, Vivian Cai Yun Chew

TRAMPOLINE

  • 3rd B grade Mens Abhishek Ravichandran
  • 4th B grade Womens Chelsea Ellis
  • 2nd B GRADE Womens team Chelsea Ellis, Kaitlin Booth, Eva Mason
  • 1st C GRADE Womens team Alyshia Harper, Mollie Coldham, Nidhi Vijayanarasimhan

Top Science Fair Awards

Arnav Kumar won First Place in the Physical World Category with his project “The faster you stop the bigger the mess” and was also awarded an Excellence in Physics prize.

Yash Savani and Benjamin Zhang won first place in the Planet Earth category with their project “Save the Ice”. Pankti Prevedi was awarded a special prize for her project “For the Crater Good”; a cash prize and four books.

Highly commended awards were given to Ashna Siddiqui and Angel Kumar for their project “Volume and Temperature”, Methu Mohanathas for his project “How do magnetic fields affect the flow of water” and Karmella Reedy for “Minty Cool”.

KBB Music Festival

The KBB Music Festival has been showcasing the best in secondary school orchestras, concert bands and jazz bands in Auckland since 1983. The standard is extremely high and each group is marked on their technical skills, accuracy, musicianship and presentation by local and international judges.

Our Concert Band and String Orchestra worked very hard this year to prepare for the festival, displaying commitment and teamwork. The String Orchestra, rehearsed by Mr Snelling, gained a bronze award and were commended by the judges for among other things, their ability to play without a conductor. They were led by year 13 violinist Jay Huang and were one of very few groups to perform without a conductor. The Concert Band, conducted by Ms Dekker, gained a silver award and were complimented by the judges for their sound, ensemble playing and for performing a challenging programme.

Top Musicians Recognised

The KBBMF Honours Orchestra is an elite group that students are able to apply to join. This year Ellen Bingham (french horn) and Rocky Parsons (percussion) were selected to join musicians from over 20 different schools. They came together on the final day of the KBB music festival to rehearse and perform under the directorship of conductor Jeffrey Boekman from the University of Hawaii.

The NZSO National Youth Orchestra is composed of secondary school students through to postgraduate University students from all over New Zealand. Students audition for a place and this year Ellen Bingham was appointed principal French horn. She flew to Wellington in the term two holidays for a week of rehearsals, culminating in performances at the Michael Fowler Centre, Wellington and the Auckland Town Hall. The programme featured premieres of works by young New Zealand composers Reuben Jelleyman and Celeste Oram, a piece by the conductor Sir James MacMillan and the timeless classic Benjamin Britton’s 'Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra'. We are extremely proud of Ellen Bingham for being appointed section leader of such a prestigious orchestra amidst tough competition.

Paul Willis Workshop

Actor/tutor extraordinaire Paul Willis graced us with his presence this term to deliver a workshop to the year ten Performing Arts classes in Commedia dell’Arte - a theatre style from 17th century Italy! Paul came to us from recently working at The Pop Up Globe Theatre and has an extensive history in mime, clowning and many other physical theatre styles. The classes are currently making masks as Commedia characters and will be creating performances for in-class assessments. We loved the physical practical nature of Commedia and the students reactions to the world of the characters and can’t wait to see their masks and performances come to life!

Senior Hip Hop Crew

In Term three, our Senior Hip Hop Group, Diversifire, performed a dance using varying styles of Hip Hop to a large crowd at the Vodafone Events Centre for the Stand Up Stand Out Finals. The students performed amazingly, and although we didn’t place this year, we are so proud of every student for their continued dedication to the group. The commitment and enthusiasm for the crew was awesome. Thanks again to Victoria for her constant belief in the group and fabulous leadership skills, and to the teachers involved for their hard work in managing the group with such success, we can’t wait for next year.

Head Prefect Project

On Friday the 25th of August as part of the Head Prefect project, our school hosted the first ever Prefect Lunch between our neighbouring schools of Lynfield and Onehunga High School. We had six prefects including head prefects come from each school and ten of us ready and keen to meet the our counterparts. The main purpose of the event was to create a bond between our schools by engaging with each other and having fun as prefects from our community. We played group bonding activities, had quizzes with some good old Raro, pizza and, of course, lollies. It was a really enjoyable afternoon with lots of smiles and laughs. At the end a lot of people commented how much they had enjoyed meeting new people who have the same responsibilities in a forum where we could relate to one another and share a meal together. The positive feedback made all our efforts even more worthwhile. It was a fantastic lunch with great company. We look forward to seeing and hearing our three schools come together again in the near future.

Travelwise Road Safety Expo

I’m proud to say that Mt Roskill Grammar School’s first ever Travelwise Road Safety Expo was a success. As a member of the new Travelwise Committee, we were nervous to see what staff and students would think about the expo. On Thursday 7 September, organisations from all around Auckland arrived to showcase the many different aspects of road safety. These included the booze bus, speed laser guns, mocktail testing, driver licensing, a fatal vision confidence course, police dogs and more. Everyone was willing to explain or answer questions about their stall. It was an enjoyable event and I hope as a com-mittee we can plan something even bigger and even better for next year.

Alumni Success

No doubt some of you will remember our lovely ex-student Sam Low who was with us until 2010.

After leaving MRGS Sam went to Sky City with an apprenticeship in the food preparation area. He eventually moved to Coffee and ended up travelling around the world competing at international levels for both Barista and Latte Arts events.

He is now back on the scene in NZ and if you want to watch his latest project on TV, please log on to Threenow.co.nz and look for Both Worlds: season 6, episode 6

Year 9 French Breakfast

We knew we had to be at school early on a Wednesday, by 8.15am! There were some pupils there even earlier. We saw the croissants and pain au chocolat arrive. Some year ten French pupils were setting things up and we knew that we had to order IN FRENCH for these students to get our breakfast. We went to A2 or A3 and ordered our breakfast, and we also got un chocolat chaud. The pastries were huge. It took us a while to eat the delicious breakfast. After a while, we could order another hot drink. At about 8.45, we discovered that we could win prizes as well. The teachers pulled names of pupils at random out of a box. Some of us won Eiffel Tower key rings. It was a great way to start the day. MERCI BEAUCOUP. C’est formidable, extra, cool.

Gagana Samoa

Talofa lava! This year Gagana Samoa was offered to our students as part of a language option for juniors and there has been a great number of junior students that took interest in Gagana Samoa with the year nine class having 24 students and the year ten class having 19 students at the start of the school year. In term two both the year nine and year ten classes had the opportunity to experience what life is like for children their age living in Samoa. This experience was in the form of preparing food; we have nicknamed ‘The Three Stations’. The Three Stations conisisted of simple Samoan food preparations which were: fofo`e fa`i, valu talo and valu popo e fai ai le pe`epe`e (the peeling of green bananas, scraping taro and scraping coconut to make coconut cream). As background knowledge, it is very common for children living in Samoa to be exposed to the preparation of food at a young age as cooking is part of everyday life. This is what I wanted the students of the Gagana Samoa classes to enjoy as the majority have never, up until this point, been exposed to cultural food preparation within their own home lives. The Three Stations was a hands on project that I enjoyed witnessing students participate in. It was fun and an authentic way to incorporate culture and language that was engaging and encouraged students to use prior knowledge and new knowledge to adapt preparing traditional Samoan food within a New Zealand setting.

Spring Showcase

The Performing Arts Department put on three showcases this year and the Term three Spring showcase was definitely the most impressive of all. This showcase explored the idea of change, growth and development – inspired by the coming season of Spring. Years 11-13 Dance and Drama students led the September showcase with performances such as Devised Drama, Hip hop, Melodrama, Contemporary choreography, Brechtian theatre and cultural dance. The performance showcased the students talent, as almost all performances were student-created. Miss Aitchison, Miss Thompson and Miss Gillies were proud of the quality of the performances and the wonderful feedback they received from the audience. We’d like to thank our large and supportive audience – especially ex-students and whanau that returned to support our actors and dancers. We’d also like to thank Mr Thompson on the lights, Ella Mavaega on Sound, and the numerous other incredible people who work so hard to let our tamariki shine bright onstage. Well done to every student involved, it really was such a moving and important performance evening. As a department we are so proud of every single one of you and will think of the Spring Showcase as one of our definite highlights of 2017. Congratulations.

ICAS Success

ICAS is an independent, skills-based assessment program which recognises and rewards student achievement. ICAS is unique, being the most comprehensive generally available suite of academic assessments for primary and secondary school students.

For more than 30 years, Educational Assessment Australia (EAA) has continuously improved and enhanced ICAS. Today, this experience means ICAS is a 21st century quality assessment that keeps pace with classroom learning.

A new ICAS test is developed annually for each subject in each year level by our team of subject matter experts. All ICAS tests are reviewed by experienced teachers to en-sure that they accurately assess students’ skills and are relevant to what they are learning at school. Some schools use ICAS as a psychometric test to better understand what students can and can’t do at a point in time and track learning as students’ progress from year to year. Other schools use ICAS results as a component of a student’s overall academic achievement for the year and, still others use ICAS as a placement test. Each test is sat at the student’s school and is invigilated by teachers under normal examination conditions.

The students pictured are our top achievers in ICAS 2017.

Arnav Kumar and Angela Yee both obtained Distinction Grades that has placed them in top 8% of entrants from New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.

International Students at MRGS

In July and August we hosted two short-term groups from Japan and China. The groups were here for 10 nights and enjoyed studying at Mt Roskill Grammar School as well as seeing the sights around Auckland. Thank you to our host families and Junior Ambassadors for taking such good care of the students.

Mt Roskill Grammar School hosts around six International groups per year. If any families are interested in hosting our short-term groups in November 2017 and March/April 2018, please contact Fia Clarke at fia.clarke@mrgs.school.nz

MAINZ Concert

MAINZ (Music and Audio Institute of New Zealand) has consistently produced outstanding musical talent over the years, and ex-students include Grammy award winner Joel Little (Producer for Lorde), members of The Naked and Famous, The Mint Chicks, Gin Wigmore, LarzRanda, Midnight Youth, Smashproof member Sid Diamond, Kids in Space, Kids of 88, Concord Dawn among many others.

Their lunchtime concert at MRGS showcased bands from the Certificate in Contemporary Music Performance programme, playing a repertoire of contemporary music. The tour gave our students hands-on experience in other aspects of the music industry including event management (Diploma in Music and Event Management) and production (Certificate in Live Sound and Event Production).

PIPA Workshop

Thanks to PIPA (Pasifika Institute of Performing Arts) for visiting us to work with a bunch of selected PFA students to learn about how PIPA works, what their programmes are like and take us for a short work-shop in both Dance and Drama. Cheers to Jono, Stacey and Lomina for their awesome workshop and for the cool opportunity to learn about how PIPA can be a great pathway for the future.

Romeo and Juliet

On August 31st, Year 11 Dance and Year 10 PFA went to see Romeo and Juliet by The Royal NZ Ballet Company at ASB Theatre in town. It was awesome to see the students attend the ballet - some for the first time ever - so they could see the physical strength that goes into professional dance. The performers were incredible and the students were very well behaved. We love going to see shows during the year and allowing our students the opportunity to see the best dance that New Zealand has to offer. Thanks to Miss Thompson and Ms Aitchison for their smooth running of the trip!

Arts Awards

Thursday 26 October, 7pm

Sports Awards

Wednesday 25th October, 7-9pm

Diwali 2017

Fukuoka Trip Report

In April this year I was fortunate enough to experience a 10 day homestay programme in Japan as a result of winning the 2016 NZJS Haiku-Shodo Contest. This included participating in and experiencing a range of activities around the city of Fukuoka, which is located in the south-east Japanese island of Kyushu. Fukuoka is the largest city in Kyushu, with a city population of 1.6 million, and is known for its strong cultural heritage, and has been Auckland’s sister city since 1986. I spent three days sightseeing with the International Relations Department of the Fukuoka City Council, which included travelling to Dazaifu Shrine, making the famous Hakata (Tonkotsu) Ramen and wearing Kimono. A further 3 days were spent with my host family, who treated me with so much kindness and generosity. Through my host family I was able to dramatically improve my Japanese listening comprehension and learn a lot about how Japanese people live. However, the favourite part of my trip was attending Fukuoka Seiryo High School for three days. At this school, they start at 7:30, have seven 50 minute classes, one lunch break and intensive after school club activities. Different to Roskill? Definitely! I returned back to NZ on the 30th April with a suitcase of souvenirs, a mind full of the brightest memories and the deepest gratitude in my heart to everyone I met or helped me prepare to go. To anyone considering learning another language - you should! Being able to communicate in another language is a powerful thing that broadens your perspective on the world, and I wish that many of you get the chance to learn this first-hand!

Tessa Brown (NHLG 12)

Performing Arts Spring Showcase

Japanese Sushi Experience

On the 24th of August, one of our Year 9 Japanese classes went to A3 to make sushi!  We started off with just the rice, and even that was very yummy! Next was the filling, egg, cucumber and crab stick. There was even some left over, so we ate that too. It was a fun experience where we learnt with our peers how to make sushi by ourselves. By the end of the lesson we had a sushi roll for us to eat, or share with our friends. Cleaning up was fun too! Special thanks to Corrin, Pauline and Krich for helping out with washing and drying the dishes. The other fun part of our lesson was that we were able to connect with our teacher, Sensei as she taught us about her culture. There was left-over rice, so we were given it in the form of a brick as a gift to eat.  If I had a chance, I would go back in time and do it all again. (Also, self-proclamation, I made the best sushi!) Thank you Sensei!

Corrin Ansin 

Senior French Dinner

On the 7th August, the Year 11 and Year 12 French students made our way to ‘Le Garde Manger’, a fantastic French restaurant in the heart of Auckland city. This was a great way to celebrate how far we had come learning French, with our peers and teachers.

Friendly smiles from the waiters and waitresses greeted us as we stepped through the doorway, the checkered tablecloths and warm lighting adding to the homely atmosphere.

We were able to choose what we wanted to eat for the entrée, main, and dessert. It was a hard decision for some, but when the food arrived no one regretted their decision!

Plates of authentic French food were piled onto the table, including snails, onion soup, beef bourguignon, and chocolate mousse! You could almost imagine you were sitting in the French countryside, with the sun setting, and the smell of dinner wafting up the chimneys.

There was also a prize draw, where Mr McAlpine generously shared with us the gifts that he bought from France, such as key rings, pens, books, and CDs.

Discovering French cuisine is one of the best ways to experience French culture, and I’m sure everyone enjoyed the delightful dinner!

Ellen Peng

French Cafe Trip

On a bright and sunny Monday morning, the students of Mr McAlpine and Miss Robertson’s French classes arrived at school early, wide-eyed and awake for the fun morning ahead. Today was the long awaited French café trip to Eiffel en Eden - we were all so excited! When the bus finally arrived, we piled on and filled up the seats in a flash. All of us were eager and could not contain our excitement as we arrived at the French café Eiffel en Eden, which was located along Mt Eden Rd. We were greeted by the friendly workers who told us what was on the menu and directed us to the seating areas. Most of us headed upstairs to find a table to sit at - the space was quite large and a majority of us fitted comfortably in the upstairs space. Most of us went downstairs to order some food, whilst some of us stayed upstairs because the line was so long - it seemed to stretch for miles! A few minutes later, everyone had finally ordered their food. My friends and I ordered hot chocolates and French pastries, such as a Millefeuille (a French pastry consisting of thin layers of pastry). It was delicious! A few of us decided to try snails - Escargot. The snails were plated very nicely - they were placed on top of a crisp piece of mini toast with some garlic butter over it. There were also drizzles of a balsamic reduction and in addition, a green sauce on the side. The snails tasted really good - better than we expected! They reminded me of a garlic buttery chicken. Yummy! Soon, we had all finished eating and it was time to head back to school. As we climbed on board the bus again, I thought to myself, today was truly a great French cuisine experience!

Eurodias Yong & Ellie Zou

Lacrosse Girls

MRGS Lacrosse Girls teams have had an incredible season! The team demonstrated resilience and determination in pool play against some great teams (particularly against their foes, Mt Albert Grammar), the Premier team went down to Epsom Girls in the final for the season and AKSS Championship Tournament, coming second overall in Auckland. For the first time, this team was invited to Nationals. After beating MAGS and drawing against Te Awamutu in pool play, they went down to EGGS in the semi’s. They played St Peter’s College in the 3rd/4th play off, and lost, meaning they came 4th overall in NZ.  Kristine Canete was awarded MVP twice over the tournament. Our second team (Blue Team) had a rocky season, but won 3rd division at AKSS Championship, while our third team (Red Team) developed their skills and strategies giving  every team they played a tough game.  Thank you to our coaches Nigel Tan, Jessie Albri, JC Kaufusi and Romina Seylani, your enthusiasm and dedication is the foundation for our success.

Breearna Johnson, Lauren van Laarhoven-Hargreaves and Anna Greaves represented NZ at the Festival World Cup in the UK during the July school holidays. Breearna Johnson, Lauren van Laarhoven-Hargreaves, Anna Greaves and Aroha Ravestein have been selected to represent Auckland in the U18 division.  Darlene Hotwani-Myar, Saleha Abdul Rahman, Sheng-Ya Wang, Krisha Chandnani and Vinodhini Murali have been selected to represent Auckland in the U15 division.

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Winter Sports Results

Our fantastic sports teams enjoy widespread success.

Our winter sport are all reaching their climax and Mount Roskill Grammar School has already met with considerable regional and national success.

  • Girls Lacrosse: 4th nationals, 2nd Division 1 tournament, 2nd Auckland Sec School competition
  • Girls B Lacrosse: 1st Division 2 tournament
  • Girls Football: 1st 1B knock out tournament
  • Girls Rugby: 2nd Auckland Secondary School 10-aside competition
  • U15 Boys Basketball: 1st Greater Auckland Championship, 1st Central/West zone competition
  • U19 Boys Basketball: 2nd Greater Auckland Championship, 1st Central/West zone competition
  • U17 Boys BasketballL: 1st Central/West zone U17B competition
  • 2nd XI Girls Football: 2nd Auckland Sec School C grade competition
  • U15 Boys Football: 1st Auckland Sec School U15C grade competition
  • 2nd XI Girls Hockey: 1st Auckland Sec School C grade competition
  • U15 Boys rugby: team played in the final vs Botany Downs on Saturday 2nd September and were unfortunate to lose.

Peace Week Review

PEACE WEEK 2017 “CELEBRATING 30 YEARS NUCLEAR FREE AOTEAROA”

The Mediators once again helped MRGS celebrate International Peace Week during the 7th – 11th August by providing a number of exciting activities: peace assembly presentation; random acts of kindness; peace quote competitions; face painting; peace badge making; the wearing of white ribbons for peace; painted peace banners and t-shirts. In Monday’s assembly, the Mediators showed their inspirational video on Nuclear Free NZ, and then sang Dr Lyndon Burford’s original Nuclear free song. On Wednesday , it was “Embracing Diversity and Anti Violence Day” where the Hodge Commons was full of information stalls from outside agencies like Manalive, SHINE, RPE, Youthlaw, plus student run stalls on ‘Violence is not ok campaign’; PSSP, Amnesty, Live4Tomorrow, BILS, Skittles, Refugee awareness, Crane making and Peace Badge making. There was also beautiful music and singing playing outside.

A sausage sizzle (including halal sausages) raised funds for the Auckland City Mission because how can we have peace when we have poverty?

On the Friday, the Mediators marched for peace around Mt Roskill community with the releasing of green balloons into the sky.

Peace week is a student driven and student owned campaign where all the Mediators collaborate together in a positive way to make a difference to our MRGS community. They are very active and vocal about the important values of peace, kindness, equality and respect for all.

A big thank you to all you wonderful Mediators!

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Peace Symposium

On Friday 25th August, thirty MRGS Mediators attended the 13th Secondary Schools Peace Symposium organised by the Peace Foundation. 100 students represented 8 schools, all of which presented information about their schools Peer Mediation Service and Peace week activities. The students' presentations were exciting and inspirational, with many creative ideas on how to bring peace to school communities. Other peace speakers included Councillor Cathy Casey, Peace Activist Dr Lyndon Burford, and Giant Killa (Songwriter/musician/ actor).

Our very own MRGS students did an inspiring presentation which included their originally created NUCLEAR FREE NZ VIDEO and they sung Dr Lyndon Burford’s Nuclear Free Song. They received a standing ovation from the audience.

Well done to Natascha Bates, Kaitlyn Booth, Zane Chaudhry, Tafadzwa Chikomba, Lily Chu, Hana Galea, Jessica Gao, Paula Ilaua, Mele Kaufusi, Arusa Khalid, Adam King, Ash Kumar, Sammy-J Leuii, Annie Luteru, Haukinima Mafi, Eileen Makasini, Maria Makasini, Sherin Mohamed Bari, Tina Peau, Ellen Peng,  Elizabeth Qian, Janna Rana, Sidrena Sapoi, Ojas Shukla, Varshma Sivagnanam, Halym Smith, Larissa Tavui, Melody Ting, Siosaia Tuitupou, and Tasnim Yassin Ismail. You did MRGS proud once more!

A big thank you to the Peace Foundation for giving our students such an amazing opportunity!

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KBB Music Festival Success

Congratulations to our Concert Band who gained a Silver award in the KBB Music Festival. We are so proud of the way you performed, supported each other and cheered for other groups/musicians.

Congratulations to our String Orchestra for gaining a Bronze award in the KBB Music Festival. They gave a musical performance, displaying excellent teamwork. The judges commended them on their ability to play so well together without a conductor.

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Stand Up Stand Out Heats

We are so proud of both our Hip Hop Crews (Hot Chips and Diversifire) for putting on a great show at OMAC for the Stand Up Stand Out Heats on August 16th. They were supportive of all the other teams and had a wonderful time - you guys are a credit to Mt Roskill Grammar. A big congratulations to Diversifire our Senior Crew for getting through to finals which is on the 2nd of September. Hope to see you all there in support!

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Basement Theatre - AFAKASI

The Performing Arts Department at MRGS continues to benefit from our amazing friends at The Basement Theatre who recently came to perform AFAKASI in our studio. Antonia Stehlin and Katie Burson were fantastic in their portrayal of Leilani and her family, showing the journey of one Afakasi (half-caste) woman into accepting her identity as both Palagi and Samoan. The piece really resonated with years 11-13 Drama classes who are a mix of many cultures - Afakasi was a story they could connect with, leaving many of the students in tears at the end of the show. Thanks again to The Basement for their continued support - we love the shows you bring to us!

Excel School of Performing Arts

It was awesome to have Excel School of Performing Arts at MRGS on August 3rd. Loads of talent in music, vocals, dance and drama. If you're keen on being a part of their programme check out their website. A special shout out to Semi and Sione who performed and are ex-Roskill students! Awesome to see you back home on stage. Thanks to all that came to watch!

Excel has been passing through the country visiting schools to show the work they create and promote their courses. We were very happy to have them back again this year for their latest show ‘Real Talk’ which was a great mix of dance, vocals, music and drama which highlighted the idea of being honest and true to yourself. It was a really positive and uplifting atmosphere and we’d like to thank EXCEL for coming to MRGS to show our learners about the variety pathways in the performing arts.

Girls´ Football Success

Congratulation to our First XI Football Girls who won the APC PREMIER 2 final recently against MacLeans. It wasn't an easy game with a 3-3 scoreline at the end of the game, then straight into extra time with both teams scoring a goal each and so they went into a goal shoot out with MRGS winning that 3-2. Also big congratulation to Breearna Johnson for receiving the Player of the Match and scoring all 3 goals.

Perfect Hockey Season

The U15 Girls Hockey Team completed the perfect season by winning their grade final 5-0 against Baradene. The team scored an impressive 105 goals while only conceding 4 across 10 games. The girls were captained by Lalita Paopa who in particular performed to an outstanding level and has since been rewarded with selection for the Auckand U15 representative squad.

Scholarship for France

Ellen Peng wins Scholarship for France

The New Zealand Institute of International Understanding (NZIIU) is a non-profit organisation which "promotes internation-al understanding through programmes that encourage educational and cultural exchange overseas."

Every year, NZIIU offers scholarships for student exchanges. They are very prestigious awards.

To be eligible to apply for this scholarship, you need to get a Gold or Elite award in the Language Perfect Competition, and be successful in both the application and interview process.

Ellen Peng of Year 12, has been announced as one of the scholarship winners . She will start her three-month adventure in France at the beginning of next year.

The New Zealand Institute of International Understanding (NZIIU), in association with Education Perfect, has awarded Ellen Peng a $4,000 3-month scholarship to live in France for 3 months at the beginning of 2018. Congratulations and Bon Voyage!

Free Lunchtime Concert

Tuesday 29th August at lunchtime in the hall

Presented by the Music and Audio Institute of New Zealand (MAINZ).

MAINZ has consistently produced outstanding musical talent over the years, and ex-students include Grammy award winner Joel Little (Producer for Lorde), members of The Naked and Famous, The Mint Chicks, Gin Wigmore, LarzRanda, Midnight Youth, Smashproof member Sid Diamond, Kids in Space, Kids of 88, Concord Dawn among many others.
 
The free lunchtime concert will showcase bands from our Certificate in Contemporary Music Performance programme, playing a repertoire of contemporary music. The tour also gives our students hands-on experience in other aspects of the music industry including event management (Diploma in Music and Event Management) and production (Certificate in Live Sound and Event Production).

Wheelchair Rugby Chamionships

Mentoring Conference

Mentoring Conference - Wednesday 30th August: 8.30am – 8:00pm

Conference bookings now open www.schoolinterviews.co.nz code: f6pb3
As mentors, we look forward to seeing you all to discuss your child’s progress and next steps leading in to external examinations and portfolio completion.
Prior to conference students should be meeting with their mentors. We also look forward to the students themselves helping to lead the conference.

National Day of Silence

Friday 18 August was the National Day of Silence.

With manaakitanga and whanaungatanga as our overarching school values. this is an important day on our MRGS calendar. Over 40 students took a loud, but silent stand against homophobic and transphobic harassment and bullying. We are proud to be an inclusive school where diversity is affirmed and celebrated.

Over 50 student leaders chose to wear black duct tape on their mouths and maintained silence through-out the school day.

This day draws attention to the devastating impact of homophobic bullying and harassment.

With our overarching school values of manaakitanga and whanaungatanga and our strong commitment to prevent youth suicide as a school community, this is an important event in our calendar.

We are proud to offer an environment at Mount Roskill Grammar School where diversity is affirmed, respects is given to all students irrespective of sexual and gender identity, and all forms of prejudice and discrimination are actively opposed.

New Library Website

League of Legends Roskill Tournament

Live for Tomorrow

In Term 2, Live for Tomorrow have continued their work promoting Mental Health by running an Encouragement Letter event, and also by performing in Assembly.
Sending encouragement Letters was a new idea this year but was quickly and enthusiastically taken up by students who produced beautiful, creative and uplifting messages to send to their friends. Live for Tomorrow leaders then delivered well over a hundred letters to form classes in the following days. The letter writers told me, “this is a great way to express your feelings, it is easier to put it in a letter than to say it out loud”, and, “it’s fun doing this, it makes me feel happy and full of energy”.

A drama piece performed by Zane Chaudhry and Vyshni Ishwaran addressed some of the stigma around having mental health issues. They amused the audience by showing how silly it would look if we treated all of our health issues with that sort of stigma. Go and see someone for help with a sore ankle? No, what would the neighbours say?!? We don’t have ankle issues in our family!!! Hmmm…

Tough Guy Tough Gal Challenge

On Friday 30th June, our Year 13 Physical Education students competed in the Auckland Secondary Schools’ Tough Guy Tough Gal Challenge. We had a great turn out, and the students had lots of fun running a 6km cross country up and down the Helensville countryside, climbing over fences, under barbed wire, through tunnels and electric shock obstacles, wading through freezing rivers and waist deep mud. Special mention goes to Breearna Johnson who was the 5th fastest female and Tadele Wakjira who was 20th overall out of 651 competitors.

Year 12 Drama Showcase

On the 9th of June the Year 12 Drama Class performed their second showcase of the year, excerpts from Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet. At the beginning when we got to choose our roles I found it very challenging to perform this. Previously I had performed in A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Peter Quince and in Romeo and Juliet as Tybalt, but for both of those we had modernized them and we didn't have to worry about the Elizabe-han style theatre - with audience on three sides and on multiple levels in front of me. Because for this assessment we had to act it out like how they would have performed it in Elizabethan times and it was more difficult than I would have imagined. At the end of the day I enjoyed myself because it not only pushed me out of my comfort zone but my classmates too and we all got to experience something new. This is my first year of taking proper Drama and I regret not taking it in Year 11 because I really do truly enjoy acting and it makes it worthwhile when you are doing it with a classroom full of people who love it too.

(Written by student Tafadzwa Chikomba)

Dance Workshop for Juniors

In the first half of term 2 there was an opportunity for Junior students to try out new styles of dance which were offered by Senior dance students in the PFA room. The styles included Hip Hop, Tap and Samoan Dance. It was wonderful to see the capabilities of our senior students in leading these groups and to watch the talent emerge from our younger learners. We even managed to find a few new students with mega talent to join our Junior Hip Hop Crew ‘Hot Chips’ also led by Senior Dance students. The PFA Dept would like to thank Josephine Mavaega and Etita Tamiano (Samoan Dance), Victoria Medina Villapol (Hip Hop) and Chelsea Ellis and Steffanie Kobayashi-Cox (Tap) for the time and effort they put in to prepare their sets and teach, and to the junior students for their enthusiasm and for trying something new.

Rockerz Dance Success

On Saturday 27th May group of 10 passionate students performed at Logan Campbell Centre in a High School Bollywood Dance Competition. The group had put in many hours of hard work and rehearsals after school. The group has worked diligently from giving interviews at the Humm FM radio station, promoting the event and designing their own costumes. Roskill students definitely made the community proud by winning 2nd Runner up prize. Sara Shah Yr13 also got noticed for her excellence performance and was awarded best female dancer out of 11 schools. Well done to the following students for their determination and for the community in supporting them on the night. Dancers were Kiran Bora, Sachun Dutt, Ishita Dwivedi, Mitchell Gosling, Saakshi Hegde, Delicia Saldanha, Khushi Shajpal, Seth Prashanti, Sara Shah and Nidhi Vijayanarasimhan.

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Term 2 Sports Update

Basketballer of the future

Levic Kerr from year 10 spent most of the break between term 2 and 3 in Dunedin at the Under 15 basketball championships. Despite being relatively new to the sport his height, work ethic and skill caught the eye of many spectators and that of the newshub team. To see more about Levic and to view the report follow this NewsHub link

Archery now at Mount Roskill Grammar

This year we have established an Archery group. It started because Ally King, one of our year 13 students and an avid archer herself, saw that there were many students not involved in any other sport that would be keen to start archery.
So we asked for teachers and students to train to be coaches and after our whole day training in term 4, 2016 we ended up with 7 dedicated and fully trained student and staff archery coaches. We are very fortunate to have a top archer parent coach Steven King to make sure we are all doing it right. Following health and safety approval, by the end of term 2, we had a strong, skilled and keen team of about 30 archers. We train every Friday morning, before school, and afternoon, after school, in our specially kitted out, archery safe, Gym 3.

Shooting started at about 7 metres from the target, but we all got better at shooting and more accurate over the weeks. After a term of practise we are now shooting from the 18 metre mark and have some awesome archers. Unfortunately we have to wait until term one 2018 until we can compete in the inter schools competitions, but we should have some successful competitors in these competitions. In the meantime we are looking to expand our numbers and started a new beginners group over the term 2 holidays, so they will be ready for term 3 weekly practices. We are also looking into having a within school competition later in the year.
If you are interested in joining see Ms Cranch in C11 or one of our dedicated and skilled student coaches: Johnson Zhaung , Ally King, Felix Yang, Lucky Chen and Kendrel Cher.

Under 15 Rugby

Our Under 15 rugby team have played 7 games and won 6 in the U15B competition. We are looking good to make the semi-finals. The team is well led by Captain Jesse Pikaahu. The team is well known for their outstanding fitness and commitment to training four times a week.
With two games to end the round, we may well go " To the Heights".

1st XI Boys Football

The 1st XI Boys Football team has had a difficult start to the season. With a new generation of players, the young team - the majority of which are Year 9, Year 10 and Year 11 - have struggled to match the heights set last season, when the team managed 3rd place in their first season back in the U19 Auckland Premier League. In between some disappointing losses there have been two good performances against Auckland Grammar and St Peters College, which earned the team 1-1 and 2-2 draws, respectively. The recent game against St Peters saw a great performance from the team and showed they can compete in this grade. Meanwhile, the 1st XI Development team - made up of mainly Year 9 with a few Year 10 students - have been playing a good style of football and developing technically and tactically. There is much promise in the young ranks on the back of good identification and development in the intermediate school age bracket.

Senior Boys Basketball

With a young core this year, the Senior Boys Basketball team have set themselves the lofty goal of playing Premier Basketball in 2018. In order to achieve this the team must win both their Open A grade and the subsequent Greater Auckland Championship (held in mid-August). The team have started well with 6 wins from 7 and require two more victories against Lynfield and Rutherford to secure 1st place in the grade. The boys are to be commended for their commitment to both their studies and basketball. We look forward to the challenges that lie ahead next term.

Past Students Experiencing International Rugby Success

Brothers Daniel Faleafa (1st XV Capt 2006) and Michael Faleafa (1st XV 2006/07) were named in the Tongan Ikale side for internationals against Samoa and Wales in May.

Daniel is currently contracted to Brive RFC France and Michael contracted to Northland.

Senior Girls’ Lacrosse Team

Lacrosse continues to be a growing and successful sport at MRGS. Our premiere team, are currently second overall in Auckland this season after recently beating MAGS 12-9. This team are likely to be invited to Nationals for the first time next term if they continue their success. Breearna Johnson, Anna Greaves and Lauren van Laarhoven-Hargreaves represented NZ at the Lacrosse Festival World Cup in the UK, travelling first to the US over the school holidays.

Senior Girls Basketball

The Premier Girls Basketball team have had a mixed season so far with multiple injuries that have tested the depth of the team. Our team trains afterschool on Monday and Wednesdays with games from 6pm most Fridays and the occasional Monday. The girls have shown incredible resilience and team work, working hard on their fitness and shooting skills. We have a number of young girls in years 10 and 11, and a couple who are new to basketball all of whom have shown incredible promise for the future. We look forward to developing our team further as the season progresses.

1st XI Girls’ Football

The 1st XI girls have competed well in the higher grade (A1) that they were promoted to last year. To date they have five wins two draws and three loses and have scored 21 goals for and had 14 scored against.

The team is currently in 5th place out of twelve teams. This years team is very young, with 10 of the girls coming from year nine and year ten, despite their lack of age and experience they are already competing well and the future looks very bright.

Badminton on the Rise

Badminton Teams at Mount Roskill increase in team number and National Representation.

In Term 2, 18 Mount Roskill teams have been playing in the Auckland Competition. Another 9 teams will compete in Term 3. Last year there was 25 teams.
The Term 2 teams have been involved in an Auckland competition involving 229 School teams divided into grades based at different locations. Each team has 4 to 6 players, and each match against another school involves 6 games. A number of Mount Roskill teams are first or second in their grades.

Our top team is in the A grade Reserve and with one round to go, have had 4 wins, 1 draw and 3 losses. The wins have been against Lynfield’s top team, Auckland Grammar’s third and fourth team and ACG’s second team. Our top player, John Seo 13NCHA, has only lost one out of eight singles matches this season. Our second player Ian Busby 9SMLG has been selected for the Auckland Number one Under 15 team and the New Zealand under 15 team, which recently beat Australia in a test match in Sydney.

Making Art

In year 10 Art we made a painting inspired by Mount Roskill Grammar School and the Mount Roskill area. We drew inspiration from our art classes and places around the school and Puketapapa, the Mount Roskill mountain. The painting process took three weeks. Our group began by making individual plans and then tried to merge our ideas together. Then we started creating our painting by preparing the pieces of wood and painting the base colour of our painting. Then we painted the Mount Roskill mountain, and the boxes around it and filled them with colour and pattern designs that we’d created earlier. Lastly we painted the sunset sky with the cross in the middle. We arranged to work together by getting small groups to work on particular areas of the painting, ensuring that every part of the painting was done effectively and on time. We learnt that team work can help you create something faster. We also learnt helpful painting techniques like blending, creating colours and painting realistic structures.

40 Hour Famine

Thank you to all students and staff who participated this year. MRGS raised more than $2600 for Syrian refugees.

If you still have any outstanding booklets and donation collection, please return them to Miss Yang in R11

A huge thank-you to all who took part from 40 Hour Famine committee and Miss Yang.

More information on this very worthy cause can be found at:

https://www.worldvision.org.nz/40-hour-famine

Young Speech Makers Comp

Ding Gao and Ojas Shukla competed against 12 other students from around Auckland. They presented speeches on diversity and drug prohibition respectively and each delivered an impromptu speech on technology in 20 years time. They spoke persuasively and made a lasting impact on their audience.

Special Olympics Soccer

On Monday 26 June students from the MacLean Centre took part in the Special Olympics Soccer Tournament held at Macleans College, Bucklands Beach. Mount Roskill Grammar School entered a team in the 1st Division and 3rd Division.

Competition was fierce but everybody played very well. Both teams were placed 3rd in their Division and were a credit to the school showing great sportsmanship and participation.

1st Division team players:

Aaron Fernandes, Mandela Takaa, Hyung Tag Lee, Viliami Kaihau, Tonga Tupou, Semisi Tonga and Issac Tutakitoa.

3rd Division team players:

Sebastian O’Sulivan, Michael Hsu, Jaimee Henshaw, Krystal Hinks-Allen, Nitro Hansen and Daniel Zhu.

Junior Hip Hop Crew Performs

In Arts Week, the Junior Hip Hop crew ‘Hot Chips’ performed three of their five sets at Mount Roskill Intermediate School at their Arts Week assembly. The fourteen year 9 and 10 students were immaculately behaved and led by their brilliant senior leaders, Siraanika Govindu and ‘Isope ‘Akau’ola.

The feedback from the staff and students was very positive and they enjoyed seeing many MRI ex-pupils on stage sharing such enthusiasm and talent. The Junior Hip Hop crew is looking forward to performing at Stand Up Stand Out in August and has been rehearsing hard, as have the Senior Crew ‘Diversifire’.

Dance Showcase - Term 2

What a huge year for Performing Arts - again made evident by the Dance showcase of Term 2 which highlighted the wonderful work done by Miss Caitie Thompson and her students in Year 11-13 Dance. Their work was engaging, polished and very professional. The crowd of over 200 people enjoyed the work which ranged from student-choreographed pieces to professionally choreographed work taught by Miss Thompson to the students. Some of the performances were whole class dances. The Year 11 class performed a contemporary piece created by a professional choreographer inspired by the movement in the Samoan Sasa which was a great start to the evening. Year 12 students performed a piece they choreographed with Miss Thompson to ‘Just what I needed’ by The Cars, and the Year 13 students performed a professionally choreographed piece named ‘Now Reveal Me’ about individuality and expression of self. We were so proud of our students for their hard work and professional approach to the stag and would like to thank Patrice O’Brien, Mark Thompson, Rohan Shetty, Ella Mavaega and Carmela Hughes for their backstage assistance.

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Kororareka Trip - Senior Drama

On Wednesday the 14th of June, all the senior Drama students went to Q Theatre in a double decker bus to see Red Leap Theatre Company’s new work ‘Kororareka: The Ballad of Maggie Flynn’. The work explored a story of Maggie, an Irish ship captain who migrated to New Zealand in her husband’s boat. Maggie lands in Kororareka (Russell) at the pivotal era before the treaty signing, and becomes a ‘mokai’ - a slave or pet of the local Maori. The piece was performed by five of the leading and most influential women in Auckland theatre today, and explored themes and ideas that the students felt impacted by and are excited to discuss in their end of year examinations. In the examinations students analyse a piece of drama they have seen that year.

Year 13 Production

On Thursday 15th and Friday 16th of May, the Year 13 Drama class performed the highly challenging feminist text, The Collective by Jean Betts. The work focuses on the fictional German playwright Bertolt Brecht who was a pioneer of modern theatre principles and excommunicat-ed from Berlin during World War 2 for his communist plays and ideals. He was also known to be a compulsive philanderer, and often manipulated these women into writing his plays for him with little to no compensation. Thanks to the Year 13 Drama whanau, Maia Brewster, Victoria Polima and Yusuf Guessous for their help with makeup/hair and Front of House; thanks to Reon Bell and Ella Mavaega for their Sound and Lighting Design; and to Josephine Mavaega for her songwriting and performance with Rocky Parsons. The Year 13 class has really bonded over the experience of putting on this show and we have had some great results in this assessment opportunity. Thanks to our lovely audiences for being so responsive to this modern work.

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Junior Health Consultation

Junior Health Curriculum Community Consultation

Every two years, Mount Roskill Grammar School conducts a community consultation on our Health Curriculum. Health is compulsory in the NZ Curriculum for Years 9 and 10 students and can be chosen as an NCEA subject in Year 11, 12 and 13. Health has an important role in the New Zealand Curriculum, teaching our students life long skills and knowledge.

The MRGS Community Health Consultation will take place in Term 3. The consultation consists of an online survey that will only take a few minutes for parents to complete. An email will be sent to all parents and caregivers on our email database with a link to the survey. A link will also be available on the school website and paper copies available from the school office. We value your input and look forward to receiving your feedback.

A copy of the MRGS Junior Health Curriculum outline is available on the school website here. If you have any further questions regarding the Health programme at MRGS, please contact Kim Thomas or Maria Vince, 621 0050 ext 741, kim.thomas@mrgs.school.nz, maria.vince@mrgs.school.nz

p.s. survey is now available here

´YouDance´

Imagine two evenings of professional dance where students are able to perform on a beautiful stage and receive feedback on their performances by professional dancers, highly regarded in the industry. That event is YouDance - a prestigious festival of Dance which is entrance by invite-only and showcases the best and brightest of secondary school dance in Auckland. MRGS performed on night 2 and showed 3 dances - two student-choreographed works ‘Power’ and ‘Maui’ as well as Caitie Thompson’s choreography of ‘Ellipsis’. All three pieces were very well received and initiated multiple congratulations and commendations on the students’ performances and choreography. We look forward to next year where we hope to continue to show what MRGS performing arts is capable of.

Spelling Bee Success

Huthaifa Ibrahim from Year 10 also qualified for the semi-finals of the National Spelling Bee. This means he has placed in the top 200 nationwide. Good luck to Huthaifa in the semi-final which will be held in Auckland on August 12.

Farewell to Mr Keith Hall

At the end of term 2 we farewelled Keith Hall after 31 years at the school as he retires from the profession. Mr Hall began at Mount Roskill Grammar in 1986 as Head of Geography and carried out many roles including Dean of Year 13, Head of Social Sciences, and Deputy Principal since 2001. He is much loved by our community not only for his meticulous work but also because he epitomises what the school is about. He has been at the heart of Roskill since he first arrived and has been the ‘go to man’ for so many staff and students , helping people wherever he can. The Sursum Trust recognised this in naming its major scholarship in his honour.

There were many farewell events. The school presented Mr Hall with a taonga in the shape of a fish hook - Hei Matau representing strength, determination and bringing peace, prosperity and good health. It also provides safe journey over water. It is made from rare whale tooth, though not as rare as our rangatira Mr Hall. The Mount Roskill community is deeply grateful to Mr Hall for the way he has always believed the best and relentlessly cared for us.

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Junior Subject Report Night

4-7pm Thursday 10 August

Please book online www.schoolinterviews.co.nz - code = zjxa2

We look forward to meeting you to inform you of your child’s progress and discuss their next steps for learning.

Health teachers can be found under the Health & Physical Education subject.

Doc Edge Film Festival

Year 12 Media students, L-R: Reon Bell, Viran Ranweera, Ms. Vicky Bogle, Liam D’Lima, Eric Mirchevskyy

In May the students from the 12 and 13 Media classes went to the Doc Edge Film Festival at Q Theatre to watch a selection of local and international documentaries.
We entered a competition and ended up being the lucky winners of an awesome 4K Panasonic video camera. Jane Cotty from Docs For Schools presented the 12 Media class with the camera. We’re looking forward to Media students winning more prizes in future for their own awesome filmmaking endeavours.

http://docedge.nz/festival/win-panasonic-camera/

http://docedge.nz/festival-old/docs-4-schools/

Gymsports News

ASS GYMSPORTS held at Bruce Pulman Park in Papakura on 29th June.

MRGS had its biggest team ever represent the school. With a total of 28 athletes competing. Thank you to the student coaches India Horgan, Rachel Bickerton and Morgan Watson.
 
Results were as follows:

Gymnastics - LEVEL 1:

  • Alyshia Harper 2nd
  • Anna Greaves 3rd

Team places  - 2nd place:

  • Anna Greaves
  • Chelsea Ellis
  • Kaitlyn Booth

Team 3rd:

  • Wai Yen Relph
  • Dhavni Patel
  • Mollie Coldham
  • Rebecca Zhou

Trampoline:

  • 3rd  in A grade Men’s:  Shivesh Lal
  • 1st in B Grade Women’s:  Chelsea Ellis
  • 3rd in C Grade Women’s:  Mollie Coldham
  • 1st C Grade Men's: Brooklyn O'Malley

1st Level  C team:

  • Mollie Coldham
  • Aylshia Harper
  • Melanie Spence
  • Nidhi Vijayanarasimhan

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Mathematics Success

Mount Roskill Grammar School students recently took part is the 2017 Education Perfect Maths Championships. Out of 1089 schools who entered worldwide we finished the competition ranked 15th in world or in the top 1.4% globally!

Congratulations to the competitors and the staff who supported them.

Successful Open Day

On Thursday 29th June, the school played host to almost 100 new and prospective families on Open Day. The day was an opportunity for students and their parents to come and get a feel for the supportive and caring environment that allows Roskill Grammar students to thrive and succeed.

In the coming weeks there will be tours offered for any families who have follow up questions or  for  any  families  that  couldn’t  make  it  to  Open  Day.  These  tours  will  give  visitors  the opportunity to walk around the school and speak with students and school leaders. If you have a friend, relative or neighbour that you think would be interested in a tour of the school the dates and times are below. All tours will start from reception.

  • Thursday 6th July 8:00 - 9:30am
  • Wednesday 26th July 3:30 - 5:00pm
  • Saturday 5th August 9:30 - 11:00am

International Peace Week

International Peace Week is coming up the week of 7-11 August and this year’s theme is celebrating 30 years of Aotearoa’s Anti- Nuclear law.

Our wonderful Peer Mediators are already organising many exciting peace activities for MRGS. These include assembly presentations, peace t-shirts, peace banners, a peace march, an anti-violence and embracing diversity stall day, peace badge making, random acts of kindness, face painting, and the wearing of white ribbons.

Make sure you are involved in spreading the messages of peace, love, respect and kindness to all in MRGS and our community.

Ex Peer Mediator Ady Verma, who was very involved in past Peace weeks, talks to the Auckland Humanity Project about the effect being a Mediator has had on him at MRGS:

One thing I’m actually really passionate about is the way my school raised us, and that’s from our counselling services are really phenomenal and the support students get there. Peer mediation or peer support was really good, and if we could have something that’s Auckland-wide and not just in school that would be really good for people who just need to talk.... In Year 11, I became a mediator and I followed until Year 13 to becoming a senior mediator. You learn how to talk to people; helps you become a better person as well, because when you’re trying to help people, a lot of the time you end up helping yourself because you realise, oh I should be doing these things and you’re more aware of your actions that can affect other people”.

For more information see Auckland Humanity Project

Peer Mentorship Training

On Sunday 18th June and Monday 19th June, 36 Mediators were trained by Julie McCracken in Peer Mentorship skills. This engaging and interactive training included goal setting, problem solving, rapport building, communication skills, and learning how to think outside the square. 100% of students reported really enjoying this course, learning  life skills that will help them in the future and highly recommending the course to other students. One student says: “I genuinely feel like a different person coming out of this course so thank you very much”.

Another student says:  “It is honestly the most important and efficient course you will ever take”.

Peer Life Mentors are available to support younger students one-to-one. So if any student would like some support or mentoring from an older student please contact Student Services.

A big thank you to Julie McCracken for this invaluable training and to Louise Fisher and Peter Maher for their generous donation to cover costs.

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Arts Week Review

Week 9 was ARTS WEEK at Mt Roskill Grammar School – a week to learn, live and love the Arts and all that encompasses them. The Art Department hosted banner painting for peace and a few workshops by guest tutors, the Music Department hosted live performances by MRGS students, and the PFA committee (Dance and Drama students in leadership roles) facilitated professional guest tutors and workshops in Dance and Drama, and we also hosted an Arts Expo with representatives from many Auckland institutions and universities. It was a week to celebrate the opportunities the arts afford us, and the importance of the Arts to a fully rounded education or lifestyle. Thanks to the students who performed or led activities – we are so proud of their hard work and passion for the Arts.

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Arts Week

ARTS WEEK is upon us!

All week, the 26th - 30th June, there will be heaps of amazing arts activities around our school.

Download poster below for details.

All students are invited and all events are FREE!  First in first served.

Learn how to make a puppet from award-winning Red Leap Theatre Company;  try your hand at ballroom dancing with Candy Lane Dance Studios; help paint and create an awesome PEACE BANNER; groove to the live sounds of our very own Jazz Combo; or come learn about pathways in the arts after grammar school - AND LOTS MORE!

Spread the word and see you during Arts Week!
 

Japanese Trivia Championship

On Friday 16th June four Year 10 students - Anna Brown, Bhavya Jasti, Hima Gaffoor and Tanjila Hassan went to AUT for the Japanese Trivia Championship. They dressed in traditional Japanese clothing; Yukata.  We were placed 4th in New Zealand.  There were 5 rounds with 10 questions each. The rounds involved daily life, food, sports and festival, geography and pop culture. After the first 2 rounds Mt Roskill Grammar was placed 1st but after sports and festival we were tied in second place. After the 5 rounds, three school (including us) were tied with first place and had to answer the tie breaker question: “In the 2016 olympics, how many gold medals did Japan win?”  We had no idea what the answer was and took a wild guess which landed us in 3rd place. There were prizes for first place - a trophy cup, second place - $10 gift voucher for the Warehouse and a costume prize - a packet of pocky sticks. Altogether we got 45 out of 50 points and found the whole experience great fun! Thanks to Miss Kojima for driving us there, teaching us how to wear a yukata and supporting us throughout the night!

Consent Awareness Week

The Mt Roskill Grammar Peer Sexuality Support team pulled off their third annual Consent Awareness Week recently. During this week, the team hung up posters, did assembly presentations and had a lunchtime interactive session. On the Thursday lunchtime, a consent booth, videoed by the NZHerald, was set up in the school quad. The Peer Sexuality Support team talked with students regarding the importance of consent, and led some thought provoking conversations. The day was brightened up with sweets, gifts, and lots of attention from staff and students alike.

Simon Collins, Education Reporter for the NZ Herald wrote:

"Guys always want to have sex." True/False.

It may seem debatable, but there was only one correct answer in the quiz asked of all students in a Sexual Consent Awareness Day at Mt Roskill Grammar School today: "False."

"The idea that guys always want to have sex removes the whole purpose of consent" explained Year 11 student Jordan King, 15.

In other words, guys need to be asked first too, and they can say no.

"It's very common for people to think that guys always want to have sex", said a Year 11 girl, Maitreyi Chakrapani. "If we have this here we can debunk a myth."

The school's unusually open approach to the issue is its response to recent cases of teen males boasting about sexual conquests by getting girls drunk or drugged, as in the West Auckland Roast Busters case in 2013 and at Wellington College this year, which led to a march against rape culture by hundreds of school students.

Another true/false statement in the Mt Roskill quiz was: "If someone is drunk, they cannot consent to sexual activities."

Year 13 Mt Roskill student Josette Xu said she helped initiate the school's first Consent Awareness Week two years ago in response to widespread discussion about the issue on social media.

Since then, guidance department head Margaret Hoogendoorn has picked a dozen senior students each year to run awareness activities such as a skit at the school assembly, daily messages for all students, and the quiz handed out in the school quad with support from Rape Prevention Education and Auckland Sexual Abuse Help.

The Peer Sexual Support Programme team also take health classes on consent for Year 10 students, supported by a teacher at the back of the class.

"Because we are student-led, it makes it a lot easier for students to talk to us," Josette Xu said. "It's a bit awkward asking about sex with teachers."

She said it was important to start talking about consent at a young age so that students absorbed the message as part of their "morality", rather than just thinking that it was something they had to do legally.

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Japanese Tea Ceremony

Miss Kojima, Tessa and Axl were invited to demonstrate the Japanese Tea Ceremony on the 9th of June, to the employees of Mercedes-Benz company for their Cultural Diversity Day.  Before we demonstrated the Japanese Tea Ceremony, we listened to the Japanese Marketer’s speech about his experiences in Japan and how many Mercedes cars were sold last year in Japan and also how it would help us to learn about other cultures and the fun side of it.  After his speech, a Japanese drum team played taiko for us. They also had a workshop with the employees.  They had continuous changes in volume and notes which I personally think was intense and thought that the way they played was astonishing. After that, we had two sessions of serving tea to the employees. The ladies from the New Zealand Japan Society explained the Japanese Tea ceremony and demonstrated the preparation for serving Mattcha teas.  It was the sitting style. Although it may sound as if we did something boring, it was a pleasure to serve Mattcha tea as we were able to see the right way to serve Mattcha tea and learn the perfect etiquette to be used during a tea ceremony. It was a very enjoyable experience as we also got to see stunning cars that I don’t usually get to see out on the road and we also got to see Mercedes-Benz branded cars lined up in their parking lot.

Axl Rada

National Lacrosse Honours

Over the holidays Breearna Johnson, Lauren van Laarhoven-Hargreaves and Anna Greaves will be representing New Zealand. The trio will firstly travel to the USA to play
in the NZHPP Academy U19 Festival Lacrosse Team. They will then fly on to the UK to play at the Festival World Cup. Good luck to all the girls.

Open Day 29 June, 3.30-6.30pm

Mount Roskill Grammar School will host our annual Open Day on Thursday 29th June from 3:30-6:30pm.

The day is an opportunity for prospective families and students to come and experience the Roskill Way. To get a feel for the fantastic school that Mount Roskill Grammar is, with great results, both in and outside the classroom, and to live the inclusive, welcoming atmosphere.

If you have friends who have children entering year 9 next year or who are considering options for their children, please let them know the date.

MRGS High School League Champions

The MRGS League of Legend team have claimed the title as the first ever champion in the history of New Zealand high school Esports. The team was undefeated throughout the entire 13 week tournament and never once fell behind their opposition in any of the matches. The team consisted of:

  • Vinson Feng (Captain)
  • Liam Liang
  • Patrick Chung
  • Alan Xu
  • Andy Mo

NZ Herald article

TVNZ story and video

Spirit of Adventure

For 45 years the tall ship Spirit of Adventure has been taking young people on voyages to help in their personal development, where the focus of learning is on team-work, communication, self-reliance, self-discipline, self-esteem, resilience, confidence and leadership. Learning to sail a tall ship is only part of the experience!

The ship makes 23-25 voyages out of Auckland each year, of five to 10 days each. Students aged 16-18 can book a berth anytime through the Trust's website at www.spiritofadventure.org.nz 
All voyages take 40 young people from around New Zealand - 20 men and 20 women, plus crew.

Many students who have attended these voyages have gone on to take leadership positions at MRGS. They also develop new friendships from all over the country.  Students return with new confidence to make big decisions, such as applying for jobs or places at university. Having completed a voyage is a great thing to add to your CV.  Please see Mrs Bennett if you need any further information about applying for a voyage.

All Black Squad Announcement

On Thursday 8th June, the selectors for the All Blacks and Maori All Blacks came to Mount Roskill Grammar School to announce the squads that will face the British and Irish Lions in the upcoming series. The event was streamed live around the world with significant number s of press from here and abroad. At the end of the announcement of the Maori All Black squad the boys first XV squad performed a ‘thunderous haka’

At the end of the event several All Blacks and Maori All Blacks joined the students to answer questions, have photographs taken and sign autographs.

The whole day was a credit to the students and the school with many unsung volunteers working as a team to ensure that Mount Roskill Grammar School
showed the world what a fabulous place it is and what incredible students come
here.

We were honoured to host the naming of the All Black and Maori All Black squads in our school hall, and we wish them all the best for their upcoming tests against the Lions!

watch video of haka here

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STEM Challenge

Congratulations to Wendy Zhao, Lillian Tualau and Sheng-ya Wang. They participated in Massey University's STEM Challenge, and came 2nd place in the Humanitarian Engineering category, for designing a water filter system for communities in Vietnam.

Mentoring Conference Day - Tue 20th June

All students attend school Monday 19th June.

To parents/caregivers of Year 9 and 10 learners:

These students are not required to be at school on Tuesday 20th June. Normal school will resume on Wednesday 21st June at 9.15am for all students.

To parents/caregivers of Year 11, 12 and 13 learners:

The school is open from 8.30am to 8.00pm on Tuesday 20th June for year 11, 12 and 13 mentoring conferences only. Students must attend in uniform.

Conference booking

To book a half hour slot please use www.schoolinterviews.co.nz  Code: mehfw

Staff will be meeting with a number of students and families throughout the day. If you are unable to book online, please call 621 0050 to arrange a time.

The conference

In this half hour conference on Tuesday 20th June you will discuss subject specific feedback, which the mentor will have received from subject teachers. This will inform part of the ongoing discussion with your child regarding their academic, attendance and co-curricular goals and next steps.

Reporting for year 11, 12 and 13 students is through face to face mentoring on Tuesday 20th June (Term 2) and Wednesday 30th August (Term 3).

Thank you for your support of the mentoring programme – it makes a significant difference to students’ engagement and achievement knowing that we are all working together with them to help them achieve their goals.

Looking ahead to reporting dates:

Term 2

  • Years 11, 12 & 13 Mentoring Conference (9 & 10 do not attend) - Tuesday 20th June 8.30am-8pm
  • Years 9 & 10 Progress Reports with grades (hard copy & online) - Thursday 6th July

Term 3       

  • Years 9 and 10 only Subject Report Evening - Thursday 10th August
  • Years 11, 12 & 13 Mentoring Conference (9 & 10 do not attend) - Wednesday 30th August 8.30am-8pm
  • Senior Subject Report Evening - Thursday 28th September
  • Years 9 & 10 Progress Reports with grades (hard copy & online) - Friday 29th September

Greg Watson
PRINCIPAL

2 June 2017

Auckland Chinese Speech Competition

Ayesha Hafeez from Year 10 Chinese entered the 2017 Auckland Chinese Speech Competition and won 3rd place for Mount Roskill Grammar School. Ayesha did very well in the competition by presenting her speech with accurate tones and excellent fluency. She also presented a Chinese Fan Dance for the Talent Show Section wearing a set of beautiful traditional Chinese costume.

Ronald McDonald House Dinner

Ronald McDonald House is a home for families of sick children who are receiving treatment at Starship Hospital.

This week 13FHS23 prepared, cooked and served dinner for the families staying there. We served dinner at 6pm with the help of Kiwanis (an International service group who focus on children). We organised and prepared the dinner – Kiwanis fund it and help with the service.

The families enjoyed the meal and expressed their gratitude.
 
We had a great time and enjoyed helping others.

Charlotte, Nita, Tabby, Sini and Ngawai
26 May 2017

Language Perfect World Champs

Language Perfect World Championships – 15-25 May 2017

Mount Roskill Grammar School gained impressive results in this International Languages competition. MRGS pupils answered over 1.2 million questions, gaining 541,615 points, which represents 1,575 hours spent learning languages.
   
Special school achievements:

  • MRGS was 3rd school in New Zealand
  • 11th in the World (over 1,300 schools)
  • 1st in New Zealand for 250-500 languages students Category
  • 2nd in French in New Zealand (out of 225 schools)
  • 2nd in Chinese in New Zealand (out of 171 schools)
  • 7th in Japanese in New Zealand (out of 185 schools)

Special student achievements:

  • Tessa Brown – TOP Elite Award & Badge pupil at MRGS with 20,423 points!
  • ELITE Award + Badge (10,000+ points) gained by 17 students: Tessa Brown, Anna Brown, Huthaifa Ibrahim, Ellen Peng, Halym Smith, Amy Roscoe, Zainab Iqbal, Bhavya Jasti, Rebecca Ferguson, Persia Gharekhanian, Siva Sivaraman, Amisha Prasad, Zainab Aktar, Mariano Mackenzie, Euan McDougall, Leon Li, Benjamin Zhang
  • GOLD Award (3,000+ points) gained by 26 students: Ellie Zou, Lisanke Gowsigan, Eurodias Yong, Jaspher Villanueva, Shirley Chan, Emily Bayldon, Jiahui Huang, Kate Bonnici, Rejishal Sen, Sabrina Von, Sarah McKenzie, Ian Busby, Max Chen, Emily Huang, Lillian Huo, Taisei Hayashi, Neigalo Lavea, Kenny Yu, Karen Huang, Olivia Chessum, Sheng-Ya Wang, Raeesah Mustahib, Keerat Marwah, Ano Chitando, Shivasha Kishun, Lojanan Sivanantharuban
  • SILVER Award (2,000+ points) = 25 students
  • BRONZE Award (1,000+ points) = 66 students
  • CREDIT Award (500+ points) = 55 students

Chess Success

Our school chess teams did exceptionally well in the Auckland Central Championships. Our Premier Team took the silver medals; congratulations to Daniel Morrin, Euan McDougall, Elvin Zhang and William Lesiak, Our old rivals used to be Mt Albert Grammar – we left them in the dust. Now only Auckland Grammar can match us, with their top two, internationally titled players, being from Mt Roskill. A shout-out to Daniel Morrin for drawing with FIDE Master Daniel Gong – the top player from Auckland Grammar. Also well-done to our B Team, placing 3rd equal - a great job by Gaurav Pahuja, Neil Mario, Kirushni Suthakaran, and Daniel Balderrama.

2017 Language Perfect World Champs

MRGS is making excellent progress in this worldwide competition and is currently one of the very top schools out of 1,670 schools worldwide. MRGS is currently 12th in the World and 3rd in New Zealand! Special ELITE Award students so far with over 10,000 points are:

Tessa Brown, Huthaifa Ibrahim, Zainab Iqbal, Bhavya Jasti, Leon Li, Amy Roscoe, Siva Sivaraman, Amisha Prasad, Zainab Aktar, Benjamin Zhang, Persia Gharekhanian, Mariano Mackenzie, Ellen Peng, Rebecca Ferguson, Halym Smith.

The Competition finished at 6pm NZST, Thursday 25 May, and full results will follow.

Representing NZ in Badminton

Congratulations to Ian Busby (year 9) who has been selected to play for the New Zealand Under 15 Badminton team. Ian has been playing badminton since 2012 and currently plays for the Mount Roskill Grammar School A team as well as club badminton for Balmoral. On learning of his selection Ian said “The competition for
places was very strong and so I am excited to be selected and representing New Zealand
”. Despite his relatively short time in the sport, this is the second time that Ian has gone to selections but the first time he has been chosen for the national team.
Good luck to Ian in the upcoming test series against Australia which will take place in Sydney in June.

Dragon Boating

Straight into Term 1, back into school and the start of the six week Dragon boating season. Off to Westhaven Marina twice a week training up the new and excited Year 11, 12 and 13 girls who are just keen to get out onto the water. In mid-March, a group of about 20 girls travelled out to Lake Pupuke for an all day tournament. The girls gave it their all in both the 500m and 200m races and although we didn’t come out with any medals, we came out with smiling faces knowing we had tried our best. A few special acknowledgements to Miss Mackinlay who kept this sport going after Mr Williams left, and to the many other teachers who gave up their evening driving vans full of girls into the city and back.

Gibbs Farm Dance Performance

This year we were overwhelmed with pride to be invited by Pah Homestead to perform as part of their repertoire at Gibbs Farm Sculpture Art trail. We took eight selected students to the park in Makarau on the 27th of April to perform pieces they had choreographed in collaboration with Dance teacher, Miss Thompson. The pieces explored the idea of oceans, waves and the movement and dynamicity of water. The student work was of such a high quality and really challenged the students to perform in a new way seeing as at the Art trail there was no ability to play music so the students had to rely on their ensemble awareness and the use of breath and rhythm to perform the piece in cohesion. This was a great opportunity for many of the students involved to earn credits at high levels of achievement and in a context which makes authentic Performance a real possibility - we look forward to finding more opportunities for these assessment contexts.

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Sheilah Winn Regional Festival

On the 6th of April, Mt Roskill Grammar entered two pieces to the Sheilah Winn Regional Festival for 2017 – Romeo and Juliet (set in the present day at Club Capulet) and A Midsummer Nights Dream players scene (also set in a modern context, at a Mt Roskill Community Hall begging amateur actors to join in
on a local performance). Our pieces challenged the audience and showcased the immense talent Mt Roskill has to offer. Although we did not place this year, we were so happy with our performances and look forward to the festival next year. We would like to thank Hobsonville Point Secondary School for their hospitality during the day.

Polyfest - Diversity Stage

This year our school entered three groups to the Diversity stage, Indian (which our
school annually enters) as well as Jamaican and African groups, which were new entries for the school, as well as Jamaican being a first ever entry to the Diversity
stage at Polyfest. The students involved had a wonderful day and loved the experience of learning about a new culture through the medium of Dance. Our results
for the day were really pleasing; Jamaican group won 2nd place in the America’s section, and the African group came 2nd in the African section as well as 2nd in the
interpretation of theme award which was a stage-wide award. A very good outcome for these groups and for the Performing Arts Department. We would like to thank the tutors, teachers and students involved for their commitment and enthusiasm this year.

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Indian Dance Group

Polyfest - Indian Dance Group: from a students perspective

Our Indian dance performance at Polyfest has been enjoyable not only for me but the entire Indian Dance group members. This year the talent brought in by the students from Year 9 to Year 13 was outstanding. A highlight of this year’s group was watching everyone coming closer together as we spent a month and half together practicing and forming new friendships. We didn’t just make new friends, we became a family. The group helped each other learn the choreography, gave constructive criticism, and looked out for one another.

Overall the Indian group was very successful and we are thankful for the experience, and the opportunity that this has given us to learn more about our culture. We would like to thank the team of brilliant dancers for turning up to as many practices as they could, being so dedicated, committed and for never giving up! Big thanks to the parents and teachers involved with the Indian Group especially Ms Gillies, Ms Thompson, Mrs Patel and Mr Tuiali’i for supporting, guiding and organising everything. I would also like to thank Chernade, who was our tutor, for all the support and guidance. We couldn’t have done it without everyone’s support. All the best to next year’s group, I’m sure you will continue to
strive and keep our standard high.

Shivika Sharma, STHJ

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Pop-Up Globe

Learning in the Performing Arts Department is always fun, but on days such as this - it is pure joy! Mt Roskill Grammar Senior Drama students had the absolute privilege to go back in time to the 16th century to watch the play ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ by Will Shakespeare at the world-famous Pop Up Globe in Ellerslie. The students didn’t know what to expect but many said they were expecting stuffy, hard to understand language, old fashioned costumes and acting, but boy were they wrong, and very impressed! The play was hilarious and the students were smiling the whole way through - this production of Much Ado was more modernised with a Pasifika feel to it - in fact, the teachers loved watching our students watch the play almost more than watching the play; their engagement with the play was so
wonderful to see. Our students were a mix of groundlings (standing at the edge of the stage) and gallery seated patrons; our Year 12s (who are learning about Elizabethan theatre) particularly enjoyed the chance to feel as if they were back in
time and learning about the Globe theatre from a first-person standpoint. I think that this would have to be one of the best field trips we have ever experienced - even teeming rain didn’t get our spirits down - and students returned with such
wonderful opinions on one of the greatest playwrights the world has ever known, as well as some great Shakespearean quips to use with the friends and whanau!

Splendid Devising Workshop

Year 13 Drama and Year 12 Drama students had such a unique opportunity in the first week back of Term 2 to learn from a world-renowned theatre practitioner Kerry Frampton of Splendid Theatre Co based in the UK. Frampton has come to New Zealand to visit only a handful of Auckland schools on her first ever trip abroad to Aotearoa and was very keen on visiting Mt Roskill Grammar in particular.

The workshop focused on using Brechtian and Epic devising skills in preparation for their upcoming assessments in Year 13 - which focuses on alienation techniques in structuring and performance of theatre. The students had a wonderful time and were so grateful for the specialist advice and enthusiasm from Frampton and look forward to putting their knowledge into practise for their devising internal starting later this term. We hope she will visit again, perhaps with the whole Splendid team, fingers
crossed.

Chinese Music and Art

In April, Liu Lao Shi invited Ms Gander to MRGS as a guest to showcase her performance of Guzheng (an ancient Chinese string instrument) and the art of Sugar Painting (Tang Painting). Ms Gander has performed for the Corner of Chinese Culture Group at lunch time and for Year 10 Chinese in Period 5. Her exquisite technique in playing Guzheng and making sugar painting have attracted a big group of students
who came to Corner of Chinese Culture and enjoyed the music pieces named ‘ High Mountain and Flowing Waters’ and ‘Night with a Moon above the Spring River’. Each one of them was given a piece of sugar painting as a gift of appreciation for attending.

Street Dance NZ

Street Dance NZ is Aotearoa’s premiere hip hop dance competition held in April annually. Mt Roskill Grammar students featured this year in a range of hip hop crews and had some impressive success. Myke Davis Hoeft (alumni 2013) and current student Isla Mayo performed in crews which received first placings in their respective categories which qualifies them for the World Hip Hip Championships which are in Arizona in August! Neil Mohan and Victoria Medina Villapol also performed well on the evening and were a credit to the school.

Hip Hop Crews

Our PFA department has been busy this term - with two new hip hop groups added to the ever-growing list of performance opportunities. This year we have decided to split the crews to a separate Junior and Senior crew which allows for our junior students to participate in greater numbers and afford more students an opportunity for leadership. The senior and junior crews will participate in Stand Up Stand Out which happens in Term 3, as well as other performance opportunities in the school and community. We also have a fusion crew (Indian Dance and Hip Hop) rehearsing for the upcoming High School Rockerz Competition which is mid Term 2. These students have worked hard throughout the holidays to prepare for the show, led by student choreographers. We have had such a great response at auditions and some great rehearsals so far - we look forward to updating you with the progress of our groups.

An Evening of Dance

On the evening of Wednesday 1st of March, 27 students from Senior Dance classes attended a performance of Mea Tau at the Basement Theatre. Mt Roskill Grammar School benefits from our relationship with Basement Theatre’s Schools Partnership Programme which provides free tickets and transport to selected Basement shows, courtesy of generous Basement patrons. Mea Tau was created by choreographer
and dancer Elijah Kenner who was inspired by the idea of weaponry and it’s reference in the bible. It explored themes of objectification, manipulation and the relationship between toys and weaponry. The students seemed to really enjoy the show and were very vocal in the bus on the way home asking questions about the meaning of the work and how they may use the show’s work to influence their own choreography. Thanks to the students for being so well behaved on the trip and thanks again to Basement Theatre for your generosity.

Japanese Success

Tessa Brown in Year 12 travelled to Japan from 20th April to 30th April for a one-week homestay in Fukuoka on the island of Kyushu. In 2016, Tessa won the NZ Japan Society award for the Haiku & Calligraphy Competition. As the recipient of this Auckland-Fukuoka Sister City Prize, Tessa will represent Auckland City and New Zealand in 2017 as a youth ambassador, enhancing the special connection between Auckland City and Fukuoka City. She received this award in the Auckland Town Hall during the 2016 Fukuoka Day. Stephen Duxfield, President of the NZJS, presented the award and Tessa also met the Mayor of Fukuoka City, Mr Takashima. 2016 was the 30th anniversary of the sister city relationship between Auckland City and Fukuoka City, and therefore the poem theme was about “friendship”. Tessa composed the Haiku Poem in Japanese and wrote it with a special writing brush and ink. Also, as part of the competition process, Tessa was interviewed by five council members both in Japanese and English.

We wish Tessa all the best for this amazing trip during which she will be staying with a host family in Fukuoka, doing sightseeing, visiting schools and being an Ambassador for New Zealand.

New Scoreboard

It was a pleasure to unveil the new MRGS score boards for both Rugby and Football on Friday 19th May. In particular it was a great occasion to have two important people to unveil the Hall-Tuialii Rugby Score Board in honour of the work Mr Keith Hall and Mr Nick Tuialii have done for the rugby community over many years. The students sung a hymn after a karakia from 1st XV player Daeton Potaka-Hogg followed by a rousing haka as a sign of respect for Mr Hall and Mr Tuialii. It was fitting that the U15 Rugby team coached by Mr Tuailii had a 34-19 win against Avondale College and the 1st XV which is managed by Mr Hall also won 23-0 against Otahuhu College. Hopefully the first of many great results in the years ahead.

Man Kaur Visit to MRGS

Man Kaur, 101, and her son, Gurdev Singh, 79, who competed in the World Games held in Auckland over the term one holidays, also paid a visit to our school. We were fortunate to have these athletes (escorted by Ella Kumar) come and talk to P.E. scholarship group students, Junior Sports Academies, and Year 12 P.E. classes about  their involvement in the World Masters games . They discussed the importance of life long physical activity for one's wellbeing. 

She credits her good health to healthy food and regular exercise. Kaur says she runs every second day at an outdoor sports grounds and goes to a gym to work on her upper body every other day. Man  Kaur won both the 100m and 200m sprints in her age category at the World Masters Games, making her the oldest to join a select group of athletes, that includes elite competitors like Usain Bolt, who have managed to win in both categories at a single international sporting event.

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Year 13 Classical Studies

Year 13 Classical Studies students watched one of their own - Srishti Toora - undergo a life face cast.  In ancient Rome, photographs did not exist for families to hang on their walls and remember their dead loved ones so they would have a wax mask made of their dead beloveds face and then display them in their homes to honour their memory.  The masks were very life-like and showed all the minute details of ones face, such as wrinkles, large nose, full lips, bags under the eyes and so on.  We had a mask made of Srishti’s youthful face to highlight the process of mask making and be able to look at how life-like sculpture could be. Srishti says “who would've thought that only being able to breathe through one nostril for an hour while cold gloopy cottage cheese was slapped on my face would be a thoroughly enjoyable experience” and it was most definitely for the rest of us too whilst watching it all take place. Other lucky students like Neeral also had the opportunity to have a life-like impression of the their thumbs made.

Mt Roskill Campus Fia Fia Night

Talofa lava - Malo e lelei - Fakaalofa atu - Kia Orana - Malo Ni - Bula Vinaka

You are warmly invited to the Mt Roskill Campus Fiafia Night - Celebrating Pasifika Learners on the Roskill Campus

  • Wednesday 31st May 2017
  • 6:30-8:30pm
  • Mt Roskill Primary School Quad

6:00 - 6:30pm
Sausage sizzle, music and slideshow of previous fiafia nights and Polyfest
performances of 2017.
View learning displays from the Campus schools.

6:30 - 8:00pm
Official start to the programme, with performances by our Pasifika groups.

8:00pm - 8:30pm
Supper (please bring a plate to share)
View learning displays from the Campus schools.

Fencing News

Fencing has started at Mount Roskill Grammar. This Olympic sword fighting sport takes place in gym one on Mondays and Thursdays from 3.30- 4.30. The squad is limited to 20 fencers but there are still spaces available. It is a sport that requires precision, balance and cunning as opposed to brute force.  All fencing equipment is provided for the year and students just need to bring a keen ‘can-do’ commitment, a t-shirt, track pants, non-marking sports shoes, a towel and a drink bottle. If you would like to join please see Mr Thompson in P6 during break times to learn more.

Rockers Dance Competition

Our school is entered in the High School Rockerz - Bollywood Dance Competition.  This is a well-known competition in the local community and a challenging one. We have a group of 11 performing this year and we would love it if you can come along on the night to support us. Saturday 27th May 7.30pm at the ASB Showgrounds, Greenlane. Tickets are on sale for $20 from the school accounts office and you can use the ticket on the night to vote for our school. 

Visit this Facebook page and vote for the MRGS group by liking their photo.

Punctuality Strategy Reminder

To support students learning a life skill of punctuality, the following process exists:

  1. 4+ minutes late to Period 1 students go to Deans’ Centre
  2. Conversation with student had by dean on duty regarding attendance expectations
  3. Make up time done after school
  4. Ongoing patterns of lateness or make up time not done will result in being referred to house dean or house DP

Reporting and Mentoring

REPORTING & MENTORING
MRGS REPORTING VISION:

To share information on students’ progress to strengthen achievement

  1. Progress reports will be distributed in the second to last week of term for all students.
  2. JUNIOR subject report night for year 9 and 10 students only 4-7pm Tuesday 11th April. Please book through www.schoolinterviews.co.nz code y8p4c - We look forward to meeting with you to discuss progress and next steps for our year 9 and 10 learners.
  3. Mentoring our year 11, 12 and 13 students is an ongoing process.

Mentors will meet with learners over the next three weeks to check their progress towards their academic, attendance and co-curricular goals.

Attendance Reminder

Congratulations to all students who are in class, on time, for every lesson.
Form teachers and deans are tracking each student’s attendance and we appreciate the support you also offer from home.

If your child is going to be away, please report their absence to:

You can check your student’s attendance:

February/March Sports Update

The year of sport has well and truly started for our summer sports. This year at MRGS we have Athletics, Archery, Cricket, Cross country, Dragon boat, Lawn bowls, Orienteering, Rowing, Softball, Swimming, Tennis, Touch, Tag, Volleyball.

Teams that have played in Auckland wide competitions so far include Cricket, Orienteering, Rowing, Touch and Volleyball.

The boys 1st XI Cricket team have played two games to date with two losses. Some very promising touches shown throughout both of these games and the team are looking forward to that first W. The girls 1st XI have had a great start to their season with two wins from two games. Strong showings with the ball have made it difficult for their opposition to score runs and the batters have been able to chase with ease. The junior boys have their first game soon,  a team mainly made up of year 9 students so looking forward to seeing how they go.

The senior girls volleyball team have made an exceptional start to their season having played six games and coming away with five solid wins. Their only loss coming at the hands of the league favourites EGGS. Great team work shown early on in the season by all the girls.

The mixed touch have started their season with a win and a loss. The win came over Avondale and the team will be looking to secure a few more wins as the season goes on.

The first round of the orienteering got underway with a strong showing from all involved. Interest in this sport is growing with some good talent coming through.

In Rowing we had four representatives at the College sport head of the Harbour regatta. For such a small team they all did remarkably well placing in finals or just out of. These students row for local clubs so we are very fortunate to have them representing the school.

On the representative front we had two students representing Auckland at the touch nationals recently. Bianca Bryan and Fritz Tuiavii Solomona placed 3rd and 5th in their respective grades.

I would like to thank the many coaches and teachers who dedicate their time to making it possible for all the students to participate in the various sports on offer here at MRGS.

Nga mihi

Kyle Rika
Director of Sport.

Information about Typhoid - the symptoms and prevention

Dear Students and Parents

As you will no doubt be aware there have been a number of cases of typhoid in the Mount Roskill area.

Below is a link to the Auckland Regional Public Health Service website where there are information sheets about the disease, the symptoms and how to minimise risk. These are also available in Samoan and some tips in Maori at the bottom of the page.

http://www.arphs.govt.nz/health-information/communicable-disease/typhoid-fever

The best way to reduce risk of infection is to wash hands thoroughly and often with soap and water (minimum 20 seconds) and then to dry them completely.

MRGS Leadership Team

Punctuality Strategy

If a student has a valid reason for absence or lateness please contact attendance@mrgs.school.nz - If a student is more than 4 minutes late to period 1 they will have a 10 minute make-up session after school. If they do not attend that session the dean will contact you regarding the need to make up 1 hour of time on a Wednesday or Friday after school. Learning time lost is learning time that we expect to work with your child to catch up.

Attendance

Important Information for Families about Attendance

In order for students to be successful, powerful learners they need to be in class on time in every lesson.

If a student misses two periods they are recorded as having missed half a day of lessons and this is reported to the Ministry of Education.

Teachers mark their roll on the computer every period. This allows us to monitor attendance statistics for both individual and groups of students more frequently and closely. If you have any concerns about attendance or want to report an absence, please phone the Attendance Officer, on 621 0069 or email attendance@mrgs.school.nz - Please phone on the morning of your child’s first day of absence. When we do not receive a call from the family a text message is sent out. Students are expected to be in every class on time in order to be successful powerful learners. Parents/caregivers have been sent their password to access the parent portal in order to view attendance.

Athletics Carnival

The house competition got off to a great start this year with the Athletics Carnival. Students from Hillary, Sheppard, Ngata, Cooper and Rutherford House competed in tug of war, shot put and 4X100m relay events to try to secure an early lead in the House competition. The level of competition, support and camraderie matched the superb weather for the event.

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NZQA Fees Collection 2017

All Year 10 accelerated students and all senior students must pay their NZQA Fees (compulsory) to the accounts office between Wednesday 10th May – Friday 12th May . These fees must be paid so that any credits a student achieves through either Unit or Achievement Standard assessments will be recorded on a student’s record of learning. If not paid, the credits will not be released to the student. The Fee for the majority of students will be $76.70. However financial assistance is available to students whose parents/guardians receive a Work and Income Benefit or have a Community Services Card. Financial assistance forms can be collected from the front office, accounts office or from Mr. Parratt in the Commerce Department next to H6.

On Being Head Prefects for 2017

Over my four and a bit years at Mount Roskill Grammar, I’ve been involved in a lot of co-curricular activities, making the most of what the school has to offer. I started off playing Netball in the junior academies, but really found my passion for sport in Lacrosse in Year 10. Through this, I’ve been able to compete in Australia and around New Zealand for Auckland and the National Team. I’ve also been privileged to represent MRGS by coaching and playing in the Senior Girls Team. Lacrosse has been a stepping stone for me to become more of a leader. It has taught me how to interact and co-operate with other people, no matter of their abilities, age or culture.

From Year 9 it has been my goal to become a prefect, and along the way, my parents developed a code “T.P.P”, standing for “The Prefect Project” which they would refer to whenever they needed to pick me up from out of school practises or go with me to get end of year presents for teachers.

In the last few days of this school year, a group of about 40 of us were called into the office and were announced as the prefects for 2017. This announcement had been much awaited on my behalf, and so I was very relieved and happy when I found out that I had been offered the role. Next came the Prefect Camp. Three hot days in the beginning of December, spent at Ambury Farm just over in Mangere Bridge. For me, this was a time to detox from all the stress of the year and have fun with my mates. Throughout the camp, we really bonded as a unit, doing an Amazing Race, leadership workshops and team building activities. This camp was also the time were the students got to vote for who they thought would be good Head Prefects, though this did make situations quite tense at times. However, we all still came out of the camp knowing more people and being more sunburnt.

From that, five girls and five boys met with a group of the Senior Management Team just before school started where we had group interviews for the Head Prefect positions. I had heard about this from previous years and had always been hesitant about the thought of us being in the same room, answering the same questions. Luckily, it was not as bad as I had originally thought, with the four other girls, the senior leadership team and I all being at ease.

After the long Waitangi weekend, we were greeted back into school with another slip calling us into the conference room. The days leading up to this had been filled with anxious thoughts and so, to say the least, I was pleased to just know they had reached a decision. Mr Watson congratulated us and said that we would be the Head Prefect team for this year. The next few minutes for me were a complete rollercoaster of emotions, going from being so nervous my heart was about to blow out of my chest, to absolutely tingling with joy. This was where he said that Ojas and I would be the Head Girl and Boy for this year. The rest of the day was a blur of congratulations and hugs and then once I got home, off to training where there were more congratulations and hugs. That night, after telling
my parents, they came to the conclusion that now “The Prefect Project” was officially closing and it was time to use all the things I’d learnt throughout that project in my Head Girl duties this year.

Emma Thompson

Prefect Team for 2017

In an early assembly this term the 2017 School Prefects were formally introduced to the school and presented with their badges. These 42 young men and women strengthen the student leaders of the school bringing their particular service, commitment and energy to their new roles. We look forward to their ongoing demonstration of excellence, respect and responsibility. Mr Watson also announced the Head Prefects for this year. Emma Thompson and Ojas Shukla are the Head
Prefects for 2017 and Meleana Puloka, Siosaia Tuitupou, Caera Judge and TJ Apulu are the Deputy Head Prefects.

Mentoring Update

Thank you to the large majority of families who attended our first conference on the 16th of February. Mentors will meet with the students twice a term in addition to family conferences (June and August dates tbc).
Our mentoring programme for year 11, 12 and 13 students involves conversations between mentors, students and the students’ families establishing and monitoring goal-setting. The goals set this month relate to academic achievement, attendance and co-curricular involvement.
To support students’ goal setting for 2017 we will be sending information about homework centres and assessment information, including deadlines for internal assessments, shortly.
The mentoring programme is a powerful context within which we can work together, with students and their families, to set SMART goals and for our students to strive to achieve them.

New Polyfest Groups

This year Mt Roskill Grammar School is entering 2 new groups to the Diversity Stage, alongside the annually competing Indian Group. The Southern African group is a team of over a dozen students from years 9-13, led by Bostwana-native tutor, Phodiso Dintwe. Dintwe is a contemporary and traditional African dancer who has made practise so much fun for our very lucky students. Ex-MRGS student Randy Sjafrie has returned this year to choreograph for our new Jamaican group, expertly guided by Diane Dunchie-Coley from the ESOL Dept who will be teaching students about the history and culture of the dances from the Caribbean nation. Chernade Prasad, also ex-MRGS, has returned to tutor the Indian group and we are excited to see her effective leadership style influence our students. So far, the engagement within the Indian, Jamaican and African groups has been very impressive, as well as the growing bond between the groups as a whole. Whilst performing on the Diversity Stage at Polyfest is not as competitive as the Pasifika and Maori stages, most of the students performing at Polyfest will be assessed against Dance and PE standards which is an exciting prospect for our learners, and they will definitely be having a lot of fun while doing it!

Meet the New Members of the SLT

Principal, Greg Watson (2nd left) welcomes Ms Janine Tupaea (far left), Mr Terry Storer (2nd right) and Mr Desmond Pemerika (far right) to the MRGS senior leadership team.

Mr Terry Storer

Mr Terry Storer joins Mount Roskill Grammar School as Associate Principal after over 25 years in education. His career has taken him all over the world and he has worked in some of the most prestigious International schools in South America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.
Currently studying for a Doctoral degree, Terry is passionate about student leadership, providing opportunities and pathways for every student and holistic education.
In reflecting on his first few weeks at Mount Roskill Grammar School Terry said “Schools are often externally measured by exam results. These are already good at Mount Roskill Grammar and continue to improve. There is an underlying intangible for why students perform at these levels however; it is the heart and soul of the school – is the school a place where people want to come, are happy, feel safe and valued? Mount Roskill Grammar is all of those things and more. The diversity of the student body is a strength in a globalising world and is embraced and celebrated; it has become as much part of the fabric of the school as the buildings themselves. It is a fantastic place to come to every day and I am excited to get to know and understand the students, staff, parents and community even more over the coming weeks and months.”
Terry is married and has two sons in year 8 and 10.

Mrs Janine Tupaea

Mrs Janine Tupaea moved with her husband, 10 year old daughter and six year old son from the Wairarapa to take up the Associate Principal position at Mount Roskill Grammar. Both of her children are now attending Mount Roskill Primary School and are enjoying living nearby the college in the suburb of Hillsborough.
Janine’s teaching background is in Art and Design, and although this has predominantly been within secondary schools she spent some time working within an Intermediate School. Before transitioning into senior leadership Janine had been a Head of Department Art experience within three schools, including Tereora College in the Cook Islands. Her most recent position was Deputy Principal at Makoura College in Masterton, where she spent over 8 years.
Janine believes it is essential that we focus on teaching students how to think, as opposed to what to think, in order to prepare them for their future, and life long learning beyond their last day of secondary school. She commented “Education is student’s passport to travel in any direction that they so wish. Any destination is possible, regardless of the place that they are departing from, providing that we can help them to envision that it is achievable”.
When asked about her first impressions of MRGS Janine noted “I came to Mount Roskill Grammar School because I had been told about what a diverse and dynamic place it was. I have found this information accurate, and feel that our community is extremely fortunate to have such a passionate and dedicated team of staff who are continually reflecting on ways in which we can improve what we do, in order to maximise opportunities and achievement for every individual learner. Our students are a delight - and every student interaction that I come across thus far reaffirms what a unique and exciting place this is to be a part of. I am excited about what this chapter of my career involves and I look forward to working alongside students and caregivers to ensure that we are doing all that we possibly can, to ensure that every single learner succeeds to their potential”.

Mr Desmond Pemerika

Mr Desmond Pemerika comes to MRGS with a teaching background in Biology and Science. Before transitioning into senior leadership Desmond was a Dean and had Head of Department Science experience within two schools. His most recent position was Deputy Principal at Michael Park  School, where he spent over 9 years. When asked about what drives him as an educator Desmond listed the following things as keys to his beliefs.

  1. Education is an opportunity not a hinderance.
  2. We must provide an education that maintains student interest by helping them see how what they are learning prepares them for life in the real world.
  3. We must instil curiosity which is fundamental to lifelong learning.
  4. We must excite our students to become even more resourceful so that they will continue to learn outside a normal school day.

Desmond grew up on Richardson Road. When asked about his first impressions of joining the school he remarked. “Mount Roskill Grammar School feels like I am coming back home. Our students are honest, positive and I have thoroughly enjoyed the interactions I have had since starting at the beginning of the year. The staff I have found to be committed and genuinely wanting what's best for our students. I am very fortunate to be in a school with passionate colleagues who are continually looking at what can be done to help the students in their class to succeed to their potential. I am very fortunate to be part of this wonderful school and wider community”.
Desmond’s wife is a secondary school teacher; they initially met 20 years ago when they were teaching together at Avondale College. They have been together for 18 years and have two daughters, Aria (16) and Rosa (9).

New Staff at MRGS

At the start of this year we greeted a number of new staff at the Powhiri - we welcome them to our community of learners and look forward to the contributions they will make as they settle into their Roskill classrooms!

PFA ´Showsage Sizzle´

On Thursday 2nd of March, the Performing Arts Committee put on what they called a ‘Showsage Sizzle’ – a show and sausage sizzle fundraiser to raise money for their projects for the year. Yusuf Guessous, Isope ‘Akau’ola, Josephine Mavaega, Ella Mavaega and Tafadzwa Chikomba performed outside the PFA room and thanks to their beautiful performances, crowds snapped up every last sausage we had. The PFA Committee is a new student-led group, who are focused on promoting the Performing Arts, supporting student-directed work and creating Dance and Drama events for our school and community. We are particularly looking forward to preparing for Open Day and Arts Week for our very quickly growing department. Thanks to all the students who helped out and have worked so hard to organise this committee.

Senior Dance Trip

On the evening of Wednesday 1st of March, 27 students from Senior Dance classes attended a performance of Mea Tau at the Basement Theatre. Mt Roskill Grammar School benefits from our relationship with Basement Theatre’s Schools Partnership Programme which provides free tickets and transport to selected Basement shows, courtesy of generous Basement patrons. Mea Tau was created by choreographer and dancer Elijah Kenner who was inspired by the idea of weaponry and it’s reference in the bible.  It explored themes of objectification, manipulation and the relationship between toys and weaponry. The students seemed to really enjoy the show and were very vocal in the bus on the way home asking questions about the meaning of the work and how they may use the show’s work to influence their own choreography. Thanks to the students for being so well behaved on the trip and thanks again to Basement Theatre for your generosity.

Ship for World Youth Leaders

“Ship for World Youth Leaders” visit Mt Roskill Grammar

On Valentine’s day, 50 delegates from all over the world from the “Ship for World Youth Leaders” (SWY) visited MRGS to hear about MRGS’s Peer Mediation Service and NZ’s peace initiatives. This programme (SWY) is operated by the Japanese Government involving youth from Japan and many countries around the world.

It was an honour for MRGS Mediators to host this visit where we had presentations from the Peace Foundation, SOUL (Save Our Unique Landscape campaign) and the MRGS Mediators past and present. The room was a buzz of conversations about peace, respect and social justice.

 As one Advanced Mediator, Bhavisha Punja says:

It was an amazing experience where we were encouraged to ‘BLOOM’ by Matt Renata, which stands for: “Be a Leader that Opens Others Minds”. That we can lead from the front, the back and the side. That we are today’s Leaders, and that everyone and anyone can make a change if you put your heart, mind and soul into it.... The event was like being with family where we all wanted the same things of peace and love for the world. It was also great hearing from the Ex MRGS Mediators as we learnt how mediation had changed their lives and how they still use the skills in their careers and life”.

Ajay Ravindran who was a MRGS mediator in 2010 brought the delegates to MRGS. He states:

The powhiri was beautiful, and definitely served as the perfect introduction to Aotearoa, to Tamaki Makaurau, and to Mt Roskill Grammar. The mihi by Mr Watson on behalf of the school and by Matt Renata on behalf of the manuhiri and participants also set the tone for the rest of the visit...
I think the biggest round of applause has to be given to the MRGS students. I loved how open and eager they were with the participants. I know some of the Japanese participants especially were a little shy at first, but they (and others) couldn't stop talking to me about how awesome the students were...Thank you all again from the bottom of my heart, it was a huge privilege to be able to bring this group to MRGS and to have these conversations shared with them
”.

A big thank you to the Kapa Haka group and Whaea Lee for the beautiful powhiri; The Peace Foundation presentations from Chris Le Breton, Lyndon Burford and Christina Barruel; Presentation from SOUL Pania Newton and Farrell Cleary;  our amazing ex MRGS Mediators : Naima Ali, Jonjon Cowley- Lupo, MaryKate Fonua, Nancy Gafa, ,Diana Qiu and Ajay Ravindran and last but never least to our wonderful Mediators who did MRGS proud once again!

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New Parents' Evening

We welcome families of new students from all year levels. Come and learn about our school’s vision, curriculum and support network. The senior leadership team, house deans and academic deans will be present.

  • Date: 14th February 2017
  • Time: 7pm
  • Venue:  Hall

Mentoring Conference - Thursday 16th February

All year 11, 12 and 13 families meet their child’s mentor. It is an opportunity to set goals for 2017 with our learners. Mentors will contact families to arrange a time to meet for 15 minutes between 4pm and 8pm. Our mentoring programme is well supported by our community and reflects the value we place on face-to-face reporting.

First Day Powhiri 2017

Once again the school proudly welcomed its new members in the school hall on Thursday 2nd February. The class of 2017 were called into the school hall with a karanga and given a rousing haka powhiri by existing staff, prefects and year 13s, before being formally acknowledged by a whaikorero from the Principal Greg Watson. After the ceremony students joined their House groups for an orientation day which included the first Peer Support sessions.

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2017 Startup Info

Welcome to the 2017 school year at MRGS – details of start-up dates for all students are detailed below.

Returning Students – 2017 course changes only
Students must attend in uniform in the school hall

  • Year 13 – Wednesday 25th January 9.00am
  • Year 12 – Wednesday 25th January 11.00am
  • Year 11 – Wednesday 25th January 1.00pm
  • Peer Support Leaders - Wednesday 25th January 1.00pm in the Hodge Learning Commons.

First School day:

Thursday 2nd February 2017, Y9, Y13 and all other new students

  • Y9 and new students 9.40am on school main field  (for Powhiri and assemblies)
  • Y13 9.00am in school hall for Powhiri preparation

Friday 3rd February = All students

  • 9.00 am ( all students to form classes)

School closed Anniversary Day – Monday 30th January
School closed Waitangi Day – Monday 6th February


Enrolments
– All new enrolments must be completed by Tuesday 24th January for students wishing to start on 2nd February.

Uniform and Stationery Shop – on Campus (access Frost Road Gate 4)
Opening hours:   

  • January 23rd - 26th 8.00am to 6.00pm
  • Fri Jan 27th 8.00am to 12.00 midday
  • Closed Monday January 30th
  • January 31st - February 2nd 8.00am to 6.00pm
  • Fri Feb 3rd 8.00 to 12.00 midday
  • Closed Monday February 6th
  • February 7th 8.00am to 12.00midday and 3.00pm to 5.00pm. 
  • February 8th 8.00am to 9.00am
  • February 9th 8.00 to 9.00am and 3.00pm to 5.00pm.
  • Closed Friday February 10th
  • Then the shop will return to normal term time hours:
  • Mondays & Thursdays – 8.00 to 9.00am and 3.00 to 4.00pm

Farewells to Associate Principals

At the end of this term we have farewelled  two of our Senior Leadership Team – Associate Principals, Julie Small and John Wilkinson. Ms Small is moving on to an exciting new position as Associate Principal at St Peter’s Cambridge while Mr Wilkinson is taking a well-earned retirement after 21 years at Roskill. Our school has been blessed with two leaders of outstanding quality and integrity in John and Julie. As part of our appreciation they were presented with taonga at Junior prize-iving by our BoT chair Marjet Pot who paid tribute to their service in her speech: “You are both very proud of MRGS and you deserve to be. You have given your heart and soul to the community. You have never turned away from the challenges of school life and you know that you have made a huge difference to the educational outcomes of students
and the professional development of staff.”
Our community wishes them both the best in their respective futures. Below we include a brief tribute to each and their service at Roskill.

Ms Julie Small

Julie began her teaching in Waikato and  taught at both co-educational and single sex schools, experienced being a Head of Department and Faculty, Deputy Principal and spent 10 years in two different schools as a Principal. She joined MRGS in 2011 bringing a wealth of experience in curriculum and exceptional leadership skills. She has made a difference at Roskill: a difference in the professional thinking of many teachers and middle leaders in the school, in the leadership capabilities of many teachers and most importantly, in the leadership and career aspirations of many students. She has worked tirelessly in the re-design of our curriculum, in the development of our Roskill Effective Teacher Profile, in the leadership of restorative practice, in school tone, and in using data sharply to understand problems and progress practice.
She has done this through an extraordinary ability to not only design big picture thinking but to track this through to what a big idea could look like in the work of each teacher and each student. In doing this with determination she has raised the educational achievement of the students of our school at all levels. As a leader pastorally, academically and operationally, she has left no stone unturned in her quest to ensure that all students are catered for and reach their potential. We thank her for her commitment and exceptional service.

Mr John Wilkinson

Before emigrating to New Zealand from England in 1989, John was a teacher and HOD English in a variety of schools. He first taught at Auckland Grammar School and joined  Roskill in 1995 as HOD English. He  became a Deputy Principal in 2003 and later Associate Principal. In addition to developing teaching in his subject and managing a successful Department he has been a national leader in English curriculum development, NCEA assessment and the New Zealand Scholarship English examination. As a community we have been lucky to have such a wise and able leader guiding our school for 21 years.

John has been instrumental in strategic planning, policy development and the school gaining its double 5 year ERO reviews. His work in shaping and presenting the work of the school has been outstanding. He has been our event planner, developing the NCEA Awards Evening, running the Diamond Jubilee, being the most amazing MC at the campus music event, quite at home amongst the primary school ukele band; absolute calm in a sea of excited musicians.

In later years John has worked alongside the Board and is the wordsmith and the thinking power force for the strategic planning and policy development. He has brought  his wisdom and clarity of thought to the role of being responsible for the tone of the school. He is seen as our 'gentleman and scholar’; empathetic, always treating people graciously and thoughtfully, highly educated, widely and richly read.
He is fiercely proud of Roskill, when he speaks to students about Roskill they listen because they sense the depth of his convictions about a school community he loves.

He has led the school adeptly as Acting Principal on a number of occasions, always bringing sound judgment, attention to detail, and regard for each person to the role. He leaves Roskill with our thanks, having been an outstanding and most respected leader.

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