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Weekly News Bulletin Term 1, 2016

Weekly New Bulletin Term 2, 2016

Education Perfect World Languages Championships

Education Perfect World Languages Championships – 16-26 May 2016

Mount Roskill Grammar School gained impressive results in this International Languages competition. MRGS pupils answered over 1.5 million questions, gaining 580,675 points, which represents 6,514 hours spent learning languages.
Special school achievements:

  • MRGS was 2nd school in New Zealand
  • 7th in the World (over 1,100 schools)
  • 3rd in Japanese in New Zealand
  • 4th in French in New Zealand
  • 4th in Chinese in New Zealand

Special student achievements:

  •  Tessa Brown – 3rd in New Zealand and 21st in the world with 27,819 points!
  • ELITE Award + badge (10,000+ points) gained by 16 students: Tessa Brown, Jordan King, Anna Brown, Huthaifa Ibrahim, Ellen Peng, Jessica Gao, Halym Smith, Amy Roscoe, Zainab Iqbal, Zoe Fuller, Bhavya Jasti, Rebecca Ferguson, Anna Greaves, Persia Gharekhanian, Aiden Fang and Alex Wichman
  • GOLD Award (3,000+ points) gained by 40 students: Qanita Abdul, Hepi Akauola, Jane Babu, Isaac Bayldon, Kate Bonnici, Shirley Chan, Max Chen, Thea Dickson, Ayesha Essop, Jamie Gibson, Selena He, Jiahui Huang, Lillian Huo, Serah Kavaliku, Tabitha Kavaliku, Steffanie Kobayashi-Cox, Ashleen Lau, Jean-Luc Libeau, Dominic Loretz, Miki Lu, Keerat Marwah, Euan McDougall, Sarah McKenzie, Jeremy Narayan, Dhavni Patel, Amisha Prasad, Rishil Prasad, Aarti Rao, Charlotte Shirreffs, Angela Soriano, Loran Surendran, Kirushni Suthakaran, Anuksha Talpade, Sheng-Ya Wang, Dulanya Withana, Josephine Yo, Eurodias Young, Kenny Yu, Sophia Zhou, Ellie Zou
  • SILVER Award (2,000+ points) = 17 students
  • BRONZE Award (1,000+ points) = 65 students
  • CREDIT Award (500+ points) = 73 students

New BodySafe Programme

On Friday 20 May the organisation “Rape Prevention Education” launched  it’s new and revised “BodySafe” programme. HOD Guidance Margaret Hoogendoorn and Year 13 prefects Sanaj Deshpande and Kavish Dharan were the guest speakers at this media launch.

They spoke about last year’s successful “Consent Awareness Week” the Peer Sexuality Support Programme team ran last year. Counsellor Margaret Hoogendoorn spoke about her gratitude for the excellent facilitation of the BodySafe programme in our Year 10 Health programme over the last 13 years.

Year 11 Geography Trip to Rotorua/Tarawera

31 year 11 Geography students spent three days in Rotorua as part of a field trip to see the volcanic environment. They study Extreme Natural Events and the Tarawera eruption of 1886 is their case study. Whilst in Rotorua the student visited the Buried Village, took a 4 wheel drive trip to the top of Mt Tarawera and explored the Waimungu Valley. They also went up the gondola and down the luge and visited the Rotorua Museum.


2016 Chinese Speech Competition

On 14th May, 2016, three students of Chinese from Mount Roskill Grammar attended the ‘2016 Chinese Bridge Speech Competition’ hosted by the Confucius Institute of Auckland. They are Alex Wichman, Bhavya Jasti and Ayesha Hafeez. They gave an excellent performance in the speech competition. Congratulations to Ayesha and Bhavya who both won a Merit Prize Certificate. Congratulations also to Alex on winning the SECOND Prize for the Auckland Region. She is going to compete again in the National Chinese Speech Competition in two weeks’ time. Mount Roskill Grammar School was awarded a Certificate of Appreciation by the Confucius Institute of Auckland.

Live 4 Tomorrow

Live 4 Tomorrow have been selling cakes and positivity this week starting 16th May, 2016. With every sweet treat purchased, buyers also received a bookmark with an encouraging message. Live 4 Tomorrow aim to decrease stigma around mental health and to encourage help seeking behaviours in our student body. They will be using the money to cover costs associated with other events and initiatives they hope to run this year. Any leftover money will be donated to the Mental Health Foundation.

Open Day 2016

New Hockey Turf

Our new hockey turf is progressing towards completion. After the years of lobbying, planning and fundraising by the school and support from local community groups, it is satisfying to see the striking blue top turf surface being laid and the area taking on the characteristics of a state-of-the-art hockey playing surface. In the next months we will be organising a dawn blessing for the turf and later an official opening ceremony which will formally inaugurate the facility and acknowledge the work put in by so many to provide the school and Roskill with such a marvelous resource.

DP Keith Halls´ 30 Years of Service

Deputy Principal Keith Hall has delivered 30 years of service to our school and community. Keith started his career at MRGS in 1986 and in his time here he has been the HOD Social Studies and a Y13 Dean before moving into his current role as Deputy Principal. Keith has also been very involved in our community through such endeavours as overseeing fundraising events and rugby management. In recognition of Keith’s service, a morning tea was held on Monday where he received congratulations from staff, a gift from the school, and a framed long service certificate.

Youthline 2016 Health Fono

Our Health Council are a group of young people united to advocate and promote healthy wellbeing in their community. On the 7th of April, our Junior Health Council represented Mt Roskill Grammar School at the Youthline 2016 Health Fono. We took 8 elected students from Year 9 and 10 to an excellent day of training where they learnt event management skills, leadership development and team building to equip them with the skills they will need for the year ahead.

Here’s what our students had to say about the day: 

The 2016 Health Council Fono was a blast! We met other health councils from other school. We participated in 3 workshops which all taught us aspects of what it means to be in health council. We learnt the more we planned, the better our results will be!’ – Simar, Yr 9

The youth health Fono was an immensely enjoyable experience. We had free food which was great, as were the activities which we participated in. We gained a lot of new knowledge (and calories!) and engaged in conversation with other enthusiastic students from other schools. I personally recommend everyone participate in this enjoyable experience.’-  Akash, Yr10

The activities taught me about team work which is a key part of successful working. I will be focusing on effective team work in our health council to make this school a better place.' – Puja, Yr 9

We look forward to putting some of the skills we learnt into making our events this year successful and fun. Look out for further information on our healthy sandwich day coming up later in term 2. 

MRGS Social Media

You can now keep up to date with the latest happenings at Mount Roskill Grammar School via social media. You can find us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Here are the links:

Sheppard House Relay for Life

Sheppard House had the privilege of participating in this year's South Auckland Relay for Life in support of the Auckland Cancer Society. It was an amazing experience filled with laughter and the forming of new friendships. There were 14 students who participated and over $2000 was raised. Relay for Life gave us the opportunity to raise awareness and give back to the community and the Auckland Cancer Society for all their hard work as well as honouring those who are survivors and fighters of cancer. Sheppard House plan to make this an annual event and would love to see more students getting involved.

Year 12 Geo Mt Tongariro trip

This year, students from the Year 12 Geography classes travelled down to Mount Tongariro, to study the natural and cultural environment around this mountain. Hiking up hills and over bridges to waterfalls, rivers and lakes. On these walks we got to see the different plants and areas around the base of the mountain, which helps now that we are back at school studying the actual environment. As well as the hikes, we also were able to go white water rafting down the Mount Tongariro River which has about 60 rapids. This was an amazing experience to be able to have on this trip. We also had a fair amount of free time which meant we were able to bond with our classmates and get to know each other better. Overall this was a great trip, for both education and social experiences.

Student Engagement

An increasing number of students are getting to period 1 on time. Thank you to families who ensure their son/daughter arrives at school before 9am.

While we have spent time in Term 1 focusing on supporting students to arrive to period 1 on time you will understand that it is vital students attend all classes on time. We have therefore implemented the “4 minute” to class expectation across all periods including Learning Capability Time.

We want each student to gain the best experience from each lesson and therefore arriving to class on time ensures learning is not disrupted and that the learning time can be maximised.

Chalk Art Day

During term one Chalk Day once again transformed our quad. There was a rainbow of positive and thought provoking messages, and some beautiful art works too. After an initial set up, the work organically grows, as students passing by are invited
to participate, adding their own ideas and colours to the ever growing mural. A total of 60 pavement chalks were used up by the end of interval!

The event is led by the Live for Tomorrow group, who promote mental health and well-being. L4T also encourage help seeking behaviours, and work towards the destigmatisation of mental health issues.


Learning Capability Time (LCT)

This year Learning Capability Time has become a formal teaching and learning time with lessons on Tuesdays and Thursdays in term one and a shift to one
lesson on Thursdays for term 2. LCT supports students to further develop key learning dispositions and transferable skills or competencies that will help them to become successful, lifelong learners who are active and responsible citizens. We have covered a range of topics this term under the theme of ‘Our Place’. Students learnt about things such as where to find help at school, the history of Puketapapa (Mount Roskill), the New Zealanders our five Houses are named after and what our School values of Manaakitanga, Whanaungatanga, Excellence, Respect and Responsibility look like in different contexts. Students have been encouraged to work in mixed year level groups in LCT and there has been a strong push for seniors to take up leadership roles within their form class and to share their experience and
knowledge with our junior students in a Tuakana/Teina type model. We look forward to the learning we will be doing alongside our students next term in LCT with a theme of ‘Participating and Contributing’.

Peer Mediation Service 2016

The MRGS Peer Mediation Service is going from strength to strength with nearly 180 students applying each year to be trained. In March, 114 new Mediators were trained by the Peace Foundation which involves learning effective communication
and conflict resolution skills. A further 33 Advanced students received a whole days training from the Peace Foundation and 8 LEADR adult Mediators, many of them being lawyers. These Adults Mediators spent the whole day coaching our students to be more confident Mediators. Advanced Mediators have also received advanced training from Youthlaw (Youth Rights & Responsibilities) and Brainwave Trust (How violence effects the developing brain). Rainbow Youth will be training
them next term.

The role of the Mediator is to be an ambassador of social justice helping MRGS to be a safer, kinder, more respectful place to be. An anonymous survey reports evidence that suggests that Mediators feel more confident and connected to school, experiencing a stronger sense of belonging and have positive visions for
themselves for the future. They enjoy helping others and being a part of the bigger picture of creating community peace.

Daniel Pegado (Mediator of the Year 2008) who visited this year’s advanced training says that “Mediation kept him coming to school and has changed his life.”
For more information please read MRGS Mediation Service article in the latest Peace Foundation magazine Mediation Works (page 5).

Yr13 APY Bush Survival Camp

On Friday 8th April, Mr Horne and Mr Gabriel took the Year 13 APY class out to Mr Horne's section in Waimauku for a Bush Survival camp. As part of the trip the students had to complete the assessment criteria of building a shelter wholly from natural materials and sleep in it for the night. The assessment also requires them to light fires in damp conditions, make an animal trap and create a water purification device. The students were paired off and had three hours to make the best shelters that they could before tucking into a BBQ dinner, campfire and marshmallows. Tepou and Maria serenaded us with great music and we had a fantastic time. At 5.00am the rain began but the shelters held up well and everyone survived! Thank you to the helpers involved - Mr Gabriel, Alana Miller and Mr Purvis.

Cooking for the Community

Recently a Year 11 Food and Hospitality class prepared a two course evening meal for families staying at Ronald McDonald House. The class prepared the meal over two days and catered for 120 people. The menu included baked marinated chicken drumsticks, fish bites, felafels, garlic rolls and a selection of salads. Dessert was apple and blackberry crumble and custard.

A group of students were lucky enough to go to Ronald McDonald House to serve the meal and represent our school. They got first-hand experience of catering service. It was an enjoyable experience that they would love to do again.

Year 11 Art Trip to Corban Estate Art Centre

On Thursday 31st March, the entire Year 11 cohort of Art students went to Corban Estate Art Centre for an all day Art workshop. Students spent the day designing, planning and making paper body adornment. The body adornment is for a 4 credit internal art assessment. Students are working on their assignment in class until the end of the term, but the intensive full day workshop gave them the opportunity work collegially to share and refine their ideas with friends across both classes. There was a great atmosphere throughout the day, students were positive, focused and productive the entire time.

At the end of the day, after a full on day of creating, we had time to get some fresh air and check out the fantastic graffiti street art at Corbans, before getting on the bus back to Roskill.

Polyfest 2016

On the 16th – 20th March the annual ASB Polyfest took place at the Manukau Sports Bowl. This year, Mount Roskill Grammar had five groups participating; Maori, Samoan, Niuean, Indian, and Tongan. Each group put in many hours of practice and represented our school superbly at the event. We are proud of each group's efforts and would like to say a big thank you to everyone who was involved. From the staff
and students to the family and community members that helped make this experience such a memorable and enjoyable event.



MRGS Tongan Culture Group

There were 74 members of MRGS Tongan Cultural group who prepared and performed on Friday 18th of April at the ASB Polyfest. They were very positive and well behaved. They performed two different faiva (dancing). They did very well and won the first prize for Faha’iula and came second for Lakalaka. Members have learnt and experienced that they have to be positive and persevere in order to achieve a set goal. It is exciting that Level 1, 2 and 3 students will all achieve NCEA credits from what they have done. This years group upheld the good reputation of MRGS, as always being one of the top three schools on the Tongan stage.



MRGS Niuean Culture Group

MRGS have not had a Niuean culture group representing the school at Polyfest for 12 years. After much discussion between Mr Tuialii, Lynnie Leilona (tutor) and the Niuean community it was agreed that a group would be entered this year. Practices for group leaders started late 2015 over the holiday period and then students were asked to sign up with practices starting in week one of Term 1, 2016. Practices were held daily c/o Mt Roskill Intermediate School gym, Saturday’s c/o Wesley Intermediate School hall and then for last few weeks before Polyfest c/o MRGS quad area.

The majority of the 23 students are of Niuean descent with a few Samoan students as well. They were well led by group leaders Thornton Taufelila and Ana Laufoli plus well tutored by Lynnie Leilona, and accompanied by musicians Afa
, Minnie Polima and Morrison Fakaigo Ikaposi. The additional parent support also needs to be acknowledged (Taufelila, Laufoli, Fakaigo and Vaisele families) as does Mr Tuialii, Mr Pune and Ms Atchison.

As a lead up to Polyfest the group was invited to perform at Mt Roskill Intermediate School and Wesley Intermediate School whole school assemblies. We’d like to extend a big thankyou to these schools for inviting us to perform and for the use of their facilities for practices. We are part of a wider school community so it was a great example of collaboration at its best. After a 12 year absence from the Polyfest stage our expectations were to have fun and represent MRGS, ourselves and families with pride.

The group far exceeded our expectations and proudly achieved the following:

  • 1st place Olden
  • 1st place Exit
  • 2nd place Meke
  • 2nd place Costume
  • 3rd place Modern

Awarded the ‘Koli mo e Lologo he Vaha Tuai’ trophy on behalf of all the students (listed below), tutor, musicians, parents and supporters we’d like to say a big thankyou to everyone who has supported the group. MRGS is back and rocking on the Niuean Polyfest stage!

Lynnie Leilona (tutor) / Russell Su’a (teacher in charge)

MRGS Niuean Culture Group 2016 (as at 30/3/16):


  • Thornton Taufelila 12HSBV
  • Corban Taufelila 9HREW
  • Jerry Tafea 13HMAZ
  • Rhicky Tafea 13HREW
  • Dornell Ikaposi 13CAFL
  • Jon Maluavia 10SGRN
  • Devante Brennan 12HRSG
  • Nisi Polima Isaia 9HNGO
  • Akuila Fakatoumafi 10RKKT
  • Antonio Filemone 9SSRG
  • Joey Noue 9SMCS


  • Ana Laufoli 12HMAN
  • Krisney Akeimo 13HGYC
  • Lovely Oka Uaisele 11RKKT
  • Maggie Akeimo 11CJNW
  • Vaimoana Tuitavake 11HMAN
  • Olivia Vaisele Fakatoumafi 10SLYN
  • Siutaisa Palu 9HRSG
  • Neigalo Lavea 9RKKT
  • Victoria Polima 12HRNK
  • Bianca Bryan 10NBGV
  • Tanya Bryan 12CCAV
  • Prigette Halalova 13SLYN


  • Afa Laufoli
  • Minnie Polima
  • Morrison Fakaigo Ikaposi


  • Malia Taufelila
  • Tala Taufelia
  • Tessa Laufoli
  • Afako Laufoli
  • Tukisifa Fakaigo
  • Avia Fakaigo
  • Taka Vaisele
  • Heilala Vaisele

Board of Trustees Triennial Elections

Nominations are invited for the election of five (5) parent representatives to the Board of Trustees.
A nomination form and a notice calling for nominations will be posted to all eligible voters.  Additional nomination forms can be obtained from the school office.
Nominations close at noon on Thursday 19 May 2016 and may be accompanied by a signed candidates’ statements.
The voting roll is open for inspection at the school and can be viewed during normal school hours. There will also be a list of candidates’ names, as they come to hand, for inspection at the school.
An evening for prospective candidates to speak to voters will be on Thursday 26 May 2016 at 7.30pm at the school in the Hodge Learning Commons.
Voting closes at noon on Thursday 2 June 2016.

  • Calling for Board of Trustee nominations by Thursday 5 May 2016
  • Voting papers sent by Tuesday 24 May 2016
  • Voting day by Thursday 2 June 2016
  • Count votes Wednesday 8 June 2016
  • New Board takes office Thursday 9 June 2016

Beverley Wong
Returning Officer

Year 12 Photography Trip

On Tuesday March 22 the Year 12 Photography students completed a field trip to Cornwall Park and the One Tree Hill summit to create photographs for their AS 2.2 Landscape assignment. The objective of the assignment is for students to demonstrate understanding of the conventions of landscape photography by looking at a range of different exemplars and to use these conventions in their own work. We started photographing at the Greenlane end of the park, walked up to the summit where more photographs were taken, then walked down the Manukau Road side of the mountain to the Star Dome Observatory. It was a busy day and the students are now downloading their images and working on them in Photoshop in preparation for the approaching deadline.


Book Week at Dominion Road School

Visit to Dominion Road School for Book Week:
On Monday, March 21st, a group of prefects visited Dominion Road School as part of book week. Here, they read to students from their favourite picture books. Our students enjoyed visiting the primary school, as many of them had gone to Dominion Road School in the past. The children also enjoyed having the older students read to them and were full of questions about the chosen books. It was a great success all round and wonderful to see reading enjoyed across the community.

Apirana Taylor Visit

On March 12, poet and author Apirana Taylor visited the school. Year 9 students were treated to a poetry recital of some of his most notable works, such as Rat-at-tat-tat and Sad Joke on a Marae.  A group of 25 senior students sat down in the school library with Taylor for a writing workshop, where they explored the power of words and were able to craft their own poetry using some of his techniques. It was a fantastic opportunity for our students to see writing in action.

Junior Report Evening

YEAR 9 & 10 SUBJECT REPORT EVENING: Thursday 31st March 4-7pm
At Mount Roskill Grammar School we value the opportunity to meet with parents and caregivers of our students so that we can work together to support their learning.
Years 9 and 10 may now be at secondary school, but all of our students benefit from us meeting with you to discuss their progress, achievement and next steps.
We look forward to seeing you and your child on Thursday 31st of March.
Bookings are now open on schoolinterviews.co.nz - The access code is tw9xe
Any queries please do not hesitate to contact the school admin@mrgs.school.nz or 621 0050

Year 12 Lake Pupuke Trip

12APY went to Lake Pupuke to give the sports of Windsurfing and Paddleboarding a try. It was a new experience for most of the class and it was great that  everyone gave it a go. The weather was a challenge; not enough wind in the morning and too much in the afternoon. There was just as much time spent falling into the lake as standing on the boards but as the day wore on the level of success increased. Throughout the day there was plenty of fun and laughter and most importantly, plenty of learning and thinking around the aspects of safety involved in the activity which the class was currently learning.

Excellence Awards Evening

Our annual Excellence Awards allowed students and their families to proudly mark their examination achievements at NCEA and Scholarship. It was a marvellous evening and a number of past students took the time away from varsity to accept our acclaim including two of our Outstanding New Zealand Scholars - Arun Ravindran and Zi Yuan Tee.

Ta Moko Trip

The Year 13 Drama class went to The Basement Theatre in Week 6 (term 1) to see the incredible Dance-Drama-Spoken word hybrid performance of Ta Moko, performed and devised by students of the Pacific Institute of Performing Arts. Mt Roskill Grammar is enjoying a fabulous relationship with The Basement this year as a partnership school – the patrons of the theatre provide free transport and tickets to shows for our students in order to allow MRGS students to see local talent for free. The performance was a moving performance about identity and culture, and although it was unsure how much the Drama students would read into the Dance component of the performance, the feedback was overwhelmingly positive and students felt a real personal connection to the story of the performance. We would like to thank PIPA and The Basement for this incredible opportunity and cannot wait for future performances courtesy of the generous Basement Theatre.


Opening of Hodge Learning Commons

As part of the development of our Facilities, the H block downstairs area , previously Senior Common Room - was opened this week as the ‘Hodge Learning Commons’. This renovated area will provide a learning hub and pathways offices for the school in addition to being a place where Year 13 can share their intervals and lunchtimes.


Pop-Up Globe Visit

In late March the Year 11 and 12 Drama classes went back in time to Elizabethan England - to the Pop Up Globe! This structure is the first of its kind in the world – an exact replica, pop-up, temporary reconstruction of the second Globe Theatre in London. Year 12 Drama have been studying Shakespeare for the first two internals and the workshop we were treated to was so helpful for their learning. Rita, our workshop leader, taught us about the history of the building, Elizabethan theatre, and we even got to perform on the stage in Shakespearean style. It’s been so great to have this resource available to us this year and it has made our students so much more passionate in learning about the great Bard and his works. We are going to the Globe again on the 5th of April to see a production of Romeo and Juliet which will be the cherry on top of a great start to Years 11 and 12 Drama at Mt Roskill Grammar.


MRGS BoT Survey for Parents

As part of the Board and School management’s communication and responsiveness to our community we are conducting a parent/caregiver survey in the first two weeks of March which we would appreciate as many parents as possible taking part in. This survey will provide feedback to the Board of Trustees about how we are tracking against the strategic plan. A separate e-mail with details and a link will be sent to all families but if you would like to take part now the survey can be found here.

Roskill Alumna to Attend Venice Architecture Biennale

Past Roskill student (Class of 2009) Antonia Lapwood has just been awarded a scholarship to attend the Venice Architecture Biennale. The event opens in May and is known as ‘ the Olympics of Architecture’.

Antonia is a recent Masters of Architecture graduate and recently she has been assisting with the proposed redevelopment of the Tauranga Civic Centre.

An article detailing her achievement and featuring background on her career was recently published in the NZ Herald’s Viva supplement of February 24th - a link to the article is here.

School Exchange with Lycee Jean XXIII

In term one our school continued its successful return exchange with the French school Lycee Jean XXIII. For over twelve years the languages department has established a contact which sees Roskill students journeying to Yvetot in Normandy for a two week homestay. The process is reversed when the French students visit New Zealand and are hosted by students and families. During this term’s visit of the French school, friendships were renewed and host families met the young people with whom their sons and daughters had stayed on the French leg of the exchange late last year.

On their arrival here the French party were welcomed with a stirring powhiri from the school’s Kapa Haka group,. During their first week the twenty-five students and three staff visited Rotorua, taking in the Waitomo caves on the way. They had the full Whakarewarewa village experience as part of their overnight stay including a hangi which gave them a real taste of Kiwi ‘kai’. On another trip they visited Tiritiri Matangi - witnessing the sanctuary’s wonderful bird and marine life. During their stay they also had further trips around Auckland including a morning tea at the historic Alberton mansion. They also gave a presentation in a school assembly  - performing both a popular song and their national anthem. There were some tearful farewells when the French group left for the return home; but their time with us, like the exchange as a whole, has been a positive learning experience. The school would like to acknowledge the financial support it has always received from the New Zealand-France Friendship Fund - assistance which has enabled the continuation of the exchange for many years.


NZQA Fees Collection 2016

All senior students must pay their NZQA Fees (compulsory) to the accounts office between Wednesday 18th May – Friday 20th 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.

Learning Capability Time (LCT)

With the change in daily timetable for 2016 all students now have a lesson each Tues and Thurs during LCT where they are explicitly taught a range of capabilities to help prepare them for the global world.

The vision for Learning Capability Time is that:

all Mount Roskill Grammar students are given opportunities which support them in developing key learning dispositions and transferable skills or competencies that will enable them to become successful, lifelong learners who are active and responsible citizens.

LCT will provide students with a space in which to think and develop ideas about who they are, what their beliefs are, and how they learn. To work out how to find support when needed, how to collaborate effectively with others and how to navigate relationships, technology, and a range of their own and others’ expectations.

These are the types of things we want students to be able to say as a result of their learning in LCT:

  • I have experienced leading others in learning while at school.
  • I have ideas about what kind of world I want to live in.
  • I can effectively and professionally present my skills, qualifications and experience in a CV.
  • I know what caring and having empathy for others is.
  • I want to do positive things for others as well as achieving my own success.
  • I know how to study in a way that works well for me. I have strategies for time management so I can meet deadlines.
  • I have experienced stress but I have strategies for dealing with and preventing stress.

Student Engagement

One of our annual school goals this year is:

Each teacher will lift student engagement and achievement through examining and strengthening their pedagogy (learning and teaching)

At Roskill, students engaged in their learning will:

be confident, connected learners and achieve “to the heights”

One aspect of being engaged is how students learn in class.

Students engaged in their learning will:

  • talk about their learning in small groups and in their wider class
  • share new ideas
  • plan together
  • listen and be able to explain their learning to others
  • debate
  • ask questions
  • show curiosity

By talking with your son or daughter about their learning and by asking questions about what they are learning you will be able to support them to achieve “to the heights”.

A second aspect of being engaged in learning is to attend every class on time.
Our school target for attendance is 92% for 2016. Do you know what your son/daughter’s attendance rate is at the moment? Students can ask their Form Teachers/House Deans for this information.

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 Mrs Hyland, 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.

n.b. The Ministry of Education now has a NEW code for the way the school is required to record absence. Families who take holidays during the school term will have their son/daughter’s absence recorded as an unjustified absence.

Lateness to school:

Students must be in class within 4 minutes of the start time of each lesson. When a student is late to class they miss the initial learning being set up for that lesson and they interrupt the learning for others in the class. If late the class teacher will send the student to the Deans Centre for a late pass and mark the student LATE. The student will then attend a make-up session after school that day. Repeated lateness will result in students completing detentions after school.

By being on time all students will get the best from their learning.

We look forward to working with you to support your son/daughter in being engaged in their learning.

Ms J Small
Associate Principal
Learning and Engagement

MRGS Reunion Lunch

For the third successive occasion, Bob Jones (MRGS foundation pupil from 1953) has organised a Reunion lunch which took place in February. There was a great response to the invitation and 90 people were confirmed, 32 of which are Foundation pupils. People attended from all parts of New Zealand and overseas. Bob’s comment recently was that even after 60 years those attending still remember their days at MRGS fondly. The event was held at “The Venue” on Waiheke island.

Prefect Team and Head Prefects 2016

In an early assembly this term the 2016 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:

Sanaj Deshpande and Deeksha Vijayakumar are the Head Prefects for 2016 and Mary Kate Fonua, Joshua Simmons, Victor Chitando and Janita Fuller are the Deputy Head Prefects.

NZ Scholarship Exam Successes

Our school’s record of achievement in the premier national examination continued with students gaining 64 scholarships - the best result since 2008 and the 5th best in the 25 years since this model of scholarship was introduced. Three students, Nathan McDougall, Arun Ravindran and Zi Yuan Tee will receive New Zealand Outstanding Scholar Awards. Arun and Nathan each gained 3 outstanding scholarships and three further scholarships placing them 10th and 11th in New Zealand just outside Premier Scholar status. Scholarships were gained across 14 different subjects with 17 scholarships and 3 outstanding scholarships achieved in Accounting. 34 students gained at least one scholarship and 8 students gained 3 or more scholarships. A striking performance from our 2015 cohort of senior learners!

MRGS NCEA Results from 2015

Once again Mount Roskill students demonstrated their powerful learning in the NCEA examinations.
Some details and graphs are given below:-

Whole school

  • Pass rate for Level 1 at 79% is the best ever and is ahead of and increasing more rapidly than the national rate.
  • Pass rate for Level 2 at 75.2% matches the best ever result in 2014; 12 % up on previous years.
  • Pass rate for Level 3 at 60.7% is the best ever and is matching national trends.
  • The percentage of year 13 students gaining at least level 2 is now 90%.
  • Level 1 Numeracy and Numeracy achievement rates remain over 90%.
  • Excellence and Merit endorsement achievement rates are very good. The number of excellence endorsements at levels 1 and 3 are the highest ever.

Key points

  • There is a sustained trend of improvement in Level 1 and Level 2 pass rates, particularly for Maori and Pasifika students.
  • Endorsement rates at all levels continue at high levels.
  • Increasing achievement is beginning to impact at Level 3

Excellence Endorsements fror 2015 Exams

Once again the school achieved high numbers of Excellence endorsements. At all three levels we surpassed our results in 2014 and continued the outstanding achievement across a range of subjects that the endorsements represent. A student’s NCEA will be endorsed with Excellence if they gain 50 credits at Excellence. This year a total of 203 MRGS students achieved at this highest level across NCEA 1, 2 and 3. In addition another 295 students had their NCEA endorsed with Merit after achieving at least 50 credits at this level.

These results once again attest to the committed, resilient and engaged learning within our student community. These young men and women will be celebrated at our forthcoming Excellence Awards Evening in the school hall on March 10th.

Graphs below give the Level 1 and 3 Excellence Endorsements in comparison with National figures.

MRGS endorsements at these levels continue to be above national and in 2015 were 6.4 % higher at level 1 and 6.5% higher at Level 3.

UN Youth High School Ambassador

Disha Gomathinayagam, a year 13 student in Rutherford house and a member of Prefect team has been selected as a UN Youth High School Ambassador for 2016. In this role she will be supporting and promoting the organization of UN Youth which runs a number of events throughout the year for both high school and tertiary students, including the well-regarded Auckland Model United Nations, Auckland Case Competition and outreach events. The organisation provides civics education outside the usual classroom context. Through fun workshops, Model UN, and other events, they engage students in the most pressing affairs of their country and the international community. We are sure that UN Youth will benefit from Disha’s energy and commitment.

New Staff Members

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!

Hockey Turf Update

Work on the redevelopment of the Hockey turf continues. Its base layer, and fencing are nearing completion. We expect to be using the new surface in mid-May.

Parents of New Students Evening

On Tuesday 16th Febrruary we held our annual meeting for families of new students. The evening opened with an informal opportunity to meet and greet House Deans and school leaders over a a cup of tea and biscuits. Those attending were then invited to take their seats in the hall for a brief introduction to the school by Board Chair Marjet Pot, the Principal and other Senior Leaders. A highlight of the presentation was the introduction of the school’s Head Prefect team for 2016 who each gave brief detail about themselves and their school involvement. Their words and the commitment to the school they displayed fittingly inspired our new students and their parents.

Powhiri for New Students and Staff

Once again the school proudly welcomed its new members in the school hall. The class of 2016 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.


2016 Start of Year Details

School Administration Office

The School Administration Office opens on Thursday 21st January

Returning Students: Course Changes

Returning Students – 2016 course changes only:

  • Year 13 – Wednesday 27th January 9.00am (in school hall)
  • Year 12 – Wednesday 27th January 11.00am (in school hall)
  • Year 11 – Wednesday 27th January 1.00pm (in school hall)

First School day:

Thursday 4th February 2016 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 5th February = All students

9.00 am (students to form classes)

School closed Anniversary Day – Monday 1st February
School closed Waitangi Day – Monday 8th February


All new enrolments must be completed by Tuesday 26th January for students wishing to start on 4th February.

Uniform and Stationery Shop
on Campus (access Frost Road entrance 4)

Opening hours – Jan 26th - 29th, 8.00am to 6.00pm closed Monday February 1st
Feb 2nd – 5th, 8.00am to 6.00pm; closed Monday February 8th
February 9th 8.00am to 12.00 midday; Feb 10th – 12th 8.00 to 9.00am and 3.00pm to 5.00pm.

Then the shop will return to normal term time hours
Mondays – 8.00-9.00am and 3.00 to 4.00pm; Thursdays - 8.00-9.00am and 3.00 to 4.00pm

Term Dates 2016

Term 1
For Y9 and new students Thursday 4th February. For all other students Friday 5th February - Friday 15th April
Term 2
Monday 2nd May - Friday 8th July
Term 3
Monday 25th July - Friday 23rd September
Term 4
Monday 10th October - Friday 9th December

Changes to the School Day for 2016

Over the past two years the school has been reviewing its provision of learning in the junior school and has pursued its vision to make learning in years 9 and 10 as interesting as possible and the best possible base for senior learning. This has resulted in changes to subject choices in the junior school with a deepening of learning opportunities in certain subjects and the introduction of academies in a range of areas. As part of this continuing process of strengthening learning provision we are making changes to the way the week at Roskill will look in 2016. The changes will make the times of the day simple and straightforward.

For 2016 the school will have a new timetable in which:

  • There are 25 periods per week (rather than the previous 27 periods) - so no lessons will be rotated off.
  • Every lesson will be 55 minutes long
  • LCT— Learning Capability Time will be three times a week for 30 minutes each time (It will be more like a lesson and focusing on learning.) Everyone in the form class will be there.
  • Assemblies will only be on Monday. On the first week of a two week cycle -there will be a school assembly. On the second week there will be house assemblies - strengthening the idea of the house being a ‘school within a school’.
  • School will still finish at 3.10 pm ( apart from Wednesday when finish time will be 3.00pm)
  • School will start a little later at 9.00 am. On Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The expectation is that with a 9.00am start everyone has plenty of time to get ready and be on time for learning. It also means that there will be some time before school when teams or student groups might choose to meet.
  • School will start on Wednesday at 9.20 ( This is to allow for Staff Professional development time before classes)
  • Otherwise the school day will be the same. There will be 5 lessons, lunch will be after period 4 followed by assembly or LCT.

Mount Roskill Grammar School - Frost Road, Mount Roskill, Auckland New Zealand T:+64 9 6210050 F:+64 9 6210055 Terms & Conditions  Site Credits
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