By Matthew Markham | Posted: Thursday November 21, 2019
There is a sense of excitement building at the hostel with the end of the school year fast approaching.
Many of our senior students have finished their exams and have had an early start to their holidays. The rest of the senior students will be finished by the end of next week.
The juniors have been kept busy in the evenings with ten pin bowling, swimming at Moana Pool and numerous games of touch at Roberts Park.
We have a couple of important events to end the year at the hostel. Today is the annual Year 7 Hostel Open Day, where prospective families for 2021 come along and have a look at the school and the hostel, we have excellent numbers, with over 16 families in attendance. Next Friday we have the Year 8 sleepover and parents’ function. I am sure there are some nervous but excited boys. It is a highlight for the current Year 9’s as well, as just for one night, they are not the youngest members of the hostel!
We held a working bee at the hostel a couple of weekends ago and a big thank you to everyone who helped. We repaired and replaced some damaged guttering, painted the lower wall of the Hawthorne dorm and did some extensive gardening in the area between the housemaster units and the matron's house. It was amazing the amount of work we got through and once again a huge thank you to all of those who gave up a Sunday afternoon to work at the hostel, in extremely hot conditions!
At Skippers Feast a few weeks ago next year’s prefect team was announced.
Prefects for 2020 are:
Head of Hostel
Deputy Head of Hostel
Congratulations to all these boys especially Mitchell and Angus. The hostel staff look forward to working with you next year. Congratulations as well to Harrison Glaister who is the School House top scholar for 2019, well done Harrison on this fine achievement.
Last week, Thomas O’Connor traveled north to spend a week at Napier Boys' High School as part of the newly developed Otago Boys'/Napier Boys' boarding exchange. The following is his report:
An amazing opportunity was presented to the Year 10 hostel students; a chance to travel to Napier Boys’ High School and stay in their hostel for a week. I was very keen to go as my dad was an old boy of the school (NBHS) and he was a hostel boy, so it would’ve been awesome to have a look around and get to know a bit about where he went to high school. I put my name down by writing an email to Mr Markham stating why I believe I should be the student chosen to go. Lucky enough, I was the student that was selected, and it was well worth it. I got to meet many teachers that taught and coached my father which was awesome.
I had a busy week involving myself in many sports and activities such as canoe polo, cricket and mountain biking. I also got to spend some time with my cousins which was great. Over the weekend I went back to one of the Year 10 hostel boys’ farms. We went to the Waipukurau show and we did a 5km mud run which was awesome.
Overall the hostel and school were very similar to ours. Napier Boys' has very similar rules and a very similar hostel setup. The school was a bit more spread out than Otago Boys' and they have much larger playing fields. One thing that was good up there was that the hostel was on the school site, so it is not far to go somewhere to kick a ball around or go to the cricket nets. They also have a school pool just like ours which is used for canoe polo and swimming on a hot day.
I had an awesome week up there getting to know a bit about a different boys school and I would recommend it to any year 10 hostel boy, it is a great experience.
Mid way through next year, applications will open for this year’s Year 9’s to apply. I am sure after Thomas’ positive experience there will be much interest.
We have some exciting things happening in School House next year with the Boarding Development Programme and an upgrade to both the basketball court and the heating system in Hawthorne. It has been a long time coming but work on the new car park is due to start early next year. We are currently in the tender process. This will be the biggest piece of work that has occurred at the hostel since the construction of Nicholson in 1996 and will greatly improve both parking and the street appeal of the hostel.
This will be the last newsletter for the year, and I would like to wish you a happy and safe Christmas and new year. See you all in 2020!