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5th July 2013



Tena Tatou e te whanau.  Board Chairman Mr Heald, Archbishop Moxon, tena koe, the Honourable Mayor of Waipa District, Mr Livingston, and Mrs Livingstone, distinguished guests, staff, students, families and friends of St Peter’s, I welcome you to Senior Prizegiving 2012.

Tena koutou katoa.  Ka nui nga mihi kia koutou.

Following on from the excitement of our 75th Jubilee celebrations in 2011, we might have expected this year to be a little quieter and more low key.

That has certainly not been the case and the School is clearly highly geared in its thirst and search for excellence in everything it does.

Many significant events occurred during the year: the welcome of our School’s first Kaumatua; the school roll up to a record 1,106; 100% pass rates in IB Diploma and Cambridge International Exams in Mathematics and Business Studies; 98.1% in NCEA Level 2; Hayley Haskell’s top place medal in the University of New South Wales Mathematics Exams; Alumni Kane O’Donnell’s Woolf Fisher Scholarship to Cambridge University (worth $100,000); a record 74 Scholar’s Ties and nine Founder’s Scholarship Medals awarded; Personalised Tracking of Year 11; the official opening and blessing of Gardner House, tours to Vietnam & Cambodia (Social Sciences) Melbourne (Golf), Brisbane (Netball) and the United Kingdom and Ireland (Rugby Development); AIDA; Sunday Best one of the top eight bands in New Zealand Smokefree Rockquest; the purchase of a significant work of art in Gregor Kregar’s sculpture “Immersive Echoes”; our rowers winning the Star Trophy for overall top School at the New Zealand Secondary Schools Rowing Regatta, Tennis co-ed team a seventh New Zealand Secondary Schools gold; Squash retaining its top New Zealand co-ed School trophy; Cycling, Swimming, Duathlon winning New Zealand golds and Girls Snowboarding, North Island gold; three Alumni competing at the London Olympics; the commencement of work on the Velodrome.  The successes were capped off recently by our award of the coveted Green-Gold Enviroschool status. And in the past fortnight the 1st XI cricket team has beaten two major New Zealand rivals, Tauranga Boys College and Hamilton Boys High School, both for the first time, to reach its first New Zealand top six playoffs in December.  And that, to be fair, is just the tip of the mountain of achievement.

Such achievement does not come by chance and I thank again our amazing staff, parents and supporters for their organisation, enthusiasm and skilled leadership. 

Today we acknowledge one such example on our staff. With 18 years of selfless service as a full time, permanent staff member, we salute the leadership and achievements of Mrs Eagar as she retires from her position as Head of English and Languages.  Mrs Eagar has been an outstanding leader of language in our school for 18 years, 17 of those as Head of Department and then Head of Faculty.  Her leadership has been an inspiration to our staff and to the students who have been fortunate to have been taught by her.

Her outstanding record in the large number of NZ Scholarships gained, the challenging and extending of students (and staff), the tireless work in planning, preparation, marking and monitoring programmes and work, the leadership of change as NCEA and IB have been successfully introduced to our school and the positive impact she has had on our Library and Information Centre, have all added to her status as a legend in our school.

Mrs Eagar’s wonderful work has inspired so many with her love and passion for literature and reading and they will carry that through their lives.

Mrs Eagar, I hope you take great satisfaction from your life’s work here.  I trust you will have many long years ahead of reading, walking, enjoying family, music and concerts.

Mrs Eagar, as a school, we congratulate you on your many achievements and thank you for your service.  We wish you a long, happy and content retirement.

I would now invite forward our Chairman, Mr David Heald, to present Mrs Eagar with our Staff Honours Silver Owl, awarded for outstanding service as a full time member of the academic staff. 

I would also like to mention the other long serving member of staff, retiring after 20 years of part-time service here – Mr Peter Dornauf.  Mr Dornauf is a legend.  He has taught English, Art and, his abiding passion, Art History.  Mr Dornauf has inspired all of his students with a lifelong understanding and passion for art and how art reflects society.  Mr Dornauf holds the St Peter’s School record of New Zealand Scholarships attained by his students – 50 scholarships.

We thank you, Mr Dornauf, and wish you a long happy retirement writing, painting, reflecting and standing up for a better society.  Let us join in thanking Mr Dornauf.

In Chapel, we sing, from time to time, a song based on a prayer by St Francis of Assisi – “Make me a channel of your peace”.  In the penultimate line, the words tell us that “it is in giving to all men that we receive”.

The Christian message of service to others, so typical of the life and work of Mrs Eagar, is also at the heart of our Church School, our staff, our Trust Board, our goals and aspirations.  We search for happiness and well-being through helping others to be achieve fulfillment in their lives.

All those students and staff, parents, those involved in Pastoral Care, Houses, tutoring, teaching, mentoring, coaching, advising and supporting, have their lives enriched by this way of life.  It is about relationships – building bridges, connections, houses, homes, families, schools, communities, countries, a global world.  When we take out the “me”, “I”, self-centred approach and replace it with “you” and “we”, we can transform our lives and our world.

That message is from ancient times, but it resonates for us in the 21st Century.

You can have all the knowledge and skills you can find on the Internet, but you are not educated.  Education is, fundamentally, about the values by which we live.  Typical of those values is the concept of service, love, compassion and empathy for ourselves, each other, our environment.

Our school leavers will be well served if they carry this message in their hearts, minds and actions.

As a school, we are most fortunate with our staff.  They go beyond the call of duty and offer our students amazing support, encouragement and opportunities.  As we move into next year, the inclusion of dedicated staff learning time in the academic day, is a significant commitment by the School to enhance our Professional Learning Community.  We are all learning and always will.  Let us all be open to change and to challenging ourselves with learning for life.

This year’s School Prefects have been outstanding.  The Executive has been inspiring in its initiative, focus and commitment.  I have thoroughly enjoyed the wit, initiative and input of our Heads and Deputies.  They have led our largest and most impressive Year 13 group in Gardner House.  We also thank our 85 House Prefects for their great work in the Day and Boarding Houses.

I thank most sincerely our Associate Principal (Mr Speedy), First Deputy Principal (Mrs Steel), Deputy Principals Mrs Earl (Teaching and Learning), Mr Porter (Curriculum), Mr Douglas (Human Resources) and Mr Scott (Business Manager) for their tireless work on the Senior Management Team.  They are an inspiration to work with and are the driving force in the leadership of our school.

Following a review of Support Staff Management, we have also established a Support Staff Senior Management Team and I thank Mr Scott, Mr Douglas, Mr Martin (Property Manager), and Mr Fleming (Communications Manager) for their valued input and leadership in this new team.

I acknowledge our outgoing Chair, Mr Bryan who has served our school superbly well for the past 12 plus years, and look forward to working closely with our Trust Board’s new Chair, Mr David Heald (the first Alumni to be elected as Chair of the Board).  The Trust Board is a proven, successful governing team which leads and supports fully the School’s goals.

Thank you all for the part you have played in another highly successful year for our school.

May you each have a Merry Christmas and a successful New Year.

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School - Main Entrance 1930s

Success for Science Graduate

We are thrilled to congratulate alumni member Kane O’Donnell, who has been awarded a prestigious Woolf Fisher Scholarship allowing him to attend Cambridge University, England.

Kane, who attended St Peter’s from 2004 to 2008, was named Dux in 2007 and 2008 and went on to gain a BSc (Honours) in Science at Canterbury University in 2011. Asked about the scholarship, Kane comments, “I was pretty chuffed, to put it lightly”. The award, worth $100,000, will enable him to complete a PhD in Theoretical Physics at Cambridge over a four year period.


The 2013 St Peter's School Alumni AGM will be held Saturday 13th April 2013 in the Functions Room, Student Centre.

Having only recently arrived in New Zealand, from England, Will Stone was awarded the Alumni Organ Scholarship in 2012, his final year at St Peter’s.


A keen musician, Will is studying Music at Higher Level for the International Baccalaureate programme, which he finds challenging, however very rewarding. He plays the organ for chapel services as well as for his own pleasure where he gets to learn inspiring pieces such as Bach’s Toccata and Fugue.

Lucas Vetter has been studying keyboard since the age of five. He started attending St Peter’s in Year 7 as a full-time boarding student.

Lucas recalls that the first time he saw the organ pipes on the left hand side of the School Chapel, he realised he was in the presence of an exceptional and magnificent musical instrument. The opportunity to undertake formal tuition is the realisation of a dream which began in his first year at St Peter’s. He started lessons with Mr Mark Eyre in 2011, and the following year was awarded an Alumni Organ Scholarship.

In addition to playing the Chapel Organ, Lucas is an enthusiastic all-rounder and has contributed to the musical life of St Peter’s by playing in a variety of orchestras.

Monty Pierard was Chaplain at St Peter's from 1951 - 1953. A popular and original teacher – with a keen sense of humour - he brought a love of music, a deep knowledge of the classics and wide experience of life to the classroom.  

1936 Official Opening Ceremony

Click here for an account of the opening ceremony of St Peter's which took place on Saturday, 22nd February, 1936 with about 800 guests and dignitaries in attendance. The pdf copy of the proceedings from the 1936 Chronicle includes excerpts from Mr Broadhurst's speech.

1936 Prizegiving speech

Click here for a pdf copy of Mr Broadhurst's first prizegiving speech, from the 1936 Chronicle. This speech contains information about the cups and trophies which were donated for this first prizegiving ceremony.

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