Kings College - 15/05/2017


On the basis of the information obtained during the review, ERO considers that Kings College meets the criteria for registration as a private school set out in the Education Act 1989.

1 Background

The Chief Review Officer has a statutory duty to report on the performance of private schools throughout New Zealand.

Section 35I of the Education Act 1989, requires the Education Review Office (ERO) to review fully registered private schools, and to report to the Ministry of Education on whether each school continues to meet the criteria for full registration.

This review report was prepared in accordance with standard procedures approved by the Chief Review Officer.

2 Criteria for Registration

Kings College provides students with a high standard of education. The college caters for boys only in Years 9 and 10, and is coeducational at Years 11 to 13. Thirty-nine percent of students live in college boarding houses. Seventy five percent of those students are drawn from greater Auckland.

The board of governors and college managers are future focused while building on the school’s strong tradition. The founder’s original vision from 1896: “To provide the best all round education it is possible to attain” remains the guiding principle of care and education at the college.

The college has experienced two changes in headmaster since ERO’s evaluation report in 2011. Since the current headmaster’s appointment in 2016, there has been a restructuring of the educational leadership team (ELT), and includes the appointment of a new deputy headmaster. The headmaster and four deputy headmasters ensure a strong focus on teaching and learning, and student wellbeing. College leaders recognise the importance of good pastoral care underpinning student learning. ELT members complement each other well and are leading and driving the college through a period of significant educational change in consultation with key stakeholders. The College Board actively supports the college’s vision and direction.

Initiatives since 2011 include a student mentoring programme and an onsite 24/7 medical centre. The college’s special character remains evident in the day to day practices of the college, and the provision of the curriculum and co-curricular programmes. Students experience the Anglican faith through the religious education programmes and chapel services. The house structure, including the day house provision, promotes a sense of identity and pride for day students and boarders in both their house and the college.

As part of the change agenda the college’s teaching and learning philosophy has been clearly defined around eight dimensions that show valued student outcomes, and expected teacher behaviours. The framework places students at the centre. It clearly articulates what an all-round Kings College education looks like in the 21st century, equipping students to meet the demands of lifelong learning and responsible citizenship.

The college continues to provide suitable curriculum, tuition, staffing, premises and equipment.

The college curriculum reflects The New Zealand Curriculum, and includes religious education.  During their time at the college, students experience a broad curriculum and are involved in numerous co-curricular activities. The Year 9 curriculum is designed to provide boys with a wide variety of learning experiences that will enable them to make informed subject choices within relevant learning pathways in their years ahead. The Year 10 education outside the classroom (EOTC) experience is a notable feature of the boys’ curriculum. Te reo Māori is compulsory in Years 9 and 10. Students begin to make the choice of their preferred learning pathway in National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEA) or Cambridge International Examination (CIE) from Y11.

As noted in ERO’s previous reports, students continue to achieve high levels of academic success in National Certificates of International Achievement in the National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEA) or Cambridge International Examinations (CIE). College leaders acknowledge the value of college-wide consistency and reliability of data that can demonstrate students’ progress over time. They are reviewing assessment practices in Years 9 and 10 to align with the colleges eight dimensional teaching and learning philosophy. A recently introduced student management system is providing reliable information, enabling decisions about college policies and practices to be evidence based.

Well-resourced programmes reflect the college’s commitment to high quality teaching and learning. Staff are well qualified and demonstrate collaborative teaching and learning practices. Coherent systems and opportunities are building teacher capability, inquiry and evaluation to achieve the college’s vision. The introduction of teaching as inquiry in 2016 is focusing teachers on examining the effectiveness of their practices, thereby adapting their pedagogy to best meet students’ needs. Beginning teacher induction is thorough and well supported. The new appraisal process has the potential to strengthen consistency across the college, and ensure Education Council requirements are met. Support staff make a significant and valued contribution to the college. Staff wellbeing is prioritised by the board and senior leaders.

Students learn in calm and deliberately arranged learning environments that promote engagement. Digital technologies are very well integrated into teaching and learning. Students and teachers interact positively and with respect. Students demonstrate an enthusiasm for learning, and learning together. Generous staff to student ratios enable good support for all students, including those with additional learning needs and talents. Teachers have high expectations of student behaviour and for their achievement.

The college is very well resourced and maintained. High quality facilities strongly promote academic learning and students’ involvement and achievement in the arts, sport and cultural events. Previous ERO reports have noted the blend of traditional and new buildings and learning environments. An additional, thoughtfully considered master property plan is in place, to guide future property development.

The members of the college’s managing body have attested that they comply with the provisions of section 35G in relation to being fit and proper persons to manage the college.

3 Other Obligations

Well-established systems enable the college’s managing body to be assured that its other statutory obligations are being met.

4 Other Matters

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students (the Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

At the time of this review there were 50 international students attending the college, mainly from Thailand and China. Fourteen students are from European and other Asian countries. Almost all international students live in the college boarding houses. The majority of these students remain at the college for their entire secondary education.

International students experience the same benefits, and high quality education and care as domestic students. They have access to first language counselling and have a nominated guardian who cares for them over some weekends and New Zealand public holidays. International students are well integrated into college life, undertake school leadership roles, and develop friendships with kiwi students.

The team responsible for international students is keen to use the new student management system to further track international student progress and achievement as a cohort during their time at the college. They have also expressed their interest in additional anonymous student surveys to further evaluate the quality of care and education of international students.

Provision for students in the school hostel

Selwyn House, St John’s House, School House and Parnell House are the college boarding houses for the 331 boys in Years 10 to 13. Te Pūtake Lodge for Year 9 boys opened in 2016. Middlemore House accommodates 64 girls from Years 11 to 13. This total of 395 boarders comprises 39% of the college roll.

The hostel owner has attested that all the requirements of the Hostel Regulations are met. Good relationships within the houses, and between the houses and the school supports learning for students who are boarders.

Points noted in ERO’s 2011 reports have been largely addressed, with considerable and ongoing refurbishments to all the houses. Effective work has been done to offer more consistent boarding experiences for all boarders while maintaining the uniqueness of each house. Contributing factors include:

  • experienced house masters who are also members of the teaching staff
  • high expectations of expected school student behaviours that are reflected in the house
  • consistent communication between families, students and house staff
  • regular house meetings that help to ensure students receive clear and consistent messages
  • the establishment of Te Pūtake Lodge that is providing an excellent transition for Year 9 boys into the boarding experience. 

Student welfare is promoted by well-established procedures and practices such as:

  • house masters who are supported by matrons and tutors ensuring there are suitable ratios of staff to boarders before and after school, at night, and over weekends
  • clear procedures for applying for, approving and monitoring student leave from the house
  • the availability of the 24/7 medical centre and care to all boarders.

All boarding houses take steps to provide a safe physical environment. Each house has suitable areas for study, recreational and social activity. At every level, boarders are provided with sufficient personal space for storage, study and sleeping. Boarders use college facilities outside of school hours. Nutritious meals are provided in the college dining room and are supplemented by kitchen facilities in the hostels. The hostels are well secured at night, internally and externally.

5 Conclusion

On the basis of the information obtained during the review, ERO considers that Kings College meets the criteria for registration as a private school set out in the Education Act 1989

Steffan Brough
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

15 May 2017

About the School 


Otahuhu, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Private Secondary (Years 9 to 15)

School roll


Number of international students


Gender composition

Boys      81%
Girls       19%

Ethnic composition

Cook Islands Māori
other Asian
other European


Special Features

Five boarding houses, one Year 9 Lodge and five day houses

Review team on site

March 2017

Date of this report

15 May 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

Private School Review
Private School Review
Private School Review

February 2011
December 2007
November 2004