The school is divided into five Houses, whose names are taken from early settlers in the Wakatipu Basin: Arthur, Duncan, Fox, Hay and Mackenzie.
Arthur - Thomas Arthur was originally a shearer as well as a part-time gold prospector and is one of the men responsible for discovering a significant deposit of gold within the Kimiākau, Shotover River during the mid-1800’s. Arthur’s Point was subsequently named in his honour and this is the region where he first discovered the gold.
Duncan - Alfred Duncan was a Scotsman and a shepherd who, alongside some others, was crucial in the establishment of bringing a significant number of sheep to the head of the lake where the township of Tāhuna, Glenorchy now lies. Mount Alfred (known by Ari to local Māori) was named in honour of him and alongside some others he built a mud hut near where the Glenorchy Café stands today. This was the beginning of farming in the area which has continued until the present day.
Fox - William Fox, generally known as Bill, was an Irish gold miner who found his way to Aotearoa in the mid-1800’s via California and Victoria. It’s the controversial character of Bill Fox we can thank in part for the prominence of Kā-muriwai, Arrowtown. It was local Māori man Jack Tewa (known as “Māori Jack”) who is credited with the first discovery of gold in Haehaenui, the Arrow River. He later told William Fox. William Fox’s actions subsequently started a rush that brought miners from all around the globe into the tiny village.
Hay - Donald Hay was an Australian sheep farmer and explorer who made his way to Tāhuna, Queenstown during the mid-1800’s. Waiwhakaata, Lake Hayes was originally named Lake Hay’s after Donald was the first Pākehā to explore the lake during one particularly intrepid adventure.
Mackenzie - Hugh Mackenzie was a Scottish farmer who can be credited with being a fundamental part of the development of Walter Peak Station that we know and admire today. He and his whānau worked hard to shape the land during the late 1800’s and are responsible for building the homestead and planting the renowned gardens we see today.
Each House has a Dean who has the oversight over the entire House. They are there to support delivering andachieving the school’s vision, values and goals, including the ākonga profile and ultimately lead the development of a positive whānau culture.
Each house is divided into a number of Ako Groups which meet three times per week. Students remain in the same Ako Groups throughout their time at Wakatipu High School and as a result kaiārahi get to know their students very well. Each House group has a designated area in the school where students meet for Ako time. At the heart of this is the House social space which includes soft furnishings, a sink and microwave. A strong and important aspect of the House system is the inter-House competition, which is an important feature of the school calendar. Leadership There are numerous student leadership opportunities available at Wakatipu High School, many of which are fostered through our House competition. The Student Council and its sub-committees are responsible for this competition which kicks off with Participation Day early in the year and includes a range of activities from the arts, sports and academic areas of the school such as Matatū (a haka/waiata competition), debating, Waka-Maths, netball, touch rugby, basketball, and much more. There are multiple sub-committees of the Student Council, including Academic, Arts, Community and Service, Environmental, Sports, and Whanaungatanga (Support) Councils. House Leaders are responsible for organising students, developing House spirit and leading the charge in the House competition. House Leaders play a large role in organising and running House assemblies.
Participation Day Participation Day is normally the start of the year's House Competition.
The day starts off with a lot of noise, spirit and team work in the House March where all houses perform their routines, some of which take months in the making. Throughout the day all pupils take part in a range of athletic events, trying to score as many points as they can for their house.
Address 47-49 Red Oaks Drive Frankton, Queenstown 9300 03 4427370
2023 Term Dates Term 1: Monday 30 January to Thursday 6 April Term 2: Monday 24 April to Friday 30 June Term 3: Monday 17 July to Friday 22 September Term 4: Monday 9 October to Wednesday 13 December