Our History2020-11-16T11:53:12+00:00

Our History

Ngunguru School 150 Years 1870-2020.

On Friday 13th and Saturday 14th of November 2020, Ngunguru School held it’s 150th Birthday celebrations. Friday was a school Open Day, with past students being shown the huge changes to the school by Year 7 & 8 student ambassadors. On Saturday we had our official whakatau and opening ceremony, including planting a totora to commemorate our late Kaumātua Sonny Wellington. After the ceremony attendees enjoyed old fashioned games, the bi-annual Art Exhibition, multiple displays of our history, live music, and great food. Stories were heard and recorded, friendships made and renewed. Later that evening a formal dinner and dance was held at the Sports Club.

Below are links to video and picture galleries recording the fantastic day celebrating 150 Years of our awesome school.

Key Dates from School & Local History

1870: Ngunguru School was first opened as a Church Missionary school, to both Maori and Pakeha 1879: Alfred Hammond Mason officially took up his post Sept 14 as the first teacher 1890: Ngunguru School was constituted as a public school
1892: Captain Shoebridge takes the first load of coal down the river 1895: School had 35 pupils, many who rode along river daily to school. There was no road. 1913: Mill closes, however now there are settled faming families rather than itinerant sawyers.
1914: Tutukaka school opens 1923: The first school building was replaced
1931: Authorities recognised that the little old school was inadequate (headmaster Mr S.L.Stretton)

BOT architect reported the building was substandard and unsuited for a grade school, no electricity.

1933: Early morning fire in the school’s woodshed. 1938: New building complete, old building went to ‘top of Pukenui Rd’ 1940: Asst Head Mrs V Donaldson raised money for an asphalt playing area. Group trip to Wellington for students by train (the first many had seen)
1948: Flush toilets for the first time! 1956: A road was finally built to enable easier access to the school