Hillcrest High School is proud to have created the first long term outdoor education course by a state school in New Zealand for Year 10 students.

Year 9 Tauwhare Marae Noho

Hillcrest High School has a strong relationship with local Iwi, Ngaati Hauaa, and this is further strengthened every year through the Year 9 Tauwhare Marae Noho. Hauora class groups get to experience life on a marae through an overnight noho which begins with a Poowhiri on the morning of the first day.

Over the course of the two days, Year 12 student leaders and teachers lead the Year 9 students through a variety of activities, including a shared haangii lunch. Attendance at the noho is an important part of the introduction of life at Hillcrest High School and how the school links to the wider community. All students are encouraged to attend the noho as it gives them an opportunity to immerse themselves in high school life and bond with students from their Hauora class.


Year 10 Great Barrier Island Experience

Hillcrest High School is proud to have created the first long term outdoor education course by a state school in New Zealand for Year 10 students.

In collaboration with the Hillary Outdoors Education Centre on Great Barrier Island we have shaped a five weeks course that melds a combination of outdoor activities, community action and studies revolving around the principles of sustainability.

In 2012 we ran two inaugural five week courses, one for girls and the other for boys. The programme is still surging ahead with strong support from parents, students and the local community. The course requires students to live independently in double berth cabins with students responsible for their cooking, washing, personal and group requirements. There is no cellphone coverage at the camp and contact is made home once a week.

Students are supervised by a mixture of Hillcrest High School staff and Hillary Outdoors instructors. Under their expert guidance the students undertake 2-3 day expeditions and a range of outdoor activities including coasteering, high ropes course, sailing, sea kayaking, tramping, steep creeking, fishing, snorkelling, gardening and adventure based learning.

They undertake a cross-curricular study of cultural, economic, environmental and social sustainability, interacting during the process with local tangata whenua, business owners, primary school, Glenfern Sanctuary, DOC and the Orama community.

At the end of each course a celebration evening is held during which the students deliver a presentation of their experiences and studies to their parents, along with taking the time to acknowledge their accomplishments and present awards.


International Trips

International trips have increasingly become part of extending the learning opportunities for students. During 2016 students travelled to Spain on an International Languages trip while the 1st XV rugby toured Samoa and the 1st XI cricket team participated in the World Schools Cricket Challenge in Melbourne. Over the past few years trips to Gold Coast, Noumea, Great Barrier Reef, Botswana and Zambia have occurred. In 2017 co-curricular trips were organised to New Caledonia as part of Language studies, Silicon Valley as part of Business Studies, Vietnam as part of Social Studies and trekking the ancient Inca trails in Peru as part of Outdoor Education. In 2018 a Languages/Music trip took place to mainland China. In 2019 during the term 1 holidays, a Social Science trip was taken to Vietnam. Term 2 Science students embarked on a trip to NASA. During term 2 holidays a group of Spanish students toured Argentina.