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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]

Secondary Schools

Secondary Schools.

The Boys High School, which is under the control of the Board of Governors of Canterbury College, was opened in May, 1881. The board recommended to the Government in 1877 the establishment of schools throughout the Colony of such a character as to form a link between the primary schools and the university. In 1879, an acre of land was purchased in Worcester Street, and a tender accepted for the erection of necessary buildings. On the opening of the school there was an attendance of eighty three boys; the present attendance is 253. The building, which is a handsome stone structure of two stories, has been twice enlarged; two class-rooms and a large luncheon-room were added, and at the end of 1895 a large new wing, providing a lecture-room and two class-rooms, was erected. Besides these there is also a gymnasium or orderly-room. In all there are eleven class-rooms, including a large meeting-room, capable of holding 200 boys. The lecture-room has about seventy desks, giving sitting accommodation for about 100. The former headmaster was Mr. T. Miller, M.A., late Fellow Queen's College, Cambridge, and sometime assistant master at Uppingham and University College schools. England. He left early in 1884, and was subsequently appointed to a professorship in a German university, but died in England in 1900. The school staff comprises the headmaster, nine full-time assistant masters, one part-time master, and visiting masters in drill, swimming, singing, model drawing, and carpentering. There are two chemical laboratories in the school, and the lecturetheatre is fitted with a properly equipped lecturing-table. Attached to the school is a carpenter's shop and systematic carpentry is taught in connection with drawing. The school offers each year to new boys five “Governor's Exhibitions” tenable for three years, and four “Entrance Exhibitions,” tenable for two years, and to boys in the school eight “Foundation Exhibitions,” tenable for one year. Each of these exhibitions is of the value of the school fees for the time of
Boys' High School.Dutch, photo.

Boys' High School.
Dutch, photo.

page 168 tenure. In 1901 there were twenty-nine exhibitioners or free pupils in the school. Since the opening of the school in 1881, twenty-three boys have won Junior University Scholarships at the New Zealand university, and every year pupils proceed to this university to the departments of arts, law or engineering, while several have gone to take medical degrees at the universities of Great Britain, where most of them have been very successful. The school is now (1902) being reorganised with a view, among other things, to giving greater prominence to modern subjects; for example, history, modern languages, and drawing. There will also now be a satisfactory curriculum provided for boys who intend to leave early for business and farming. In place of Latin, these will have a commercial course in accordance with the programme laid down in the Manual and Technical Instruction Act under the head of commercial work. Some boys will be presented for the students' accountancy examination. Those destined to be farmers may have the elements of agricultural chemistry and botany taught them, as well as book-keeping, while intending engineers will have advanced drawing. To those destined for professions, Latin will be taught even more thoroughly than before, and there will be opportunities for Greek and German. English, with one foreign language, history and geography, science and drawing will be taught to all. Manual training will be taught to some.

Mr. Charles Edmund Bevan-Brown, M.A., the present Headmaster, was born in Cornwall, England, in 1854. He was educated at Louth and Bristol Grammar Schools. In 1873 he won an open classical scholarship at Lincoln College, Oxford. He took his degree in 1878 with 2nd class honours in Literae Humaniores. In 1879, he was appointed an assistant master at the large and important Manchester Grammar School, where he continued till the end of 1883. In December, 1883, he was selected, in England, for the Headmastership of the Chrischurch Boys' High School, and arrived in the colony in April, 1884. He was President of the last meeting of the Secondary Schools Conference in Christchurch. In February, 1899, the Government, offered him the post of Inspector-General of Schools and Secretary for Education, but he did not see his way to accept the position.

Standish and Preece, photo.Mr. C. E. Bevan-Brown.

Standish and Preece, photo.
Mr. C. E. Bevan-Brown.

Mr. Basil Keith Senior-Lawrence, B.A., Senior Assistant Master at the Boys' High School, Christchurch, was born at Ash Priors in Somersetshire, England, and was educated at Cowbridge, Glamorganshire. Arriving in Lyttelton, Mr. Lawrence was for some time engaged in a private school, and when the High School was opened he was appointed assistant master, his present position. Being interested in outdoor recreations, he takes an active part in the athletic sports of the boys of the school, and is also treasurer of the school games fund. He was married in 1882, and has three daughters and one son.

Mr. William Walton, B.A., Senior Mathematical Master of the Boys' High School, was born at Coventry, England, in 1856. He became a graduate of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, in 1879, and arrived in Lyttelton by the ship “Durham” in the following year. After occupying the position of assistant-master at Wellington College for a few months, he was appointed to the Timaru High school and three years later became headmaster of the Akaroa High school, where he remained till his appointment to the Boys' High School, Christchurch, in 1890. Mr. Walton is a member of the Philo sophical Institute, and in athletics is a member of the committee of the Rugby Union. He was married in 1880.

Mr. Robert Malcolm Laing, M.A., B.Sc. Science Master at the Christchurch Boys' High School, was born at Caversham, Dunedin, in 1865, and educated, first, at the Dunedin Boys' High School, and afterwards at Canterbury College. Mr. Laing graduated B.A. in 1883, and M. A., with honours in natural science, botany, and biology, in the following year, gaining his degree as B. Sc. some years later. He commenced his career as a teacher at the Timaru Boys' High School in 1884, and two years later took up his present position. He is a member of the Canterbury Philosophical Institute, of which he was at one time president and secretary, and has for a long time occupied a seat as a member of the council of that body.

Mr. Arthur Merton, Assistant Master at the Boys' High School, was born in Christchurch in 1860 and educated at Christ's College. In 1881, he became a teacher at the Cathedral school and seven years later received the appointment he now holds. Mr. Merton was for some years a member of the Cathedral choir and was long connected with the old Christchurch Musical Society as a well-known bass soloist. He was married in 1891 to a daughter of Mr. W. Kitson, of the Canterbury College Observatory, and has one son.

Mr. Oscar Thorwald Johan Alpers, one of the Assistant Masters at the Boys' High School, Christchurch, was born in Copenhagen in 1867 and accompanied his parents to New Zealand when a youth. He entered Canterbury College in 1885 and during his course of studies took two exhibitions in English. He graduated B.A. in 1887 and in the same year gained a Tinline Scholarship in English literature. Mr. Alpers took his M.A. degree with first-class honours in languages and literature in 1888. As a teacher at Canterbury College he had charge of large classes for four years, and subsequently became assistant to Professor Macmillan Brown. On the professor's visit to England in 1893 he was appointed by the Board of Governors to act as locum tenens in the chair of English Literature. Mr. Alpers joined the staff of the Boys' High School in 1891. He has contributed largely to newspapers and magazines; is author of the Jubilee Ode performed in connection with the jubilee of the province of Canterbury; he edited and published “The Jubilee Book of Canterbury Rhymes” (1900); and is jointauthor with Mr. R. F. Irvine, M.A., of “The Progress of New Zealand in the Nineteenth Century.”

Mr. Robert Speight, M.A., B.Sc. Assistant Master at the Boys' High School, was born in 1867 in Durham, England. He was educated in New Zealand and was a student at Canterbury College where he graduated Bachelor of Arts in 1888 and Master of Arts in the following year with honours in mathematics and science, and, subsequently, gained his degree as Bachelor of Science. He was appointed to the staff of the Boys' High school in 1891. He is a member of the Philosophical Institute, and has contributed papers on geology. Mr. Speight takes a general interest in foot ball and rowing, and is a member of the Canterbury College Football Club, and of the Canterbury Rowing Club.

Mr. Thomas Henry Jackson, B.A., Assistant Master at the Boys' High School, is by birth an Irishman, and was educated at the Irish Royal Schools and at the Yorkshire College of Science in Leeds. He afterwards became a student of Owens' College, Manchester, where he remained for five years, and graduated Bachelor of Arts at the London University in 1880. Mr. Jackson was for ten years a master at Mill Hill school, and for five years of the period was senior mathematical master, and had control of the modern side of the school. In 1890 he arrived in Wellington, per s.s. “Coptic,” and joined the staff of the Boys' High School at Christchurch in the same year.

The Girls' High School, one of the Educational Institutions under the control of the Board of Governors of Canterbury College, was established in 1877 in the building in Hereford Street, now occupied by the School of Art. The area of the original premises, being only a quarter of an acre. page 169 proved too small for the purposes, and a larger site was purchased during the same year, at the corner of Montreal and Armagh Streets, facing Cranmer Square. The building now occupied is a two-storey brick structure with stone facings, containing three class-rooms on the ground floor, and four on the next floor, in addition to which there is a building erected for conducting the cooking classes, and also for science classes; it is fitted up with gas stoves, scullery, and all needful appliances. The desk accommodation of the Girls' High School is equal to about 160, and the number on the roll is 133. The staff consists of Miss M. V. Gibson, M.A. (lady principal), Misses C. K. Henderson, B.A., F. Sheard, M.A., E. Low, M.A., K. Gresson, M.A., and L. Bing, B.A., besides visiting teachers who hold classes for drawing, painting, singing, French, German, cooking, dress-cutting, calisthenics, and swimming.

Miss Mary Victoria Gibson, M.A., Lady Principal of the Girls' High School, was born in Lyttelton, educated privately and at the Girls' High School. She studied at Canterbury College and graduated B.A. in 1887, and M.A., with honours in English and Latin, in the following year. After acting for a year as part-time assistant at the Girls' High School, she was engaged in private tuition for two years; for eleven years subsequently she was a teacher under the North Canterbury Education Board, and for the last eight of these she was headmistress at the East Christchurch school; a position she relinquished to accept her present appointment at the beginning of the second term of 1898.

Christ's College, Canterbury, is a corporation controlling an “Upper Department” for University students, and a Grammar School of the same character as the great English Public Schools. It consists of a Warden, a Sub-Warden (who must be in holy orders), and not more than twenty-five nor less than six Fellows, members of the Church of England, elected by co-optation. The Bishop of the diocese is, ex-officio, Warden. The present Sub-Warden is the Reverend Walter Harper, M.A., Oxford, Dean of the Cathedral. His only predecessor in the position was the Very Reverend the late Dean Jacobs. The formal foundation of the college was effected by the Church Property Trustees by a deed bearing date the 21st of May, 1855, but the Upper Department and the school are older by some years; in fact, as old as the province of Canterbury. The original scheme of the Canterbury Association included the establishment of both a grammar school and a college for more advanced students. Accordingly, in May, 1850, the Reverend Henry Jacobs, M.A., Oxford (who was afterward, for many years, Dean of Christchurch), was appointed to be Classical Professor of the College, with charge of it and also, at the outset, of the school. He arrived in December of that year in the “Sir George Seymour,” one of the “first four ships.” In an introduction to the “School List” of the Grammar School, from which the facts here given as to its early history are taken, he states that he “cannot distinctly remember having made any commencement of the Grammar School Department on board ship,” but an Old Boy, who was present at the Jubilee of 1900, stated that he clearly remembered receiving instruction during the voyage. In any case, a beginning of both departments was made with the opening of the year 1851, in two small rooms in the immigration barracks at Lyttelton. The young institution, however, soon followed the majority of the immigrants to Christchurch, where work was begun on the 26th of April, 1852, in a building which, till 1901, stood close to what is now St. Michael's Church, having been erected to serve as parsonage to this, the Mother Church. Finally, on the 26th of November, 1857, possession was taken of the schoolroom which had been built in the grounds granted to the College by the Superintendent under an ordinance passed on the 25th of October, 1855. These grounds consist of ten acres at the north-east of the Domain, bounded on the north by the river Avon, and having frontage to Antigua Street. Here, besides the library, which, with the adjacent offices, is used for diocesan as well as for college purposes, are the chapel and the buildings at present used exclusively by the Grammar School, namely, “Big School,” class-rooms, residences for masters, laboratory, armoury, music-room, reading-room, gymnasium, workshop, fives' court, and swimming bath. Of the chapel, gymnasium, and swimming bath especially, the college is with good reason proud. In front is a quadrangle, after the fashion of the colleges of Oxford and Cambridge; behind is the football field. Eight acres, also in the Domain, are rented for the sole use of the school, which has built the two convenient pavilions, as a cricket field. The Grammar School has at present slightly over 200 boys, of whom about sixty are boarders in the houses of the headmaster and two assistant masters, Messrs W. D. Andrews, B.A., and G. H. Merton, B.A. The present headmaster is Mr. C. F. Bourne, M.A.; the chaplain is the Rev. F. — Hare, M.A. There are besides ten ordinary assistant masters, with visiting masters for Music and Drawing, and instructors in Drill, Gymnastics, and Carpentry. The officers of the Cadet Corps are chosen from among the boys. Several valuable endowments provide a number of scholarships— open to competition and so arranged as to cover the whole time of school life—exhibitions, and special prizes. The most important is the Somes Endowment, arising from the gift of a Land Order in the early days by Mrs Maria Somes. From the Buller and Reay Fund exhibitions are granted to sons of clergymen ministering in the diocese. At the beginning of 1895 the Cathedral School, maintained by the Cathedral Chapter, and which, intended primarily for the education of the boys of the Cathedral choir, was also open to others, was merged in Christ's College, the choir boys becoming scholars of Christ's College, while the, use for school purposes of the house in which the Cathedral School had been carried on, belonging to the Chapter, was granted to the College. It is now occupied by the Lower School, for boys under the age of thirteen years, who are full members of the Christ's College Grammar School and share in its advantages, but are kept, so far as seems to be desirable, separate from the older boys. In like manner, among the houses for boarders, that at the Lower School (Mr Merton's) is reserved for boys under the same limit of age. The Upper Department, the present Principal of which is the Sub-Warden, is now carried on in “College House,” a building at the corner of Antigua and Cashel Streets. It supplies to candidates for holy orders and others, being matriculated students of the University of New Zealand, the advantages
Dutch, photo.Christ's College Quadrangle.

Dutch, photo.
Christ's College Quadrangle.

page 170 of college life, and of tuition in divinity, while for other subjects use is made of the lectures given at Canterbury College. There are separate studies and bedrooms for eleven students. These live together under the care of the Principal in a community which represents in the non-residential University of New Zealand the residential system of Oxford and Cambridge. There are six Theological Exhibitions of the value of £30 a year, and five Somes Student Scholarships of the value of £40 a, year. Should any of these not be filled up, the vacant rooms may be occupied by ordinary students. The jubilee of Christ's College was kept, with great rejoicing, in December, 1900.

Mr. Charles Frederick Bourne, M.A., Headmaster of Christ's College Grammar School, Christchurch, was born in 1850, entered Merchant Taylors' School, London, in 1859, and proceeded from it, with two Exhibitions, to St. John's College, Oxford, in 1868. There he won a Casberd Scholarship at his college and was placed in the first class in Classical Moderations in Michaelmas Term, 1870, and in the second class in Literis Humanioribus in Michaelmas Term, 1872, when he graduated B.A. At school he was for two years in the first Eleven, and both at school and at college was very successful as a long distance runner, winning, among other events, the following, each in two successive years— at school, the one-mile race for the Challenge Cup, and at college the one-mile and twomile races. Mr. Bourne joined the staff of the Manchester Grammar School, as a classical master at the beginning of 1874. He left it shortly before the end of 1881, on being elected to the headmastership of the Auckland College and Grammar School, New Zealand, by a commission, acting with the AgentGeneral, of which Dr Jowett, of Balliol College, was chairman, the other members being Dr Wilson, then headmaster of Clifton College, Dr. Blaikie, of Edinburgh, and Mr. Sidgwick, Fellow and Lecturer of Oriel College, Oxford. At Auckland, Mr. Bourne, now M.A. of his college, entered upon, his duties in January in 1882. He was president of the Secondary Schools Conference of New Zealand during the second year of its existence, when it met in Christchurch. Towards the end of 1892, while still headmaster of the Auckland College, he received an unsought offer of the headmastership of Christ's College Grammar School. Having accepted this, he took up his new office in May, 1893. Mr. Bourne married in 1880, Margaret, second daughter of Richard Roe, M.R.C.S., of Eccles, Lancashire, England, and has two sons and two daughters living.

Standish and Preece, photo.Mr. C. F. Bourne.

Standish and Preece, photo.
Mr. C. F. Bourne.

Rev. Francis Augustus Hare, M.A., Chaplain and Assistant Master at Christ's College Grammar School, was born in Germany in 1845, educated at St. Colomba's College in Dublin, and at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, graduated bachelor of arts in 1868, and took his M.A. degree in 1873. He was ordained deacon in Ely Cathedral in 1868, and priest in the following year, at Perth, West Australia, and was appointed headmaster of the Perth Collegiate School, in which he remained until 1872. Mr. Hare accompanied Sir James Fergusson to New Zealand as his private secretary, and on the completion of His Excellency's term of office he became locum tenens at the parish of Riccarton for two years, and joined the staff of Christ's College as chaplain and divinity teacher in 1877. Twelve years later he took up the duties of the headmastership until 1893, when he resigned, but has continued to perform his other duties.

Dr. William Perceval Evans, M.A., Ph.D., Mathematical and Science Master at Christ's College and Grammar School (and Lecturer in Physics at Canterbury College), was born in Melbourne and was educated at Nelson College, Canterbury College, and at the University of Geissen, Germany. Dr. Evans graduated B.A. in 1883, and M.A., with first class honours in mathematics and physics, in the following year. He gained his degree of Doctor of Philosophy in 1891, with first-class honours in chemistry, physics, and mineralogy, at the German university, Dr Evans returned to New Zealand in 1892, and has filled his present post at Christ's College since that time. Before visiting Europe in 1889, he was a master at Wellington College for four years. In January, 1901, he was appointed a Lecturer in Physics at Canterbury College.

Mr. William Douglas Andrews, B.A., Senior English Master, and Master in charge of one of the Boardinghouses at Christ's College Grammar School, was born at Leamington in the county of Warwick, England. He was educated at Nelson College and at Canterbury College, where he graduated in 1885, and became a master at Christ's College in 1886. Mr. Andrews married in 1890 a daughter of the late Rey. J. Raven, formerly of Christchurch.

Mr. Carl Harling, Teacher of Modern Languages at Christ's College Grammar School, hails from Hanover, Germany, and was educated at Bremen. He arrived in Nelson per ship “Magna Bona” in 1868, and was for over twelve years a teacher of modern languages at Nelson College. Mr. Harling was appointed to the position he now holds in 1889. He is also instructor of gymnastics, and is said to have been the first to introduce such instruction in the Nelson public schools. Mr. Harling has been very successful with the pupils of his college in Christchurch.

Mr. John Ulric Collins, B.A., Assistant Master and Assistant House Master at Christ's College, is the eldest son of Mr. A. S. Collins, formerly member of the House of Representatives for Nelson. He was born in 1868 at Nelson, and educated at Nelson College and Canterbury College, where he graduated bachelor of arts in 1894. He was assistant master at Wellington College from 1887 to 1891 inclusive, and was appointed to his present position at Christ's College in the beginning of 1892. As an athlete Mr. Collins has been proficient at football, cricket, and tennis, and was a member of the representative tennis team which visited Sydney in 1896. He represented Wellington for three years in interprovincial football matches, and represented Wellington and Canterbury in cricket.

Standish and Preece, photo.Mr. J. U. Collins.

Standish and Preece, photo.
Mr. J. U. Collins.

Mr. Arthur Edward Flower, M.A., B.Sc., Assistant Master at Christ's College and Grammar School, was born in Auckland in 1874, and was educated at Christ's College find at Canterbury College. He graduated B.A. in 1896, and M.A., with second-class honours in mathematics, in the following year, and gained his degree as B.Sc. in 1898. Mr. Flower commenced his career as a teacher in May, 1897, at Christ's College. page 171 He has attained considerable proficiency as a gymnast, and assists Mr. Harling in instructing the boys in this very necessary exercise.

Mr. Edward Jenkins, M.A., one of the Assistant Masters at Christ's College, is a son of the Rev. D. H. Jenkins, of Ohau, Wellington. He was born in Birmingham, England, in 1873, and was educated there at King Edward VL.'s School, and was also a classical scholar at Sidney-Sussex College, Cambridge, Mr. Jenkins took his B.A. degree, with classical honours, in 1895, and has since completed his M.A. degree. After four years' experience in England, he arrived in New Zealand in 1899, and was shortly afterwards appointed to his present position.

Mr. George Henry Merton, B.A., Headmaster of the Lower School, Christ's College, was born in 1855, at Stoke, England, He arrived in Canterbury in 1856 per ship “Egmont,” with his father, the late Mr. Charles Merton, who was for some years headmaster of the Government School and afterwards conducted a private school at Rangiora. The subject of this notice was educated at the Rangiora school, where he gained a Government scholarship in 1866 at Christ's College, and graduated B.A. in 1888. For some time he assisted his father in the conduct of the school, and in February, 1880, established a private school on his own account at St. Michael's church. On the establishment of the Cathedral School, in May, 1881, Mr. Merton became the headmaster, and continued as such until that school was merged in Christ's College early in 1895. For about seven years Mr. Merton was a member of the Cathedral choir. He was a lieutenant in Christ's College Rifles rom 1896 to 1901, and was appointed captain and adjutant of the North Canterbury Infantry Battalion in 1901. Mr. Merton was married in 1881 to the daughter of Mr. J. Trischler, of Faversham, and has one son and two daughters.

Mr. Clement Lester Wiggins, Assistant Master in the Lower School, Christ's College, was born in England in 1843, and educated at various schools. Arriving in Lyttelton in 1861, he became headmaster of the Akaroa public school in 1870, and served there three years. Subsequently, he conducted a private school in that place, and afterwards at Sumner till 1896, when he joined the staff of the college.

Mr. Alfred James Merton, Organist and Music-Master at Christ's College Grammar School, was born in Christchurch in 1857, and received his education at Mr. C. Merton's school, Rangiora, where he gained a Somes' and junior scholarship, and at Christ's College. Mr. Merton studied music under Messrs. Parker, Lund, and Tendall, and entered the service of the North Canterbury Board of Education as assistant master at Rangiora school, where he remained till 1877, when he became organist of St. Mary's Church, Timaru. After twelve months, during which he also taught music, Mr. Merton returned to Christchurch, and was shortly afterwards appointed organist and music-master at Christ's College, which he has filled for over twenty years. Mr. Merton is musical director for the Savage Club, and district grand organist of the District Grand Lodge of Freemasons, E.C. As a volunteer, he was Bugle-Major of the old Canterbury Battalion, and is now bandmaster of the Garrison Band. He also conducts the school teachers' musical examinations, under the Government syllabus, and is examiner to the Wellington Education Board in music and singing. Mr. Merton was married in 1882, to a daughter of the late Mr. John Grierson, of Christchurch, and has two sons and four daughters.

Standish and Preece, photo.Mr. A. J. Merton.

Standish and Preece, photo.
Mr. A. J. Merton.

Mr. William Guise Brittan, Bursar and Business Agent of Christ's College, was born in 1844 at Sherborne, Dorset, England. He is the son of Mr. W. G. Brittan, one of the founders of the Canterbury settlement, chairman of the Emigrants' Council, and afterwards Commissioner of Crown Lands until his death in 1876. Mr. Brittan arrived at Lyttelton with his father in 1850, per ship “Sir George Seymour,” one of the “first four ships,” and was educated at Christ's College. After spending about ten years in the country, he joined the staff of the college as business agent in 1875, and was appointed bursar in 1894. He is a member of the diocesan synod, and of the General Synod of New Zealand. Before joining the college he was for five years immigration officer at Christchurch.

Convent Of Mercy Collegiate High School for young ladies, 338 Colombo Street, Christchurch. This educational establishment was founded in 1894 by Bishop Grimes. The school is pleasantly situated, and is a large two-storey wooden structure containing twenty rooms, three of which are devoted to school purposes, thoroughly well equipped and furnished, one large room being the school-room and the others a special music-room and kindergarten school. The Sisters impart a thorough English education, together with instruction in special subjects. The other portions of the building form the residential quarters for the members of the community, which includes nine Sisters, each of whom has undergone a complete course of training for the work of teaching. Some of the Sisters are engaged in tuition at the parochial school, and also at the Papanui branch school. The young ladies who attend the convent are instructed in the theory and practice of music, so as to qualify for the Royal Academy of Music and Royal College of Music, and for the Trinity College examinations; also in drawing and painting, needle-work, and other necessary accomplishments. At present there are about forty pupils in addition to twelve children in the kindergarten. There is a large and convenient play-ground, where the scholars obtain recreation.