The Senior College of New Zealand opened in 1995 when Dawn Jones (former Principal of Diocesan School for Girls) and Sir John Graham (former Headmaster of Auckland Grammar School) decided to create a senior secondary school set in a central city location. Under the leadership of Dawn Jones, the College began small and yet in the first year, this academically focused school was ranked in the league tables in the top ten and the college has continued to gain excellent academic results.
Academic Colleges Group was formed as more schools were developed and Senior College of New Zealand – affectionately known as SCONZ, became ACG Senior College.
In 2003, a decision was made to adopt the Cambridge International Examinations and immediately the staff took this new qualification on board. In its most successful year, the college gained 34 Top in New Zealand and Top in the World Awards. With many students wishing to go overseas for tertiary study, CIE gives a clear pathway and ACG Senior College is proud that many students have gained places at prestigious universities like Oxford and Cambridge. Year on Year the results have been consistently excellent. Dawn Jones retired in 2004 leaving behind a real legacy of academic achievement.
With the appointment of a new principal in 2005, Kathy Parker looked at developing the culture of the College. Initially being a college which was purely academic, Kathy wished now to consider how education at Senior College could best serve the students of the future. This meant retaining the core values of academic excellence, but also adding the extras that developed the whole person – someone who would go into the world confidently and with sound values and focus. The Result is that after 10 years of purposeful development, the College has a programme which includes leadership, sport, the arts, community service, overseas trips and much more.
In 2013, it was decided that Senior College would adopt the International Baccalaureate programme with a mid-year intake. This meant that students who were focussed on studying in the northern hemisphere were able to complete their college studies in May in readiness to take up a place in an American, English, Asian or European university. This new venture was embraced wholeheartedly by the staff and on receiving an authorisation visit from IB, the team advised that it was the “best prepared school they had ever seen”.
With a Pre-IB and an IB Diploma class, Senior College is about to complete the first year of the Diploma Programme with students sitting their final examinations in May 2016.
We are proud to be a college that is constantly evolving in all aspects of the curriculum and extra-curricular activities. It is with pride that we are the only school in New Zealand offering the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme as well as the Cambridge International Examinations. This was our bid to ensure that students could choose the qualification that best suited them.
ACG Senior College students are incredibly proud to be part of a college where they are treated respectfully and valued for both their intellect and as individuals. The historic building where the school is located in the central city location is a real plus as students who have access to all that the city offers.