A warm welcome to those intending to board at our school.
School House caters for 105 boys, and is located next door to the school grounds.
The school has purchased a property in nearby Lloyd Avenue with the intention of opening it as a girls’ hostel. The school will keep the community updated with progress on this development.
Our boarding hostels strive to provide a safe emotional and physical environment that supports students in their day-to-day life at Mount Albert Grammar School. We aim to help each boy and girl maximise their opportunities for leadership and participation, and realise their potential in personal growth.
Each student is supported in their academic, service, spiritual and sporting areas by the MAGS Way values that promote excellence, respect, integrity and personal responsibility.
Mount Albert Grammar School has a rich history in boarding. The school opened as a boys-only school in 1922 under Headmaster FW Gamble, and in his first annual report he noted that “frequent inquiries for boarding accommodation emphasise one of Auckland’s greatest liabilities – possessing no institution to receive children of outlying districts who have earned and desire the right to be taught in a Grammar School”. From the beginning, Gamble, who had been a Resident Master elsewhere, wanted a boarding house.
The Auckland Grammar School Board of Governors agreed and in 1926 brought a large house at 807 New North Road from the Child Welfare Department. It had been built 43 years earlier as a gentleman’s resident on more than six acres of land, running the length of Burch Street through to Asquith Avenue and occupying half the block. After some refurbishment it opened in 1927 as the Mount Albert Grammar School Hostel with 22 boys, HL Towers as Housemaster and T. Scott as his assistant. The following years the numbers almost doubled; hardly surprising since 44 boys were boarding privately.
Gamble did not like the word ‘Hostel’ and wrote to the Board petitioning a change of name to School House. The board concurred. Over the years the large grounds provided tennis courts, a cricket pitch, vegetable gardens, grazing for cattle from the School Farm and adventures aplenty as well as a less-than-voluntary work site.
The original School House closed in 1970. The new School House, built on the school’s lower hockey field, was up and running in 1971, six years before the Golden Jubilee.
At the turn of the new century, and as the 75th Jubilee neared, School House was remarketed as Towers Hall, a tribute to the legendary first Housemaster. In 2009 the Board of Trustees resolved to change the name back to its original moniker, School House.
Girls began attending MAGS in 2000, and the Board of Trustees was aware of the need to provide an equal opportunity for girls to board close to the school so they too could benefit from a MAGS education. In 2016 a facility became available in nearby Lloyd Avenue, a safe and beautiful residential street five minutes walk from the school. The school was successful in purchasing the property but plans to make it suitable for a girls’ boarding hostel have been put on hold.
In the meantime, it will converted to serve as teaching staff accommodation.
Mount Albert Grammar School’s boarding facilities are part of Mount Albert Grammar School, and ultimately accountable to the Mount Albert Grammar School Headmaster and Board of Trustees.
The Board of Trustees has delegated to the Directors of Boarding at School House and the Girls Hostel the authority to manage and operate the facilities on a day-to-day basis. The Headmaster has been delegated the Board’s authority to act as employer, and to make all-important decisions regarding the Hostel, the staff, and the students living at School House. This includes the power to suspend and ultimately exclude students from the School House in appropriate circumstances.
As such, all of the policies, where applicable, outlined in the Mount Albert Grammar School Policy Manual and all of the procedures, where applicable, outlined in the Mount Albert Grammar School Quality Assurance Manual, apply to the residents and staff of School House.