In 1918 the Board of Christchurch Girls’ High School bought three and a half acres of land at Avonside. In the cottage on that site, two classes of forty students began in January 1919. Girls studied at Avonside for their first two years of high school and then went to the Armagh Street site.
In December 1927 Avonside Girls’ High School became a separate high school. The first Lady Principal was Miss K.M. Gresson M.A. She was an experienced teacher of French and had studied at the Sorbonne. In 1928 there were 93 girls. 1930 saw the school’s first sixth form class.
A number of students gained University scholarships in those early days. These successes marked the beginning of the school’s fine academic tradition.
A tradition of sporting excellence and innovation began early too. Tennis, swimming, life-saving, cricket and tramping were popular sports from the beginning.
Avonside today is an innovative modern school within a traditional framework.
Our history provides a sound foundation for an exciting future.
2012 marks a significant point in the Avonside story. It is the year of reestablishment following the damage of the February 2011 earthquake.
The changes forced on the school have resulted in purpose-built specialist rooms, safe, single-story construction and greatly-enhanced provision of computer technology.
The school is well-positioned to continue the role it has enjoyed for the past 85 years, of providing effective and relevant learning experiences, equipping students with the tools necessary to take their place in twenty-first century New Zealand.