Curricular activities beyond the classroom

In keeping with our Policy on Curriculum, of addressing issues of personal, spiritual, academic, sporting, and cultural growth, the education at John Paul II High School extends well beyond the classroom. Our students are encouraged to participate in a wide range of activities and often we see our students developing life-long interests. Staff members and many parents willingly assist with a variety of sporting and cultural activities.


Outdoor education gives the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of our country, to meet challenges of living in less restricted surroundings, and to learn to live in a group dependent upon others.

  • Year 10 students participate in a camp to reinforce the skills of leadership and self-reliance at Boyle River
  • Years 12 & 13 students have the opportunity of following a course of study for Outdoor Education as a subject at Level 2 for NCEA
  • Various other curriculum-related field trips are organised e.g. industrial visits, biology studies, work-shadowing and visits to tertiary institutions in Christchurch
  • Years 9, 11, 12 & 13 students attend a Retreat once a year, led by a retreat team


The school provides a range of sporting opportunities. We have a gymnasium and outdoor court facilities. Our students have achieved excellent results over the years in many sporting codes. Sport is valued in the school and promoted strongly because of the important qualities of loyalty, self-discipline, teamwork, health and fitness, and leadership it engenders. While winning is certainly the aim, we try to emphasise participation, sound sportsmanship, and playing to the best of your ability.

Team sports and the development of co-operative effort are encouraged but we nevertheless take pride in the many achievements of students who play sport as West Coast representatives. Students are encouraged to play for school teams and are able to participate in athletics, basketball, cricket, netball, rugby, rugby league, soccer, volleyball, hockey, softball, and swimming. Some students play several codes for local teams. Where our numbers are small, students are provided with sporting opportunities by being part of our combined Greymouth High Schools team.

Winter and summer inter-school fixtures are held most years with other schools (e.g. Catholic Cathedral College, Mercy Cup, etc). We also take part in West Coast and Canterbury competitions. Some of our school teams, in recent times, have involved themselves in international sports competitions by traveling overseas to participate.

Cultural Activities

All students have the opportunity to participate in a variety of cultural activities. Our students have a proud record in public communication. We enter a number of public speaking and debating contests, the most prestigious being the annual Diocesan competition for the Bishop Lyons’ Shield.

The school has often set up an instrumental group, choir, and rock band to cultivate further our students’ musical talents. Tuition in a variety of instruments may be available. Participation in drama and cultural activities is also encouraged. Our Kapa Haka group leads the school in formal occasions and attends our local competitions.

There is an annual formal Ball for seniors in September and the Leavers’ Dinner is held in November.

Work Experience

Students can gain valuable work experience in our Work Experience programme or, for those students who have identified a desired career path, The West Coast Trades Academy and Gateway programme. These are available for students to learn work skills out of class and at the same time gain NCEA credits from practical standards in the workplace.

STAR funding also supports students seeking taster experiences in a range of vocations and we offer correspondence learning through Te Kura Pounamu (The Correspondence School) for those students with a particular need to study a subject which we are unable to offer.