Boarding at Waitaki House

Waitaki House is situated on the grounds of Waitaki Girls’ High School in central Oamaru.

Waitaki House culture is based on family values and being inclusive to all. We believe relationships are built on trust, good communication, and safety. Each girl’s safety is at our centre, with trust being built through good communication with the girls, especially around what activities they do, as well as pick up and drop off times. Underpinning this is the school values of Responsibility, Resilience, and Respect, and our goal of growing strong women for the future.

Positive features of the hostel include supportive relationships between the hostel and the school, regular surveying of students and valuing their input, and good levels of pastoral care. The close proximity of the hostel to the school provides easy access to WGHS facilities. The hostel is responsive in supporting students who have extensive sporting, curriculum and performance commitments. The hostel is well managed by an experienced manager. The hostel staff focus on the provision of a safe and supportive living and learning environment for the boarders.”

ERO Report, 2019

At Waitaki House, we provide the structure and flexibility that is required for each girl to reach their potential. The Girls lead busy lives, and this is especially true as they become seniors and leaders within the school and Waitaki House.

We have supervised prep (Homework) from Monday to Thursday for each year level. We enjoy having teachers come into Waitaki House for tutoring. We also arrange extra tutoring as required, whether from a peer or a teacher.

Girls live in:

Each girl is encouraged to make her room her own space with posters, plants, and photos. Waitaki House has modern facilities and dorms have their own common rooms. The common rooms are equipped with a smart TV and their own kitchenettes, which include microwaves and hot drink facilities. The hostel provides access to wireless internet, as well as computers linked to the school internet.


Dining at Waitaki House isn’t just about the food; Dinner time is a time for both staff and students of Waitaki House to come together. This makes it a special part of our day, where we get the chance to have a good catch up. Girls sit at designated tables from Monday to Thursday, with the tables involving a mixture of different year levels. This enables the girls to develop broader friendships and also helps to develop greater support throughout the House.

Mealtimes are flexible, as we understand extra-curricular commitments can easily get in the way of schedules.


Weekends at Waitaki House are just like weekends at home. The girls are free to sleep in and have breakfast in their PJs whenever they are ready. They have the chance to participate in sports, cultural actives, or just head into town.

We organise fun activities on the weekend and plan one major activity per term. These include events such as boating at the Waitaki Lakes (family day); a Dunedin trip for shopping and activities; a trip to Tekapo for ice skating, snow tubing, and hot pools; and the opportunity to go snow skiing. We also develop interschool community, with the girls participating in activities with Waitaki Boys’ throughout the year.


  • The hostel manager of Waitaki House, Tina Souness, is involved in all aspects of life at Waitaki House, from waking girls in the morning to eating tea with them at night. She enjoys helping girls to reach their potential, as well as joining in with activities and having fun with the girls.
  • Hostel supervisors play a key role at Waitaki House working closely with the girls, supporting and guiding them in their daily lives.
  • Live-in staff supervise the girls during the weekends. They help girls with transport to and from sport and weekend activities, and also run activities for the girls to keep them engaged and enjoying hostel life.
  • We have both full and part-time catering staff. Led by Zelie Murray these amazing staff are responsible for preparing delicious and nutritious food for Waitaki House, while also providing enough choices to keep everyone satisfied. They also run the school canteen, the free healthy food school lunch programme and do catering for the school.


We invite you to come and have a look at our fantastic facilities.

Please contact our Hostel Manager, Tina Souness, using one of the methods below. We look forward to hearing from you.

Phone: Supervisors – 022 093 5157 or Overnight – 027 200 4494

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