International Students

International Experience

Rathkeale College has a long tradition of hosting International Students. The College prides itself on how it integrates these young men into the New Zealand way of life and its education system. This is a small school where class sizes are kept small so that individual students are well-known and cared for by the teachers, boarding house masters and matrons. Overall care is provided by the Director of International Students who keeps in close contact with parents and assists with insurance, flights and other day to day issues.

Mixing with the Locals

The International students stay in one of the three Boarding Houses on the school site. This gives them the opportunity to meet and mingle with the local boys and assists in increasing their proficiency in the English language. Boarding provides a wonderful first step away from home towards the independence and self-discipline required to succeed at University. For many students, opting to become more proficient in the English language in an English speaking environment, while learning the social skills necessary to succeed away from home, is the right choice to make at an early stage in their education. Rathkeale College provides this opportunity for its international students. International Students attend the Senior College on the Rathkeale site in Years 12 and 13.

International Students in Boarding

Rathkeale College’s boarders are split between the three boarding houses. Rugby House is home to all of our Year 9 boarders who get a program tailored to introduce them into their new school and for many, boarding for the first time. The boys will be split between Cranleigh and Repton House which are both home to boys from Year 10 to 13.In Rugby House there will be two dorms of year nine boys. A dorm is a corridor that contains areas with two beds called cubes. There are around twenty beds in a dorm. All of the boys in a dorm are the same year level expect for one or two senior boys who are there to provide guidance and support. Senior boys will have cubes with doors.

Rathkeale College will endeavour to keep boys from the same country in different dorms or houses. International boys do not share cubes with other international students.This means that if we have two boys from the same country in Year 10 one will go to Repton House and the other to Cranleigh.

Yachiyo Shoin College

In addition to accommodating a number of International Students, Rathkeale also values it relationship with Yachiyo Shoin College from Japan. Regular visits allow for the further integration of students from overseas with their Rathkeale counterparts.

Why Rathkeale College?

Why New Zealand?

New Zealand provides International students with a clean, beautiful, safe and friendly place to study. Its NCEA courses provide a broad perspective on most subjects and is recognised by universities both in New Zealand and abroad. To find out more about the New Zealand syllabus please visit the following web site:


Rathkeale College’s greatest facility is the 66 hectares of grounds on which it is located. So impressive is the forest and playing fields that rather than take our students to paintball they come to us! On-site there is a swimming pool, gymnasium and weights room, state of the art music and art suites, a squash court, library and computer suites. The 750 seat auditorium is one of the best in the region and in the past has attracted some very big names to Rathkeale including the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.


Sport and cultural activities play a major part in Rathkeale’s curriculum. All students participate in singing and have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument. Sport is compulsory and the boys must participate in both a winter and summer activity. In addition to weekend sport activities which usually take the form of competition games, the full boarders also have the opportunity to participate in weekend activities. Recently these have included rafting, caving, camping, karts and paintball.

International students stay with host families for Exeat weekends when they are required to leave the Boarding House twice each term. During the holidays they can go to English language schools with other International Students or even go on one of the Discover New Zealand trips that are organised by companies in New Zealand specifically for students from overseas.

English support

Many of the International Students choose to take part in the ESOL programme which delivers a curriculum specifically for these students and will allow them to achieve the English qualifications required to attend University in New Zealand, Australia or elsewhere. The programme offered gives students a wide exposure to the English language in spoken and written forms and in comprehension. This gives students a much broader understanding than some of the alternative courses that are offered.


Glenn McIntoshGlen McIntosh

Director of Boarding and International Students
Email |
Phone | +64 27 274 6686


LizLiz Cheetham

ESOL coordinator
Email |
Phone | +64 6 370 4595