Denis Wood

A Change for St Paul’s

The journey of developing an institutional legacy contains historical changes which determine the course taken by that institution. As St Paul’s College now completes its latest change, we reflect on its history to appreciate the significance that these changes have made over the past nine years in determining the College’s future.

The Marist Brothers first moved to 183 Richmond Rd, establishing Scared Heart College in 1903. In 1955 Scared Heart College moved out to a newly developed site in Glenn Innes, leaving behind the buildings and infrastructure built up over 50 years. This became St Paul’s College. 

During St Paul’s College’s first 20 years, the Brothers and the College community undertook fund raising activities to complete a number of significant developments. These included new classroom blocks, the Chapel, sports fields, lower court area and the gym.

The Private Schools Integration Act 1975 saw St Paul’s College integrated into the state education system while retaining its special Catholic Character. This in essence saw the government manage the running costs of the College and the transition from Marist Brothers teaching and managing the College, to the lay teachers of today.  

In 1989 Boards of Trustees were established for all state and state integrated schools.

In 2013 the Proprietor requested Denis Wood, Mark Bowden (Old Boy) and Bruce Smith (Old Boy) to join the Board of Trustees and endeavour to raise the profile of the College. Denis Wood was appointed Chairman of the Board. 

Under Denis’s leadership a strategic plan was drawn up and implemented with support from outside educational expertise such as John Morris, retired Headmaster of Auckland Grammar.

The Marcellin Champagnat Building was designed, funded, built and opened in 2018.

The appointment of Kieran Fouhy as Headmaster ensured quality staff, delivering quality educational outcomes with strong family values infused into the young men attending St Paul’s College.

Today, we look at St Paul’s College with pride. It stands amongst the best secondary schools and with recently appointed Headmaster, Keith Simento and newly appointed Chair of the Board, Bernice Mene, the College is continuing the strong Catholic Marist education for young men.

The retiring Board Chair, Denis Wood, was instrumental in championing the many changes over the nine years of his tenure. The hallmark of his leadership has been been his courage, tenacity, consistency and generosity of time, with a never say no attitude. The St Paul’s College community owe Denis a debt of gratitude for his exceptional efforts in ensuring a course for the bright future of the College.

On behalf the St Paul’s College community, we thank you Denis for your nine years of dedication, hard work and commitment.  

Bruce Smith – Board Member