At a special assembly on the last day of Term 2, 2014 the House System at Otago Girls’ High School was launched. Apart from a very short lived house system in operation for part of 1979 this appears to be the first time in the history of the school that houses have been established. After consultation with the students, staff and alumni it was decided that the houses would be named after ex-students. Siedeberg would have been an obvious choice but as we already have a building named after Emily Siedeberg this name was not considered. The final four names selected were:
Allan (Orange) after Flora Allan, Dux of Otago Girls’ High School in 1879 and Principal of the School from 1912-1921. Flora attended OGHS from 1876 to 1879.
Benjamin (Blue) after Ethel Benjamin, New Zealand’s first woman law graduate (1897). Ethel started at OGHS in 1883 when she was eight years old and was a pupil at the school until 1892.
Cruickshank (Red) after Dr Margaret Cruickshank, New Zealand’s first woman medical graduate to practise. Margaret was a pupil at the school from 1888 to 1891 and Dux in her final year.
Williams (Green) after Yvette Williams (now Corlett), the first New Zealand woman to win a gold Olympic medal. She won gold in the long jump at the Helsinki Olympics in 1952. Yvettte attended OGHS from 1942 to 1945.
All students and staff have been allocated to a house with sisters being placed in the same house, hopefully enabling future generations to continue House links.