Our Story

Chilton Saint James School strives to provide every student with opportunities so they can be the very best that they are capable of achieving. We aspire to develop a passion for learning for our students in a caring and friendly environment where they feel nurtured.

Chilton Saint James School is a remarkable school set up by a truly remarkable woman, Geraldine FitzGerald. A woman of vigour, talent and single-minded vision, she made sure that her pupils had a richness of experience they needed to thrive in this pioneering country.

The world has changed a lot since our foundation, but our approach remains the same. We do not offer a stifling education. Life at Chilton is a broad, rich and diverse set of stimulating experiences. We fuse the best in academic achievement with the best in creative and active physical expression. Our goal is to create that most elusive and valuable of commodities in today’s challenging world: creativity.

Inspiring creativity in every endeavour

Chilton Saint James School is a world-class private girls’ day school through years 1 to 13. The campus sits on Waterloo Road in Lower Hutt – a quick 15 minutes from downtown Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city.

We also operate a co-educational Preschool at our campus on Waterloo Road.

Established in 1918, Chilton is an Independent school, affiliated with the Anglican Church. We welcome students from all faiths and aim to teach respect for one another’s religious traditions.


Our Motto and Values


On St James’ Day 1926, Archdeacon Johnston preached to the School from Matthew 20:22: “Are ye able to drink of the cup I shall drink of, and to be baptised with the baptism I shall be baptised with? They said unto Him, We are able!”

After the service everyone seemed to feel the School had found a motto:  “Possumus – We are able”.

Shortly before her death in 1955, Principal and Founder Miss FitzGerald wrote: “Any school which adopts this motto is undertaking more than it knows and is destined to a harder testing than it ever thought of… Chilton Saint James School has already been severely tested in its faithfulness to this declaration and will undoubtedly be tested further. May the grit and courage of its children rise towards this unattainable standard of greatness.”

The Chilton motto aligns with Christian values which underpin the expectation of student behaviour and how they treat others.

What are the Chilton values?

  • Moral courage
  • Respect for self and others
  • Love
  • Compassion
  • Honesty
  • Integrity

“Possumus We are able”

Our Vision


Our campus is our haven, where our girls have the chance to be active in mind, body and spirit.

Our teachers are our catalysts, ready to instigate and nurture ideas into flame.

Our girls are our bright sparks, infused with the curiosity and creativity of the world around them, poised and ready for challenge and change.

A Chilton girl is an original thinker, a confident talker and a natural character. She is a girl with an active mind and body: poised ready for challenge and change.

Happy to be learning, learning to be happy.