Top Placing in NZ Physics and Maths competition

By Emma Perry (star reporter) | Posted: Friday August 21, 2020

Congratulations to Paxton Hall who was placed second in NZ in the NZ Physics and Maths competition organised by the Universities of Auckland and Canterbury.

Hannah Liyanarachchi received a Special Commendation in the same competition. 

See the STAR newspaper article below.  3 September 2020  by Emma Perry. 

Numbers add up on pupil’s busy schedule 

Paxton Hall enjoys being busy.

The Logan Park High School pupil juggles his schoolwork with a range of extracurricular activities, including chess, the school’s jazz band, activism, scholarships and trying to learn more about his chosen subjects.

"I have never really tried not being busy," Paxton said.

The 16-year-old recently finished second in an online New Zealand physics and maths competition.

He was runner-up to his half-brother, Tobias Devereux, of Kavanagh College, who is also a high-achiever and featured in The Star last month.

The competition involved answering 30-40 multiple-choice questions based on advanced physics topics and some maths.

Paxton said the questions were university-level.

"I didn’t really understand anything but luckily they did provide you with all the formulae you needed to know, so with a bit of intuition you could work out where you needed to go.

"It was pretty fun."

The competition was more of a learning experience for him, something which he thrives on.

"Just in general I try to look out for opportunities as much as I can.

"I try to take part in as many extracurriculars as I can fit into my schedule."

Despite being told that he was doing too much, mostly by his parents, he wanted to take advantage of his age.

He had been told that the mid-to-late teens was the time in a person’s life they are able to learn the most.

"By learning as much as possible I think I’m just optimising my time."

While maths was his favourite subject, he had delved into other subjects in the past few years, such as English, history and music.

He won a nationwide award in writing last year, as well as regional awards for music and chess.

Logan Park High School co-principal Kristan Mouat said Paxton was self-motivated.

"He’s got so many talents across such a broad range of things.

"He’s genuinely excited and inspired by new learning opportunities."

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