During its early years, Iona College developed at an unforeseen pace. In 1916, the staff cottages were built and the swimming pool was opened. In 1917, St Oran’s was built as a separate hospital but, upon completion, was used for boarding accommodation such was the demand for places. By 1918 there were 125 boarders.
Miss Fraser retired in 1921. Her name lives on in one of the school’s four Houses and her generative wish for the school is contained in these words:
May Iona do its share in furnishing our beloved land with women whose bodies are free with the freedom of health, whose minds are free from all littleness, and whose souls are free with the fruits of the spirit against which there is no law.
Miss Fraser was succeeded by Miss J R Barr, from New Plymouth Girls’ High School, who convinced the College Council that Iona should become a registered secondary school. This became possible after the conversion of a classroom into a science laboratory.
Despite the manse upbringing and excellent academic record of Miss Barr’s successor, Miss Ann Drennan, her term as Headmistress was short and, at the end of 1924, Miss Irene Stollery was appointed as acting Principal and then Principal in 1926.