Home > Our School > School History

School History

Anglo-Chinese School (Junior) is one of the seven units in the ACS Family of Schools. The Anglo-Chinese School has 123 years of history, which began with the vision and passion of one man, an English surveyor-turned-missionary, Bishop William Fitzjames Oldham. At that time, little was offered by way of education in the city-port and he wanted to provide an education for the many boys he saw wandering aimlessly in the streets. 

On 1 March 1886, he founded Anglo-Chinese School in a shophouse at 70, Amoy Street. Adapting a bilingual approach to education, the boys learnt English in the morning and Chinese in the afternoon. Although the school started with only 13 pupils, its high quality of education made it popular and respectable in the local community. Thus, to cater to the needs of the rapidly increasing pupil population, the school moved to the larger premises on Coleman Street. During the period of the 1st World War (1914-1920), the school was led by Rev J.S. Nagle. To benefit the pupils further, Rev Nagle introduced regular chapel services and physical education; to solve staffing problems, Rev Nagle encouraged the brighter pupils to stay on in the school to work as teachers. This form of continuity soon developed loyalty amongst the old students. In the process, the school identity and spirit grew stronger.

With the continued growth of the school, there was a need for a second primary school and thus, ACS (J) came into being. The school was established at the Barker Road Campus in 1950 and remained there until 1985, when it moved to the Cairnhill campus. The school remained there until 2008. 2009 marked another milestone in the growth of the school as it moved to a bigger and better-equipped campus at 16 Winstedt Road.

The success of ACS (J) is largely due to the preservation by subsequent principals of the foresight and vision of our founder. The pursuit of Academic excellence, Character development and Service based on Christian values still remains as a cornerstone in the school’s vision which aims to make “Every ACSian, a young gentleman of character, ready for the future”. This vision has the support of the Old Boys and the parents. Together, they fuel an ACS spirit that bonds every ACSian together in a closely knit family.

Today the family of 7 ACS units is held together by that same spirit that holds true to our founder’s vision and passion in providing a quality holistic education grounded in Christian values and principles.