Home > Our School > School History

School History

Bishop William

Anglo-Chinese School (Junior) is one of the seven units in the ACS Family of Schools. The Anglo-Chinese School was founded on March 1, 1886 by Bishop William Fitzjames Oldham in a shop-house at 70 Amoy Street. Adopting a bilingual approach to education, the boys learnt English in the morning and Chinese in the afternoon. Although the school started with only 13 students, its high quality of education made it popular and respected in the local community. Thus, to cater to the rapidly increasing student population, the school moved, in 1887, to larger premises at Coleman Street. To solve staffing problems, the principal, Rev Nagle, encouraged the brighter students 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. 

ACS House at 70 Amoy Street

ACS itself was originally a “full school” but it was only in 1928 that the lower levels were separated and the Primary School established. With the continued growth of the school, there was a need for a second primary school and thus, ACS (J) was established at the Barker Road Campus in January 1951. Curiously, both primary schools at that point shared the same name – “Junior School” until 1957, when the two schools assumed their identifying names. From the onset, school revolved around curricular and extra-curricular activities, something that was common place in all the ACS schools. Even then, the school had students who went on to represent Singapore in swimming.  It is no surprise that till today, rugby and swimming remain niche areas of the school. ACS Junior is proud to have contributed to the making of Singapore’s first Olympic gold medal in swimming. 

ACS(J) - Cairnhill campus

In 1985, ACS(J) moved to the Cairnhill campus and remained there until 2008. In 2009, the school moved to its present premises at 16 Winstedt Road.

ACS at Winstedt Road

The success of ACS Junior 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 a cornerstone in the school’s vision, which aims to make “Every ACSian, a young gentleman of character, ready for the future, to lead and to serve”. This vision has the support of the Old Boys and 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.