St. George’s Colonial College was founded in 1850 by twenty-one Spanish Jesuits who had been exiled from Colombia, as part of a religious persecution, amidst a storm of protest against Roman Catholic priests. The College began its long history on 2 September 1850 in a rented house at 26 North Street, located on the southeast corner of North and Orange Streets. At its head was Father Emmanuel Gil, S.J., a distinguished scholar and former court preacher to the King of Spain. As Jamaica’s first secondary institution for classical and scientific education, the school started with 38 day students and 30 boarders teaching Latin, Greek, French, English, Rhetoric, History, Mathematics, Logic, Metaphysics, Ethics, Drawing and Calligraphy. After only two years, the Spanish Jesuits departed Jamaica to teach in Guatemala, turning St George’s over to the English Jesuits. The school moved to 5 Upper King Street and changed its name to the St. George’s Presbytery Secondary School.
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