JAMAICA College was initially founded in 1789 by Charles Drax in St Ann. It was given the name Drax Free School, which was then changed to Jamaica Free School, then to Jamaica High School.
In February 1883, the school was relocated to Hope Road, St Andrew, and reopened in its new location in July 1885. In 1902, the school was combined with University College and given the name Jamaica College, as which it is still known.
The campus consists of many historic buildings, including the Simms Hall, which was built in 1885; the Assembly Hall in 1913; the Scotland Building in 1889; and the Chapel in 1924. Each building features historic architectural details such as the Gothic and Georgian features of the Simms Hall, which is the first noted building on the campus.
The current school population consists of a number of boys from various communities in comparison to the initial student body which primarily consisted of boys from affluent families and heritage. Over the years, they have maintained a rich tradition in both academic and athletic fields.
Its history continues to be written by its present students who respond to its motto: Fervet Opus in Campis. That being said, they boast an alumni which includes former prime ministers Michael Manley, Bruce Golding and Norman Washington Manley, who is the former chief minister and premier of Jamaica and founder of the People's National Party.
In 2011, the school was awarded the most innovative high school in Jamaica because of their many achievements and special education programmes that have recently been implemented. In 2011, a Memorandum of Understanding that has been signed between Jamaica College and the Caribbean Maritime Institute will enable students at JC to pursue a range of maritime career choices.
Accordingly, in celebrating Jamaica, we commemorate the significance that Jamaica College has played in the past and present, with continued exceptional performances to expect in the future.