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Anderson School, Ipoh - The History And School Badge
The badge bears the insignia of SMK Anderson Ipoh. Right at the top, the words “ANDERSON SCHOOL IPOH PERAK” are written. Directly below that is an image of a crown and one of a tiger. At the bottom of the badge, the school’s motto, “TO STRIVE, TO SEEK, TO FIND AND NOT TO YIELD”, is emblazoned.
Anderson School, Ipoh, named after the then High Commissioner of the Malay States, Sir John Anderson, was formally opened on the 6th of February 1909. Due to the lack of availability of places at the Kuala Kangsar Malay College and reluctance on the parts of Malay parents to send their children to missionary schools in Ipoh, such as the Anglo-Chinese School, the $45,000 Anderson School building on Douglas Road was born. Initially, the impressive building designed by A R Hubback, had ten classrooms and a large hall on the first floor. The school’s first headmaster was Lt Col J H Tyte, previously of Victoria Institution, Kuala Lumpur, who naturally brought with him a member of staff and 5 former pupils of his old school.
The school started with 52 boys and 6 classes. From its early days, the school regarded sports with significance. Lt Col Tyte, who had represented Selangor in both football and hockey, introduced the two sports here. In 1917, the headmaster then, Mr R E Smith, introduced the House System in games and the School Colours (Blue & White). Apart from football and hockey, horse-riding and cricket were also introduced in the school’s early days.
Up until 1921, the highest qualification at the school was gained at Year 7 (equivalent to the present day Form 3). That year, Cambridge Certificate classes were added. Also in 1921 a hostel for Malay boys was opened in Ipoh to enable scholarship boys from rural areas to attend, but this was scarcely sufficient as the demand for an English education surged among the Malays during the 1920s.
Then in 1924, under the leadership of Mr C F C Ayre, four pupils were coached for the London Matriculation Examination. They all passed and proceeded to read Law in England. The school motto, adopted in 1931, “To Strive, to Seek, to Find and not to Yield” is credited to Mr. Ayre while the first edition of the annual school magazine was published in 1935, under his watchful eye as well.
The current building that houses the school only began being used in 1931. However the Primary to Standard Two classes that had been held on separate premises on Maxwell Road since 1929, continued to be run independently until they were absorbed into Anderson School in 1937.
After a hiatus of 44 months during the Japanese Occupation, the school reopened its doors on the 24th of September 1945. The school continued to thrive, setting a new record in 1952 with 37 out of 74 of their candidates achieving First-Classes in the Cambridge School Certificate Examination. By 1956 the new school was the largest academic institution in Kinta , when it recorded an enrolment of 2,144 students. The school also provided free places for Malay boys who wished to continue their education after passing the fourth standard in a vernacular school.
By its Golden Jubilee celebration in 1959, the school had expanded to include a science block, 5 labs with 2 of them specifically catering to the teaching of Physics and Life sciences, a drawing room, a new library, a larger athletics track and sixth-form classes in both the science and humanities streams. The secondary and primary schools were separated in 1958. The primary school became known as Sekolah Rendah Cator Avenue or Cator Avenue Primary School.
With the election of Mr Tan Seng Chye to replace Mr M Ogle as principal in 1965, the duty of running the school was handed over to local people. The school continued to expand both physically and in the size of its student population. Between 1969 and 1979 the hall was upgraded, a new canteen was built, as was a new dormitory. Between 1979 and 1999 3 new blocks were acquired exclusively for the six-formers, a computer room was added and a safe room was constructed for the storage of question papers for public examinations held by the state education department. The old principal’s quarters were converted into an educational museum in 1999.
One of the names that seems to crop up regularly when memories of the school are discussed is the mathematics schoolmaster, Ung Khek Cheow, who taught for 33 years at Anderson School. He is remembered as a pillar of voluntarism in Ipoh, supporting the old Andersonians' Club and the Rotary Club library project amongst others.
Further information about the school can be found at http://www.andersonian.net
We've also been given the following link (thanks to Meng Lean and SK):
To read more about the school at Douglas Road, Ipoh, click here.
To read more about the school at Maxwell Road, Ipoh, click here.
To read more about the first school hostel, click here.
To read more about the book ‘Images 1909 to 2009 - The Centennial Anniversary Anderson School', click here.
To read more about Colonel J H Tyte, click here.
To read more about the Ipoh Trade School, click here.
To read more about the book ‘Journey of the Andersonians - Who's Who ’, click here.
To read more about The Malay College, Kuala Kangsar, click here.
To read more about Anglo-Chinese School, Ipoh, click here.