School History

School History

Selection of the School Site
  • Back in 1965, the Education Department contacted Bishop Ronald O. Hall and proposed the establishment of a new girls' vocational school in Kwun Tong to be run by the Hong Kong Sheng Kung Hui. Bishop Ronald O. Hall later liased with our first Principal, Rev. Joyce M. Bennett (to be referred to as Ms Bennett in the following paragraphs) to discuss plans for establishing the new school. Ms Bennett first visited the school site at Ngok Yue Shan (formerly known as Crocodile Hill) in late 1965. The road leading up to the peak was not completed. There were no buildings in the neighbourhood vicinity, and Kung Lok Road at the foot of the hill was under construction at the time. As the government initially requested an establishment of 30 classes in the new school, Ms Bennett then planned to set up four different disciplines (Arts, Science, Commerce and Technical) to meet the government's request for the provision of vocational education for girls. In 1966, the Church was informed that the area of the school site could accommodate 30 classes, but more classes also meant higher construction costs. The Church at one point even considered giving up the school site in favour of a smaller site. In the end, however, those involved considered the school site as worth keeping. Eventually, an agreement was reached with the Government in 1967 and additional funds were granted for establishing the school.

The Choice of the School Name
  • Bishop Ronald O. Hall proposed to name the school as ‘St Anne's’ (聖安妮). However, the Chinese members of the organizing committee thought the name was not suitable for the school when translated into Chinese. After a long search, Ms Bennett found the name ‘St Catharine's’ in a Dictionary. St Catharine grew up in Alexandria, Egypt and her birthday, 25th November, was considered a suitable day for school celebration. Since St Catharine is the Saint in command of women scholars, lawyers and wheel makers, her name was considered fitting for a grammar and vocational school. After a year-long discussion, the vicar of St Barnabas’ Church, Rev. Baldwin Lau suggested the use of the words ‘傑靈’as the Chinese name of the school. The term ‘傑靈’ originates from the old saying ‘人傑地靈’ , meaning ‘Outstanding Man Makes Sacred Land’. The two Chinese characters ‘傑靈’ thus carry the meaning that this beautiful place, that is, our school will produce virtuous and distinguished graduates to serve the community.

Origin of the Class Names
  • Our school set up five Form One classes in September 1968. Ms Bennett considered it unwise to name the five classes with 'A' to 'E' since it may lead to the misconception that the classes are ranked according to the quality of the students. Eventually, Ms Bennett picked five women from The New Testament and their names were adopted:

    Mary: A woman who was attentive to Jesus' teaching
    Martha: A busy cook
    Dorcas: A tailor
    Priscilla: A tent-maker
    Phoebe: A deaconess

    These women were considered good role models for our girls. During the school's tenth anniversary (1977 to 1978), two floating classes were formed and these were named Naomi and Ruth respectively. Naomi returned from Gentile land and Ruth was a Gentile. They were warmly received by the Hebrews after joining their community, so the two names fitted the new classes perfectly. The names mentioned above are also used by students when forming different houses in group activities. Today, we still name our classes Mary, Martha, Dorcas, Priscilla and Phoebe .

School Opening
  • Our school already had five Form One classes when school began on 1st September 1968. Five disciplines were taught, and students could progress to Form Five and sit for the Hong Kong Certificate of Education Examination. The five disciplines were Arts, Science, Commerce, Technical and Vocational Training. The school site at Ngok Yue Shan was still largely a piece of vacant land when our school first started running. Even after a few months, there was nothing but a banner saying that the campus blueprint was designed by Wong & Tung & Assoc. Architects & Engineers. It was not until the end of December that construction of the campus started. On Christmas Day of 1968, the first batch of workers set up the school boundary with wooden nails and ropes, and the total area of the school was finally shown. On 22nd March 1969, Sir Jack Cater was invited to our school to lay the foundation stone. Our school moved into the new campus in September 1969. On 9th March 1970, Sir David Trench, the Governor of Hong Kong, arrived at our school in a helicopter and officiated at the opening ceremony of the school.

School Badge
  • The Red Background: The blood of the martyrs which is the seed of the Church.

    The Motto of the School: Brave, Gentle, Sincere

    The Nestorian Cross: The Cross surmounting a lotus which is a symbol of the pure flower growing in the evil of filth and mud, proclaims the victory of Christ's death over the evil and sin of the world.

    The Catharine Wheel in Gold: The torture our saint suffered.

School Hymn

Address : 26 Hong Lee Road, Kwun Tong
Tel : 2345 6481
Fax : 2790 2381