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All Saints was first to have pure science
Published on: Thursday, October 24, 2013

Kota Kinabalu: SM All Saints has transformed throughout the years going through ups and downs which enabled it to become the first school in Sabah to start pure science education for its students in 1958.

It was also the first school in the state to have a pure science laboratory, added Joseph Wong Yun Ming, chairman of the All Saints School Management Board at a press conference at SM All Saints in conjunction with its 110th anniversary.

"The pure science subjects were for Form Four and Form Five students.

In 1959, the Cambridge Local Examinations Committee granted the school 'A' status.

This gave it the right to conduct its own practical examination in science."

It was the first school in Sabah to attain this status, highlighted Wong.

"In 1962, Bridge class and Form six was introduced. In fact, All Saints was the first school to start the Form 6 (Arts class)."

Wong further explained that SM All Saints was built in April 1, 1903.

"It is one of the earliest schools in Kota Kinabalu which at that time, was called Jesselton."


Its humble beginnings started in a borrowed government building that served as an office.

It was officially declared open by Governor E. W. Birch on Dec 22, 1903 when he visited the school. It was named King Edward VII School, after the former British king.

According to our archive records, the school started off in a small government building near the Atkinson clock tower then moved to Karamunsing in front of the Palace Hotel, he added.

"In 1953, it moved to the present site here in Likas."

It started with only about 30 students, mostly Chinese boys under the administration of Chai Ah Soon. As the principal and class teacher, his main concern was undoubtedly on the academics.

The school created a milestone in having its first woman principal, Datin Lorna Mathews (2003-2011) who served the school in year 2003 when it celebrated its 100th year anniversary.

Wong said that she was a visionary woman who aspired to elevate the school to greater heights through emphasis on discipline and academic achievement.

Under her leadership, Datin Lorna had made changes in the administration and management of the school.


During her term of service, she upgraded several school facilities.

Among them were the renovation and expansion of administration office and the staff rooms.

Other than that, she also developed new facilities for the school such as the Sixth Form Block, the Centenary Workshop, the School Archive, the Conference Room, the school Chapel, the new Grand Stand, the covered walkway, the workstation, the installation of the closed-circuit television ((CCTV).

She had upgraded all of the students and teachers washrooms, the classrooms, the floor tiling and improved the school landscape.

In addition she had initiated the Sixth Form Graduation Ceremony and made the Prefects Installation Ceremony a special function on its own.

Tiong Ai Ping, the current principal is the second woman principal who started in year 2011.

She continued and improved on the excellent tradition of the school adding more positive changes to it.

As for academic achievements, All Saints was ranked as the third best secondary school in Sabah and 238 out of 2,098 secondary schools in Malaysia in year 2009.


It was also acknowledged and featured in the Premier Schools Stamps on Dec 16, 2008 by Pos Malaysia Berhad.

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