Miss Sophia Blackmore founded Methodist Girls’ School on 15 August 1887. Supported by the Women’s Foreign Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church in America, Miss Blackmore, an Australian missionary, came to Singapore with a mission – to provide girls an education.
The beginning was modest. In a shophouse in Short Street, she set up school for nine little girls whose fathers wanted them to be formally educated at a time when girls were discouraged from going to school. The fathers, all Tamil businessmen, donated money, furniture and the rent-free shophouse that became the Tamil Girls’ School, forerunner of Methodist Girls’ School. The school soon attracted so many other girls, all eager to learn, that in 1901 it had to relocate to Middle Road while a larger building was constructed in Short Street to house 150 pupils.
Ten years later, the first Senior class of four girls sat for and passed the Cambridge Examination. The enrolment at MGS increased steadily, and by 1925 the school had to move to Mount Sophia where it remained until 1992 when increasing numbers once again dictated another move, this time to Blackmore Drive.
Miss Sophia Blackmore
A hundred years after its founding, MGS sought greater autonomy from the Ministry of Education (MOE) to provide quality education for its girls; MOE responded with a counter-proposal for independence. Consequently, in January 1989 the Secondary school acquired independent status; thereafter the full school functioned in a single session, for the benefit of all. Independence, and the advantages that came with it, gave fresh impetus to the drive towards excellence.
Unless the LORD builds the house, they labour in vain who build it; Unless the LORD guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain. Psalm 127:1