St. Joseph's College, Hong Kong
Table of contents
Established in 1875, the school is the first Catholic boys' school in Hong Kong. It is a Lasallian institution. Together with a Kindergarten and a Primary School at 47 Wood Road, Wanchai, the St. Joseph's population now exceeds 4200.
The school excels in both academic and extra-curricular activities. Throughout its 130 years' of history the school contributed a lot to the society, with a lot of graduates becoming important social figures.
The north and west blocks of the school are declared monuments of Hong Kong.
The sponsoring body of the school is the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, known as the 'La Sallian Brothers', named after the founder of the Institute, St. John Baptist de La Salle.
The aim of the Institute is to give a human and Christian education to the young, especially the poor. The spirit of the Institute is of FAITH and ZEAL: to have faith in God and an ardent zeal to teach the children. This is also a mission shared by all La Sallian schools in Hong Kong.
All La Sallian schools are committed to helping young people to develop themselves fully as human persons, to learn to live as brothers and sisters in a world of justice.
The story of the College started from 1860, when a Portuguese commercial school, St. Saviour's College, was established on Pottinger Street. But after years of bad management the school had to close down. Father Timoleone Raimondi, who was the Bishop, convinced Rome to send the Lasallian Brothers to the British Colony. On the 7th November 1875, there landed in Hong Kong the six pioneers who formed the first Community of the Christian Brother Schools. Brothers Hidulphe Marie, Hidulphe de Jesus, Hebertus who were from the Boarding school of Marseilles; Brother Adrian Edmund, Aldolphus Marie from the Novitiate of London; Brother Isfrid from Paris. They renamed the school St. Joseph's College.
The Director, Brother Hidulphe Marie, had great experiences in teaching and organizing schools. After a few weeks the enrolment had doubled and it became evident that an extension to the present building must even then be contemplated. Mgr. Raimondi, in June, 1876 purchased for $14,000 a fine house situated at 9 Caine Road and the Brothers at once moved into it. It was called the Buxley Lodge. In 1879, the first class of Chinese students was admitted to school; however, most of the students then were Portuguese from Macao.
A piece of land in Glenealy below Robinson Road became home to St. Joseph's College in 1881, to cater for the needs of the fast-growing school. The original structure of the College till then was a two-storey building, but a third was added in 1898 for the accommodation of the boarders. Three years after completion of the building, the wings were added. For about 40 years, St. Joseph's College enjoyed fruitful years at Robinson Road.
During the years the school became outstanding in both academic and sports field under the leadering of the Brothers. The three higher classes prepared their students for the Oxford University Examinations, namely Senior, Junior and Preliminary, and it was quite usual to see St. Joseph's College heading the results list both in quantity and quality. The College also became a cradle for the success earned by many football and other sports clubs. The Hong Kong's First Scout Troup was established here in 1913.
On 13th February 1918, a 50-second earthquake struck the Colony, and the Robinson Road campus was severely damaged. Anxious to get a new and safe place for the education of the youth, Brother Aimar bought the Old Club Germania at 7 Kennedy Road on 3rd September. The Club was left unoccupied since the outbreak of WWI. Brother Aimar also set up a branch school on Chetham Road, Kowloon, which later became the La Salle College, Hong Kong.
The top-floor of the five-storied historical building was the Brothers' Quarters, with the Brothers served as teachers and new ones would join the family when there was necessity. The third floor was once a dormitory for students and boarders, while afterwards it served as the old "Old Hall". The second floor was the office and quarters of the secretary, the first floor located the general office and recreation room. The ground floor of this Victorian building was a library.
In order to accommodate more students, the North Block (Classroom Block) was erected in 1920 and was opened by Governor Sir Stubbs. The Chapel Block (Science Block) was completed in 1926, housing the Chapel, laboratories, and the Li Shek Pang Hall (Old Hall).
During the Japanese Occupation from 1941 to 1945, the College was used a clinical depot by the Japanese Royal Army. Some Brothers fled to Vietnam and became guests of the Dominicans and the Jesuits, while others were kept prisoners of war in concentration camp. The campus was kept in shape by a minor staff called Ah Yiu, who would also smuggle essentials into the camp for the Brothers.
After the War, the College continued to flourish. In 1962, Club Germania was demolished and a modern eight-storey building at 7 Kennedy Road, now known as the New Building, was erected. This was the time when Brother Brenden Dunne was Principal of St. Joseph's College. Governor Sir Robert Black and Superior General Brother Nicet Joseph officiate the Opening of the New Building.
The College is now one of the most prestigious secondary education institution in Hong Kong, providing Form 1–5 and Matriculation education to 1300 boys.
The mission of St. Joseph's College is to educate students in areas of intellectual, physical, social, moral and emotional development. This process will take place in an environment conductive to learning in the context of interaction between staff and students.
"LABORE ET VIRTUTE" — Work and Virtue — sums up the life of this great Saint. He was a workingman, a carpenter by trade and his virtue made him worthy to be the foster-father of Christ. This motto expresses the spirit of our school too. It is by hard work and virtue that a Josephian shall make a success of his life and so remain true to the best traditions of our College.
The school badge, though complex it may seem, bears the long and noble traditions of the College. Antique, elegant and symmetrical, the school badge possess such exquisiteness that reflects the outstanding qualities of both the school and its members.
All through our College a voice is resounding,
Promptly respond to your duty's clear call.
Harken you all for the trumpet is sounding,
Your Mater's proclaiming her watchword to all.
(Chorus) Forward, not flinch nor fear,
Ever with heart sincere,
Render with joy to your Mater her due;
All that is vile reject; Heaven will e'er protect,
Sons of St. Joseph's valiant and true.
Labour and Virtute your motto still bearing,
Forward with courage in ways that are just
True to your standard be doing and daring,
As faithful Josephians in Heaven you trust. (Chorus)
Onward and upward in life's earnest battle,
Joyously bearing the brunt of the fight,
Nobly forgiving for aught that may pain you,
And bravely defending the cause of the right. (Chorus)
Lift up your hearts for a Kingdom awaits you,
Honour and Virtue with courage defend;
Serve Him in life, who in death can reward you,
And vow to be faithful and true to the end. (Chorus)
The College is located at 7 Kennedy Road which is only five minutes walk from Central – the heart of Hong Kong – and our neighbours include St. Joseph's Church and Hong Kong Park. St. Joseph's Path, which joins Kennedy Road and Garden Road, runs along the east side of our College.
The College's architecture is an interesting combination of traditional European and modern styles. The Old Building, constructed in 1920, houses the Form 1 to 3 classrooms as well as the Form 4 & 5 art stream classrooms. The Chapel Block on the west side houses the Old Hall, Music Room, Science Laboratories, Lecture Room and School Chapel. These buildings were built in a Colonial style, reflecting European Classical influence. The most prominent features are the clock towers and the turret. Verandas are also one distinctive feature of local architecture in the days with no air conditioning.
The New Building, which replaced the original Club Germania on the site, houses the Form 4 & 5 science stream classrooms as well as all Form 6 & 7 classrooms. The Physics, Chemistry and Biology laboratories as well as the library and both junior and senior computer rooms are located in this building. The New Hall is also part of this structure. Our primary and kindergarten sections now occupy their own premises in Wood Road, Wan Chai.
Arts and Social Subjects Business Fundamentals Business Studies Chinese History Chinese Language Chinese Language and Culture Commerce Computer Applications Economics Economic and Public Affairs English Language French Geography History Principles of Accounts Religious Studies Travel and Tourism
Science Subjects Additional Mathematics Biology Chemistry Computer Literacy Computer Studies Integrated Science Mathematics Physics Pure Mathematics
Cultural Subjects Music Physical Education Putonghua
Brother Thomas Favier (Supervisor)
Mr. Leung Cheung Hing (Principal)
Brother Alphonsus Breen, Brother Patrick Tierney, Brother Lawrence Blake
83 staff members work at St. Joseph's College. 29 women and 54 men. The staff includes a principal, two vice principals, fifty classroom teachers, a careers mistress, a discipline master, a counselling mistress, a sports master, a librarian and two music teachers. In addition, there are three laboratory technicians, one secretary, five clerical personnel, a part-time social worker, twelve janitor staff and two IT technicians.
Official Students' Information Technology Support Team Parent – Teacher Association; Old Boys' Association; Students' Union; Value Education and Academic Promotion Team.
Religion Christian Union.
Academic Biology and Conservancy Association; Chinese Culture Society; English Society; French Club; Geography Society; History Society; Mathematics Society; Putonghua Club; Travel and Tourism Society; Economics, Commerce & Public Affairs Society.
Sports Aquatic Club; Athletic Club; Badminton Club; Basketball Club; Bowling Club; Football Club; Squash Club; Table Tennis Club; Tennis Club; Volleyball Society.
Cultural Aesthetic Society; Art Workshop; Astronomy Society; Board Card and Role-Playing Games Club; Bridge Club; Camera Club; Computer Society; Drama Club; Library Society; Literature Connection; Magic Society; Melodica Band; Movie Society; Music Society; Philatelic Society; School Orchestra; Science Society.
Service 1st Hong Kong Group Scout Troop; 1st Hong Kong Group Venture Scout Unit; Award for Young People; Interact Club; Red Cross Unit 17; Social Service Group; St. John Ambulance.
Publication Editorial Board; Web Publishing Board.
- Green & White (published annually from 1958)
- Green & White Gazette (published twice a year)
- Green & White Online
- Swimming Gala
- Dress Casual Day
- Opening Mass
- Annual Cross Country
- Green & White Walkathon
- Christmas Mass
- Green & White Ball
- Green & White Day
- Internal Talent Quest
- Sports Day
 130th Anniversary Grand Open Day: Starring Josephians
Green & White
The most used combination of colours in the College. Green represents the Irish Shamrock, while White represents the French Fleur-de-lis. The Brothers of the College mostly come from Ireland and France.