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Every school has its story, and these are the stories of each Headmaster and the accomplishments under his leadership. Some were long-serving and others rather short-lived, but all had an impact on the operation and advancement of St. Andrew’s College. SAC is what it is today because of its great leaders.

List of 7 items.

  • George Bruce

    1899-1900 – George Bruce

    The Rev. Dr. George Bruce had the foresight to establish St. Andrew’s College in the former home of Sir David Macpherson at Chestnut Park, Toronto. During that first year, 56 students were enrolled with 13 of them as boarders. Due to illness, Rev. Dr. Bruce passed the reigns after only one year at the helm.
  • D. Bruce Macdonald

    1900-1935 – D. Bruce Macdonald

    D. Bruce Macdonald was the School’s longest-serving Headmaster, having assumed the mantle in 1900 and retiring in 1935 only to take over as chairman of the Board of Governors in 1938. During his tenure, the School outgrew Chestnut Park and, in 1905, moved to Rosedale, which accommodated 150 boarding students and 300 day boys. When the city needed a place to locate a temporary military hospital, the Rosedale students moved to Knox College. Then again, in 1926, the final move to Aurora happened. Much of the foundational piece of what St. Andrew’s is today is thanks to work done during Dr. Macdonald’s years of service. The first yearbook, The Review, was published (1901), the Old Boys Association was formed (1903), and the Ladies Guild, now called the Parents Guild, was established (1934). The Highland Cadet Corps was established in 1905, followed closely by the Pipes & Drums in 1915. The first Cadet Inspection was held on May 14, 1906. The School continued to expand, and by its 10th anniversary, students from Jamaica, the United States, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, China, and Bermuda were enrolled. In 1911, the School became a corporation under the control of a Board of Governors. Dr. Macdonald also navigated through the First World War when 600 Andreans went off to fight, with 104 Old Boys and two masters losing their lives. The move to Aurora was his most significant accomplishment. The Aurora campus opened with Dunlap Hall housing classrooms and administration, a swimming pool, and a gymnasium. Flavelle House and Memorial House were the two boarding houses, and the dining hall and infirmary were where Sifton House is now situated. The Malone Playing Fields on the lower part of campus were also present. Within five years of the move, the School built Macdonald House (1930), which consisted of classrooms, a dining room, and residences, followed closely by the consecration of Memorial Chapel (1931).
  • Kenneth G.B. Ketchum

    1935-1958 – Kenneth G.B. Ketchum

    Upon the retirement of Dr. Macdonald in 1935, the headship was assumed by Dr. Kenneth G.B. Ketchum, the School’s French teacher and former head of Memorial House. Under his leadership, housing was built for teachers, now known as Masters’ Row (or the Row). As well, the Campbell Houses, named in honour of C. Graham Campbell, a friend of Dr. Macdonald, were opened, providing two houses for faculty members (1940). A new housemaster’s residence was built at the northwest corner of Memorial House, as well as two new teachers’ houses at the south of the Upper Field (1954). The Second World War (1939-1945) took its toll on the Andrean community as 600 Old Boys served in the Armed Forces and 45 lost their lives. In 1942, during the war, Dr. Ketchum was appointed director of studies at the Royal Canadian Naval College in British Columbia and took a three-year leave of absence from his school duties. J. C. Garret served as Acting Headmaster during this time. The first issue of The Andrean was published (1956).
  • Joseph Robert Coulter

    1958-1974 – Joseph Robert Coulter

    Joseph Robert Coulter became the College’s fourth Headmaster. Tragically, two years after he took the reins, Dr. Ketchum passed away (1960). The School continued to grow and 1962 was a year of positive transition: The St. Andrew's College Foundation was incorporated under the laws of the Province of Ontario, Canada; the Lower School as a separate entity ceased and students were integrated into the same buildings; the Great Hall was opened in honour of the Macdonald Family and served as the dining hall for all students, and also contained staff residences, a music room, and a barber shop; and Fourth House was opened as the third Upper School boarding residence. That same year, a classroom wing, later named Coulter Hall in honour of Mr. Coulter, was completed; every teacher now had his own classroom. The new wing also contained the Kenneth Ketchum Auditorium and a rifle range and cadet stores on the basement level. On a sad note, it was also the year Dr. Macdonald passed away. Construction continued in the next decade, and McLaughlin Hall opened in 1971, dedicated to science and named in honour of a major donor, Colonel R. Samuel McLaughlin. Ramsey House, named in honour of Alan R. Ramsey, an Old Boy from the Class of 1908 and a member of the faculty, was established for Upper School day boys (1972). Mr. Coulter retired in 1974, the year St. Andrew’s celebrated its 75th anniversary.
  • Tom Hockin

    1974-1981 – Tom Hockin

    Tom Hockin was appointed as the School’s fifth head of school. During Dr. Hockin’s tenure, the Athletic Centre opened (1979). The original building included a double gymnasium, three squash courts, change rooms, and athletic administration offices.
  • Robert Bedard

    1981-1997 – Robert Bedard

    Robert Bedard was SAC’s sixth Headmaster. Laidlaw House came into existence in 1982 to honour Robertson Laidlaw, a faculty member from 1909 to 1960. Barbara Houlding was the first female member appointed to the Board of Governors (1983). Fourth House got a new name: Sifton, a tribute to the Sifton family’s many contributions to the College (1984). The MacPherson Hockey Tournament was held for the first time in 1984, named after Lloyd MacPherson, who was Assistant to the Headmaster from 1957 to 1982. “Project ’85” provided an addition to McLaughlin Hall for an art studio, computer science, and mathematics (1985). A six-plex apartment building for staff housing is completed, and New House was established (1988). An addition to the Athletic Centre in 1990 included three new squash courts, a half Olympic swimming pool to replace the one built in 1926, and classrooms. That same year, the Focus Festival of the Arts was introduced. The Ketchum Library was renamed in honour of Graham F. Towers ’13, the first Governor of the Bank of Canada (1993).
  • E.G. (Ted) Staunton

    1997-2009 – E.G. (Ted) Staunton

    Ted Staunton was appointed as SAC’s seventh Headmaster. Within a year, the Athletic Centre was re-named The Bedard Athletic Centre; major renovations were made to Macdonald House as well as to Dunlap Hall to provide modern, efficient space for the administration; the School adopted the mission statement, Dedicating ourselves to the development of the complete man, the well-rounded citizen; and New House was dedicated as Smith House to honour Geoffrey R. Smith, who taught at the School from 1964 to 1999. St. Andrew’s celebrated its centennial with a ceilidh gala at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. What was initially going to be a cosmetic clean-up evolved into an architectural and academic project and the Andrean community rallied behind the “Building Towers” library project. A new century dawned and with it came the 20-year Campus Master Plan, an ambitious endeavour launched in 2001. It created outdoor spaces linked to a network of paths; built a Middle School wing, Rogers Hall (named for Dem Rogers ’59), complete with a double gym; enclosed a courtyard to create a spacious atrium, now known as Staunton Gallery in honour of Ted Staunton; converted the gym in Dunlap Hall into a light-filled, three-storey art facility named after Alf Wirth ’59; and restored and renovated Ketchum Auditorium. SAC went wireless in 2003 when students and faculty started using laptops. The Cadets Corps celebrated 100 years in 2005, and the Ladies Guild (re-named the Parents Guild in 2009) commissioned a bronze “Andrew” statue, which was presented to the School at the 100th anniversary Cadet Inspection and which stands near Cole Hall. The Donald Davis Theatre, named after Donald Davis ’46, officially opened in 2008, the same year the McEwen Leadership program was created, named after Rob McEwen ’69.
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