Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Marymount Secondary School

Marymount Secondary School is a very prestigious secondary school in , Hong Kong Island, Hong Kong. The primary school arm is Marymount Primary School.


The School, originally known as Holy Spirit School, was founded by the Maryknoll Sisters, an American religious order, on 10 January 1927 in Hong Kong. Back then, the school was on in Central Mid-levels. There were only 8 classes of students sharing four tiny classrooms. In the 1930s, the school moved to a slightly larger building in Caine Road. There were seven classrooms, but conditions were still cramped by today’s standards. By 1941, the school was offering a complete course leading to matriculation, and so was one of only a small handful of schools at that time which prepared girls for university.

In 1941, invaded and occupied Hong Kong. The school was closed until 1948. When the school reopened, Hong Kong was facing a new challenge as many thousands of immigrants were pouring across the border to escape the civil war on the mainland. Marymount rose to this challenge by offering places to as many girls as it could.

As the school continued to expand, a new building with better facilities became necessary. In October 1957, the school moved to its present location on the wooded slopes at the top of Blue Pool Road, overlooking Happy Valley. At the same time, it was renamed Maryknoll Sisters’ School. Initially, the building housed both Secondary and Primary Sections, but in 1961 the Primary School was relocated to the premises at Tai Hang Road, directly above the secondary school. During the school year 1978-79, the Maryknoll Sisters handed over the sponsorship of the school to the Columban Sisters.

In September 1983, the name of the school was changed to Marymount. Throughout its history the school campus had also been home to a convent, with the nun’s dormitories housed on the fourth floor and the site of the library originally being a chapel. It was only in 1993 that the nuns vacated their premises in order to make more room for the ever-growing student population.

In 1991, Mrs. Nancy Wong became the school’s first Chinese principal, and the first principal who was not a member of a religious order. In 1996, the Columban Sisters initiated the transfer of the sponsorship of the school to the , the process of which was completed by September 1997. The CLC is an international Catholic lay community with a keen interest in education and commitment to the service of youth, and which receives spiritual guidance from the Jesuits of Wah Yan College, Hong Kong. The CLC has pledged to preserve the same school spirit, foster the traditions and continue to provide quality education at Marymount.

Mrs. Wong oversaw the school’s transition from being managed by the Columban sisters to being managed by the World Christian Life Community. The CLC is a Catholic lay community which works to support education and the needs of young people,

The Secondary School operated up to 29 classes with over 1000 students until 1998, offering arts, science and social disciplines up to Form 7. With the restructuring of the school, the total number of classes is at 26 by the 2003. The Primary School operates 24 classes and has about 900 students.

In 2003 Mrs. Wong retired after 36 years of devoted service to Marymount, and the school welcomed its current principal, Ms. Veronica Ma.

Over the years, many generations of girls have received an education at Marymount, and the Primary and Secondary School together now accommodate nearly 2000 students.


There are four houses to which students and teachers are assigned.

Jupiter - Red

Mercury - Yellow

Uranus - Orange

Venus - Blue

Each house is headed by a House Captain elected by the students. Every year, students compete in inter-house events, such as the annual Sports Day and Swimming Gala. These events aim to uphold the sense of belonging of all the students of Marymount Secondary School. This year , the house captains of the 4 houses are: Kimmy Lee , Sally Hui , Jennifer Wong , Melodie Leung .


The school shield was formerly adapted by the Maryknoll Sisters from the Dominican one, with 8 alternating black and white triangles divided in the middle by a cross marked red and blue. On top of the shield is a dove, representing the Holy Spirit. The motto of the school was written in Latin underneath, "Dominus Illuminatio Mea".

In 1983, when the school name was changed to Marymount Secondary School, the shield was re-adapted. The middle section was changed from the Dominican one to MSS, the initials for Marymount Secondary School and Maryknoll Sisters School, embracing the past and the present. The dove, representing the Holy Spirit still hovers above the school name, and the motto was translated into English "The Lord is my Light".

Curriculum and Achievements

Students use English as the medium of instruction for all subjects except Chinese Language, Chinese Literature, Putonghua and Chinese History. In forms one and two, a modular system is adopted in the Humanities in order to facilitate project-based learning and critical thinking. In senior forms, students prepare for the HKCEE and HKALE and select subjects from option blocks.

Student Council

Marymount has an elected Student Council which promotes student welfare and acts as a channel of communication between the school and the student body as well as organising a range of activities throughout the year. Students can take part in the Student Council as elected class representatives in the role of Spokesman or Councillor, or as the Executive Board's Chairlady, Vice-Chairlady, ECA Coordinator, Service Coordinator, Sports Coordinator, Secretary, Treasurer or Public Relations Officer. The Executive Board members are nominated by students, and elected by the students. The Spokesman and the Councillor of each class are elected by its own class members. This year , the officers of the Student Council are: Fiona So , Priya Gaur , Priscilla Au-young , Bonnie Wan , Elaine Wong , Rachel Wong , Stephanie Choi , Cherry Yeung .

Clubs and Teams

Academic Clubs-

Chinese Club,

Putonghua Club,

English Society,

House of Debate,

Mathematics Club,

Science Club,

History Club,

Geography Club,

French Club

Interest Clubs-

Astronomy Club,

Computer & Information Technology Club,

Film Appreciation Club,

Hong Kong Award for Young People ,

Japanese Culture Club,

Junior Police Call ,

Strategy Games Club,

Table-tennis Club

Visual & Performing Arts Clubs-

Chinese Drama Club,


Dance Club,

Drama Club,

String Orchestra,

Visual Arts Club,

Wind Band

Service Groups

School Service Groups

Campus TV Team

ECA Committee


MSS Messenger

Music Committee

Sports Committee

Student IT Team

Tuckshop Committee

Yearbook Committee

Community Service Groups

Community Youth Club

Girl Guides

Interact Club

Social Service

Pastoral Care Service Groups

Careers Service

Civic Education

Environmental Education


Health Education

School Teams



Cross Country


Odyssey of the Mind



Table Tennis



Summer Uniform

For Form I to V students, their summer school uniform is a blue or yellow A-line knee-length cotton dress. The dress, regardless of its colour, has a pocket on each side with a zipper in the front middle, white pointed collar, and short white sleeves. Students can choose which colour of uniform they wish to wear to school on their own choice. Short white socks and black shoes are mandatory.

For Forms VI and VII students, their summer uniform is a white short-sleeved blouse matched with a light blue, knee-length cotton skirt. They may wear pantyhose and low heeled black shoes.

Winter Uniform

The winter uniform for Forms I to V students is a long sleeves beige blouse or turtle-neck sweater worn with a woollen jumper on top. Students wear short darkbrown socks and black shoes. The students may wear a beige scarf with 2 brown stripes on each end.

Forms VI and VII students, the top is a beige blouse buttoned at the back with a dark brown coat, or a goldenrod turtle-neck sweater , worn with a rust-coloured woollen skirt. Students may wear low heeled black shoes, and transparent or dark brown pantyhose.


The summer cardigan is white with the school badge embroidered in blue on it. The winter cardigan is similar to the summer cardigan, but is in brown with the school badge embroidered in white on it.

Winter Jacket

The winter jacket comes in camel and beige. Camel and beige looks exactly the same other than the colour.

On the exterior of the jacket, there is a collar the school badge is sewed on the left. Each side has a pocket. Four buttons are on the front. These buttons bear the school shield on them. There are also two buttons on both sides of the sleeves, and two straps to go along with them. These buttons also has the school shield on them. The cuffs are adjustable.

On the interior of the jacket, the upper lining is made of flannel and the lower half has a padded lining. There is another pocket on the inner lining of the jacket.

Notable Alumni

*Carolyn Woo Dean of College of Business Administration, University of Notre Dame, USA

*Patricia Stewart Artist

*Deborah Simms Olympic Swimmer

*Carrie Yau Hong Kong Government Permanent Secretary for Health, Welfare and Food

*Emily Lau Hong Kong Legislative Council Member

*Anna Wu former President of the Hong Kong Equal Opportunities Commission

*Priscilla Chan- Cantopop Singer

*Sandy Lam - Cantopop Singer

*Catherine Bragg - United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs

*Lorraine Moore Artist

*Agnes Chan - Pop singer, television personality, professor

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