St. Andrew's has served the Jackson, Mississippi area for 70 years offering a college preparatory education, and has always stressed the physical, moral, and academic dimensions of a student's development.
The school's beginnings were modest yet full of inspiring vision. In 1947, the Vestry of St. Andrew's Church voted to use the Parish Hall to house a school program, which would embrace grades first through fourth. A charter was secured, and St. Andrew's Episcopal Day School opened to 45 students. Mrs. Adele Franks was the founding headmistress. Kindergarten and fifth and sixth grades were soon added, and as the numbers grew, so did the school's fine reputation.
Seventh and eighth grades were added by the mid-sixties, and in 1966, St. Andrew's moved to its 14-acre campus on Old Canton Road. Its new facility was described by a local newspaperman who attended the school's opening as being "an architectural and educational wonderland." Upper School grades were added year-by-year in the early 1970s, and the first class of seniors graduated in 1974. During the mid-seventies, African-American students along with minorities from a number of ethnicities and nationalities, attracted by the school's academic reputation and open hand of welcome, enrolled at St. Andrew's.
Long-range planning, which was undertaken at the end of the 1970s, indicated that St. Andrew's would soon outgrow its Old Canton Road campus. Hence, 74 acres of rolling pastureland along the Natchez Trace were purchased, and the successful $4 Million Fund Drive in 1983 made possible the start of new campus construction in October 1984. The North Campus, serving grades ninth through twelfth, opened in September 1985. At that time, a 36,000 square-foot classroom building and the Speer-Lyell Observatory were in place.
Opening in the fall of 1994 on the Ridgeland campus were classroom and laboratory buildings to accommodate the move of the Middle School, a library resource building, and a dining commons building. The Center for Performing Arts opened in 2003, and the McRae Science Center opened in 2011. The South Campus continues as home for pre-K3 through the fourth grade.
Students of all races, ethnicities, and religions attend St. Andrew's. The school belongs to the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and the Southern Association of Independent Schools (SAIS), and is affiliated with the state's public and parochial schools through the Mississippi High School Activities Association (MHSAA). Honors include recognition by the prestigious Cum Laude Society and an assessment by SACS that St. Andrew's provides "a quality education second to none in the state and the entire Southeast." In 2005, St. Andrew's was selected as a recipient of a grant from the Malone Family Foundation to provide an endowment for scholarships for gifted students with financial need. In total, the endowment campaign of 2004 enabled St. Andrew's to grow its endowment from less than $1 million to its current level today of almost $8 million in invested funds.
St. Andrew's is experiencing enormous success in its largest capital campaign in school history. Forward Saints encompasses additions and improvements on both campuses that benefit every student. The Early Childhood Center and Discovery Center opened on the South Campus in August 2016, and the Athletics and Recreation Center (The ARC) was dedicated in September 2017. Forward Saints is transforming the physical space of our campuses and providing the entire St. Andrew’s community with the room and the resources it needs to best live into the school’s mission for generations of students to come.