History of The School
St Monica, mother of St Augustine, was the first African woman to be canonised as a saint. It is fitting therefore, that when the Sisters of the Order of the Holy Paraclete (OHP) came to Ghana from Whitby, North Yorkshire, to set up an educational institution for girls, they named it after her.
St Monica’s School in Cape Coast, the first of the seven institutions that the OHP set up, was founded in 1926, as an elementary school for girls. Four little boys were introduced as part of a pilot project, but a few years later the Sisters decided to educate girls only.
In 1935, the Sisters acquired a site on the outskirts of Mampong, in the Ashanti region, and founded another St Monica’s elementary school. A year later, St Monica’s Teacher Training College was opened to provide career opportunities for girls, especially those from the St Monica schools in Cape Coast and Mampong. Today, the Teacher Training College’s curriculum has been expanded to include specialist teacher training courses in Textile Design, Art, Business Studies, Science and Home Economics.
In 1937, Richard Aglionby, Bishop of Accra, gave the Sisters a site along the High Street in Accra to build another elementary school for girls, to complement a boys’ school further down the High Street. Both schools were named after their founder – Bishop Aglionby -Bishop’s Girls’ School and Bishop’s Boys’ School. Shortly after, St Monica’s Secondary School with a Sixth form was established on the Mampong campus. Initially they shared facilities with the Teacher Training College, but from 1946, they each had their own premises and Principals.
In 1948, Sr. Miriam, a trained nurse/midwife began some basic nursing training courses in Mampong and the surrounding villages. It was so successful that in 1954, St Margaret’s Maternity Hospital and Training School were built. They were also meant to provide careers in nursing and midwifery for alumni of the OHP schools and other young women in Ghana.
In 1974, the Sisters founded the Mampong Babies Home, to provide care and shelter for orphaned babies, many of whom were born at St Margaret’s. The Babies Home also run a Nursery Nurse Training course. In 1976, the Sisters wound up their activities in southern Ghana and moved to Bolgatanga in the Upper East region where they established a vocational school for young boys and girls.
Many families in Ghana have benefited from the excellent education and career opportunities offered by the OHP schools. We count among our alumni, the late Dr. J.W.S. De-Graft Johnson, vice-President of the 4th Republic of Ghana (one of the four young boys educated at St Monica’s Cape Coast), numerous doctors, nurses, teachers, accountants, civil servants, judges, lawyers, Cabinet Ministers, businesswomen, house-wives and many more in every strata of society in Ghana and abroad.
Wherever we may be found, the alumni of the St Monica schools are united under one name and motto: “Each for all and all for God”.