Queen's Royal College

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Queen's Royal College
TnT PoS M7-1 Queen's Royal College.jpg
Queen's Park West
Port of Spain

Trinidad and Tobago
TypeMale secondary school
MottoCertant Omnes Sed Non Omnibus Palmam
("All strive, but the prize is not for all")
EnrollmentApproximately 725 (in 2010)
Campus typeopulent urban
Color(s)Royal blue
NicknameRoyalian / Blue Bloods
AffiliationGovernment of Trinidad & Tobago

Queen's Royal College, referred to for short as QRC, or "The College" by alumni, is one of the most prestigious secondary schools in Trinidad and Tobago. The college is noted for its distinctive German Renaissance architecture.


The origin of QRC goes back to the Stuart Grammar School, at the corner of Duke and Edward Street in Port of Spain, whose Principal was Edward Stuart.[1] In 1859, when a new "collegiate school" was being contemplated, Stuart was invited by the colonial government to be part of the enterprise. The Queen's Collegiate School opened later that year opposite what is now Lord Harris Square, then known as Billiards Orchard.

The intention was, as Governor Arthur Hamilton-Gordon told the Legislative Council in 1870, "that its advantages should be open to those of every race and every religion, and that the education given should be of a decidedly superior character."

In 1870, the school became the Queen's Royal College and was housed in the supper room of the Prince's Building.

When the Government Farm moved from St Clair in 1899, part of the land was reserved as a new home for QRC through the intervention of acting Governor Sir Micah Fields.

The school, referred to in those days as Royal College, had 120 pupils, who did not wear a uniform but had to wear a hat or cap bearing the college crest. They learned algebra, geometry, arithmetic, Latin, French, English, geography, history and Greek or Spanish.

Today in Queen's Royal College uniforms are worn, as at almost all government schools, and QRC projects and involvements usually involve a blue theme, due to the well-known uniform of blue shirt jack and long khaki pants. In 2009, the school implemented a new dress uniform for formal occasions as existed in the past. Its principal is David Simon.[2]The college also implement a school polo uniform to be used for casual events .

Architecture and history of the main block[edit]

The foundation stone was laid on 11 November 1902 by Courtney Knollys, who was the acting Governor of the day. The structure was designed by Daniel M. Hahn, who was Chief Draughtsman of the Public Work Department and an Old Boy of Queen's Royal College, during the period when the school was housed at the Princess Building. The architecture of the building is German Renaissance in style, evident by the solid appearance. Constructed at a cost of 15000 British pounds 1,845,000.00 British pounds adjusted for inflation , the original building accommodated six classes for 30 boys each. The lecture hall could hold over five hundred persons at a time.

Notwithstanding the German origin of the plan, a legacy perhaps of Mr. Hahn's student days in Berlin, the design of the interior is tropical with a aristocratic touch[clarification needed] from the days when European school architecture was austere.

QRC was not free at some point but after a couple years it became free.[citation needed]

General information[edit]

Queen's Royal College Clock Tower in January 2015

The main building itself is one of the Magnificent Seven, a group of historic buildings built in the early 1900s. The North and South buildings, known as the North Block and Science Block respectively, were built during the late 1930s. Later came the West Block, and every student, past and present, will remember the controversial "painting pink" of the block.[citation needed] The school has its own pavilion and cafeteria, both located on the edge of its field, used in all seasons for various sports.


West Block of Queen's Royal College 2007, Port of Spain

Queen's Royal College as a secondary school in Trinidad & Tobago consists of classes from Form One through Form Six. The school can be termed a "seven-year" school but qualification into Form Six is based on the student's performance at the CSEC (Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate) examinations. Classes are categorized by name according to the word "ROYAL" but excludes the letter "A" perhaps due to the stigma of an "A" and the negative effects of a stratified class system based on student academic performance. Form One consists of three classes, 1R, 1O and 1Y whereas, Forms 2 through 5 consists of xR, xO, xY and xL where x represents the class number. External students can also gain access into the Sixth Form Level based on their qualifications and other academic factors. On average, up to ten external students enter the Sixth Form level per year.

Subjects offered at Form Six level[edit]

The following subjects applies to both Lower Six (year one) and Upper Six (year two). Subjects are usually divided into Unit 1 and Unit 2 with the exclusion of Caribbean Studies which is usually assigned to the first year in Form Six or Lower Six and Communication Studies to the second year in Form Six or Upper Six. All subjects are of the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) format and students are allowed to do a minimum of four subjects, but exceptions are sometimes accepted.

As of July 2012





  • Caribbean Studies
  • Communication Studies

Active groups and extra-curricular activities[edit]

Extra co-curricular[edit]

  • Cadets
  • Scuba Diving
  • Football
  • Basketball
  • Cricket
  • Table tennis
  • Swimming
  • Water polo
  • Hockey
  • Volleyball
  • Judo
  • Track & Field
  • Rugby
  • Dragonboat racing
  • Scouts
  • Steel Pan
  • Choir
  • S.A.

Other extra-curricular groups[edit]

  • QRC Students' Affairs Initiative (QRC SAI - Student Government)
  • Leadership 2020
  • RBTT Young Leaders (debating)
  • Key Club International
  • Catholic-Christian Students' Movement (CCSM)
  • Inter-School Christian Fellowship (ISCF)
  • QRC Scouts
  • The Blueprint newspaper
  • Alpha Company, Trinidad & Tobago Cadet Force (TTCF)
  • Queen's Royal College New Boys' Association
  • QRC Hindu Society
  • QRC Chess Club

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ George Alleyne, "QRC celebrates 150 years", Newsday, 8 April 2009.
  2. ^ "Queen's Royal College Staff Listing". Retrieved 5 November 2012.
  3. ^ C. L. R. James, Chapter 2, "Against the Current", Beyond a Boundary (1963).
  4. ^ Smith, Roberta (2018). "Kynaston McShine, Curator of Historic Art Exhibitions, Dies at 82". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 10 February 2018.
  5. ^ Sir Vidia cherishes school days Trinidad and Tobago's Newsday, 16 April 2007.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 10°40′07″N 61°31′09″W / 10.6687°N 61.5193°W / 10.6687; -61.5193