The Society was known by various names at one time or another. Beginning as the Society for Educating the Poor of Newfoundland, it in turn adopted the names of the Newfoundland School Society, the School Society of Newfoundland and British North America, the Church of England School Society for Newfoundland and the Colonies, the Colonial Church and School Society and Colonial and Continental Church Society (CCCS).
The Society was formed in 1823 as a result of the energy and interest of a young English merchant, Samuel Codner. The chief aim of the Society was to communicate free instruction to the poor inhabitants of all denominations of the Colony. There was, however an obvious bias in favour of the Anglican Church.
The Society’s first school was established in St. John’s. By 1826 a school was established in Trinity.
The Mercantile Journal, in a lengthy article, had this to say in 1826:
“At Trinity, where the Master arrived in June last, the Magistrates kindly offered him the temporary use of the Court House, for a School Room, in which he had, up to the latest accounts received thence, admitted about 100 children, who have made considerable progress in Education. Mr. Fleet, under whose care this school is placed has been indefatigable in the performance of his duties, and thereby secured the marked approval of all the inhabitants of Trinity. The people, feeling the want of a School House at Trinity, have lately held a Public Meeting, at which £100 was subscribed - an eligible spot of ground has been liberally bestowed by Messrs. Garlands, for the purposes of the Society, and the poor inhabitants have agreed to bring from the Forests during the Winter months the necessary timber for the frame of a suitable building; to these laudable efforts, the Society has added a grant of £100, which, it is expected, will enable the people to erect a House sufficiently large for the admission of all the poor Children of Trinity, and the adjacent Creeks, in the course of the present year."