We are the Wildcats!

Our History

A Timeline for Major Events in Academy History

1886  Dr. W.B. Seeley founded The Seeley School, a college preparatory school. Opening classes brought thirty boys to 231 East Houston Street, near Travis Park, and by year’s end enrollment increased to sixty-four students.

1888   Seeley purchases land on North Flores at San Pedro Springs and construction begins on residence and school building.

1894  Graduating class receives notice of acceptance at University of Virginia, University of Pennsylvania, Harvard, Yale, and  Princeton without entrance exams. 

First record of the name change to San Antonio Academy.

1906   Dr. W.W. Bondurant purchases San Antonio Academy and expands lower school program to include grades two through seven. Faculty climbs from four to six. 

1914   Frame building of Seeley School replaced by new brick buildings with expanded boarding facilities. 

1920  Lieutenant W.T. Bondurant, nephew of W.W. Bondurant, joins faculty as Commandant of newly-formed military program and as instructor in Latin and French.  


1926  Upper school grades eight through eleven move to the Alamo Heights campus of West Texas Military Academy, and SAA upper school becomes Texas Military Institute on vote of students. 

1927  Lieutenant W.T. Bondurant named headmaster of SAA and holds title until 1943 when, as Col. Bondurant, he is appointed President of SAA and TMI. 

1941  Military schools gain popularity and enrollment triples during WW II. Bunk beds are placed in every dorm room. 

1952  San Antonio Academy returns TMI to the Episcopal Church and operates for the first time as an independent junior school.


1960   SAA becomes non-profit in preparation for accepting tax-exempt gifts for expansion.

W.T. Bondurant, Jr. named president of SAA and his father, Col. Bondurant, Chairman of the Board.  

1967  This marks the first full year of elementary education at SAA. 

1968  SAA moves to 117 East French Place on December 7. 

1985  John Webster becomes Head of School in The Academy's 100th year. 


1988  San Antonio Academy is accredited by ISAS, the Independent Schools Association of the Southwest, and is accepted into membership by NAIS the following year. 

1995  The Academy raises $2.5 million to construct Ellison Hall, a multi-use convocation center. 

1998  SAA ends its boarding program. 

2000  The Board of Trustees approves San Antonio Academy’s Strategic Plan, creating a shared vision for the school.

The Academy’s Board of Trustees raises $3,900,000 to renovate the dormitories, and transforming them into eight new classrooms and the Bondurant Library.

2005  Student outcomes earn distinction on the national level.     

2006  Annual Giving (monies raised for operating expenses) totals $1 million.

SAA receives its first-ever seven figure donations as three separate $1 million gifts are made to the endowment campaign, Honoring our Tradition…Investing in the Future.

2007  The Board of Trustees raises more than $9 million of new endowment funds, increasing San Antonio Academy’s endowment from $5.7 million to $13.6 million with pledges that will carry it to $15 million within five years.

The Academy begins a new cycle of strategic planning.

During the two-year span from 2005-2007, annual giving totals $1.9 million.

2008  The endowment totals $14.6 million, with pledges that will carry the endowment to more than $16 million during the next five years.

Annual giving totals $700,000, and a record number of donors, over 600, make annual gifts.

The Board approves a new Strategic Plan that reaffirms SAA’s core values and charts a clear course for the next five-ten years.

The Academy administers the ERB/CTP IV to all 7th and 4th graders in math and reading. Our boys outperform the independent school norms in both subjects.


On the first high school report cards for the Class of 2007, there is a positive variance between our boys’ GPA at SAA and their GPA in high school.

2009   SAA enrolls 347 boys, its largest total ever.

ISAS re-accredits SAA for ten years.

On the first high school report cards for the Class of 2008, 51% of the grades are A’s.

Annual giving totals more than $630,000, exceeding its goal as 100% of trustees, faculty & staff, and 92% of parents make donations.

The Board approves a new Master Campus Plan and a Succession plan for key employees.

2010  On the first high school report cards for the Class of 2009, 56% of the grades are A's.

Football returns to The Academy and the varsity squad post a 6-7 record.

2011 San Antonio Academy achieves 100% parent participation in the Annual Fund for the second year in a row. Fewer than 3% of the nation's independent schools attain this level.

SAA celebrates 125 years of excellence.

2017 John Webster retires at the end of the 2016-17 school year marking 32 years as Head of School. The "John Webster Need-based Endowment" was created to honor his 32 years of love, friendship and dedicated service to SAA 

2017 Clint DuBose began his inaugural year as new Head of School in the fall of 2017.  

Historical Notes 


During the first year of the school's existence, San Antonio Academy was the first private school in the state to be given full affiliation by the University of Texas.



The first game of modern football in San Antonio was played between The Academy and West Texas on March 10, 1894, resulting in a victory for San Antonio Academy's team of eleven with a score of 12 to 10. Franz C. Groos (Class of 1894) made the very first touch down in the first game for the San Antonio Academy football team. 



The realities of war were brought vividly home by the death of Louis Jordan, San Antonio Academy Class of 1911, former captain of the University of Texas football team. Louis was killed in action on March 5, 1918. He was the first Academy graduate to die in action and the first Texas officer to die in France.