On 17 December 1929, nine Anglican heads gathered at St. Andrew’s School in Bloemfontein to discuss matters of mutual interest, laying the foundation for what is now the Southern African Heads of Independent Schools Association.
This first conference proved to be invaluable to the attendees who agreed to a second gathering the following year in Bloemfontein to organise the conference on a larger and more permanent basis.
The initial gathering was followed by the next meeting, held in December 1930 at the same venue and was attended by the heads of sixteen Anglican schools. At this, the first formally constituted general meeting of the Conference, it was decided that twenty-eight heads of diocesan schools were to be appointed as constituent members to the Conference of Heads of Church Schools. This name was soon changed to the Conference of Headmasters (HMC).
The onset of the Second World War in 1939 signalled the start of a difficult period in the history of the conference schools. Many new issues, like trying to replace staff who had enlisted in the armed forces, presented themselves making the conference timely and relevant amid adversity.