Southwest Adventist Junior Academy opened its doors prior to 1951 as Oakland Seventh-day Adventist Church and Elementary School, becoming the first black Christian school in the DFW Metroplex. In the fall of 1961, the name of the school was changed to Southwest Region Academy. The institution became renowned for its curriculum offerings from Pre-K through grade 12, providing educational opportunities for the youth of the entire Southwest Region Conference. Reduction in grade levels in 1968 to junior academy status (K-10) did not dim its vision for academic excellence.
Due to the rapid growth of the Dallas metroplex and demands to expand the efficiency of its transportation systems, the school was mandated to relocate, because the construction of I-45 would eventually intersect its property. In 1969, the church and school relocated to their present sites and the school’s name was changed to City Temple Elementary School (K-8). Grade levels were raised over a period of six years, and once again, the school was granted junior academy status in 1975.
As City Temple Junior Academy, it served as a beacon of Christian education in its new location, and became renowned for its exemplary standards and accomplished alums. Numerous leaders in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex recognized the church and school for playing a vital role in the Dallas community.
In 1999, the school was brought under the Southwest Region Conference of Seventh-day Adventists and given its current name: Southwest Adventist Junior Academy. The school became a constituent school for the area churches within the Southwest Region. It has since returned to sole constituency with the City Temple church, but it retained its former name.
SWAJA’s legacy has continued as the school remains one of the eldest black/Christian/private schools in the metroplex. It has produced students who have excelled academically and found pride and joy in serving God, their church, and their fellow man. SWAJA graduates have gone on to become doctors, lawyers, preachers, teachers, real estate moguls, business owners, and many other admirable professionals. But the key to their success, and the success of the school throughout its history, is SWAJA’s dedication to its mission of harmoniously developing each child spiritually, mentally, and physically.