In 1884, Frank Harper, J.A. Rogers, E.C. Hopf, and W.P. Bowers met to organize a school for the growing Harper community. Mary and J. A. Rogers, Jr. sold two and a half acres to school trustees, and in 1885 a one-room frame school was built with donated labor and materials. In 1906, voters established the Harper Independent School District and a new limestone school building was completed. By 1908, Harper began absorbing other local schools, with the first being Pocket School District No. 34, and continued to be the leader in education in the area. Between 1908 and 1912, trustees continually faced monetary shortfalls and the school year was shortened several times due to lack of funds. However, through creative management, determination and community donations, Harper schools always reopened to serve the community.
Mary D. Rogers sold additional acreage for school expansion in 1930. Several schools consolidated with Harper in 1940, and additions to the school, completed by 1942, were built through the federal Works Progress Administration (WPA). In 1943 five acres purchased from Ed Kensing allowed expanded student activities. The school introduced a number of new activities in the 1940s, including six man football played on cleared pasture land or in the rodeo arena of the community park. At several times throughout its history,
the school district was asked to join the Kerrville or Fredericksburg districts, but all requests were denied. Harper Independent School District was once one of dozens of rural schools in Gillespie County. Today, it is now one of three remaining school districts in Gillespie County, serving also portions of adjoining Kerr, Kimble and Mason Counties.