Kuleli Military High School was established on September 21 1845 under the name of "Mekteb-i Fünun-ı Idadiye" at Maçka Barracks now used by Istanbul Technical University. Due to its renewal, it completed its first year at the “Mizika-i Humayun” and “Çinili Köşk” which was used as “Baltacılar Apartment”.
Then after the renewal of “Maçka Barracks”, “Mekteb-i Fünun-ı İdadîye” started its second education year with a ceremony at the presence of Sultan Abdülmecid on October 10 1846. In 1868, all military high schools were decided to be combined. At that time, four military high schools, including Kuleli, were combined under the name of "Umum Mekteb-i İdadî Şahane" and transferred to Galatasaray Barracks. When the combination of military high schools turned out to be a failure, it was decided that the schools should go on their own education system separately. For this reason, “Mekteb-i Fünun-ı İdadîye” and “Deniz İdadîsi” moved to Kuleli Barracks in 1872. After that time the school came to be known as "Kuleli İdadîsi".
Because of the war between the Ottoman Empire and Russia in 1877-1878, the school was decided to be a hospital. So Kuleli moved to Turkish Military Academy building in Pangaltı. When the war ended, it returned to its building in Çengelköy with "Askeri Tıbbiye İdadisi" (1879). The hospital on the ridge outside the school was evacuated and given to the Military Medical School because of the over-population in the school. Then the hospital moved to Beylerbeyi. Later, "Askeri Tıbbiye İdadisi" was transferred to Haydarpaşa (1910).
During the Balkan War in 1912-1913, Kuleli Barracks was converted into a hospital again. Some of the students were sent to Kandilli High School for Girls at Adile Sultan Palace and some others to the buildings next to Beylerbeyi Palace. At the end of 1913, the school moved back to its own building. During World War I, the school moved to Rum Orphanage on Büyükada for some time. At the end of World War I, the building was abandoned due to the British request in Mondros Treaty and allocated to Armenian orphans and immigrants (November 5, 1920).
Kuleli İdadîsi first moved to a military camp, consisting of tents only, near Sünnet Bridge in Kağıthane, then one month later to a police station in Maçka. Because of the British interest there, it was transferred to the old Gendarme School near Beylerbeyi Palace (December 26, 1920). Kuleli Barracks was given back to Turkish troops at the end of Lausanne Peace Agreement as a result of the great victory in the “Büyük Taarruz" (The Great Offensive) on August 26, 1922. The British evacuated the Kuleli Barracks and thus the school moved to its glorious home after a 3-year period on October 6, 1923.
The school became a civilian high school by "Tevhid-i Tedrisat" Bill (a law that combined all education) passed in 1924 and renamed as "Kuleli Lisesi" (Kuleli High School). At the end of the same year, it became a military high school again. Also it took its present name in 1925 as "Kuleli Military High School”.
In the Second World War, Kuleli was transferred to Konya in May 1941 according to the mobilization plans. Kuleli Barracks was converted into a 1,000-bed military hospital and the Bosphorus Transportation Command moved there as well.
After the Second World War, the school moved back to Istanbul on August 18, 1947 and has been in its historical and sacred home ever since. Kuleli Military High School had applied the curriculum of Ministry of National Education for science until 1975-76 academic year. At that date, it started college system and the education period was increased from three years to four years, with the addition of Prep Class.