Castilleja School

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Castilleja School
California Rain at Castilleja School (3219384020).jpg
United States
TypePrivate, College-prep
MottoWomen Learning - Women Leading
FounderMary Ishbel Lockey
HeadNanci Z. Kauffman
Average class size15
Student to teacher ratio6:1
Campus size6 acre
Campus typeSuburban
Athletics conferenceCIF Central Coast Section
(West Bay Athletic League)

Castilleja School is an independent school for girls in grades six through twelve, located in Palo Alto, in the U.S. state of California. Castilleja is the only non-sectarian all-girls middle and high school in the San Francisco Bay Area. The faculty consists of approximately 70 full-time and part-time women and men. Castilleja is a member of the California Association of Independent Schools[2] and the National Coalition of Girls' Schools.[3][4]


Castilleja was founded in 1907 by Mary Ishbel Lockey. Originally from Montana, Lockey graduated from Stanford University in 1902, where she majored in English.[5] She was a charter member of Alpha Phi and was the first Stanford Alpha Phi elected to Phi Beta Kappa.[6] She was encouraged by Stanford's first president, David Starr Jordan, to start a school that would offer girls a comprehensive, college preparatory education.[7] In its early years, some boys were allowed to take classes at Castilleja.[8] The school's core values, known as "the 5cs," include conscience, courtesy, character, courage, and charity.

In 2007, Castilleja celebrated the 100th anniversary of its founding.

Expansion proposal[edit]

In 2016, Castilleja announced its intentions to build an underground parking garage and new buildings to increase enrollment to 540 students. Because of the scale of the proposed development in an R1 neighborhood, the project experienced considerable opposition among neighboring residents.[9]

Notable alumnae[edit]


Castilleja is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools, the National Coalition of Girls' Schools, and the College Board. In late 2007, the Wall Street Journal identified Castilleja School as one of the world's top 50 schools for its success. In 2009, Castilleja was given the highest accreditation rating by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Castilleja was named one of the Bay Area's Best Private Schools by San Jose Magazine.[citation needed]

Castilleja was also recognized as the 5th best private high school in the United States by in their 2015 rankings.[11]


  1. ^ Financing a Castilleja Education
  2. ^ "Home". California Association of Independent Schools. Retrieved 2016-03-14.
  3. ^ "Home". National Coalition of Girls Schools (NCGS). Retrieved 2016-03-14.
  4. ^ Bay Area's Best Private Schools | San Jose Magazine
  5. ^ "Kappa". Alpha Phi Quarterly. XXVII (4): 418. September 1915.
  6. ^ Alpha Phi Quarterly, vol. 17, p. 194.
  7. ^ Sargent, Porter (1998). The Handbook of Private Schools. Boston: P. Sargent. p. 679.
  8. ^ "Castilleja School". Western Journal of Education. XXVII (7): 6. July 1921.
  9. ^ "Home Page". Protect Neighborhood Quality of Life. Retrieved 2017-03-22.
  10. ^ Hailey, Gene (1937-01-01). California Art Research, Volume 16 (Abstract) (PDF). W.P.A. Project 2874.
  11. ^ "2016 Best Private High Schools - Niche". K-12 School Rankings and Reviews at Retrieved 2016-03-14.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°26′20″N 122°09′06″W / 37.4388°N 122.1517°W / 37.4388; -122.1517