St. Andrew's School (Delaware)

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St. Andrew's School
Scholae Sancti Andreae
Middletown, Delaware
Type Private, Boarding
Motto "Pistis Kai Episteme" ("Faith and Learning")
Religious affiliation(s) Episcopal
Established 1929
Headmaster Daniel T. Roach
Faculty 76
Enrollment 310 total
Average class size 12 students
Student to teacher ratio 5:1
Campus 2200 acres
Color(s) Cardinal Red and White
Athletics 21 Varsity Interscholastic Teams
Athletics conference Delaware Independent School Conference
Mascot Cardinal, Saint, & Griffon
Average SAT scores (2012) 1320 verbal + math
Endowment 197 million

St. Andrew's School is a private, Episcopal, co-educational boarding school situated on 2,200 acres (8.9 km2) in Middletown, Delaware. The school enrolls 310[1] students in grades nine through twelve. Following the tradition of other boarding schools, students refer to their "form" instead of their "grade." Freshmen are III formers while, seniors are VI formers. All students board, living in dorms on campus separated by sex and form (freshman boys on one dorm, freshman girls on another, etc.). Seniors live in underclassmen dorms, acting as residential leaders in charge of the dorms and dorm life.

The school had 41% students of color and 17% international students at the start of the 2015-2016 school year.[1]

The school admitted 28% of its applicants with a 58% yield rate and a median SSAT of 83% during the 2015-2016 school year.[2]

Educational philosophy[edit]

St. Andrew's offers a full course curriculum in the liberal arts. The culmination of a student's English career is the Senior Exhibition. In the Senior Exhibition, a student will read a work of literature provided by his or her instructor, attempt to develop a thesis on that work of literature in the form of a 10–15 page paper and defend the thesis before members of the English department. The senior exhibition process has been compared to a university thesis defense, except with a very short paper instead of a 100-300 page thesis, as would be typical of college level work. The senior exhibition aims to build off of the skills that have been developed through the students' English career, and especially on the ability to think critically.

Tuition and financial aid[edit]

St. Andrew's has an endowment of $170 million. The tuition at the school is $55,000. Roughly 46% of the students receive some form of financial aid. St. Andrew's dispensed approximately $6.1 million in financial aid in 2015, with an average grant of $42,688.[1]


St. Andrew's was founded in 1929 by A. Felix du Pont (1879–1948), a member of the du Pont family, which made its fortune in the chemical industry. It was founded to provide a top education to boys of all socio-economic backgrounds, regardless of the families' ability to pay. St. Andrew's originally was an all-boys school, but became coeducational in 1973. The school also has a student-run SDLC,or Student Leadership Diversity Conference, which addresses issues of racial and ethnic diversity, and a Gender and Sexuality Alliance, which has provided social support to gay students and their allies since the early 2000s. A notable feature of the school is an original N.C. Wyeth mural in the dining hall, which depicts the founders of the school, early trustees and headmasters. The background shows classic English cathedrals, paying homage to the school's Anglican inspiration and architecture. The founder, A. Felix du Pont is seen standing with a Bishop Cook, gazing towards the realization of his dream for the school depicted on the opposite side of the painting. The left side of the mural shows students standing around the Alma Mater - which was rumored to have been modelled after Irenee du Pont - with some in formal dress and others in athletic clothes. One boy is holding an oar from a crew shell bearing the red and white St. Andrew's Cross seen on the emblem of the school as well as the oars used by the rowing team.[3]

The Irene duPont Library at St. Andrew's School was given by and named for the founder's sister, Irene Sophie duPont. The Library was built in October 1956 and completely renovated in 1997. It contains 32,000 volumes and over 120 periodicals. The library also offers one of the school's' computer labs, a periodical room, a reference room, and several study rooms ranging in sizes able to accommodate a full class down to single person use. The library also provides technology resources which are available for loan to students for academic and personal use, such as laptops, tablets and video cameras.[4][5]

Buildings, Facilities and Grounds[edit]

St. Andrew's is located on 2,200 acres (8.9 km2) of land, much of it dedicated nature preserve. The school also leases tracts of land to farmers, with the contractual agreement that they will farm the land in a sustainable, environmentally conscious way. In the center of this land is Noxontown Pond, which is used for crew in the spring, and is open to fishermen.

The main campus is formed by a small cluster of buildings. The most recognizable of these is Founders Hall, which is the center of the school and houses boys dorms, the dining hall, classrooms, the chapel and offices. Much of Founders Hall is original, given at the inception of the school by A. Felix du Pont, before which it had been his mansion. There have been a handful of additions to Founders Hall, including the addition of the Irenee du Pont library, which was built in 1956.Other classrooms are found in Amos Hall, named for William Amos, including a biology lab, a physics lab and a chemistry lab. Recent additions to the campus are the O'Brian Arts Center and the Sipprelle Fieldhouse.

Athletic Facilities and Fields[edit]

The main building serving athletics is the Sipprelle Fieldhouse, a LEED Gold certified building with basketball, volleyball and squash courts, as well as a weight training and general purpose gym and the offices of the athletic trainers.

St. Andrew's has 11 multi-use athletic fields on campus, a 5k cross-country course along with many miles of trails going all throughout the school's property. The school also has 4 multi-use courts, which can be set up for different sports such as basketball and volleyball, an indoor track,[6] a six-lane swimming pool, 9 squash courts, a wrestling room, 2 dance studios, 17 tennis courts, 2 paddle-tennis courts, and a boathouse which houses both men's and women's crew with around 20 shells.[7][8]


All St. Andrew's students are required to participate in a sport or other activity - such as the play or managing a team - during each of the three athletic seasons. Athletes play at the thirds, junior varsity or varsity level. Teams that have won state championships include the varsity girls' lacrosse team, winning the state title from 2002–05, and boys' varsity tennis, which took the state championship in 2009. The varsity boy's lacrosse team took states in 2004. In 1997, the St. Andrew's women's rowing team won the School/Junior Eights class in the Henley Women's Regatta in England. In 2011, the St. Andrew's men's rowing team finished second to Abingdon who broke the 20-year-old course record in the final of the head-to-head, single-elimination Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup challenge, after beating two-time defending champion and British champion Eton College.

St. Andrew's is a member of the Delaware Independent School Conference. Traditional rivals in conference include the Wilmington Friends School, Tatnall School and Tower Hill School. Every year, the football team battles the Tatnall Hornets for the coveted cannon trophy and often the conference title in the Cannon Game. Athletic rivals in other sports include the Hill School, Sanford School, Salesianum, Middletown High School and Westtown School.

Film appearances[edit]

The 1989 film Dead Poets Society starring Robin Williams was filmed almost entirely on the school grounds. The school was known as Welton Academy in the movie.

It served as the shooting location for young Bartlet's boarding school in The West Wing episode entitled "Two Cathedrals" (#44).

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "St. Andrew's School: About Us » Facts and Figures". Retrieved 2015-10-22. 
  2. ^ "Facts and Figures". St. Andrews School. 
  3. ^ "The mural / N.C. Wyeth". St. Andrews Archive. Retrieved 2015-10-22. 
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "St. Andrew's School: Crossroads » Athletics » Sipprelle Field House". Retrieved 2015-10-23. 
  7. ^ "Famous Movie Locations: St. Andrew's School From 'Dead Poets Society' (Middletown, DE)". The Moviefone Blog. Retrieved 2015-10-23. 
  8. ^ "St. Andrew's School: Athletics » Athletic Facilities". Retrieved 2015-10-23. 
  9. ^ "Player Bio: Eric Boateng". Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  10. ^ "CNN reveals Erin Burnett's New Show Title: OutFront". 
  11. ^ "Ruby Cramer Staff Page". 
  12. ^ "St. Andrew’s Celebrates 81st Commencement". St. Andrew's School. 2014-05-26. Retrieved 2015-01-22. 
  13. ^ Jean Garnett (August 18, 2008). "Dominic Seiterle '94 wins gold in Beijing". SAS Alumni News. St. Andrew's School. Retrieved Nov 18, 2009. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°25′59″N 75°41′19″W / 39.432945°N 75.688505°W / 39.432945; -75.688505