Student Life

Student Experience

Transformative Tartan Experience

Our Tartans are known for their character, poise, thoughtfulness and integrity, and this is the most rewarding feedback we hear. Our Episcopal identity, striving for justice and peace among all people and respecting the dignity of every human being, sets the foundation for an inclusive, welcoming community rooted in shared values and a transformative student experience that lasts a lifetime. 

At St. Margaret’s we often say that this is a place where students thrive, and we see the proof every day in their lives. St. Margaret’s students are happy, healthy, curious, eager and engaged in learning and caring for the world around them. A focus on who our students are, ethically, physically, socially and emotionally, is as intentional as the focus on their academic learning. Every student is known and loved by a unique early childhood through grade 12 community that fosters belonging, purpose, life skills, well-being and happiness. 
We enlist our core values of character, community, balance and breadth, high expectations, and equity and inclusion, in every aspect of our work in nurturing young people as they learn and grow. A tightly-woven student life program of leadership, service learning, spirituality, advisory, health and wellness, DEI and cultural competency work, traditions, and importantly, our Episcopal foundation are essential elements of the St. Margaret’s student experience.
Beyond the classroom, students are further encouraged to explore their own experience and areas of interest through a vibrant, close-knit community of classmates, younger and older students, caring adults and robust and authentic opportunities for personal growth. The many faculty, advisors, counselors, chaplains and coaches who are in their everyday lives creates a strong support of caring adults who know and love them, cheer for their successes and provide the support they lean on when they face challenges.
Our school culture, from students to adults, is welcoming, inclusive, loving and supportive where students are confident and have a sense of belonging to try new things, take risks, sometimes fail and often succeed beyond their own expectations.
St. Margaret’s students actively participate in a variety of experiences and traditions that provide balance and rally points to their challenging academic programs and new applications for their learning. The core of student life at St. Margaret’s, is time spent gathered together nurturing peer and student-faculty relationships, mutual trust, comfort and confidence to be themselves share their voice and try new things. Formal gatherings in the life of school include, Chapel, Middle School and Upper School Convocations, assemblies, class meetings, class retreats for fifth grade through senior year, pep rallies, dances, activities, all-school celebrations, arts performances and Tartan sporting events.
Students pour curiosity and commitment into service learning endeavors and peer relationships alike, and seize opportunities to develop connection and leadership through student government, clubs, affinity groups, arts productions and groups and athletic teams. Through Chapel and Advisory, they grapple with ideas and social matters, embrace diversity and paradox, deepen connections with their own beliefs, find understanding and respect for the beliefs of others and develop their empathy, voice and character.
Our students belong and are deeply connected. The sounds of bagpipes, a nod to our namesake St. Margaret of Scotland, dot their years as Tartans. They possess a great sense of school pride and treasure longstanding school traditions, including All-School Opening and Closing Ceremonies, St. Margaret’s Founder’s Day, Senior-Junior Candlelighting, Tartan Family BBQ, St. Margaret’s Founders Day, Tartan Faire, the Tartan Trot, grade-level retreats, Grade 8 Washington D.C. Trip, Homecoming and the culminating events of Grade 5 Recognition, Grade 8 Promotion and the Senior Class Commencement Ceremonies.
St. Margaret’s students are citizens, friends and Tartans, and understand and value the importance that these experiences play in their own lives.

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  • Students performing in the orchestra


    At St. Margaret's Episcopal School, we believe that everyone is on an artistic journey. Through experiences in the visual arts, music, dance, theater and technical arts, students discover and nurture the artists within. As students from Early Childhood School through Upper School are introduced to the fundamentals of the art forms, they learn how to learn.

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  • Student athlete at bat during a baseball game


    The athletic program at St. Margaret's is central to our mission and integral to the learning process. Through athletic competition, we strive to achieve the highest degree of integrity, sportsmanship, and mutual respect as we prepare our students for lives of leadership and service.

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  • Student addressing the student body at an assembly


    St. Margaret's students are provided leadership opportunities and are able to initiate, explore, and practice leadership skills in a safe and encouraging environment. Students are learning to become active and responsible citizens through formal and informal opportunities that work to advance justice on behalf of all members of our community and the world.

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  • Students participating in a community service activity

    Service Learning

    A pillar of the St. Margaret’s mission is to educate students for lives of service. Our community believes that an essential outcome of our education is that our students and graduates feel the empathy, responsibility and calling to serve others and be active and contributing citizens within their communities and the world.

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  • Students attending a chapel service


    Led by St. Margaret’s Episcopal School chaplains, Chapel is an integral part of the student experience for every student nurturing character, grace, community fellowship and spiritual wellness.

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  • Students in their advisory group


    Middle and Upper School advisory groups meet weekly to discuss current adolescent topics and social issues, reflect on guest speakers and school topics, perform community service projects, guide academic progress, and to simply connect with one another. The advisory groups become a constant, tight-knit, school family for each student.

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  • Health and Wellness

    St. Margaret’s Episcopal School is committed to support the health and wellness education and development of our students, faculty, and school community We know that wellness is an integral factor to student academic and overall success and happiness.
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An Independent Preschool Through Grade 12 College-Preparatory Day School in Orange County California

Non-Discrimination Policy
St. Margaret's Episcopal School does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, color, religion, sexual orientation or national and ethnic origin in the administration of its educational, admission, financial aid, hiring and athletic policies or in other school-administered programs.