Cate School

5.00 5 1 (14 reviews)
Tel: 8056844127
1960 Cate Mesa Road, P.O. Box 5005
Carpinteria, CA 93013
  • Founded in 1910, Cate School is a grade 9-12, coeducational, college preparatory boarding school in Carpinteria, California.
  • What began as a group of twelve boys and a few teachers has expanded into a 280-student, 57-teacher, deeply academic and talented community with the most diverse student body of any boarding school of its size in the United States.
  • One of the most experienced and committed teaching faculty in the country: 82% hold advanced degrees, 18% of these have PhDs.
  • Cate is one of this nation's most selective boarding schools, accepting under 20% of our applicants each year.
  • 60% of Cate's most recent graduating class attend the 25 top-ranked colleges and universities in the country and 18% went to Ivy Leagues and Stanford.
  • The Cate experience combines academics, athletics, art and co-curricular activities in a close-knit, community setting where students are enriched by their relationships with their teachers and each other.
  • When students leave Cate, they have the tools and the conviction to seek out lives full of purpose and meaning.
  • College admissions offices often report back that Cate students are among their schools' brightest, most dynamic, and intellectually curious individuals.
  • Mission: Through commitment, scholarship, companionship, and service, each member of the Cate community contributes to what our founder called: "...the spirit of this place...all compounded of beauty and virtue, quiet study, vigorous play, and hard work.".

Alumni Reviews
  Review School

  • Review Description

  • Class of 2016
    5 Stars   1/18/2017
    Yale University
    On the surface Cate is defined by its dedicated commitment to service (the school motto is "Servons" meaning "to serve"), its more casual and down-to-earth California vibes, and its interest in the outdoors as a. . .

  • Class of 2015
    5 Stars   5/11/2018
    University of Southern California
    Cate is a very unique school located by the ocean and mountains which allows for a great deal of outdoor activities while still being in California. . .

  • Class of 2014
    5 Stars   6/12/2017
    Trinity University
    I have heard that the majority of schools on the west coast have a relaxed environment but Cate had that coupled with the incredible location on a hill overlooking Carpinteria and the Pacific Ocean. Our. . .

  • Class of 2011
    5 Stars   11/29/2016
    Brown University
    At Cate I engaged with learning in a completely different way. I entered Cate thinking that the best thing about this kind of education was it would get me into a good college and therefore. . .

  • Class of 2010
    5 Stars   7/19/2011
    College of William and Mary
    The word, I feel, that always describes Cate best is "community." I left my local public high school to attend Cate because I wanted to be in a residential high school community, and that's exactly. . .
  • Show more reviews (9 reviews)

Top 20 Placements

Listed among the top 20 boarding schools (out of 325 schools) for:

Definition of Terms 
2017 School Data
Cate SchoolBoarding School Avg.
School FocusCollege PrepCollege Preparatory
Grades Offered9-127-12
School TypeCo-edCo-ed
Religious AffiliationNon-denominationalNon-denominational
Year Founded19101910
Campus Size150 acres110 acres

Student Body

Enrollment280 students300 students
% Students of Color
44%
20%
% International Students
16%
20%
% Students Boarding
82%
68%
Average SAT Score1350* National Avg. »View
Average ACT score31*National Avg. » View
Offers Post-Grad YearNoNo

Academics and Faculty

Saturday ClassesYesNo
Frequency of Saturday ClassesBi-WeeklyWeekly
Classroom Dress CodeCasualCasual
Average Class Size10 students12
*National School Avg. » 20
Teacher : Student Ratio1:51:7
# of AP / Advanced Courses Offered2217
ESL Courses OfferedNoYes
% Faculty with Advanced Degree
82%
70%
Summer Program OfferedYesYes

Finances

Endowment Size$90 million$17 million
Yearly Tuition
(Boarding Students)
$60,400$53,300
Yearly Tuition
(Day Students)
$48,100$28,560
% Students on Financial Aid
33%
37%
Avg. Financial Aid Grant48264$22,700
Merit Scholarships OfferedNoNo

Admission

Application DeadlineJan. 15Jan. 15
Accepts Standardized ApplicationYesNo
SSAT RequiredYesYes
Average Percentile SSAT85%-
Acceptance Rate
14%
55%
Director of AdmissionsLisa Spengler
Associate Director of AdmissionsGwendolyn Pierce

Course Listings

List of Courses OfferedLink to List of Courses

AP / Advanced Courses

# of AP / Advanced Courses Offered2217
CoursesAdvanced Art (A and AB), Advanced Art History, Advanced Biology, Advanced Calculus 1 (AB), Advanced Calculus 2 (BC), Advanced Ceramics, Advanced Chemistry, Advanced Chinese: Chinese Cinema, Advanced Chinese: Literature, Advanced Chinese: The Chinese Idiom, Advanced Choral Music: Camerata, Advanced Computer Science, Advanced English 11, Advanced English 12, Advanced French: Language Studies, Advanced French: Literature Studies, Advanced Global Systems, Advanced History: Anthropological Perspectives, Advanced History: Comparative Revolutions, Advanced History: Modern Middle East, Advanced History: Modern Presidency, Advanced Mechanics with Calculus, Advanced Molecular Genetics, Advanced Multivariable Calculus, Statistics, and Linear Algebra, Advanced Photography, Advanced Physics: Astrophysics, Advanced Physics: Electronics, Advanced Physics: Mechanics, Advanced Spanish: Hispanic Cinema, Advanced Spanish: Language Studies, Advanced Spanish: Literature Studies, Advanced Spanish: Magical Realism, Advanced Spanish: Master Works of Spanish Literature, Advanced Statistics, Advanced Studio Art, Advanced U.S. History, Directed Studies, Japanese 4, Senior Inquiry Project

Sports

# Interscholastic Sports Offered1714
SportsBaseball, Basketball, Cross Country, Dance, Football, Lacrosse, Soccer, Softball, Squash, Surf Team, Swimming, Tennis, Track, Track and Field, Ultimate Frisbee, Volleyball, Water Polo

Extracurriculars

Total Extracurricular Organizations4423
ExtracurricularsClub or Organization:
Alianza (Latino Student Alliance), Black Student Union, Blue Crew, California Mathematics League, Cate Liberals League, Cate Repbulicans, Cate Review (Literary Magazine), CateNet Masters, Chinese Language & Culture Club, Cultural Awareness Club, Dance Club, Digital Art, El Batidor (school newspaper), Environment Club, Film Society, Foster Homes (community service), Gay Straight Alliance (GSA), Green Team, Holiday Cheer (Community Service), International Student Club, Invisible Children, Junior Statesmen of America, Los Ninos (community service), Men's Forum, Mesan (school yearbook), Mock Trial, Model United Nations, Pandemonium (improv group), Peer Tutors, Poetry Smackdown, Public Service Club, Round Square, Student Book Club, Student Senate, The Crew (Video Club), Tour Guides, Women's Forum

Arts and Music Programs:
Camerata, Cate Artists' Theatre, Chamber, Chorale, Jazz Club

Recreational Athletic Programs:
Kayaking Club, Martial Arts Clu

College Matriculation

Year: 2012 - 201610 Most Popular College Choices  (# Enrolled)
New York University20
University of Southern California17
Stanford University14
University of Pennsylvania13
University of Chicago11
Barnard College10
Colorado College10
Georgetown University10
Santa Clara University7
Columbia University6
Link to Matriculation Data

School Notes

  • With more than 150 courses offered, the goal of the Cate curriculum is to teach students to think and to develop in them a lifelong love of learning. Cate graduates consistently enroll in the country`s top colleges and universities.  Cate strongly values diversity. Our student body is comprised of 44% students of color. We enroll boys and girls from 29 states and 19 countries.  Our commitment to socio-economic diversity is evidenced by a financial aid budget of more than $4,070,000.
  • School accreditations: Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS)
  • Sample of notable school alumni/alumnae:
    • David Crosby - Singer/songwirter
    • Garrett Lisi - Noted physicist
    • Billy Steinberg - Musician/Songwriter
    • Warren Breidenbach III - Pioneering surgeon
    • Sir John R.H. Bond - Financier
    • Mona Khalil - United Nations
    • Dr. William New - Inventor and physician
    • Joshua Yaro - Professional soccer (MLS)
    • Ema Boateng - Professional soccer (MLS)
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