History

Honoring Our Past

“It is our challenge and our delight at The Colorado Springs School to release the inherent capacities of each individual and I believe that, in large measure, we succeed.”
Margaret White Campbell, Founding Headmistress

The Colorado Springs School (CSS) was established in the early 1960s by a group of parents, educators, and other concerned individuals who were drawn together by their desire to provide a strong, educationally innovative, college preparatory school for girls in Colorado Springs.

A certificate of incorporation for the school was drawn up in July of 1961. The name of the school, originally, was The Colorado Springs Episcopal School for Girls. In March of 1962, the school dropped its affiliation with the church and was renamed The Colorado Springs School. That spring, the school’s founders interviewed Margaret White Campbell, then Head of the Upper School at Beaver Country Day School near Boston. Janet LeCompte, one of the founders, wrote, “She was, of course, irresistible to us and on her part eager to found a new school.”

Thus, in September 1962, the School began with 23 students in the former home of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Drake on Pourtales Road, with Margaret White Campbell as its first Headmistress. By the spring of 1967, enrollment had nearly quadrupled and the Board of Trustees voted to purchase both the Trianon property at 21 Broadmoor Avenue and the nearly 12 acres known today as Boddington Field. Otis (“Utley”) White and Bill Boddington were central to the delicate negotiations surrounding this purchase. Many generous donors, including Mr. and Mrs. Philip G. Cole, Russell T. Tutt, William Thayer Tutt, Raymond J. Montgomery, Ben S. Wendelken, Mr. and Mrs. James A. Krentler, Mr. and Mrs. Oliver LeCompte, Mr. and Mrs. Robert C. Norris, and El Pomar Foundation, made the acquisition possible. New programs were added in response to market changes and demands.

In the fall of 1965, the school initiated a full-fledged boarding program in the former Heintges home at 24 Pourtales Road. Boys were admitted to the 7th and 8th grades in 1970, and to 9th grade in 1974. In 1975, the Board of Trustees voted to make the school fully coeducational for grades 7 through 12.

Then, in 1976, the school merged with the newly formed Children’s School to offer a comprehensive program for Kindergarten through 12th-grade students. That year also brought the official creation of CSS's treasured Experience-Centered Seminars (month-long academic and experience-centered courses) in the Upper School division. Since then, all grades have incorporated experiential education into their coursework. The first male boarding student graduated in 1977. In 1994, a much-requested PreKindergarten was established for four-and five-year-olds. In the fall of 1998, preschool was added to the Children’s School.

In the fall of 2000, CSS’s boarding program was phased out, and in its stead came the Homestay Program, which continues today.