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Tabor Academy

Call: 508-748-2000
Visit School Website
Tabor Academy
Tabor Academy
Tabor Academy
Tabor Academy
Tabor Academy
Tabor Academy
Tabor Academy

At a glance

Location Marion, MA
Tuition $62,300
Grades 9-12 Students Receiving Aid 36%
Student Body Coed Total Aid Awarded $7.3,000,000
Student/Faculty Ratio 6:1 Endowment $46,000,00
Contact School

Acceptance Rate

Acceptance Rate 35%

Total Enrollment

Total Enrollment 515

Average Class Size

Average Class Size 12

Sports & Extracurriculars

Sports & Extracurriculars 48*
Average SAT Score (Math) N/R
Average SAT Score (Verbal) N/R
Learning Support Program?
Number of AP Programs 18
ESL Offered?
IB Program Offered?


Region Boston MA Area
Providence RI Area
Program Emphasis Boarding School
College Prep
Day School
All Grades 9-12
Boarding Grades 9-12
Grade Divisions Secondary
Religious Affiliation Nondenominational
Student Body Coed
Established 1876
Dress Code Semi-formal
School Setting Suburban
Campus Size (Acres) 86
Head of School John H. Quirk, Jr.
Endowment $46,000,00


Tabor Academy was founded by Mrs. Elizabeth Taber in 1876. It was a time, as Mrs. Taber was clearly aware, of great national events: the Centennial Celebration of the Declaration of Independence and the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia, as well as the end of the presidency of Ulysses Grant. A decade out from the end of the Civil War, much of the country was in an optimistic mood. Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone in 1876; Thomas Edison was close to discovering the electric light. Custer would make his "last stand" in the summer. Harvard and Yale would play their first Thanksgiving football game in the fall.

Mrs. Taber had grown up in Marion, Massachusetts, and spent her childhood along the shores of Sippican Harbor. She married Stephen Taber, moved to New Bedford, and became the mother of three children. While her husband achieved considerable wealth as both a clock maker and whale ship investor, Mrs. Taber’s life was shadowed by sadness. She saw all three of her children die in infancy, and after the Civil War her husband died as well. For a period of time, Mrs. Taber apparently lived in solitude in a New Bedford mansion, but then, in her mid-eighties, she underwent a kind of epiphany. She determined to make her life count for something good, so she returned to the town of Marion to begin a decade-long transformation of the place of her birth. She committed her great material gain to good use. She caused to be built parks, a library, the town’s Music Hall, and, finally, Tabor Academy, which she named, as a kind of theological pun and to expand its meaning beyond herself, for Mt. Tabor in the Holy Land. She housed her Academy in two Victorian structures on the corner of Spring and Main Streets in Marion. She also had built a large home for herself and the family of her first Headmaster. And, through her will, she charged the school always to improve itself: “… the character of the school,” she wrote, “should be gradually elevated and its scope enlarged [to serve] youth of all portions of the country ….”

Tabor Academy served students from the Town of Marion and surrounding communities like Wareham, Rochester, and Mattapoisett, and from time to time a few young men boarded at the school. The majority of students were young women, however, and the school prospered and grew for about twenty years.

Then, a series of financial catastrophes swept the country, and Tabor Academy, along with many of the New England town academies, began to wobble. In 1916 there were fewer than a dozen students, and the trustees contemplated a sale of the property to the town as a site for the local high school. However, three trustees prevailed over this plan and that year hired a new Headmaster, Mr. Walter Lillard. Mr. Lillard brought a fresh vision to the school, seeing at once that moving Tabor from its “in town” location to the seaside would make it unique among New England schools. He quickly convinced the trustees of the vitality of his vision and worked over the next twenty years to move Tabor Academy toward the sea. By the mid-1930s, Mr. Lillard had effected a dramatic “trade” with the town of Marion, exchanging the then Town Hall (now the current site of the Academic Center) and a small plot of land on Front Street for the Academy’s larger land and buildings. He managed to acquire nearly a half mile of salt marsh and fields and a few old “summer cottages,” and thus, “Tabor Academy, the School by the Sea” had its second founding.

Quickly, under Mr. Lillard’s leadership, the school grew ten-fold, and by the time all of the operation of the school moved to its current location, Tabor’s reputation as a unique and extraordinary place had been secured. Over the last seventy years Tabor has developed its extraordinary philosophy, program, and facility founded on its deep connection with the natural world, the spiritual legacy of the sea around us, and the common humility and dedication that life by the sea inspires.


Full Time Faculty 104
% of Faculty with Advanced Degrees 72%
Student/Faculty ratio 6:1
Average Class Size 12
A Sampling of Courses Offered
American History
American Literature
English Literature
Environmental Science
European History
A.P. Courses Offered
Calculus AB
Calculus BC
English Language
English Literature
Environmental Science
European History
French Language
French Literature
Latin Literature
Physics B
Physics C
Spanish Language
Spanish Literature
US History

Student Enrollment

Total Enrollment 515
Boys 271
Girls 244
% Boys/Girls 53%/47%
Boarding Students 351
Day Students 164
United States
Dist. of Columbia
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
Rhode Island
Majority of students come from Northeast
% of Students of Color 13%
% of International Students 19%


Web Address
Director of Admission Mr. Eric Long
Application Required Yes
Application Fee Amount 50
Application Deadline(s) Jan
Financial Aid Deadline(s) January 31st
Financial Aid Awarded $7.3,000,000
% of Students Receiving Financial Aid 36%
Acceptance Rate 35%
Total Applicants 1200
Admissions Selectivity Selective
Admission Tests Accepted
Day Student Tuition $45,150
Boarding Student Tuition $62,300

College Placement Office

Dedicated College Placement Office Yes
Recent College Matriculations Link to our list:
% of Graduates Who Attend College 100%

Athletics & Extra-Curricular Activities

field hockey
ice hockey
other (sailing)
track and field
Recreational Sports
ultimate frisbee
weight lifting
Extra-Curricular Activities
Asian Club
Audiovisual Club
Community Service Program
Dance Club
Debate Club
Digital Photography Club
Dorm Proctors
Gay/Straight Alliance
Habitat for Humanity
Honor Council
International Club
Literary Magazine
Math Club
Model UN
National Honor Society
Peer Tutoring
Photography Club
Radio Station
Recycling Club
Science Club
Ski Club
Student Government
Student Publications
Tour Guides
Young Democrats
Young Republicans


  • May 23, 2013
    Alumnus/Year Graduated: 2013

    Please share a few thoughts about your experiences with Tabor Academy: Tabor was an amazing place to learn and grow. The sense of community, the faculty, and the friendships made here make it a truly unique place. I formed relationships with teachers and coaches that have made me more mature, thoughtful, and successful. Tabor was a positive experience with lots of special memories, traditions, and a beautiful place to spend my high school years.

  • May 24, 2013
    Current Student/Year Graduated: 2013

    Please share a few thoughts about your experiences with Tabor Academy: My experience at Tabor was an incredibly positive one. Tabor students are blessed with incredible opportunities, a supportive community of friends and faculty, and a wonderful academic program. I was taught by dozens of passionate, experienced, invested faculty members who made themselves available to help and who genuinely cared about each student. I could pursue academics, athletics and art all at the same time, and I honestly think that Tabor was the perfect place for me. I chose Tabor over Groton because I wanted a larger school with a greater range of programs and I wanted to live at home and be a day student at Tabor. I definitely made the right decision, and I am so proud and grateful to call myself an (almost) Tabor alumna.


Contact Info

Phone 508-748-2000
Address 66 Spring St - Marion, MA 02738 USA
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