Colley W. Bell III joined St. Margaret's School as its 13th Head of School in 2021, bringing over thirty years of independent school experience to the banks of the Rappahannock. Mr. Bell considers himself, first and foremost, a learner and teacher. At St. Margaret's, he teaches 8th-grade history and Religion classes.
It began while growing up in a girl's Episcopal boarding school where his father was the headmaster and religion teacher. His mother served as the provost, dean of students, and history teacher. As a graduate of an Episcopal boarding school, he points to the spiritual interconnectedness in the Episcopal tradition that brings form and function to the lives of all. Mr. Bell's familiarity with St. Margaret's stretches back decades, and his parents often talked fondly of the "grand girl's school on the river."
He holds a master's degree from Columbia University and is passionate about the American, Russian and English history. He studied the history of the Anglican Church at Keble College at Oxford. Conversations with Mr. Bell often lead to historical topics, whether curiosity about his home in the McCall-Brockenborough House – or his own family's fascinating past.
Colley and his wife Edwina, Director of Advancement, are always seen on campus, tending to projects in much the same manner as were his parents. They are a unique fixture in contemporary schools as husband and wife serving together for the daughters of St. Margaret's. Mrs. Bell's office is favorite spot where the Golden Reteiver, Barrymore, is found.
As Mr. Bell shared, "I want for the daughters of St. Margaret's an experience of a century, free of the politically-charged environs of America's suffering schools. We are a faith-based school for all at work, study, and play - it's that simple, that important. The school's heritage informs us of an ambitious and holistic education within a tight-knit community where grace and humility are cherished. In short, we abide by our motto, as we grow in age, may we grow in grace."