Skip to main content


Why Give

Dear Benefactors, Sponsors, and Patrons of Junipero Serra School,

The success of Junipero Serra School is facilitated through the generosity of its many benefactors. The generous gifts the school receives supports and supplements the full cost of educating a student. Tuition covers only a portion of the actual cost of a JSS education and it is through the generosity of parents, grandparents, local benefactors and the network of JSS alumni who are grateful for their Catholic education, that JSS is able to continue its important legacy. It is a legacy of faith formation, community service, generosity, and selflessness that has defined Junipero Serra School.

The legacy began in the early 1940’s as the population of Carmel began to grow with a significant influx of military families due to World War II. The Carmel Mission pastor, Reverend Michael D. O’Connell, eager to open a school to support the needs of a growing parish, appealed to the Sisters of Notre Dame and suggested using Villa Angelica, the Sisters’ vacation home and convent, to host the school. So it was in February of 1943 that Junipero Serra School welcomed its first group of approximately 50 students. By September of that same year, Junipero Serra School had an enrollment of 78 students, taught by a faculty of five Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.

Meanwhile, construction on the first four classrooms at the mission had begun. Within two years, through the dedicated work of Harry Downie, designer and master builder, the first four classrooms along the south side of the mission were completed. In 1945 when the Sisters of Notre Dame transferred the classes from the Villa to the newly constructed classrooms at the mission, the students found their classrooms designated by animal pictures over the doors instead of numerals. These animal pictures remain to this day as an important reminder of the unique history of Junipero Serra School and its connection to the founders and builders of this extraordinary school.

Through our partnership with you, our Junipero Serra School Community, the Carmel Mission Basilica Parish, and our many benefactors, we are able to fulfill our mission of educating tomorrow’s leaders today. Thanks to all of our benefactors whose prayers, contributions, and volunteer work creates and nurtures the spirit of love, kindness, compassion, and academic excellence that is the hallmark of a Catholic education at Junipero Serra School. I invite you to make a gift to support our mission. A gift at any level is an investment in the future and truly makes a difference in the life of a child, just as it did in 1943.

I invite you to become a patron today.


Mr. Steve Henderson

Junipero Serra School is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. All charitable donations are tax deductible.e

Ways to Give

Donate by Phone

Please call the office (831) 624-8322, and we will be happy to take your credit card information over the phone.

Mail your Gift

Mail your check or money order made out to Junipero Serra School to:

Junipero Serra School
3090 Rio Road
Carmel, CA 93923

Share your Talent

Whatever you do, you can be of great help, call us for an opportunity to share your talent.

Gift of Time

We are in constant need of volunteers, please call us (831) 624-8322

Office Depot / Office Max

Office Depot / Office Max donates 5% back in credit quarterly to JSS for FREE supplies when you make qualifying purchase. This is a small act that can make a huge difference. The Junipero Serra School ID is 70200217, Zip Code is 93923.

If you forget to provide the JSS identification at the time of your purchase, you can call 877-567-5287 with your order number (on your receipt) and they will register your sale for JSS. Thanks for your support of this valuable service.

Thank You to Our Donors

  • Pebble Beach Company Foundation
  • Knights of Columbus
  • Big Sur International Marathon
  • AT&T
  • S.T.A.R. Foundation
  • Diocese of Monterey, TOP Tuition Assistance
  • Monterey Peninsula Foundation
  • Wells Fargo Bank