International Student Application Process
Santa Margarita Catholic High School accepts a limited number of International Students each school year. International students applications are reviewed by the school's Admissions Committee and are accepted based on their academic and English qualifications. International students may apply only for the beginning of a school year (Fall semester only, no Spring semester applications).
International students must demonstrate strong English skills (TOEFL English proficiency exam required plus a series of Skype interviews/examinations required) as all of the classes at SMCHS are taught in English at an accelerated rate. The goal is to see all international students be successful at our academically rigorous school, hence the advanced English requirement.
Applications for the 2014-2015 school year (beginning Fall 2014) will be accepted from December 1 2013 through May 1, 2014.
Admissions Process - Step 1 - Application
International student applicants must complete all of the following steps to begin the admissions process. All items are to be sent to our school via mail:
Santa Margarita Catholic High School
Attn: Admissions Office
22062 Antonio Parkway
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688, USA
or email: Admissions@smhs.org
If any items are missing, the student's application will not be reviewed for an acceptance decision until the application is complete.
Admissions Process - Step 2 - Skype Interviews/Examinations
Once the initial application is received and reviewed by our Admissions Committee, a series of Skype Interviews/Examinations will be scheduled. A member of the Admissions Office and the Academic Counseling office will schedule the Skype Interviews/Examinations with the applicant. These Skype Interviews/Examinations will assess the student's English ability and learn about the student's academic record.
Admissions Process - Step 3 - Application Acceptance and I-20 Application
After reviewing the student's application and results from the Skype Interviews/Examinations, the Admissions Committee at Santa Margarita will make the determination on acceptance to our school. The student will be notified via email if they have been accepted to Santa Margarita Catholic High School.
After the student is accepted, SMCHS will process the I-20 application if the international student requires an I-20 to apply for an F-1 Student Visa in their home country. The I-20 should take approximately 2 weeks to be received by our school. Once our school receives the I-20, it will be express mailed to the student's family. The I-20 may then be used to obtain the F-1 Student Visa in their home country. Note: the I-20 cannot be requested by our school unless the name and address of the home stay family is provided to our Admissions Office (see step 4).
Admissions Process - Step 4 - Homestay Arrangement
All International Students, even if age 18 or older, are required to reside with a host family during their attendance at SMCHS. The arrangement of the homestay for the international student is the responsibility of the student's family. Santa Margarita Catholic High School does not arrange for the homestays of international students. Finding a host family close to our campus and providing our school with the address and phone number of the host family is important as the host family information is necessary for the I-20 application. The I-20 application cannot be created without the homestay information.
If an international student is in need of a homestay family, try one of the following companies:
Homestay Services International
Phone number: (714) 504-0866
Homestay Services International (HSI) is a company (not affiliated with Santa Margarita Catholic High School) that provides homestay families for international students in our community. This company finds supportive and caring families for the student from a list of families that have been thoroughly screened and interviewed. HSI will also pick up the student from the airport and handle any questions about the host family and the international student. HSI charges a nominal fee to match a student with a host family and a monthly amount that HSI pays to the host family to offset the costs of hosting a student. Please contact HSI for more information.
Green Planet Homestay
Phone number: 1-781-996-0429
Green Planet is an educational service company that specializes in bringing on-the-ground support to international student programs at U.S. high schools across the country. Our trained staff is committed to the success of each student, providing arrangement and oversight of residential accommodations that are not only safe, but will enhance the students' overall American experience.
Whether you are a student seeking great care at your U.S. school, a potential host family interested in a meaningful cross-cultural experience, or a high school seeking quality assurance and oversight of your international student program, GP is here to help you feel at home.
Green Planet is a CSIET-approved organization. This recognition reflects our commitment to providing a safe and accommodating homestay program for students and host families.
Admissions Process - Step 5 - Health Insurance
Before an international student is allowed to begin classes at Santa Margarita Catholic High School, they must show proof of medical coverage/health insurance. It is recommended that the health insurance covers doctor visits, medicine, and treatments, in addition to hospital stays and emergency services.
International students may wait to purchase health insurance until after they have received their acceptance email, but a student will not be allowed to attend class until proof is sent to the Admissions Office at Santa Margarita.
If an international student is looking for health insurance, one of the largest companies that provide comprehensive medical coverage is:
ISO International Student Health Insurance
Admissions Process - Step 6 - Registration and Tuition Payment
When a student is accepted, the acceptance email Santa Margarita sends to the international student's family will include information on registering for class and paying for tuition. The registration process will be done online. Registration will require a $550 registration fee that may be submitted online via electronic check.
All international students, as a condition of the I-20 process, are required to pay for the entire year's tuition and fees before the new school year begins. For international students, there is no discount for paying the full year's tuition in one payment.
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Tuition and Fees for 2014-2015 School Year Due July 1, 2014
Tuition and fees are due July 1, 2014 and all international students are required to pay for their year's tuition and fees in full before the school year begins. Receipt of these fees signifies that the international student is registered for class and can begin the 2014-2015 school year at Santa Margarita Catholic High School. Fees currently for the 2014-2015 school year include:
Additional Fees for 2014-2015 School Due When Student Begins School Year
The following are fees that students will have to pay once they arrive in the U.S. and are ready to begin class in the Fall of 2014. Note that many of these fees are optional or will vary depending on the student's class schedule and living expenses.
Questions on International Student Admissions
If you have any questions about international student applications or the admissions process not covered above, please contact Jeff Reinert, International Student Admissions Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org