St. Mary’s College is one of the Oldest Boys' colleges in Sri Lanka, which has a history of nearly 150 years. It is the great Alma Mater of many distinguished citizens in Sri Lanka.
Established in 1867 adjacent to St. Mary's Church as an Anglo - vernacular school and come under the direction of Benedictine Missionaries, on the Colombo-Kandy road in the Kegalle district. It was Rev. Fr. Domenico Pingulani who initiated the school and was in religious missionaries between 1864 and 1880. St. Mary's College Kegalle was the fifth established Catholic boys' school in Sri Lanka after the schools of Colombo, Jaffna, Kandy and Galle. When going down the memory lane one cannot forget the proud appearance of St Mary's which a fine edifice of colonial architecture is.
In 1893, the Jesuit Missionaries from Belgium took over the management of school and they were in charge of college from the year of 1883 for 76 years. This period could be called the "Golden Era" of the history of St. Mary’s College and it is during this period that the school took its initial steps in the direction of the "Pathway to the Heights". The first Parish Priest was Fr. Neut, who came from the Belgium. From the beginning, the school was famous for the best results at the Cambridge Junior & Senior Exams. The school maintained a very high standard and this is best illustrated by the fact that it admitted overseas students (especially the Indians.) in as early as the 1990's.