History & Mission

History & Mission

Founded by a small group of parents and educators in 1999, Compass School is an independent day school in Westminster, Vermont that has grown into a thriving community of scholars and artists, students and teachers, faculty and families. The school offers a safe and challenging learning environment for students from communities in Southern Vermont and New Hampshire in grades 7-12.

The Compass curriculum is built on design principles inspired in part by the values of the Coalition of Essential Schools. Our five learning realms are the foundation of a Compass education and guide the development of graduates who are good students and good people. These realms are Knowledge, Thinking and Reasoning, Personal Development, Communication, and Community Involvement.

This five-fold focus stresses service, personal growth, academic excellence and, above all, self-awareness. Students are continually asked to reflect on their education through the portfolio process and the highly interdisciplinary and inquisitive nature of our classes. This introspection creates a space for students to value their education and take ownership of their learning.

For over a decade this approach has helped students pursue their dreams and achieve success in post-graduate experiences ranging from attendance at some of the nation’s top colleges to service work in their local communities and abroad.

Vision Statement

Compass School provides a unique model for publicly accessible education, serving children in our region while making an impact on the larger educational world. We embody an inspiring learning community that balances personalized education with high expectations for all, leading each student to successful graduation and post-graduate experiences.

Mission Statement

The Compass School inspires and educates students to gain the knowledge, skills, and personal qualities essential to pursuing their dreams and having a positive impact on the world.