Why VMS

Vail Mountain School’s mission is to prepare students intellectually, emotionally, and ethically to thrive in a collegiate setting and beyond with the life-long purpose of active participation in global citizenship. Easy to say; harder to do.

To achieve this goal, faculty at VMS are singularly focused on one thing--your child. They bring their passions into the classroom and develop deep, caring relationships that inspire a true love of learning. Our teachers pay close attention to the social, emotional and academic needs of each individual, adapting curricula and lessons that fuel the fire more than fill the bucket.  Put simply, a good school knows your child by name, a great school knows your child by heart.

VMS is the only independent K-12 school in Eagle and Summit Counties and we embrace the freedom this provides. Our rigorous, globally inspired, college preparatory curriculum readies students for challenges both in and out of the classroom. The experience is enriched by athletics, independent projects, service learning, in-depth intraterm classes, winter hut trips, outdoor education, and Ski Fridays. We believe teachable moments are everywhere and we are bound neither by belief nor government mandate to teach in only one way. One size does not fit all, one size fits one.

Our community works and plays together, sharing a love for the active mountain lifestyle that defines us and that has converted countless visitors into lifelong residents. Our location is truly unique, enabling us to provide an education that cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Outside our front door lies the world famous Vail ski resort. Just steps from our back door are trails that lead to majestic 13,000 foot peaks, mountain meadows filled with wildflowers, pristine waterfalls, and diverse ecosystems. Interstate 70 provides quick access to the learning opportunities of Denver and Boulder and the sublime desert playgrounds and rivers to the west. 

Matching the beauty and elegance of our natural setting, our school community is housed in a state-of-the-art facility with design inspired as much by our beliefs about how learning best occurs in a K-12 environment as by aesthetic considerations. Lower, middle, and upper school classrooms are mixed throughout with abundant open common spaces to encourage cross-age interaction and give students room to move.

Operating on the principle that emotional stability is a requisite for academic success, students start each day at VMS with Homebase, a unique advisory forum designed to build community, strengthen character, and encourage ethical decision making. In partnership with parents, teachers help students confront problems, and set positive, proactive examples, challenging students to be their best in the classroom, on the playing field, online, and outside the school. We pride ourselves on celebrating individual achievements and supporting each other's struggles. The result is a caring community of engaged learners that supports the greatness in one through the strength of many.

Few other schools are so supportive. Very few other schools offer the independence, small class size, invested faculty, and welcoming community found at VMS. On the shoulders of many, each individual can stand tall and LEARN MORE.