Founded in 1997, Vermont Commons School is an independent, college-preparatory school, located in South Burlington, Vermont for students in grades 7 - 12. With an emphasis on academic rigor and innovation, skills, and creativity, the program at Vermont Commons features faculty who use 21st Century teaching methodologies and encourage environmental responsibility. VCS is proud to educate students who are academically motivated and intellectually curious. The average class size is 12, and each year 100% of the graduating class gains acceptance to college. The school primarily serves students from the greater Chittenden County area, although some students travel from as far away as Middlebury, Waitsfield, towns along the Canadian border and Plattsburgh, New York. Approximately 25% of the student body receives need-based financial aid to attend the school. Courses are offered on a semester and yearlong basis. Enrollment for the 2012 - 2013 academic year is 80 students. The academic program at Vermont Commons incorporates genuine life experiences with challenging academic offerings taught by a dynamic faculty, most of whom have advanced degrees. The central purpose of all academic activities is to provide students with exceptional skills, knowledge, and experiences in each academic discipline. Classes at VCS are writing intensive, hands-on, and focus on critical thinking skills across the curriculum. Students move from acquiring skills and understanding systems, to analyzing and communicating solutions.Vermont Commons presents a challenging college preparatory curriculum for grades 7 - 12. The curriculum offers courses in a variety of subjects and uses material in ever increasing depth and complexity throughout a student's career. At each stage in the process students enjoy strong mentoring relations with their teachers. By junior and senior year they experience the expectations of college level coursework. One semester of UVM's Calculus 21 is taught over the course of one year, enabling our students to earn four college credits, which are transferrable to other institutions. We offer a Contract Honors Program, which was implemented at the onset of the 2012-2013 academic year, and this program is an opportunity for students to gain extra challenge, complexity, and coursework in grades 10-12. Students "contract" for additional studies and earn an Honors designation for that course on their transcript.