About the Academy > History of the Academy
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History of the Academy

Click here to view a photo slide show of the Academy through the years.

St. Johnsbury Academy was founded in 1842 by Erastus, Thaddeus, and Joseph Fairbanks to provide "intellectual, moral, and religious training for their own children and the children of the community."   The school was reincorporated in 1873 in order to accomplish the founders' goal of providing exemplary educational opportunities to a wider range for students, not just those destined for the liberal arts colleges and universities.

By creating a comprehensive school, offering technical training as well as college preparatory studies, the founders created a school that was unique among New England academies. This action greatly changed the character of the school enabling it to serve the educational needs of St. Johnsbury and the surrounding communities. A long standing voucher system, providing area students with educational choice, continues to allow the Academy to enroll the majority of students from the St. Johnsbury area while maintaining its own independence. For more than a century and a half this commitment has remained at the very heart of St. Johnsbury Academy's educational philosophy. Employing authentic and traditional methodologies, the school remains committed to personally relevant instruction.

St. Johnsbury Academy believes that learning is most effective in a community atmosphere where collaboration and respect for others is part of the common daily business.  Small classes, the advisory program, and a diverse offering of extracurricular activities all exist to support this notion of community.

Today St. Johnsbury Academy remains unique among American independent schools in its ability to offer its students a truly comprehensive curriculum. This breadth of curriculum, supported by first rate facilities and the resources to attract an outstanding faculty, has attracted national recognition as well as over 230 boarding students from across the United States and around the world.

© 2007 St. Johnsbury Academy | 1000 Main Street | St. Johnsbury, VT 05819-0906 | phone: 802.748.8171 |
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