Vernon Secondary School
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|2100 15th Street|
Vernon, British Columbia, V1T 3Z9
|School type||Public, high school|
|Motto||"Pride on the Hill"|
|School board||School District 22 Vernon|
|Principal||Mr. Ken Gatzke|
|Enrollment||Over 950 (2016)|
|Colour(s)||Navy, Red and White|
|Team name||Vernon Panthers|
A panther is the school mascot (closely resembling the Florida Panthers of the NHL) and the institution's recreational teams are thus named accordingly. The school's adopted colors are Navy Blue and Red, primarily, with the secondary color being White. The school's motto is "Pride on the Hill", referring to the hill the school is situated on. VSS is known for having one of the biggest shop and woodworks programs in the Okanagan Valley.
VSS was formerly Vernon Senior Secondary School and hosted only grades 11-12, but was later changed to include grades 8-12 thus becoming Vernon Secondary School. The school was originally built in 1968, the new school was rebuilt and opened on January 7, 2013. The $38 million state-of-the-art school is situated on the lower field of the old school's property. The school is a carbon neutral building with a natural light design, water flow reductions, a ground source heat exchanger and geothermal field.
During earlier decades of Vernon Senior Secondary School's history (including through at least the earlier 1980s), the school included students in grades 11 and 12 only. Through those decades, all the grade 11 and 12 public school students who resided in the greater Vernon area (including the Coldstream area, but excluding the school district's Lumby, Lavington, and Cherryville areas) attended this school. During those decades, the greater Vernon area's public junior high schools all served grades 8, 9, and 10 students. The area's elementary schools served grades 1 through 7 students and eventually provided kindergarten.
The High Performers' (HP) Program was established by Vernon Secondary School in School District #22, Vernon, in 2002 to meet the needs of students who are achieving at exceptional levels in extracurricular endeavours and thus need flexibility in their school scheduling.
VSS is also the host school of the outdoor school program EarthQuest. Since 1982 Grade 11 students from all high schools of SD22 have had the opportunity to enroll in EarthQuest. Primarily based in nearby Kalamalka Provincial Park, students also attend VSS during the winter months.
VSS and its cafeteria program has partnered with Camosun College to offer students Professional Cook Training Level 1 through the ACE-IT Apprenticeship program (Accelerated Credit Enrolment in Industry Training) program.
Academic terms and block schedulingEdit
Vernon Secondary runs on a two semester arrangement (with a 16-day break including New Years and Christmas), the first semester starting from September to January and the second running from February until June. VSS uses blocks ABCD instead of periods 1234. Each class is assigned the block letter A, B, C or D, with different classes each semester. The block order changes each week, starting with ABCD the first week, it the moves on to DCBA the next, then BADC and finally CDAB before starting the rotation over again. Also, Wednesday and Thursday are double block days rotating each week from AADD on Wednesday and BBCC on Thursday to DDAA and CCBB.
Singer Daniel Powter graduated from Vernon Secondary in 1989. You can find his grad photo on level 2 of the school.