Victory High School - History and Background

Lorna Letourneau founded Victory High School in 1990. Having taught in public school for over 20 years, Mrs. Letourneau saw a need for an alternative to traditional public and private high schools. Originally a small, one room school with eight students, VHS has grown into a much larger facility with both Math and Computer Rooms and over 50 students.

"In public high schools, I saw these kids sitting in the back of the room and I thought they really needed help..."

After retiring as an elementary school teacher, Mrs. Letourneau wanted to go into the missions field. She completed two years of Bible college in Oklahoma and returned to New England to work as a substitute teacher in the area high schools. That is when she was inspired to start an alternative school to teach students who might otherwise find it difficult functioning in a standard educational setting. She spoke to Judith Fillion, a friend from the state education department, who encouraged Lorna to start her own school. Mrs. Letourneau wrote a program and submitted it to the state, which approved it.

"When we started we didn't even have an office, now we are a nonprofit with four teachers."

While the program has changed and grown, the students attending has multiplied and more teachers added over the years - the school still holds to it's high ideals. The smaller class sizes and lots of individual attention are paramount to a students success. Each morning, Mrs. Letourneau speaks to the students about maintaining strong morales and values, that will enhance their future in making good life decisions.

"The real success is to show these children how valuable they are and to teach them the deep sense of security they can have in knowing their spirit."

Students arrive at 8 AM to work on the curriculum. Being an accredited high school, that entails math, English, science, social studies, health, computers and American government. Homework is corrected every day which holds students accountable. Knowing exactly where a student is academically, encourages strong school-work habits. Around mid-day, students are excused for work. Every student with a few exceptions, have a job. Working teaches responsibilty to themselves, their parents and the school. Some students are even paying for their own education.

"The kids are changed after being here..."

Most students hail from throughout the local area - Jaffrey, Rindge, Peterborough, New Ipswich, Swanzey, Dublin and Fitzwilliam. Some travel from Ashburnham, Winchendon or Gardner, Massachusetts. VHS has even had students from Maine and South Carolina. Due to a partnership with Franklin Pierce College in Rindge, credits can be obtained for Victory High School. And with a 98+% graduation rate, many of our graduates go on to college.

"We're here to help those kids who find themselves struggling in the public school system and might otherwise drop out."


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