Virginia Episcopal School

VES is a co-ed college preparatory school for boarding and day students in grades 9 – 12. In our intentionally small, diverse and engaging community—260 young men and women and 40 faculty—we guide students to strive Toward Full Stature in their academic, ethical, spiritual and personal growth.

400 VES RoadLynchburg, Virginia24503


Science is everywhere. Our students begin with this simple notion and they develop a deep understanding of the principles and rules that govern the universe.

A Physics class discusses the energy of a falling leaf, which converts from potential to kinetic, but also creates friction and heat as it presses on air molecules and the air presses back. While hiking the campus trails, our AP Environmental Science students measure the trees to calculate the offset our woods account for on the carbon footprint of our fleet of VES vehicles. As students return from their hike, the Biology teacher strolls by, points to a caterpillar munching on a leaf and reminds the students that macromolecules from food are recycled into all body structures. The students remember their lesson from Chemistry—that we balance a chemistry equation because matter is never created or destroyed, merely recycled into another form. Thus the fundamental systems that guide our universe build upon each other and are reinforced at every turn.

Our Science department fosters curiosity about the world and creates students able to succeed in future scientific study. Through discussions, active discovery, experiments and group projects, we encourage our students to think, take intellectual risks and try, even if the outcome leads them to revise their understanding. Our students learn to work together, respect each other’s ideas and talents, and celebrate the camaraderie and success that comes with like minds involved in critical thinking and problem solving.

Most students begin with the study of Biology in the freshman year and advance to Chemistry or Physics as their mathematical proficiency increases. After the first two years of study, their interest and skills guide them as they explore the wide range of science courses offered.

Department Staff

Chad Hanning

Margaret Thomas Bourne Chair of Science | Director of Community Life | Asst Coach, Golf

Christopher Bright

Science Teacher | Head Coach, Cross Country | Asst Coach, Wrestling | Sustainability Coordinator

Matt Foy

STEM Teacher | Head Coach, Boys JV Basketball | Asst Coach, Boys Varsity Basketball

Larissa Knebel

Thomas H. “Tuck” Maddux III ’47 Distinguished Master Teacher—Science | Chair, Faculty Advisory Comm

Patrick Pickard

Science teacher

Rachel Pollock

Science Teacher | Head Coach, Robotics

Scott Winston

Athletic Trainer | Assistant Director of Athletics