Blue Ridge Virginia Governor's School
Blue Ridge Virginia Governor's School
by Jim Hopkins, school board member
image missingThe Virginia Department of Education provides funding for high schools across the Commonwealth, but in addition, it also supports nineteen governor's schools. The governor's schools are regional high schools for talented and gifted students.  The most famous is Thomas Jefferson High School in Fairfax County. Most people consider it a Fairfax County school because it is in the county.  But in reality, Thomas Jefferson is a regional high school that serves most of the school divisions in Northern Virginia, including Loudoun County and the City of Alexandria.

The Blue Ridge Virginia Governor's School (BRVGS) is the governor's school that serves the students of Orange County. It is a regional program for 640 academically motivated high school students from the counties of Fluvanna, Goochland, Greene, Louisa, Madison, Nelson, and Orange.  Unlike Thomas Jefferson, Blue Ridge has no self-contained building but operates as a school within a school.  The BRVGS students remain in their local high school and link with their regional peers through interactive technology projects, online classes, and occasional field experiences.

The Blue Ridge Virginia Governor's School is the Talented and Gifted program for Orange High School. It represents academically the top 10% of the student body.  The core curriculum for the Blue Ridge is carefully planned by qualified subject matter instructors and approved by the BRVGS Joint School Board.  I have been honored to be Chair of the Blue Ridge Joint School Board for the last five years.

At Orange County High School, there are 144 slots available for governor's school students.  These slots are the total for high school grades 9 through 12; thus, each grade level has 36 slots.  Each year, up to 36 eighth-grade students are selected to be in the Blue Ridge Virginia Governor's School as they begin their first year at Orange High School.  If you know of any students who may want to apply for the governor's school, they should contact their middle school guidance office. More information on the Blue Ridge Virginia Governor's School may be obtained from their website at