Education in Danville, VA
Education options in Danville and Pittsylvania County include two public school systems, a four-year university and a community college, plus other professional programs available through other institutions.
The area of Pittsylvania County excluding Danville is served by Pittsylvania County Schools' 10 elementary, four middle and four high schools. PCS schools were recognized in 2009 for outstanding performance. John L. Hurt, Jr. Elementary School received the Governor's Award for Educational Excellence. The State Board of Education gave its VIP Excellence Award to Chatham Elementary School, Gretna Elementary School, Twin Springs Elementary School and Tunstall High School.
Danville Public Schools contains nine elementary, three middle and three high schools, as well as Grove Park Preschool and other institutions. One of DPS's most impressive institutions is Galileo Magnet High School, an International Baccalaureate school. It provides in-depth courses in communications and computer technology, aeronautics, and biotechnology.
The Piedmont Governor's School is an advanced study program offered to gifted 11th and 12th-graders that is hosted by Henry Community College and Danville Community College. Students from Danville, Pittsylvania County and surrounding counties are offered a college-level education in mathematics, science and technology.
Danville Community College
An instrumental link between Danville’s academic and economic sectors is Danville Community College. The two-year college offers progressive courses and flexible scheduling and has expanded educational access through partnerships with area schools, neighborhoods and community organizations. DCC also has taken a lead role in assistance with economic development through partnerships with developers, the Danville-Pittsylvania County Chamber of Commerce and the business community.
“We consider ourselves an entrepreneurial community college,” says Dr. Carlyle Ramsey, president. “We’re always trying to anticipate what our employers need and constantly interact with them. Assisting with economic development is right at the core of who we are.”
DCC is strengthening the local workforce through a significant amount of customized training and industry-specific services including pre-employment training and skills assessment. In an effort to meet the training needs of employers and the community, DCC developed an accelerated Advanced Manufacturing Technician certificate, which allows students to accumulate 25 credit hours in just 10 weeks.
Meanwhile, the region’s only four-year institution is building on a tradition of excellence both on campus and throughout the community. Averett University consistently has been a pioneer in education, combining strong liberal arts programs with innovative offerings such as aeronautics and equestrian studies. Averett also offers business and teacher education programs statewide.
Under the leadership of Dr. Tiffany Franks, who began her tenure as president in 2008, the university is establishing itself as a leader in regional transformation.
“Averett is stepping up to share its brain power with all aspects of our region. We have the intellectual power not only to educate area students but to create the culture of higher learning that can help our region move forward,” Franks says. “We want to be the best partner, the best teacher and the best leader. We want people to be proud of their hometown university.”
Averett’s programs have been expanding to meet the needs of local employers. The university has developed an autism education program, approved by the Virginia Autism Council, and issues certificates of training in autism spectrum disorders. In addition, Averett has established a Center for Excellence in Athletic Training that makes Danville a key destination for first-class sports medicine services and conferences.
To accommodate as many students as possible, Averett is offering online learning opportunities, with classes also offered at The Southern Virginia Higher Education Center in South Boston and The Franklin Center in Rocky Mount.
Other Key Players in Higher Education
Other key players include the Danville Regional Medical Center School of Health Professions, where students are getting real-life experience in the fields of nursing and radiologic technology. At National College, individuals are gaining skills necessary to enter into professional fields such as accounting and business administration. The Institute for Advanced Learning and Research, assures that people are engaged in educational pathway programs that are strategically aligned with the institute’s research centers in polymers, engineering, and horticulture and forestry.
Find more on what it's like to live in Danville, VA.