Our Mission and Values

The Vanguard School is an independent, co-educational boarding and day school for students who learn differently. Vanguard strives to ensure each student aspires to higher educational opportunities and independent life.


Our Core Values:







The Vanguard School was established in 1966 in Lake Wales as one of the first schools to work with students with diagnosed learning disabilities. Vanguard originally began as an after school tutorial program in suburban Philadelphia, Vanguard quickly developed into a school serving students who struggled in traditional learning environments and benefit from teachers that understand they serve students who learn differently. In the late 1950’s, Bill Carnhill, father of a Vanguard student, who is also a resident of Mountain Lake in Lake Wales led the way to establish Vanguard as a residential/day school in Florida. Mr. Carnhilll’s neighbors at Mountain Lake supported the development of the current 76 acres campus on Highway 27. In 1975 The Vanguard School was accredited by the Florida Council of Independent School (FCIS) and in 1983 received additional accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).