Carlbrook School, a private coeducational, college preparatory therapeutic boarding school located on 200 acres in western Halifax County, closed Thursday, and employees at the school confirmed students were asked to be out of the school by Sunday.

The school opened in 2002 serving selective students in grades 9-12 with high aptitude and potential who have struggled academically or socially in previous educational environments.

Carlbrook School has graduated almost 700 alumni, many of which have gone on to graduate from or are currently enrolled in highly regarded academic institutions located across the country and around the world, according to Private School Review.

In an email sent Thursday, alumni were informed that “due to declining enrollments, Carlbrook School will be closing this week after almost 14 years of work with students and their families.”

Employees and students were informed this week, confirmed Brandy Epps who has worked at the school for 12 years.

“I guess it’s official that I will be looking for a job after 12 years at Carlbrook, Epps said. “After 13 years they are closing their doors. I’m so sad. I love this place and staff like my own family.”

She wished good luck to all Carlbrook students and staff and their families.

When contacted for comment at the school, Carlbrook Dean of Academics Melissa Peacock was unavailable for comment.

When asked to provide contact information for Justin Merritt, one of Carlbrook’s founders who is listed on the website as director of college counseling, the receptionist said she could not do that.

Named for the historic property on which it is located, Carlbrook School was a coeducational, college-preparatory boarding school with a 200-acre campus in southern Virginia.

Prior to declining enrollment, the school served approximately 80 students from more than 25 states and the District of Columbia, as well as several foreign countries.

Instruction was provided for grades 9 through 12, with postgraduate studies offered in select circumstances. Average class size was six to eight students, and the overall student/faculty ratio was 2:1.


Utilizing an innovative psychoeducational model where intellectual exploration and character development are integrated, Carlbrook School served as an intimate learning community designed to challenge and inspire students of high aptitude who have struggled academically or socially in previous academic environments.

Of the school’s full-time professional faculty members, almost 85 percent hold advanced (post-baccalaureate) degrees.



Carlbrook School is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the Virginia Council on Private Education, and is a member of the Association of Recovery Schools, Secondary School Admissions Testing Board, the Association for Experiential Education and the Educational Records Bureau.

According to the school’s mission statement, the mission of Carlbrook School was to help students discover, internalize and effectively utilize the intellectual and personal resources necessary to succeed in college and in life.

In operational terms, the school’s primary objectives were threefold:

• to help students of high aptitude narrow the gap between their scholastic potential and actual academic performance;

• to assist families in restoring trust and effective communication;

• and to help adolescents acquire the conceptual and emotional resources to examine critically and converse reflectively about the core values of integrity, honesty, friendship, compassion, courage, vivacity, understanding, perseverance, respect and honor.