After leaving Trinidad and Tobago to attend school in the United States, Vernon Farrell emigrated to Canada in 1965. He completed his M.Ed. at the University of Toronto and was a teacher and principal at several schools in the North York Board of Education. Since 1995 he has been the principal at Brookview Middle School where he has conveyed the vision that, "All students can learn. Validation of students’ life experiences and culture enables them to see themselves in inclusive curricula as subjects rather than objects." Vernon has been instrumental in motivating others to action through the renaming and adoption of a proactive agenda for The African Heritage Educator’s Network, including founding of the network’s "Focus" newsletter and "Project '90," a Saturday tutorial program in North York which has been embraced by the African community.
In his capacity as principal, Vernon introduced a mini-school system to bring staff, students and the community together to renew enrollment at Woodbine Junior High School (1987-1990). Since his appointment at Brookview Middle School, student "benchmark" scores have gone from the lowest in the North York system to an above system's average. Brookview School focuses on: strong academic leadership, high academic expectations, monitoring of students’ work, maintaining a safe and orderly school environment and parent involvement. The accomplishments of this school have been acclaimed and highlighted in the media and educational circles. In 1996, Vernon Farrell received the Harry Jerome Award for Leadership for outstanding contributions in the Black community.