Sending your child to a UK boarding school is an important decision that will play a pivotal role in shaping their future. To answer the overarching question of whether you should send your child to a UK boarding school, let’s break it down into four smaller questions. Firstly, what are the benefits of sending your child to boarding school? Secondly, how much does it cost? Thirdly why do parents send their children to boarding school? Fourth and finally, what is the youngest age you could send to boarding school at?
What are the benefits of sending your child to boarding school?
There are many benefits to sending your child to a UK boarding school. Class sizes tend to be smaller, making it easier for students and teachers to engage with one another, for teachers to allocate more time to helping students that are struggling and for teachers to adapt their teaching strategies to suit the strengths of individual students. Boarding school students are also encouraged to exercise their independence outside of the classroom and have a wide range of extra-curricular activities to choose from. This aids with personal development and will help your child adapt to a university-style way of doing things long before most non-boarding school students get the chance to. This environment is also more focused and limits distraction by design, meaning that a child’s time there is much more restricted than it would be at a non-boarding school but in many ways is more disciplined and productive. There are also considerable advantages after your child leaves boarding school in that they will have access to strong alumni networks. Traditionally referred to as ‘the old boy’s network’, the friendships and acquaintances your child makes at a UK boarding school carry over into the professional world and offer opportunities and advantages that would be inaccessible otherwise. This benefit is even more pronounced among international boarding school students who will acquire native English fluently, and have a safe environment in which they can immerse themselves in British culture thanks to high-quality pastoral support and care.
How much does it cost to send a child to boarding school?
Average UK boarding school fees in the UK come out at £11,609 per term for secondary schools and £8,621 per term for prep schools, as reported by the Independent School Council in December of 2020. However, there are considerable discounts available for parents wanting to send their children to boarding school with bursaries and scholarships being commonplace. In 2020 the ISC reported that 33.5% of pupils at ISC schools received some kind of financial assistance.
Why do parents send their children to boarding school?
Parents send their children to UK boarding schools for a wide variety of reasons. As mentioned above financial assistance is commonplace and some parents get that financial assistance through their jobs. For example, members of the armed forces, members of the diplomatic corps and some members of the clergy (depending on their denomination compared to the schools) have access to that help. There are also logistics to consider. Perhaps a parent’s job involves them moving around the world regularly, in that case a UK boarding school gives a routine and stability to a child’s education that would otherwise be disrupted by having to move school every time the parent moves location for work.
What is the youngest age for boarding school?
The youngest age a child can board in the UK is 7 years old. Starting boarding at this age can be particularly advantageous for international students as it allows them to practice their English and become more resilient and adaptable before entering the crucial phase of their education in secondary school.
In conclusion if you can send your child to a UK boarding school, you should. The financial barrier to entry is permeable thanks to a wide range of options for financial assistance. While the education your child receives will be much more engaging and focused thanks to smaller class sizes and a disciplined, distraction free environment. Setting them up for a successful future, it is also the contacts your children will make while they are there that are equally beneficial to their development, allowing them to forge friendships and professional connections that will last a lifetime.