If you’re thinking about sending your child to boarding school but not yet 100% sure on your decision, this blog may be able to help. Ensuring you have all the information you need about boarding schools can ensure you make the very best decision and one that is right for your family and your children.
While there are advantages to traditional day schools, boarding schools offer a number of benefits, from encouraging independence to inspiring creativity and building social skills, all of which have a positive impact in later life.
Read on to discover some of the other benefits of boarding school.
Boarding school allows your child to develop a sense of independence that day education paths cannot always offer. If your child is away from home, they can’t be reliant on others all the time; they have to start taking daily tasks and activities upon themselves, for example getting up on time in the morning and being prompt for lessons.
While boarding gives children the opportunity to feel independent, they aren’t completely alone. They can develop independence with the help of a supportive network of peers, tutors as well as their Housemistress or Housemaster and other staff at the school.
Boarding schools are often set in stunning campus settings that are there to be enjoyed and made use of. On-site facilities are extensive too with many schools offering full sized gyms, state of the art theatres and large libraries with all the books you’d ever want. Being able to enjoy the facilities at your leisure without any travel time to school each morning and evening is a real bonus. Consider this, between 2015 – 2019 in the UK, the average trip time to school was 19 minutes (one way). As there are an average of 190 school days per year, that’s 120.3 hours spent driving to and from school!
Boarding schools offer a real community feel and allow children to feel at home. When you’re living and studying in the same place, over time pupils develop a sense of belonging which in turn can help them grow as a person. There’s even been research to suggest that a sense of belonging can lead to better physical and emotional wellbeing which can positively impact academic outcomes. A sense of belonging can be heightened if the school is small to medium sized as staff will most likely know children by name and know what makes them tick.
Having adults by your side who really understand what it’s like to be in education and what life is like during the teenage years can be a real benefit. The vital teenage years shape a person’s future and are prime ages for personal development. Having people to turn to that can help nurture confidence and independence at this stage is one of the many advantages of boarding school.
In the traditional school setting, you might engage with academic staff during lessons and in some extra-curricular activities. However, at boarding school, pupils get the opportunity to engage with staff outside of the normal environment such as during pastoral activities and at the weekend. This can help children feel more connected to the school which in turn can lead to increased engagement, happiness and feelings of security.
We all love our family – well most of the time anyway! However, you can appreciate them more when you live away from them, as the saying goes ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’. When you live at home, it may not always be possible to spend quality time with your family if parents have working commitments or other children to look after. While boarders will have plenty of opportunities to stay in touch with parents and guardians, when you do get together during the holidays you can truly enjoy quality time spent together, free from distractions.
How many children get the opportunity to live and study with their peers? At boarding school, this is one of the main benefits. On one hand, you want your child to develop academically but developing social skills is equally as important. Boarding schools give students the chance to integrate with others inside and outside the classroom with most offering a whole range of clubs, activities and games to participate in. Boarding houses are inherently social too with many boarders sharing dorms and shared common rooms to make use of. In addition to this, many boarding schools welcome international pupils from across the world. This provides an opportunity for pupils to develop an awareness of cultural differences and live with people from various nationalities which helps to nurture social skills and emotional intelligence too.
What better way to prepare for the future than to live away from home. Most young people don’t get this opportunity until at least college or university age. Boarding schools provide a head start on this which can help to build a sense of personal responsibility. Boarders are ultimately responsible for the actions they take, from organising their weekly calendars to getting their homework done on time.
No friendship is perfect. We all have ups and downs through childhood and adulthood. However, the best friendships are those where you support each other through the tough times and are there in the good times too. Being in such a close-knit community with peers provides a real chance for children to develop and understand the ups and downs of friendship.
Many families have no choice but to send their child to a boarding school in the UK. For example, as a Forces Family you may be deployed to different countries on a regular basis and for children, this can be quite unsettling. Boarding school can offer stability and security. You can be reassured that your child is well looked after by the same people without having to chop and change schools every time you move.
We have covered just 10 of the main benefits of going to a UK boarding school but, with a strong education here at Wycliffe, you can experience a whole lot more.We offer flexibility with full, day and flexi boarding from the age of 7 and, our individual approach is designed to ensure every pupil thrives – no matter their talents or capabilities. We believe education to be more than just what is learnt inside the classroom and what grades are achieved. For this reason, we aim to develop pupils as a whole ensuring they are best prepared for their futures as global citizens.