Boarding schools in England help students build valorisation and recognize their self-worth. As they participate in a community in which they are seen as equals (as opposed to just the children being taken care of), they recognize what they can contribute and how they affect people around them
A boarding school provides education for pupils who live on the premises, as opposed to a day school. The word "boarding" is used in the sense of "room and board", i.e. lodging and meals. As they have existed for many centuries, and now extend across many countries, their function and ethos vary greatly. Traditionally, pupils stayed at the school for the length of the term; some schools facilitate returning home every weekend, and some welcome day pupils. Some are for either boys or girls while others are co-educational.
Private boarding schools in the UK have a more extensive history of such schools, many independent private schools offer boarding and some UK boarding schools offer a post-graduate year of study to help students prepare for university entrance.
A typical boarding school has several separate residential houses, either within the school grounds or in the surrounding area.
A number of senior teaching staff are appointed as housemasters or housemistresses and some have house prefects, each of whom takes responsibility for anywhere from 5 to 50 students resident in their house or dormitory at all times but particularly outside school hours. Each may be assisted in the domestic management of the house by a housekeeper often known in U.K. or Commonwealth countries as matron, and by a house tutor for academic matters, often providing staff of each gender. Some schools often have a resident family that lives in the dorm, known as dorm parents. They often have janitorial staff for maintenance and housekeeping, but typically do not have tutors associated with an individual dorm. Nevertheless, older students are often less supervised by staff, and a system of monitors or prefects gives limited authority to senior students. Houses readily develop distinctive characters, and a healthy rivalry between houses is often encouraged in sport.
Houses or dorms usually include study-bedrooms or dormitories, a dining room or refectory where students take meals at fixed times, a library and possibly study carrels where students can do their homework. Houses may also have common rooms for television and relaxation and kitchens for snacks, and occasionally storage facilities for bicycles or other sports equipment. Some facilities may be shared between several houses or dorms.
In some schools, each house has students of all ages, in which case there is usually a prefect system, which gives older students some privileges and some responsibility for the welfare of the younger ones. In others, separate houses accommodate needs of different years or classes. In some schools, day students are assigned to a dorm or house for social activities and sports purposes.
Students generally need permission to go outside defined school bounds; they may be allowed to travel off-campus at certain times.
Depending on country and context but certainly here in the UK boarding schools generally offer one or more options: full (students stay at the school full-time), weekly (students stay in the school from Monday through Friday, then return home for the weekend), or on a flexible schedule (students choose when to board, e.g. during exam week).
Each student has an individual timetable, which in the early years allows little discretion. Boarders and day students are taught together in school hours and in most cases continue beyond the school day to include sports, clubs and societies, or excursions.
British boarding schools have three terms a year, approximately twelve weeks each, with a few days' half-term holiday during which students are expected to go home or at least away from school. There may be several exeats, or weekends, in each half of the term when students may go home or away (e.g. international students may stay with their appointed guardians, or with a host family). Boarding students nowadays often go to school within easy traveling distance of their homes, and so may see their families frequently; e.g. families are encouraged to come and support school sports teams playing at home against other schools, or for school performances in music, drama or theatre.
Some boarding schools allow only boarding students, while others have both boarding students and day students who go home at the end of the school day. Day students are sometimes known as day boys or day girls. Some school’s welcome day students to attend breakfast and dinner, while others charge a fee. For schools that have designated study hours or quiet hours in the evenings, students on campus (including day students) are usually required to observe the same "quiet" rules (such as no television, students must stay in their rooms, library or study hall, etc.). Schools that have both boarding and day students sometimes describe themselves as semi-boarding schools or day boarding schools. Some schools also have students who board during the week but go home on weekends: these are known as weekly boarders, quasi-boarders, or five-day boarders.
To find out a range of private UK boarding school options we can offer please register and get in touch.