Editor's note: I asked Whitney Retzer, the Senior Associate Director of Admissions at St. Timothy's School, Stevenson, Maryland, to answer some questions which I know most parents have about boarding school. Here are her answers. ~Rob Kennedy
RK: 1. Can't my child get just as good an education in my local public school? Why should I go to all the expense and trouble of sending her to a boarding school?
WR: There are benefits to private boarding school that cannot be matched. Students are given more support, encouragement and differentiated instruction that is only possible is small classes and with greater access to teachers. St. Timothy’s school has a teacher to student ratio of 8:1 which means students can be in classrooms as small as six students and as large as twelve per teacher.
Also, the majority of St. Timothy’s faculty hold advanced degrees, and many live on campus and are therefore accessible and available to students outside the classroom. In this environment, students truly get the time and attention to flourish as 21st-century learners that are critical-thinking, curious and caring global ambassadors.
RK: 2. What advantages can a boarding school offer parents looking to send their son or daughter to a private school?
WR: Boarding schools offer students once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to study and collaborate with friends from all over the nation and world. St. Timothy’s has students from 20 different countries and 15 different states who are all living and studying together. Students change roommates twice a year and assigned lunch seating. . .read more
The New England Preparatory School Athletic Council was founded in 1942 as an informal association of prep school athletic directors in New England. What is very gratifying to see after over 70 years is the growth of the organization from the original eleven schools to a membership currently in the 160 range. That growth is proof of the importance which private schools attach to their athletic programs.
As I have stated many times, sports programs are not an optional extra in private schools. Sports programs are integrated fully into the education of young people in private schools which take the saying of the first century Roman poet Juvenal seriously. "Mens sana in corpore sano" which means a healthy mind in a healthy body. Private schools adopted this approach from the beginning. As a result, you won't find many private schools where sports are not compulsory. Sports are an integral component of most private school programs. Most schools set aside a weekday afternoon when the entire school engages in a variety of athletic activities. As you scan private school websites, explore the athletic offerings. One of them is sure to appeal to your youngster. Moreover, as she settles into her new school, you will soon discover that she is trying out several different sports, including some which you never thought she would try. The final point which I must make about private school sports is that they teach young people to integrate exercise into their daily lives. And that is a. . .read more
The education systems in the U.S. and UK are ranked among the best in the world. With an emphasis on employing highly qualified teachers, providing students with opportunities for success inside and outside of the classroom and offering tailored support, the academic experiences offered at boarding schools in the U.S. and UK have their fair share of similarities, but they also have differences that ultimately distinguish the education on each side of the Atlantic Ocean.
In the UK, students often follow the A-Level academic program in their last two years of secondary school. This program culminates in internationally recognized qualifications, which means that it’s possible for A-Level students to apply to and attend university in the U.S. or other countries. But A-Levels are the standard pathway for entry to university in the UK. With the A-Level program, a student will focus on just three or four subjects that are related to what they would like to study at university, and then they apply to a specific field or program in line with their A-Level studies. In the U.S., students can follow the well-known IB or AP programs, but in addition to those qualifications, they can also receive a high school diploma. To earn a high school diploma, a student in the U.S. will have to meet the academic requirements set by a state’s department of education. These requirements include all subjects – math, science, humanities, English and arts, as well as additional electives. This means students gain exposure to. . .read more
The International Baccalaureate covers the entire K-12 spectrum with three distinct educational curricula. In this article, we focus on American private schools which offer the Diploma Programme. This rigorous course of studies targets high school students ages 16-19. Colleges and universities the world over recognize the IB Diploma. The International Baccalaureate organization must authorize schools before they can be designated an IB school. The adherence to a strict set of standards and protocols is essentially what makes the IB Diploma so valuable. Let's take a look at boarding schools which offer the IB Diploma Programme.
Annie Wright School, Tacoma, WA
Founded in 1884
Number of students: 192
Grades 9-12. Girls
Religious Affiliation: Non-denominational
Annie Wright School has a PK-8 division which is coeducational. The high school is for girls only. The campus is located on 10 acres in the north end of Tacoma. The school has been an IB school since 2009. For complete details regarding curriculum, sports, extracurricular activities, costs, and other information, see the Annie Wright Schools profile.
Cheshire Academy, Cheshire, CT
Founded in 1794
Number of students: 400
Grades 8-12. Coeducational
Religious Affiliation: Non-denominational
Cheshire Academy is situated on 102 acres in the historic Connecticut town of Cheshire. The school has been an IB school since 2011. For complete details regarding curriculum, sports, extracurricular activities, costs, and other information, see the Cheshire Academy profile.
EF Academy New York,. . .read more
In 2015, Florida became the first state ever to welcome more than 100 million out-of-state and international tourists. In addition, more people moved to Florida than California for the first time in nearly a decade. There’s good reason, too. The weather. The year-round outdoor activities. The cost of living. The job growth and opportunities. The sporting events. The cultural arts. The music festivals. The ever-improving infrastructure.
Not only is Florida a great state to visit and live, it’s an incredible place to learn. With 10 college-prep and boarding schools in Florida, the state offers a nice mix to choose from. But why is attending boarding school in Florida better than anywhere else? Here are just a few reasons:
Sunny and Tropical
Nicknamed the “Sunshine State,” Florida boasts an average of 361 days of sunshine a year. Did you know St. Petersburg holds a Guinness Book World Record with 768 consecutive sunny days? St. Petersburg is just one of many places in Florida where sunshine reigns supreme. giving students an opportunity to enjoy outdoor activities all year long.
There are just 20 states that average less than 15 inches a snow each year. Florida. . .read more