Why Boarding School

The decision to attend boarding school is not an easy one. While the quality of resources, activities, and academics offered by boarding schools may be found in local schooling options, boarding schools offer a unique set of benefits and experiences. Our informative articles cover the history of boarding schools in the US, explore the varied types of schools, and provide an overview on why boarding school can be an excellent educational option for your child. Learn more about issues affecting international students, identify some of the oldest and most prestigious boarding schools in the US, and review expert advice on making the right choice.
View the most popular articles in Why Boarding School:
Updated   August 29, 2016
Summer Boarding School Programs
Learn several key reasons why a summer boarding school program can be beneficial for your child.
Boarding schools offer many benefits, but the decision to send your child to one can still be difficult. What if you know that a public school is no longer for you (or your child), but you’re not sure about sending him or her away to a boarding school? A summer program at a boarding school may serve a number of good purposes to help you with this decision. It can give you and your child a feel for the boarding school experience, as well as for a specific school itself.   
 
Living away from home
 
For many parents and children, boarding school represents a major shift in their relationship, and it indicates a growing maturity in the child. For the first time, the child may be living away from home when he or she enrolls in a boarding school. By enrolling in a boarding school with a summer program, you and your child have an opportunity to see whether living away from home is an environment he or she can handle. 
 
A summer program allows everyone to see if the child is mature enough for this transition. Many boarding schools recommend enrolling in a summer program for exactly this reason. For example, Episcopal High School in Virginia strongly encourages prospective students to visit over the summer not only to become familiar with the facility, but to determine if they are ready to live on their own.
  
Academic challenges and considerations
 
Boarding schools pride themselves on their high standards. A high level of performance is expected from the students who attend a
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Updated   June 21, 2016 |
International Students: Boarding School Benefits
Boarding school is appealing to both U.S. and international students. Learn why boarding school is a popular option for international students around the world.
Boarding school is appealing to both U.S. and international students. This is why boarding school is a popular option for international students around the world.
 
Who are International Students
 
An international student is a student that holds a foreign (non-U.S.) passport. There are many reasons why boarding school is a popular option for international students around the world.
 
Why Boarding School for International Students?
 
Many international students would like to attend college or university in the United States, but find it difficult to do so. International students may lack the proper guidance when choosing between the thousands of colleges in the United States. Their English skills may also be a problem when applying to an American university. Boarding school helps international students:
  • Improve their English proficiency
  • Help them learn about and gain acceptance to appropriate U.S. universities
  • Adjust to a new culture by providing a smaller, structured environment designed to support non-native English speakers
English Immersion & ESL (English as a Second Language) Courses
 
 It can be difficult to learn English if it is not spoken regularly. In boarding school, international students attend class, play sports, and live with English-speaking students. This creates a helpful environment for learning English. This gives them the chance to make friends and communicate in English on a regular basis.
 
ESL (English as a Second Language) classes offered in boarding schools also help international students learn English more quickly. These classes are generally very small. ESL courses are designed to improve an international student's speaking, reading and writing ability. Boarding schools provide international students
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Updated   June 03, 2017
Considering a U.S. Arts Program?
If the arts are part of your interests and your passion, you should research each school’s available offerings. Spend time reading the school’s literature and visiting its website.
This article was written by the staff of Boarding Schools in the USA.

Arts programs are an especially appealing aspect of selecting a U.S. boarding school. In fact, you may be narrowing your search to U.S. programs because both contemporary and traditional art forms are flourishing in this country and many of our boarding schools excel in arts instruction and practice.
 
To be sure, arts programs vary widely. Some programs specialize in visual art, (drawing, painting, sculpture, photography, ceramics, and computer graphics), theatre (acting and theatre design), dance (ballet, jazz or modern), creative writing, music (vocal or instrumental) or filmmaking. Other schools offer relatively little instruction in the arts and specialize more in outdoors activities, military training, and so forth.
 
When choosing a boarding school in the U.S.A. it is important to match your interests and goals as they change over time, with the strengths of the school.
 
If the arts are part of your interests and your passion, you should research each school’s available offerings. Spend time reading the school’s literature and visiting its website. Be sure to look for the qualifications of the teachers, who may themselves be artists, and the range and level of available courses. Examine the facilities available – the theater, studios, and practice rooms. If possible, visit the school yourself.
 
 
You should evaluate whether the arts are your first priority. Arts courses may be just a part of the well-rounded education that
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Updated   August 05, 2017 |
Types of Boarding School
Explore the different types of boarding school options in the US. Find which type of boarding school is most appropriate for you.
There are several different types of boarding schools. These distinctions will be useful to know as you research schools:
 
College-Preparatory Boarding Schools
 
College preparatory boarding schools' primary goal is to prepare students for the academic rigors of college life. If you're a generally well-motivated student seeking to excel and explore new opportunities, this is the type of boarding school you're looking for. All the schools listed in our boarding school directory are exclusively college-preparatory or junior boarding schools. Note that a number of college-prep boarding schools also accommodate students with learning differences (LD) or ADD/ADHD. Within college-preparatory boarding schools, there are additional distinctions between schools:
  • All-boys or all-girls boarding schools - while fewer in number, there are a number of single-sex boarding schools in the USA. View a list of all-girls boarding schools or all-boys boarding schools.
  • Military schools - these boarding schools also prepare students for college-life, with the addition of military-type discipline and structure. View a list of military boarding schools.
  • Pre-professional arts schools - these schools specialize in helping students train and become artists in a variety of fields such as music, visual arts, theatre, ballet, and creative writing. Students are prepared for entrance into either traditional colleges or specialty schools like music conservatories (e.g., Juilliard). View a list of arts boarding schools.
  • Religious boarding schools - these schools have an emphasis on a particular religion and spiritual growth. View a list of Christian boarding schools.
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Updated   June 03, 2017 |
Boarding School Myths
Read about common boarding school myths in case your perception of boarding school is driven largely by popular movies and urban legend.
What are boarding schools really like anyway?
 
Even if you're just starting your boarding school research, there's a good chance you already have an impression of what boarding schools are like. Perhaps you have read The Catcher in the Rye or A Separate Peace. Or maybe you saw Dead Poets Society or School Ties.

These stories, while entertaining, take place in boarding school settings which are quite different from what you will actually find today. An excerpt from an article about college-preparatory boarding schools in The New York Times summarizes these differences well:
 
"To generations of students whose syllabuses include J.D. Salinger's "Catcher in the Rye," boarding school represents the winter of their adolescent discontent; a cold, distant place where parents threaten to send their children if they don't measure up. Parents dropped their children off in September, picked them up again in June and let the schoolmasters worry about what went on in between.

If Holden Caulfield were to return to school for Alumni Day 2001, he would find that the world of proctors and prefects, dorm teas and Mr. Chips has undergone a millennial thaw. Most of the approximately 36,000 students at boarding schools packed their bags willingly and are in daily e-mail contact with mom and dad. The ivy is no longer one shade of green. Students are as likely to room with a real prince of Thailand as with the fresh prince of Bel Air, as the schools reach farther into the public high
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Why Boarding School

About Boarding Schools

Here you’ll find basic information on boarding schools and why they may be the best choice for your child. Get answers to some of the most frequently asked questions, dispel boarding school myths, and learn what separates a boarding school from other private school options.

Kinds of Schools

There are several types of boarding schools, each offering a unique set of experiences. The articles in this section will provide more information on college preparatory, junior and therapeutic boarding schools. Here you will explore the pros and cons of single sex education, learn the truth about military schools and identify schools with programs for learning disabled students.

International Students

US Boarding schools attract students from all over the world. International students often face a unique set of challenges. This section will cover topics relevant to global students. From English immersion to preparing for entry into a US college or university, we’ll provide helpful tips and resources to help international students make informed decisions.

History

This section provides a comprehensive look at the history of boarding schools in the US. We’ll cover the evolution of private schools, as learn the importance of school mottoes and explore the history of 15 schools and their founders.