Determining which programs are 'must haves' is an important part of choosing the right boarding school for your child.
As you begin to refine your boarding school search, one of the things you will find yourself doing is circling back to find out which schools offer the programs your child wants and needs. Remember: you and your child need to discuss your wants and needs together. That way you will end up with a child who is enthusiastic about going to private school and feels that she has been involved in the process. Unlike the limited options which you will find in most public schools these days, private schools offer a rich array of programs.
Mandarin, Spanish, French and Italian are the most common languages offered in private schools. You will find these most often at the high school level but they are increasingly common in the primary grades. If you really want to kick it up a notch, there are several private schools which actually teach everything in French, German and Hebrew, for example. Review the curriculum section of school web sites to determine what language courses are offered. You can find schools quickly by inputting "chinese language" as a search string on this site.
What about classical languages such as Latin and Greek? Latin is still to be found on course lists in many schools. Classical Greek is not as common. If a world view is important to you, then review carefully the language component at the schools which interest you. Being fluent in a language or two is increasingly important.
is your thing, then you need to investigate the course offerings and the teachers who are doing the heavy lifting. Look for masters degrees in those disciplines. Incidentally, seeing what percentage of faculty have advanced degrees is easy to do on this site using the school comparison tool.
Studying robotics is very popular in many schools. Given the importance of this technology in manufacturing, it is a subject well worth studying in as much depth as you can before you get to college.
Riding programs are something many parents insist that their children have. Most programs feature English style riding programs and facilities but there are a few schools which also offer Western style riding. You can find schools with equestrian programs on this site by inputting the search string "equestrian schools".
Being a Canadian I grew up with hockey. I was on skates from the age of 3 or 4. So I am thrilled to see the great interest in hockey in my adopted country. Many private schools have strong hockey programs. Again, input "hockey boarding schools" in the search program to find schools offering hockey programs.
The variety of extracurricular activities which most boarding schools offer is simply mind-boggling. Literally, whatever your child might be interested in will be offered in a boarding school. Since this is an important aspect of choosing the right school for your child, take time to review the extracurricular activity programs offered.
I have highlighted just a few programs for you to consider. There are dozens more. Have fun exploring them.