About Boarding Schools
I just read another one of those discouraging articles in the New York Times about the low esteem in which America holds its teachers in the 21st century. Author Sam Dillon is referring to public school teachers. This is a difficult time for most public school boards of education as they try to figure out what programs to reduce or eliminate to balance their budgets. Since local school districts are funded principally from taxes on real property, they cannot simply raise the mill rate. Historically, local residents will not pass budgets which have large tax increases. Inevitably, teaching positions are on the table. Teachers face salary and benefit cuts or, even worse, outright job losses. While I most certainly empathize with the teachers' predicament, I also know that private schools stand to reap the benefit of having some of these gifted professionals join their ranks. Besides being able to have a job in their chosen profession, why else would professional teachers want to teach in a boarding school? They would want to do so for many of the same reasons why you and I want our children to attend such residential schools. Let's look at some of the factors which might make an experienced public school teacher consider teaching in the private K-12 sector.
Teachers want to teach. They love their subject. They know it inside and out at the level at which they have been teaching. They know all the tricks and
1. There is a boarding school which will fit your requirements.
The United States and Canada have approximately 400-500 hundred boarding schools. The chances are that you will be able to find a school which will suit your requirements. Take time to determine what you are looking for in a boarding school with the person who will be attending the school, namely, your child. She needs to buy into the concept of going away to school. She also needs to understand the many benefits of a boarding school education, both in the short and in the long-term. Perhaps her first reactions will be negative because all she will see is that she is going to be losing all her friends and her family. In short, she will assume that going off to boarding school will separate her from everything she knows and loves. That's tough for a teenager to deal with.
If you plan your strategy carefully and discuss the matter with her rather than dictating what will happen, you will quickly build consensus. After all, you only have to point out to her how you wanted her in the first place and that you have nurtured her emotionally and in every other way since birth. Hopefully, then she will trust your judgment and good sense when you put it to her that way.
Once you have her attention, discuss what she needs to build a happy and successful three or four years away at high school. Most boarding schools will accept
If you are just beginning to explore boarding schools, this article will give the view from 10,000'. I suggest that you scan the article quickly, and then drill down in anything which interests you. Our site has a wealth of information to guide your search process. And, if you don't find the answers you want, you probably will be able to find them on our sister site, Private School Review. Finally, if you have more questions, tweet me. I will be happy to help.
Boarding schools range in size from rather small (100 students) to rather large (1200 students). Most boarding school populations are somewhere in the middle with 300-400 students. Compare these numbers to most public schools and you will begin to see why size is so important in my opinion. I wanted my daughters to be visible when they went to boarding school. When the school community is a manageable size, teachers and administrative staff get to know their students quickly. More importantly, they will usually know what their young charges are up to. Boarding schools take their role as your substitute very seriously. The legal term is in loco parentis. Your child will not be invisible or able to hide when she attends boarding school.
Chatham Hall is an example of a small school. Everybody knows everybody in a school like this one.
How many boarding schools are there? Approximately 300 boarding schools in the U.S.