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Source: (13) What do Parents want from a boarding school? | LinkedIn

When it comes to choosing a boarding school for their child, parents are often faced with a daunting task. With numerous options available, each with its unique strengths and weaknesses, it’s essential to know what to look for in a boarding school to ensure the best possible education and experience for their child. In this article, we’ll delve into the top considerations that parents typically look for in a boarding school.

Academic Excellence

First and foremost, parents want to ensure that their child receives a high-quality education. This includes not only academic performance but also the quality of teaching, curriculum, and resources available. Parents look for schools that offer a rigorous curriculum, experienced teachers, and small class sizes to ensure personalised attention. Additionally, they want to know that the school is accredited by reputable organisations, such as IAPS and BSA.

Safety and Security

Parents are naturally concerned about their child’s safety and well-being when they’re away from home. They look for schools that have a strong focus on security, including measures such as:

– Secure campuses with gated entrances and surveillance cameras

– Regular security checks and patrols

– A comprehensive emergency response plan

– Trained staff and faculty who can respond promptly to emergencies

Caring and Supportive Community

A boarding school is more than just an academic institution; it’s a community that provides emotional support and care. Parents want their child to feel connected, supported, and valued by the school community. They look for schools that:

– Have a strong sense of community and camaraderie among students

– Offer extracurricular activities and clubs that cater to different interests

– Provide counseling services and mental health support

– Have a low student-to-staff ratio to ensure personalised attention

Extracurricular Activities and Opportunities

Boarding schools offer a range of extracurricular activities, from sports teams to music ensembles, which provide students with opportunities to develop new skills, build relationships, and explore their passions. Parents want their child to have access to these opportunities, which can help them grow both academically and personally.

Residential Life

Living away from home can be challenging for many students, especially those who are entering boarding school for the first time. Parents look for schools that prioritise residential life, providing:

– Comfortable and well-maintained dormitories

– A supportive Residential team

– A variety of meal options and dining facilities

– Regular check-ins and communication with parents

Location and Accessibility

While some parents may prioritise proximity to their home or work location, others may be more interested in the school’s location in terms of accessibility. For example:

– Is the school located in a urban or rural area?

– Are there nearby airports or transportation hubs?

– Are there opportunities for international travel or cultural immersion?

Cost and Financial Aid

Boarding schools can be expensive, but many offer financial aid packages to help make them more affordable. Parents look for schools that:

– Offer bursery admissions or financial aid packages

– Have a transparent fee structure and breakdown of costs

– Provide resources for students who require additional support

Reputation and Accreditation

Reputation is everything in education. Parents want to know that their child is attending a reputable institution with a strong track record of academic excellence, student success, and community involvement. They look for schools that:

– Have a strong reputation in their region or globally

– Are accredited by reputable organisations

– Have a history of producing successful alumni

Communication and Transparency

Parents want to stay informed about their child’s progress, both academically and personally. They look for schools that:

– Provide regular updates on their child’s academic performance

– Have an open-door policy for communication with parents

– Offer regular parent-teacher conferences or online meetings

Innovative Teaching Methods

In today’s fast-paced world, parents expect schools to adapt to new teaching methods and technologies. They look for schools that:

– Embrace innovative teaching methods, such as project-based learning

– Invest in cutting-edge technology and infrastructure

– Provide professional development opportunities for teachers

Support for Students with Special Needs

Some parents may be concerned about supporting students with special needs or learning disabilities. They look for schools that:

– Offer specialised support services, such as speech therapy or counseling

– Have experience working with students with similar needs

– Provide accommodations and modifications to help students succeed

Community Engagement

Parents want their child to be part of a community that values social responsibility and community engagement. They look for schools that:

– Encourage community service or volunteer work

– Have partnerships with local organisations or businesses

– Offer opportunities for students to participate in global citizenship programs

In conclusion, when choosing a boarding school, parents consider a range of factors beyond just academic excellence. They want their child to receive a well-rounded education, develop important life skills, and feel supported by the school community. By considering these factors, parents can make an informed decision about which boarding school is best suited for their child’s needs.