Parents pursuing private education for their children have two distinct options – to board or not to board. If you choose the latter, it’s essential to pick an environment that will help further your child’s learning and not hinder it. After all, they will be spending a lot longer than the standard school hours on campus.
So to do the right thing by your child, here are three categories of boarding schools for parents to consider.
Boarding in the city or “urban boarders” is a trend that’s on the rise according to the Australian Boarding Schools' Association and it’s easy to understand the appeal. Sending your child to boarding school at a short distance from home can be the ideal balance between giving them independence as well as the comfort of having their family nearby.
The experience of boarding in the city is also a unique one for students. This is in large part due to the freedom they get to explore their surroundings, making it an excellent opportunity for parents hoping to encourage their children to explore all facets of their personalities and still be able to see their families without the need for extensive travel. It’s also a good choice for parents
who due to work or other commitments, may not be able to visit their child as frequently if they decide board further away.
If you aren’t entirely sold on the idea of boarding school, weekly boarding may be the trial run you need. This option allows students to board during the week and return home on the weekends and can be ideal in situations where children have to travel extensively to and from school. Instead of wasting time on the commute, they can use it to invest back into their education and extra-curricular activities. This will also be the most suitable option for children who are apprehensive about boarding, as the transition is a lot more gradual.
The most traditional of the three options are country boarding schools, and they offer an excellent opportunity to learn independence and enjoy a unique culture that isn’t provided by studying in the city. Granted parents won’t be able to visit as frequently, but the ability to take your child’s learning beyond the classroom can certainly make up for it. The mixture of in-class and extra-curricular education encourages a holistic approach to learning that can only come from full-time boarding away from home.
Another advantage is instilling discipline – not the kind that’s run by fear but the discipline to be responsible for yourself. In an environment where children are away from their families, the skills of cleaning up after themselves, being aware of their responsibilities and collaborating with peers can come naturally.
Ultimately, the decision of whether to board or not is dependent on the type of learner your child is. Before making the call, or choosing the type of school, it’s crucial to get an understanding of how a student learns and the environment that is best suited to that.