If you have a teenager in or about to enter high school, it’s an important time to start thinking about their academic future and personal development. If you’re not sure whether they would thrive more in a day school or boarding high school, read on to learn about the biggest differences between the two types of high schools, and you’ll be able to better decide where your child would benefit the most.
Preparation for College
Jumping straight from high school to moving away from home to attend college is a major adjustment that can be very difficult if the student isn’t adequately prepared. While high schools offer some variety of college prep classes, boarding high school is the ultimate preparation for college.
Students will get used to living away from their parents with a roommate, all while learning how to adapt to new surroundings and live with people they may have just met—very similar to the college experience.
Not only will boarding school prepare your child for the lifestyle aspects of college, but there’s no better place to prepare academically. Premier boarding schools have a 100% college acceptance rate among their students, so you can rest assured your child will have the resources and the help to excel in the academic world bybeing prepared for the next step when the time comes.
Even with the perfect college acceptance rate and ample academic resources, boarding schools teach that it’s up to each individual student to accomplish their goals. This skill will help your child not only upon entering college, but far beyond.
Feeling of Community and Acceptance
In day high schools, it’s very easy for students to fade into the background with no real attention from faculty and staff. Each student keeps their school life and their home life separate with very little overlap.
At boarding high schools, it’s nearly impossible to get lost in the shuffle. The smaller school and class sizes make it much easier for students to form solid academic relationships with teachers who care for each student individually. Students might be living away from home, but they still have a full support system whenever they need it, whether in school or at the dorms.
Most boarding schools in the US have faculty who double as the dorm parents and sometimes athletic coaches as well, but the best boarding high schools have dorm parents who are not members of the faculty. This way, teachers can give their full attention to their classes and subject matter while the dorm parents can be more focused on giving each student the personalized attention they need outside of a school setting.
You won’t have to worry about sending your child off to a school away from home where they won’t have anyone to turn to if they have a bad day or feel homesick. Dorm parents specialize in the understanding of psychology of adolescents, along with their social development and well-being. Ultimately, your child’s safety is their top priority, though they also focus on your child’s academic progress, ensuring they’re keeping up and excelling in their studies.
Focus on Personal Development
Day high schools are there to offer classes needed for graduation, so there isn’t much focus on personal development. Students can learn many important life skills and knowledge at day schools, but a boarding school gives the complete experience, with many programs focused on helping your child be their best self as well as a strong member of the community.
With so much going on in your high schooler’s life, it can be hard for them to find the time to serve others. At boarding high school, they will have the opportunity every week to participate in an organized service project. These opportunities include working as a youth mentor, helping the needy, or cleaning up public spaces.
Dorm parents also lead a weekly curriculum to help with character development, focused on responsibility, accountability, safety, empowerment, diversity, community, and respect.
Living full-time around boarding school peers offers a completely different experience than attending a day school while living at home. Many students at day school leave everything at the door when they return home for the day. At boarding school, they will be constantly surrounded with opportunities for improving themselves academically as well as personally, better preparing them for bright futures ahead. While boarding high school admissions can be competitive, it’s worth the process to give your child every opportunity to succeed.