With an estimated 300 private boarding schools in the United States and Canada, finding the right fit for your student and your family can seem like a daunting task. How do you sift through all the pamphlets and websites and look past the advertising to see what a school is really like?
Finding your best fit out of the many private boarding schools available is an important decision, so we’re here to help you do it right. The first questions to ask yourself are these: What do I value as a parent, and what does my student value? As you look into private boarding schools, you’re searching for a place that values the same things you do.
First and foremost, a school is a place of learning. Your student will be entering school with the intent to receive the best education possible. Look for a school that is focused on preparing students for the future. Is the curriculum up to date and evolving with new research? Does it promote 21st century values like critical thinking, creativity, collaboration and communication? At Wasatch Academy, we hold all of these values to be a critical part of our school.
In a boarding school environment, teachers have an even greater impact on students. They are the adults that your student will see every day and look to as mentors. Learn about the staff at each school you study. The best teachers will have experience as well as knowledge, be caring and nurturing and have strong personal character.
Take an in-depth look at the resources available to extend education outside of the classroom. Do the school’s academic programs include extracurricular programs and clubs that match with your student’s interests? Will these programs spur personal growth?
When you select a school, you essentially welcome it as a part of your family. Familiarize yourself with the institution’s core values. What type of a person does the school hope your student will become? Is it the same type of person you hope your son or daughter will be? Will it teach your student the importance of kindness, respect, honesty, strong character, hard work, positive attitudes, acceptance and diversity?