10 Considerations: How To Choose A Good Boarding School

An education in the UK is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. One potentially filled with wonderful memories, good friends, and also a gateway to academic and career excellence. Therefore, choosing the right boarding school is crucial as it can impact your child’s journey. We’re here to walk you through the important considerations when choosing a good school.

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Choosing a boarding school can be a daunting task. But not to worry, in our list below we’ll walk you through the essential considerations when choosing a good school.

1. Academic Standards

The primary purpose of sending your child to a boarding school is to provide them with an excellent education that will set them for life after school. To do that, you can check out the school’s academic credentials to ensure that your child will receive the education they deserve.

You can also take a look at the league tables of how many children are scoring top grades in a particular school, which can help you compare how other schools are performing. Other aspects you’ll also have to consider are class sizes, ranges of subjects, and many others—these will help you form an opinion about a school.

2. Standard Of Living

While you will want your child to receive the best education, it is also vital that they get the best care and is happy living there. Don’t be surprised if you even consider this as even more important than the quality of education.

An excellent way to figure that out is to look at accreditation to certain bodies, such as the Boarding Schools Association or the Independent Schools Councils. These bodies are tasked with regular inspections and monitoring of different aspects of boarding schools that include the quality of facilities, behaviour of students, academic standards, and other similar factors.

3. Location

Different boarding schools can be found in different locations. Some may be found in the countryside, while others can be found in cities. Of course, there are pros and cons to both options. For example, if you want to maximize convenience, you would want to pick a boarding school in the city that has access to nearby facilities, public transportation, and an airport. If you have any relatives or families living in the UK, you can also consider opting for a school near them so that your child can always look for them if needed.

4. Type of School: Co-educational or single-sex

Know that some schools cater to both sexes, while others focus on either boys or girls. The environment of each type of boarding school will be different, so take the time to figure out which one will best fit your child. Some will argue that single-sex schools offer minimal distractions, while others say that co-educational schools immerse the child in a diverse environment which helps them prepare better for the future.

5. School Facilities

School is not just about studying. It is a great place for students to develop holistically be it in sports, art or music. When choosing a school, look at the school’s facilities, including dormitories, classrooms, libraries, sports facilities, and dining halls. Consider whether the facilities are up-to-date and meet your child’s needs.

6. Accommodation Options

Consider the types of accommodation provided by the school. Boarding schools in the UK offer a variety of options to suit different preferences and needs. Here are some of the different types of accommodation options you may find in a boarding school:

  1. Single Rooms: Single rooms are individual rooms that are designed for one student. They offer privacy and are ideal for students who prefer their own space.

  2. Shared Rooms: Shared rooms are designed for two or more students who share a room. They offer the opportunity for students to build friendships and socialize with their roommates.

  3. Dormitories: Dormitories are communal living spaces that can accommodate multiple students. They often have shared bathrooms and common areas for students to socialize.

  4. House Systems: Some boarding schools have a house system, where students are divided into houses and each house has its own living quarters. This system promotes a sense of community and competition between houses.

  5. Homestays: Some boarding schools offer homestays, where students live with a local family during their time at school. This option provides students with a unique cultural experience and the opportunity to practice their language skills.

  6. Boarding Houses: Boarding houses are dedicated living spaces for boarders, with separate living areas, study areas, and bedrooms. They often have house parents who oversee the students and provide pastoral care.

  7. Hostels: Hostels are budget-friendly options that offer basic accommodation, often with shared bathrooms and communal living areas.

7. Support Services

Look at the support services available at the school, such as academic support, pastoral care, and mental health support. Consider whether the support services meet your child’s needs.

8. School Reputation

Consider the school’s reputation within the local community and the wider education sector. Look at the school’s history and track record to determine its reputation.

9. Admissions And Entry Requirements

It goes without saying that different schools will have different requirements for admission. Consider the application deadlines and whether your child meets the minimum requirements for admission. Most schools will list down their requirements in their respective websites. You can also consult us to figure out if you child meets the entry requirements of a specific school.

10. Cost

International students who wish to study in a boarding school in the UK should carefully consider the costs involved, as they can be significant. Here are some cost considerations for international students who are planning to study in a boarding school in the UK:

  1. Tuition Fees: Boarding school tuition fees in the UK can be very high, with some schools charging upwards of £40,000 per year. International students should research the tuition fees of the schools they are considering and ensure they have the financial means to cover the costs.

  2. Accommodation Fees: Accommodation fees are another significant cost for international students. Depending on the type of accommodation they choose, the cost can vary significantly. Single rooms and boarding houses are generally more expensive than shared rooms and dormitories.

  3. Travel Expenses: International students will need to factor in the cost of travel to and from the UK, as well as any additional travel expenses such as visas, insurance, and transportation.

  4. Additional Fees: Boarding schools may charge additional fees for activities, textbooks, uniforms, and other items. These costs can add up quickly and should be taken into account when budgeting for boarding school expenses.

  5. Currency Exchange Rates: International students will need to exchange their home currency for British pounds to cover their expenses. Currency exchange rates can fluctuate, and students should consider the impact of exchange rates on their budget.

  6. Scholarships and Financial Aid: Some boarding schools offer scholarships and financial aid to international students. Students should research the options available and apply for any opportunities that may be applicable to their situation.


By taking these considerations into mind, you and your child will have the best possible chances of selecting the right boarding school in the UK. Although you may make all of the decisions, remember to include your child in the decision-making process as well. Ask for their opinions, what they look for in the school, and what they hope to achieve. Questions like these will give you a better idea of what school you should pick from and, hopefully, choose one that will make them happy.

If you’re looking for co-ed boarding schools in the UK, get in touch with us today to see how we can help. We provide a wide range of boarding schools to choose from.

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