A boarding school is a school where some or all pupils study and live during the school year with their fellow students and possibly teachers or administrators. The word 'boarding' is used in the sense of "bed and board," that is, food and lodging. Some boarding schools also have day students who are students that live off-campus with their families. It is a residential school where pupils live and study during the school year. There are approximately 500 boarding schools across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Many independent (private) schools in the Commonwealth of Nations are boarding schools. Boarding school pupils normally return home during the school holidays and, often, weekends, but in some cultures may spend the majority of their childhood and adolescent life away from their families.
Why choose a UK boarding school?
UK boarding schools offer you an outstanding education, helping you to develop your skills and progress to university. All UK boarding schools have to meet strict government standards on the quality of their teaching, facilities and student care.
Many UK boarding schools combine beautiful, centuries-old buildings with a mix of modern classrooms and traditional architecture. The excellent facilities help make living and learning a great experience and you will improve your English skills while you study.
Life at UK boarding schools
Most UK boarding schools teach a mix of international pupils and local UK pupils. ‘Boarders’ are pupils who live at the school. ‘Day pupils’ live with their families and return home at the end of the school day. This mix helps to create a good social atmosphere.
Boarding schools usually close for the long summer and Christmas holidays and pupils return home to their parents or guardians. Some schools do, however, run language courses during this period.
For the shorter half-term holidays, some schools stay open. Typically, you won’t have normal classes but you will be supervised by staff and be able to take part in activities and events.
At a boarding school, you live with other pupils in a boarding house – there might be several boarding houses in each school. Girls and boys stay in separate accommodation. There will also be at least one house parent who lives on the premises who is there to look after you and care for your needs.
Young boarders will probably share a bedroom or dormitory with other children. Older boarders usually have their own private bedroom, or share a room with just one other pupil. You might also have your own bathroom or washing facilities.
Most boarding houses have comfortable communal areas where you can relax, socialize and watch television with your fellow pupils.