Are Boarding Schools The Answer?
Boarding schools conjure up images of miserable students forced to wear ugly uniforms and adhere to ridiculously strict standards of behavior. We've all read books like Catcher in the Rye and seen countless movies about the trials and tribulations of the kid so unfortunate to be sent to boarding school. Then there are the movies about the downtrodden student who is there on scholarship and horribly mistreated by the snooty rich kids. These days, none of this is accurate.
There are a lot of very good reasons to consider a boarding school. The classes are generally smaller allowing greater one on one attention to the student. Most times the faculty have advanced degrees and the schools offer a large variety of subjects. Resources like theater, sports and libraries are often better than in public school and college counseling is taken very seriously.
Common misconceptions abound. You do not have to be wealthy to afford a boarding school. Admission standards are high and there are any financial aid options. grants, merit awards, and scholarships help to defray the cost. Many people think that diversity is rare in a boarding school, but just the opposite is true. Students are from many different geographic areas. Boarding school cannot possibly be any fun, can it? Of course it can. Certainly there are rules and perhaps more structure than in public school, but fun is still possible. Boarding schools are punishment for troubled students, right? Nope, there are schools that focus on that, but not all students have problems.
You are going to be away from everything familiar to you and never get to talk to your family. In these days of internet access and cell phones, there is no reason not to contact your family daily if you need to. Internet access is limited to certain hours, but you will not be cut off from everything and everyone you love. Once you settte in and make friends you'll be taking advantage of all these schools have to offer and won't miss home nearly as much.
Parents who choose a boarding school for their children often report greater self sufficiency and maturity result from having to make choices and be responsible for their own actions. Students develop greater self confidence and are able to focus on their future and what it may hold. They are exposed to a wide variety of people and have a greater understanding of cultural diversity. Now it does not sound all bad, does it? You will be on your own, something many young people yearn for. Boarding school is an excellent preparation for life in the "real world".
The boarding school student develops pride in their school and in themselves. They often form lasting friendships that carry over well into their adult lives. If you are thinking about attending a boarding school, do some research and visit one or several. I think you might be surprised.
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