The best UK boarding schools offer benefits that go beyond the academic. With multiple opportunities inside and outside the classroom, students learn important life skills such as independence, autonomy, adaptability, effective communication, etc. They learn alongside individuals of various nationalities. They enjoy immeasurable personal growth. They build character.
All of these are important for future success. A survey by the British Boarding School Association found that 70% of students believe their boarding school has helped them develop maturity, self-discipline, independence and valuable critical thinking skills. Here are four British boarding schools that best illustrate this successful record:
Graduates progressing to Oxbridge, Russell Group universities and prestigious academic institutions around the world. A multitude of teams, clubs, associations, conferences, trips and enrichment opportunities. A home away from home for boarders. These characteristics define Headington School.
Located just a mile from Oxford city center with 23 acres which encompass plenty of green space, this is a UK independent day school and boarding school for girls aged three to 18.
Here, every girl thrives and thrives in and beyond the classroom. The objective is to prepare the pupils for the future, an approach which starts very early in this school qualified as “excellent” by the Inspectorate of Independent Schools. Specialized programs are offered for medicine and veterinary sciences, architecture and law. Work and career experience programs start at U3, including one-on-one discussions, career profiles, as well as discussions and lectures from inspiring professionals.
That’s not all! The school’s extensive alumni support network, Headington Connect, provides opportunities for mentorship and work experience. Students also benefit from the school’s close links with the University of Oxford and the University of Oxford Brookes.
Headington believes that students learn as much, if not more, outside the classroom as they do inside. The school’s new creativity and innovation center, called The Hive, emphasizes interdisciplinary learning and the development of skills such as creativity and problem-solving. Facilities, such as the Arts and Textiles Education Spaces, Lens Media Studios, Digital Manufacturing Suite, and 3D Workshop, provide girls with the support and tools to let their imaginations run wild.
Girls can start boarding school in one of the four houses in Headington from the age of 11. It’s a flexible offer – that means girls can get on board occasionally or in full, depending on individual best interests. What is constant is excellent pastoral care – it is not negotiable. Applications to various entry points are welcome – to find out more, register for its virtual open house for families overseas on September 17 here.
If you are looking for a boarding experience that offers the means to both escape and embrace the demands of the 21st century, a community that promotes Christian values and historic buildings mixed with state-of-the-art facilities a short walk from the center of London, head to Farrington School in Kent.
Steeped in history and tradition, yet forward-thinking in its approach, Farringtons School offers a comprehensive and exceptional education. At this independent, co-ed, day and boarding school for students aged three to 18, dedicated teachers help each student reach their full academic potential.
For its competitive fees, students receive an impactful education. Small classes ensure that each student develops the knowledge, skills and experience they need for their GCSE and A Level options. It’s a strategic approach – many Farringtonians progress to prestigious Russell Group universities.
Support in English is available in a variety of forms, from creative writing contests and theatrical trips to residential writing retreats and literary tours. A strong enrichment and cultural program teaches the art of leadership and teamwork, as well as those very important soft skills.
When they have finished honing their many talents at the end of their day, the Farringtonians return to their “second home”. These small pensions – established on safe and secure grounds – are surrounded by a “family” of different ages, nationalities and personalities.
Step outside and they are close to major airports and the vibrancy of the nation’s capital. To learn more about its boutique-style boarding schools, Christian philosophy, and unbeatable location, schedule a tour or attend one of its many open days held throughout the year.
Queen’s College, Taunton
Queen’s College, Taunton is a forward-thinking independent school that creates caring, ambitious and well-educated boys and girls. There is no better investment than the education of a queen. Here, students learn not for school but for life through the enriched and enhanced opportunities at Queen’s.
All students have the opportunity to participate in two extracurricular activities per day. This includes sports and the performing arts, as well as clubs such as fencing, chess, and robotics. In the evenings and weekends, they have full access to campus facilities.
What sets Queen’s apart is how it combines strong academic results, fantastic facilities, and a strong performing arts program. In this center of excellence, a team of very dedicated practitioners, all of whom have professional backgrounds, run three large-scale productions each school year. Adjustment? Some of the best facilities in the country, including a fully equipped 570-seat theater with state-of-the-art lighting and sound systems, the largest in the region.
“My whole family immediately fell in love with Queen’s,” one parent enthuses. “The school is just beautiful, with a huge range of facilities for the children to develop. The staff are very helpful and friendly and are always ready to answer any questions or concerns we may have.
Queen’s offers a diverse range of professional A-level and BTEC-equivalent level sixth grade courses, from Art, Biology and Business to Sport and Outdoor Adventure. Students entering Grade 10 can choose from 22 GCSE courses on offer. To learn more about Queen’s fully immersive traditional British boarding school life, click here.
Christ Brecon College
Few schools can boast of having a campus set in the beautiful landscape of a national park – Christ College Brecon can. Situated in a scenic location on the outskirts of the historic market town of Brecon, Wales, Christ College Brecon is a boarding school and independent day school for boys and girls ages seven to 18.
“We are fortunate to be based in such a beautiful area with so many opportunities for young people to develop their moral compass for life,” shares Gareth Pearson, principal of Christ College Brecon. These opportunities include an outdoor education program where students learn more than just physical prowess – they also harness leadership skills, self-confidence and the experience of teamwork.
Here, every student aspires to academic and artistic excellence, guided by a strong support system and dedicated teachers. Every week, hundreds of instrumental and vocal lessons take place. Two out of five students in the school learn at least one instrument. One in three is part of at least one choir or ensemble. In its auditorium, students perform ambitious productions of Scrooge the Musical, The Phantom of the Opera and Beauty and the Beast, supervised by professionals. This year, students will take on the Addams Family.
Rigorous academics, a rich balance of extracurricular activities, an enviable location, a supportive pastoral care and wellness system – at Christ College Brecon it’s a character-driven environment that inspires young talent. of today to become the complete leaders of tomorrow.
* Some of the institutions featured in this article are Business Partners of Study International