The Advantages of a Boarding School Education

Study Substantiates Benefits Well Beyond College

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Boarding schools have long been praised for offering students small class sizes, close alliances between students and teachers, and rigorous academics. But the long term benefits of attening boarding school were not always so clear. Until now ... thanks to a thorough study carried out by The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS), an association that works with more than 300 boarding schools around the world, there is evidence that supports the advantages of a boarding school education for students over public and private day schools.

The TABS study surveyed more than 1,000 boarding school students and alumni and compared them to 1,100 public school students and 600 private day school students. The results suggest that boarding school students are better prepared for college than students who attend private day schools and public schools and that boarding school students also make faster progress in their careers. The reasons for these results may be a direct result of essentially being immersed in an academic environment full time.

TABS has been working diligently to support boarding schools, and recently launched the Ready for More? Campaign. That campaign, along with the results of the survey paint an enticing picture for boarding school experiences.

Academics and Student Life

The study conducted by The Association of Boarding Schools found that 54% boarding school students report being highly satisfied with their academic experience, as compared to 42% of students who attend private day schools and 40% of students who attend public schools.

 

Check out these statistics from the TABS Study on what boarding school students say about their school environment, as compared to Private and Public School Students:

  • 75% of boarding school students report that their peers are motivated, as compared to 71% of private day school students, and 49% of public school students. 
  • 91% of boarding school students feel their school is challenging academically, as compared to 70% of private day school students and 50% of public school students. 
  • 90% of boarding school students report that their teachers are high quality, whereas only 62% of private day and 51% of public school students would rate their teachers as high quality.

College Preparation

In addition, boarding school students reported that they are better prepared for college than students from public or private day schools. The study carried out by The Association of Boarding Schools found that 87% of boarding school students reported that they were very well prepared to take on college academics, as compared to 71% of students from private day schools and 39% of students from public schools. In addition, 78% of students at boarding schools said that the daily life at boarding schools helped prepare them for other aspects of college life, such as exercising independence, handling their time well, and doing well with college social demands. In contrast, only 36% of private day school students and 23% of public school students reported that they were ready to tackle college life with success.

Benefits Extending Beyond College

Interestingly, the study showed that the benefits of having attended boarding school extended well into adult life.

For example, boarding school alumni/ae tended to attend graduate school in greater numbers: 50% of them earned advanced degrees, as compared to 36% of private day school alumni/ae and 21% of public school graduates. And once they earned their degrees, graduates of boarding schools earned top positions in management to a greater extent than their colleagues—44% did so, as compared to 33% of private day school grads and 27% of public school graduates. By the end of their careers, 52% of boarding school alumni had achieved top positions, as compared to 39% of private day school graduates and 27% of public school graduates.

Boarding school alumni say in remarkable numbers that they enjoyed their experience at school, and, in fact, an overwhelming number—90%--say that they would repeat it. It is clear from the survey that boarding schools offer not only top academics but also lifelong benefits and a close-knit community that students and alumni enjoy for a lifetime.

While many parents choose boarding school mainly for its educational value—in the TABS study, the promise of a good education was the primary reason parents chose boarding schools for their children—it is clear from the survey that the schools offer much more than just the experience in the classroom. They also offer students the ability to exercise independence, work closely with their teachers, and enjoy friendships that often last a lifetime.

Edited by Stacy Jagodowski

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Grossberg, Blythe. "The Advantages of a Boarding School Education." ThoughtCo, Mar. 30, 2018, thoughtco.com/advantages-of-boarding-school-education-2774622. Grossberg, Blythe. (2018, March 30). The Advantages of a Boarding School Education. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/advantages-of-boarding-school-education-2774622 Grossberg, Blythe. "The Advantages of a Boarding School Education." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/advantages-of-boarding-school-education-2774622 (accessed April 27, 2018).