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6 Myths About Boarding Schools

May 21, 2008
Some parents immediately dismiss the idea of boarding school for their children. Books, movies, and even computer games and popular music have painted stereotyped pictures of these facilities as either vacation villas for the rich or prisons for delinquents...or havens for young wizards battling dark sorcerers.

The actual schools bear little resemblance to these media inventions, however several myths still persist.

Boarding schools are for the rich. A growing number of scholarships are available to create admission opportunities for families of any means. Administrators are more interested in students' academic achievements than their family's bank balance.

Only Whites need apply. Boarding schools are actually more diverse than public schools. Their student bodies are drawn from all over the country while public schools serve only the local population, which is often concentrated into certain ethic or economic groups.

Parents use boarding schools to get rid of problem kids. There is a type of school called a therapeutic school that is designed for kids with behavioral or drug problems. These facilities emphasize education but also are designed to help kids deal with their personal problems. However these are not typical boarding schools any more than a drug rehabilitation center is a vacation resort. Typical schools are college preparatory, designed to provide extra educational opportunities for motivated students.

Kids get into trouble. Students are in a more controlled environment than public school. As a result, there is less incidence of crime or drug and alcohol use than in public school.

Kids hate boarding schools. Some students won't be happy in such a regulated environment and this may not be the right choice for them. However most of the attendees are highly-motivated individuals who might dislike the strict rules but appreciate the academic benefits.

Students get lonely. Any time a child moves to another place, there is a transition period. However, cell phones and internet access make it easy to keep in touch with their family and friends, although use of these will be restricted to certain hours. Plus they have opportunities to meet lots of new friends who have similar interests.

Despite all the myths, there are a few things about boarding schools that are true. According to studies, students spend more time in sporting and creative activities and less time watching TV than their public school counterparts. The coursework is more challenging and students will likely spend more time on homework than in public school. This also means they graduate with stronger academic backgrounds and are more attractive to colleges.

Graduation provides lifelong benefits. When compared to public school students, more than twice as many consider themselves prepared for the academic challenges of college and more than three times as many are prepared for the non-academic aspects such as independence and socialization.

Though the concept may seem unfamiliar to families who have never attended boarding school, for highly motivated students, boarding school might just be the best educational option.
About the Author
Author is a freelance copywriter. For more information on Boarding
Schools
, visit http://www.Petersons.com.
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