Many parents are at a crossroads when it comes to choosing either a Boarding school or a Day school for their children. The reality is that this decision should be based on a number of factors, the lifestyle of parents, budget and family values.
If you are currently contemplating this decision for your child and are in a bind as to which to pick; here are the pros and cons of Boarding school and Day school.
Boarding school Pros
Round-the-clock education and development
A major advantage of the boarding school experience is the fact that the learning never stops. Your child is immersed in an educational environment, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and even when they’re outside the classroom, they’re still learning important life skills.
Boarding school helps your child develop a social life
This means that your children will be living with their friends, which is fun and creates amazing memories. Many children want to go to boarding school for this very reason. It’s also a good option for only children, who don’t have siblings to play with at home.
Boarding school develops your child’s confidence because they’re forced to interact with other children constantly, and they’ll be learning to get on with lots of different personalities, which is a useful skill for life.
Boarding school offers extra-curricular opportunities
The extra-curricular activities on offer at boarding schools are almost certainly going to be far more extensive than those on offer at a day school. Boarding schools have a responsibility to keep children busy in their downtime, and most of them really go to town on the activities they offer.
This means that your children will have numerous opportunities to get involved in new hobbies, thereby developing non-academic skills that will be valuable for the real world. What’s more, they can take part in these new hobbies in the evenings and weekends without inconveniencing anybody. You can rest assured that they’re being kept busy and out of trouble.
Boarding school fosters independence
Going to boarding school builds independence, getting your child used to the idea of being away from home. This makes it easier for them to make the transition to life at university. They also learn to be independent and as adults when they are on their own.
There is no school run
This means that you won’t need to be going to and fro from your child’s school – taking the child to school in the morning and picking the child from school. The time spent travelling between home and school eats significantly into your child’s day (not to mention yours).
So a big advantage of boarding school is that the daily school run is a thing of the past. Removing the travel time means that children are free to do much more with their day rather. Time otherwise spent commuting can be spent on activities such as sports or music practice, or extra study. Some parents really enjoy not having to deal with daily school runs.So a big advantage of boarding school is that the daily school run is a thing of the past. Removing the travel time means that children are free to do much more with their day rather. Click To Tweet
Boarding school is the perfect solution for busy parents
It’s not just the school run that eats into your day when your children aren’t at boarding school. You’re called upon to make all their meals, supervise homework and ferry them to and from extracurricular activities. If you both work, and live in a town like Lagos with all the traffic, this might not be easily feasible.
Boarding school provides the ideal solution for career-focused parents who are anxious that their children are adequately supervised at all times and encouraged to participate in a variety of out-of-school activities. It allows you to maintain your career at the same time as ensuring that your children get the best possible start in life.
Some of the Cons of Boarding school
Parents feel much less involved in their child’s upbringing
There’s no escaping the fact that when you send your child to boarding school; you are handing over a major chunk of their upbringing to someone else. For example, when your child goes to boarding school, you are relinquishing a lot of the decisions you would normally make about what your child is and is not allowed to do. They will probably be going to someone else; such as a school-appointed carer; with their problems before you get a chance to weigh in.
Many parents find this idea hard to cope with, and feel a great sense of loss when their children go off to boarding school. You won’t be there to chat to them over breakfast or say goodnight to them when they go to bed, and in these vital years of your child’s life, when they’re growing fast, you’ll inevitably miss out on a lot of their childhood.
Interferes with Family Bonding
There will be normal family experiences that you won’t get to have with your child – or at least, not as often. If the child has older or younger siblings who aren’t also in the same boarding school, the time spent apart will definitely have an impact on their relationship.
Homesickness will strike at some point
Homesickness is likely to rear its ugly head at some point or another, at least in the beginning. The reality is that it will take some getting used to. And especially when your child is away from home for the first time in an unfamiliar environment away from their family and home.
while they will almost certainly get used to it sooner or later; it is likely that you might find it difficult when they are grappling with feelings of homesickness. As a parent, listen to your gut if you find yourself wondering whether you have done the right thing. You should also feel free to contact the housemaster to discuss how your child is settling in.
Boarding school costs significantly more
Boarding school is undeniably more expensive. The cost of sending your child to a boarding school is far more expensive than a day school because in addition to the regular school fees you need to pay for feeding, boarding, security and much more.
Advantages of Day School
You get to see your children every day
The primary reason for choosing a day school over a boarding school is that you get to see your children every day. You get to see them in the morning and last thing at night. You make their meals, take responsibility for their homework and generally retain much more control over what happens.
Any concerns they have can be discussed with you, rather than a school-appointed carer. Also, you can raise any concerns you have with your children immediately; and ensure that they are exposed to your family values.
Your children learn to be domestic
Day school affords your child the opportunity to learn basic house chores such as cooking, cleaning, washing, tidying up etc. While this can be learned in some boarding schools; most boarding schools have people who clean and tidy up after the students.
Builds family relationships
Your child gets to spend time with the rest of the family. He/she does not miss family outings and gatherings enabling the child to bond with siblings and relatives. These are the memories that make up his/her childhood.
Day school is much cheaper than boarding school
Another major argument in favour of sending your children to day school is that it is considerably cheaper.
Some of the Cons of Day school
Day school is demanding on your time
If you have a demanding job, you might find boarding school a preferable option, particularly if you travel a lot. Day school generally places many more demands on your time. This may not be ideal if you have a busy career. This might make it difficult for you to devote the necessary time to supervise homework. You will need to factor in school runs and also consider various extra-curricular activities.
Some boarding offers a hybrid consisting of weekly boarding, which means they get to come home on the weekends.
It is most important, that you know your child and what works best for your family.
There are pros and cons of choosing a Boarding school or Day school for your child. As you read through these; it should help you evaluate some of the factors and see what works best for your child.
Have you had to decide whether your child will go to boarding or day? How did you make the decision?