Benenden School has welcomed day boarders for the first time – pupils who attend the all girls’ boarding school on a daily basis

Benenden School has welcomed a small number of day boarders – pupils who attend daily rather than boarding – in Years 9 and 12. The first cohort arrived last September and this marks the first time since the school opened in 1923 that it has offered anything other than full boarding. It is also the final all-girls’ UK boarding school to move away from full board only. Headmistress Samantha Price said it was an exciting move, and a response to the many requests over the years from families. She added: “The way in which our new day boarders have seamlessly become part of Benenden reassures me that we have definitely made the right decision! It’s great to see them throwing themselves into School life and instantly making new friends”.

Day boarders is a standard term for pupils who attend daily, rather than board, and the school has said that this strategic move enables it to widen access across the local Kent community. It adds that it remains a boarding school first and foremost and has limited the number of day boarders joining each year to a handful of girls to ensure they can be smoothly integrated into Benenden.

Of the decision to introduce day boarders, Anne Wakefield, the School’s Deputy Head – Boarding and Pastoral Care, said: “Demand for boarding at Benenden remains incredibly strong and we are in the fortunate position of being oversubscribed, with waiting lists in operation. At the same time, family life has evolved in recent decades and we are aware that boarding does not suit all families”.

Benenden School

Further reading: St Columba’s continues its successful switch to co-ed