Independent schools in the UK provide an unrivalled level of education for their pupils. Not only are they steeped in prestigious history, but their academic records speak for themselves; 92% of pupils in independent schools in the UK progress to higher education, including 56% to Russell Group universities. A British independent education not only provides your child with the best chance at academic success, but the chance to develop essential life skills and connections that will help them prosper in their personal lives. 

Choosing the right boarding school for your child can seem like a daunting task, particularly when you live overseas. There are plenty of factors to consider, and with a plethora of high calibre options available, many parents look to experts to help find the best match. Here are the top things you should look out for when looking to choose a boarding school.

Research the school’s track record

Numbers don’t lie — find out whether the school produces good exam results and has a successful history of students going on to Russell Group universities. Also look at what extra support they can provide for university applications, such as interview coaching and guidance on personal statements, as independent boarding schools are usually highly experienced in this area.

It is also important to consider the subject your child may study at university, and whether the school produces particularly strong results in that area. For example, if your child wants to be a doctor, does the school place a lot of emphasis on the sciences, with a large number of students going on to study Medicine at university? 

Look beyond the academic

While good grades are essential, universities and employers are looking for more. When searching for a school, investigate the extra-curricular activities it offers, such as sports or theatre. These provide fantastic opportunities for children to become elected into positions of responsibility, such as Sports Captain, and develop transferable life skills like teamwork, organisation and leadership. Not only will these valuable qualities help your child stand out when it comes to university admissions, but they will remain assets throughout their life.

In addition, find out what sort of holistic support a school can offer your child outside of the classroom, such as pastoral care. How will they nurture your child into becoming a well-rounded young adult? While boarding, your child will spend up to six weeks at a time in school — their happiness and wellbeing are more important than their exam results.

Consider working with an education consultant

The help of an education consultant can take a lot of pressure off when it comes to finding the best boarding school for your child. Anderson Education gives free impartial advice and guidance to families considering a UK boarding education. With over 21 years of experience, they have personally visited over 350 schools and are well-equipped to help families who live overseas. Using this knowledge, they will recommend schools that meet your family’s individual needs.

Once you’ve narrowed down your list, Anderson Education can also help to arrange school visits and entrance tests, providing you with expert insight and advice every step of the way until you have accepted an offer. They also have a UK Boarding School Directory with a comprehensive list of schools to consider.

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Find out more about secondary school education in the UK