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  • British boarding schools’ question time (2) | Dickinson School Consulting
  • British boarding schools’ question time (2) | Dickinson School Consulting

British boarding schools’ question time (2)

For the second blog in this series, we asked two boarding schools in England’s South West, “Have you adopted vertical or horizontal boarding across your boarding houses and why is your chosen model best for your students?

First, the view from Westonbirt School, a boarding school in the beautiful Cotswolds. Director of Marketing, Amanda Walton, writes:

“At Westonbirt, we tend to operate a hybrid system. The ethos of vertical boarding is incredibly important across the school in terms of ensuring inclusivity, trust, respect and support between different age groups, and providing leadership skills for older boarders. In Years 7-11, boarding houses consist of pupils from several different age years.

Once pupils reach the sixth form, boarding becomes more horizontal; we have opened a co-educational boarding house offsite for Year 13s, which gives pupils increased independence, develops life skills and prepares them more effectively for university or careers.”

Next, we hear from Rachel Debenham, Director of Development at Wellington School in Somerset:

Wellington has chosen a vertical model for our boarding houses. We have two junior houses, one for boys and one for girls. This enables students to join our boarding community in smaller houses and gives us a chance to get to know them in a cosy environment. We have such great feedback from our short stay students, especially from Europe, that they often choose to stay to finish their studies with us. In the senior years, we have three vertical houses, one for girls and two for boys, which enables Year 11 and 12 students to be mentored by the older ones, while giving our Year 13s leadership opportunities that are perfect for their university and future job applications.

“Each house has its own identity, and the boarding community is central to the rich and diverse environment that is Wellington School. Our co-educational and multicultural ethos gives our pupils the opportunity to gain a greater respect and understanding for people of any gender, all races, faiths and nationalities that reflect society today. 175 boys and girls, accommodated in 5 boarding houses, are provided with the perfect environment in which to explore their academic potential, develop their social relationships, and unearth personal skills and qualities that enhance success in a wide range of cultural, sporting and artistic activities.”

Whether you think your child would benefit from sharing a house with children of a range of ages, or would prefer to live with those of their own age, we work with UK boarding schools offering both models. Please contact us to start the search.