What might an international pupil expect from a Sixth Form UK boarding school education?
UK Boarding School Education Expectations
Gone are the days when a UK boarding school education might have been associated, rightly or wrongly, with the strictest of rules, regulations and routines that only the most rigid conformist might hope to navigate unscathed.
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However, today’s UK boarding schools are kind, nurturing communities where individuals are cherished and supported to follow whichever path brings them academic success and all-round
fulfilment. Integration between pastoral and academic support is seamless with every pupil having a
bespoke network of people to guide them through their Sixth Form years.
Pupils and staff working together within UK boarding schools
Collaboration between pupils and staff, even at the most senior levels, is very much the way forward. Pupils are gaining the independence of habit and thought that is so necessary in today’s adult world. Pupils’ voice is stronger than ever with forums on everything. These stretch from the food that is served to the development of the curriculum and social programmes.
For Senior students, in particular, opportunities for leadership abound. Whether through
mentoring younger pupils, serving as school prefects, leading their boarding house or coaching sport and music.
What are the typical Boarding school sixth form Academic Requirements?
Academic rigour remains, nevertheless, at the heart of all education and UK boarding school teachers set the highest expectations of their pupils.
Many of these activities taking place in the evening and at weekends.
Of course, this includes the chance to experience elements of the culture that we think of as quintessentially British.
The provision for gaining proficiency in English is second to none and the ‘full immersion’ provided by a boarding experience.
So, along with the IELTS programme, this is absolutely the best way to achieve the fluency required by many of the world’s top Higher Education institutions.
All such experiences subsequently take place within an education system that challenges students to think for themselves, and which enables flexibility and choice.
Typical UK Boarding School Experiences
Studying within the UK offers the most authentic experience. Students are immersed in the culture from which their examinations have emanated.
The nature of the curriculum places an emphasis on the application of knowledge to novel situations and the requirement to approach responses analytically and critically.
Schools in the UK also stress the importance of learning beyond the A-Level syllabus. They offer a wealth of opportunities for all students to choose from.
For example, Roedean School’s Pathways Course offers elective seminars and lectures led by industry experts within four pathways:
- STEM; Business,
- Economics and Mathematics;
- Creative and Performance Arts.
UK Boarding School Education feature
Students are able to select courses from within one pathway or across several pathways, depending on their personal interests.
Each enabling the student to build a portfolio of experiences that can feed directly into their university applications.
UK Boarding Schools Expectations
Boarding school Sixth Form balls with student-chosen themes held throughout the year.
The celebration of Chinese New Year with student-inspired menus, celebratory activities and fireworks.
An annual International Women’s Day Festivals filled with inspirational and thought-provoking speakers.
These all enhance the A-Level studies of Sixth Formers at Roedean.
UK boarding schools are in an exceptional place to be able to offer this to students from around the world.
UK boarding school eduction experience as an international student
For an international student more than any other perhaps, the experience of a boarding education has changed enormously over the last few decades.
Boarding schools in the UK are not in the business of trying to ‘anglicise’ international pupils. Britain itself is an increasingly international and multi-cultural place.
Impressions of a UK boarding school
This is not to say, however, that an international pupil will leave UK boarding schools unchanged or uninfluenced by their experience.
They will leave with a network of friends and connections which spans the globe, with the independence to view the world with a critical eye and the confidence to challenge and right the wrongs