Boarding Schools for Boys

Boarding schools for boys provide an alternative education for boys that aren't sure military school is the right option Learn more about boarding schools for boys in the U.S. to see if it is right for your teenager. 

Military boarding schools for boys offer a number of benefits for students, but they aren't the right fit for every student and family. Military boarding schools aren't the only type of boarding school available, and with the many types of boarding school options, parents who are interested in this type of education for their sons have a lot of choices.

Some of the types of boarding schools for boys available in the US, other than military schools, include:

  • College prep boarding schools. These schools focus on preparing young men for college. They generally offer a structured academic environment with lots of support such as tutoring and peer mentoring, and have a high graduation rate and college enrollment rate.
  • Therapeutic boarding schools. These boarding schools for boys are designed to help students with certain special needs, such as Asperger's Syndrome or ADHD. Some also are geared toward helping troubled teens. They usually only focus on one type of student, and are well equipped to handle those students' educational, medical, and emotional needs. Many have trained medical or mental health counselors on site to help oversee the students' well being. These are very similar to residential education programs.
  • Magnet or special interest boarding schools. These boarding schools for boys attract students with special interests, such as science or the arts, and provide them with an in-depth education that focuses primarily on the school's special topic.
  • Religious boarding schools.

Boarding schools are fairly widespread, so parents can often find a boarding school close to home. The exceptions to this are special needs and magnet schools, which may sometimes require a student to live far from home. This can make it hard for parents to visit and may leave the student feeling homesick or even detached from their family.

In the US, almost all boarding schools are private schools, so the cost of the schools can be prohibitive. Financial aid or scholarships may be available for some schools.

Before choosing a boarding school, parents should consider several factors:

  • Type of school. Decide what you and your son want from the school: co-ed or boys only, age range, extra curricular activities, medical and religious considerations, etc.
  • Location. How far is it from home?
  • Reputation. Talk to other parents and professionals in the field to make sure the school has a good reputation.
  • Cost. In addition to tuition and fees, parents may need to pay for books, supplies, uniforms, and other costs.
  • Philosophies. The school’s philosophies on discipline, education, and other issues should be fairly compatible with your family's beliefs.
  • Accreditation/licensing. Find out who will be teaching your children and providing them with services and try to meet them. The school should do extensive background checks on all of its employees and all teachers and therapists should be licensed. The school should be accredited.
  • Family involvement. The family should be able to visit, and they should be involved in the treatment program if the school is therapeutic.

Remember that whenever possible you should include your son in the process of choosing a boarding school. Including him in the discussions increases the chances that the experience will be a success.

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