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year 5 DD wants to go to boarding school

(14 Posts)
coccyx Fri 23-Sep-11 15:35:18

My year 5 DD has asked about boarding school. We are in the Middle east for 2 more years . The school she attends is great but only 4 girls in her class. I know she feels lonely and bit isolated as other girls just not her type!
We would get some help with fees etc. Not sure what to do really. Any advice welcome

2BoysTooLoud Fri 23-Sep-11 15:47:19

I think she is far too young to decide about boarding school at 5.
She will not full understand what it entails even if she thinks she does.
I personally think 5 years old is too young to go away from you.
Keep her close....

purpleturtletoise Fri 23-Sep-11 15:49:03

Year 5 - not age 5!

Don't know what to suggest though, coccyx. What's your feeling about it?

2BoysTooLoud Fri 23-Sep-11 15:50:42


2BoysTooLoud Fri 23-Sep-11 15:51:55

Yes, year 5 puts totally different perspective on it - though still young.

Hullygully Fri 23-Sep-11 15:52:09

Could you come over here (assume you mean England) and visit a few to help you both decide?

At my dcs school it's day and boarding (but starts later) and the boarders absolutely love it. I do think they are different now.

If she is quite self-confident and reasonably outgoing, she might love it.

alarkaspree Fri 23-Sep-11 15:54:33

Has she talked about it a lot? Do you think she's given it a lot of thought, and really thinks she would like it? Or did she bring it up with you as part of the thought process? Does she know much about it, have friends who are boarders?

I would consider it, perhaps, in your situation. Difficult because both my children are too young and hopelessly unsuited to boarding school anyway.

goinggetstough Fri 23-Sep-11 15:56:17

My DC both boarded from year 4 as we were abroad and in a similiar situation to you. They had a great time. Please PM me if you have any questions, better this way than post on the thread as I expect the anti boarding school brigade will be along soon!

notcitrus Fri 23-Sep-11 16:33:23

Given my experience in an expat school, I'd strongly consider UK boarding.
A few things to consider though:
will your employer still contribute to fees if/after you move back to England? Some will continue say half fees for up to 5 years, others you're on your own within a month. COuld you still pay fees until the end of GCSE/6th form?

Related - where might you be based within the UK? THere's a big trend for people to go to boarding schools near where they live. And while many now take day pupils and you might want her to be one once living in the UK, some don't and in some the day pupils are rather excluded.

If you're there two more years, that would mean Y7 there - is there a British secondary school where you are or would it be an American/international school? They vary hugely but quite a lot are crap. Another option might be intensive language tuition and going to a local school until the end of primary? Depends what country you're in how feasible that might be and what the education she'd get would be like.
Alternatively you'd probably want a boarding school with a junior section so she wouldn't have to change schools again.
Boarding schools now have Skype and email and Facebook and mobile phones etc so students often end up more in contact with their parents than they were living with them - it's not the isolating experience it was 25 years ago (though some schools might be, or for kids with crap parents)

Lots to think about but FWIW I was in that situation 25 years ago and in retrospect boarding earlier would have been the better solution (or going to a local school).

coccyx Fri 23-Sep-11 17:22:47

I am a complete novice with regard to boarding schools.
She was the one who mentioned boarding school. Another 2 years is a long time to be without 'friends'. She is a bright, independent girl. I have looked on line at schools near my Mums. she has a strong bond with her.
I know i would miss her loads but trying to work out what she needs/wants. Our neighbour here sent her oldest DD to board in Uk last Sept. She was a few years older, but is loving it there.

DilysPrice Fri 23-Sep-11 17:32:04

Where would you be once the 2 years are up, do you know where you'd be living, and would you be able to afford to keep her there?

I think it might be the right thing to do if you'd be able to keep her in the same school until 16/18, (possibly switching to weekly boarding or day pupil once you're back in UK) but maybe not if it would mean another big upheaval in year 8.

NappyShedSal Fri 23-Sep-11 19:10:39

This is a different way of looking at the situation - who would you rather spend more time with? Your husband or your daughter? If the answer is your daughter then could you and her not move back to the UK and then regularly fly back to spend half-terms and holidays with your husband. If your DH's company will help towards fees then they could be asked to contribute towards flights instead.

notcitrus Fri 23-Sep-11 19:50:47

Another thing to check - would the employer contribute to flights home for halfterm breaks as well as holidays, or failing that could you afford it? And are there regular direct flights to where you are?

There's not that many schools that go up to 18 that have boarding facilities for under-year-7 - most boarding schools for younger kids are prep only (ie up to age 13), but if you are likely to be back in the UK before year 9 then that might work for you and give you a lot more choice, eg to be near your mum.

plumtart Fri 23-Sep-11 21:06:00

could you live with your children in the uk and send them to state day schools here whilst your dh concludes his contract over there?

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