Is It Too Late To Apply to Boarding School?

I just read a listserv posting today by a parent who wondered if it was too late to apply to boarding schools next year. The answer is simple: “NO!”

Every summer, we are busy working with students on families on boarding school placements for the coming fall. These are usually students who made it through the school year, but in evaluating the year, are not sure they want another year just like the one they had. Maybe their current school is not the right academic fit, or does not offer the right extra-curricular activities, or is not a social fit for their interests and personality. Maybe the student needs more challenge, or maybe they need more support for their learning, study habits, time management, and organizational skills. We also work with a lot of students whose families move internationally, and as we all know, assignments can change at the last minute, making a new school placement a necessity.

So how does this work? Many schools publish deadlines for the application season that fall in January/early February, and some schools strictly adhere to those deadlines. By March 10, a select group of highly selective schools have rendered their decisions and by April 10, students have accepted their offers. The most highly selective boarding schools are usually full then, and rarely look at a student out of the normal admissions cycle.

However, there are many more wonderful, niche schools that continue to accept applications throughout the summer or until they are full. Of course, with every passing day, there are fewer and fewer places available, but there are still some great options out there.

How do we know what the right school might be for your child (or if you are the student reading this, yourself)? First we get to know as much as we can about the student from student and parental questionnaires, interviews, and review of all school records. Then we think of all the schools we know, which number in the hundreds. Having visited boarding schools all over the U.S. and even Europe, we are able to think of the kind of schools that would be great match for a student’s strengths, weaknesses, skills, interests, personality and talents. We help the student and family with the application process, then coordinate with the admissions offices as the student submits the application. There is a lot of behind the scenes coordination that takes place in order to make it happen.

Just yesterday we got another positive admissions decision from a fantastic school that is going to be a great fit for one of our students. A few weeks ago, the student and family wondered if this would ever happen. But with a coordinated effort between the family, the school, and us as the educational consultants, we were able to deliver the happy news that next year will be one of new beginnings for a student who needed it!

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