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Deciding on a school for your child isn’t an easy thing, and typically takes quite a bit of research, thinking, analysis, and discussion as a family. Before you commit to a school, it is always worthwhile considering the different types of educational facilities available, including boarding schools, military schools, therapeutic schools and the like. If you want some tips on making the best decision for your child, read on for the rundown on what you should know about the different types of school today.
The most common type of facility, day schools are institutions where children come to learn during the day and then head home once the school day is finished. There are both public and private day schools, not just public ones as many people think. There are also many institutions which are focused on particular values or teaching methods, such as Catholic schools or Montessori ones. They can also be either co-ed or single-sex schools.
When children attend school only during the day and then go home afterwards, they end up spending a lot more time with their family/careers, or a lot more time by themselves, unsupervised, if their guardians are at work for long hours. This can either be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on a variety of factors such as the child, family dynamics, and the like. You will find when looking at day schools that they can vary tremendously when it comes to size, teaching style, quality of facilities, and so on.
Boarding schools, on the other hand, are schools at which students live during parts of the year, usually just during term times but sometimes also over some holiday periods. Boarding schools provide not just education but also accommodation and meals for their pupils, with the term “boarding” referring to the idea of “bed and board.” When you decide to send your child to a boarding school, you are paying for the whole lifestyle and education, including academics, 24/7 supervision, extracurricular activities, social life, and more.
There are many advantages to choosing a boarding school. For some parents, the idea of their child becoming more independent and learning to rely on themselves more because they’re away from home for much of the year is a huge advantage. Other parents like the fact that sending their child to a boarding school gives the youngster a chance to have a fresh start, or to get away from bad or negative influences at their old school.
In addition, many children find that living on campus helps them to become a part of the school community much more quickly and easily, and stops them from being anonymous amongst their classmates. For others, the advantages found in the specialized facilities and classes available at many boarding schools — such as athletics, music, equestrian, art, drama, creative writing, chess, and more — can mean the world. Such programs often give children access to activities they otherwise wouldn’t have the chance, or time, to do.
Most military schools (also known as military academies or service academies) are quite similar to boarding schools in that students live on campus and are supervised at all times by teachers and other workers. However, these types of schools also happen to prepare students for potential service in forces such as the Army, Navy, Coast Guard, Air Force, or Marine Corps.
While students who attend military schools can go on to such careers though, this is not a must, and in fact many attendees don’t. Keep in mind too that, while some boarding schools do have a military curriculum in place, not all do.
Military schools typically have some sort of structured program available, like a Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps or other internally developed plan.
These programs are typically very focused on teaching students things such as punctuality, accountability, self-discipline, how to follow leaders, how to present yourself well, how to develop a thorough understanding of responsibility as a citizen, leadership skills, and more.
Therapeutic schools also tend to be institutions where students live for part of the year like boarding and military schools, although there are some therapeutic day schools too. Regardless of that distinction, therapeutic schools are alternative facilities which specialize in educating and assisting troubled youth.
Unlike military schools in Utah and other states around the country, therapeutic schools tend to also have psychological counseling and other sessions and activities available to help rehabilitate children and/or restore them to full mental health. That’s on top of providing standard educational classes, which will help keep students prepared for life after school.
No matter what type of school you’re considering for your child, keep in mind that they are all very different. You must conduct your research both online and via an in-person visit to determine which type of school, and which exact facility, will be the best fit for the needs and budget of your family.