How to Choose a Boarding School

You may know why to choose private school, but how do you choose the right one? Selecting a private school can be challenging as each institution offers unique opportunities and teaching approaches. There are large and small private schools, single-sex environments, independent and religiously affiliated, etc. To make the best possible choice for your son, it’s important for you to understand your goals in pursuing a private school education. Below are four questions that can help you select the best private high school for your son:

What curriculum does the school use?

Learning about curriculum and class dynamics is vital when determining if a school is a good fit for your son. This is the framework upon which your child's learning is structured, so it needs to be expansive enough to prepare him for the future. You’ll also want to take a look at class size: what is the student-to-teacher ratio? Research shows that small classes encourage students to not only keep up with their lessons but to excel in academia.

What is the school’s philosophy?

While every school’s philosophy speaks to excellence and development of students, the approach will vary and you’ll need to find the right fit for your family. What does the school truly value? Ask school leadership to describe the current culture of the school, how they would like to improve it, and what they are doing to achieve that result. Ask teachers, parents, and students the same questions. Doing so will help you to determine if the school is right for you.

What extracurricular activities are offered?

One of the benefits of private schools is students are exposed to activities and sports that they might not otherwise have the opportunity to experience. Is your son interested in music and art? Ask about the school’s music and arts programs. Does he want to play a sport? Ask about the school’s athletics. At The Kiski School, for example, we are able to cater to all of our students interests from athletics and art to music and creative writing.

To what universities do students apply and gain acceptance?

Are students from the school accepted to a variety of colleges, including highly selective universities, geographically diverse schools, and respected honors programs at state schools? If your son has a very strong interest in a particular college, find out what the school’s track record is with that college. If a school sends students to a broad range of schools, it’s fair to assume that the school is serious about finding schools that are a good match for their students.

The best private school for your son is one that challenges him, supports his educational goals, and provides him a place to learn and grow. If you’re interested in learning more about The Kiski School and how we help our students succeed, feel free to contact us.
1888 Brett Lane, Saltsburg, PA 15681   |   (877) 547-5448
Established in 1888, The Kiski School is one of the oldest, private, all-boys, college preparatory boarding schools in Pennsylvania and the United States.  Home to 200 boys, Kiski offers an academically rigorous curriculum that includes Advanced and Honors courses, 12 varsity sports, and a community that allows boys to thrive through project-based learning and self-discovery. Kiski's beautiful, 350-acre campus is located in Saltsburg, Pennsylvania, 30 miles east of Pittsburgh, PA.

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