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The decision to send a child to a boarding school can be a difficult one for a family. But for many parents, there is little alternative as local schooling options may be limited or non-existent. While this isn’t always the case, there are many factors parents need weigh up when considering boarding.

Boarding schools often provide students with the opportunity to access facilities and a world-class standard of education. Boarding students could come from local, semi-local locations or can be international students coming to Australian schools from the other side of the world.

Students who embrace the concept of boarding will find this form of schooling enjoyable and successful and generally take up all options available and enthusiastically try new things in life previously unexplored.

Boarding can expose students to opportunities that they would otherwise not have had. These benefits can include:

Exciting opportunities and experiences

Attending a boarding school can offer students many unique and rewarding experiences, such as central Australian students having the opportunity to take up rowing, Chinese students could learn to play cricket, while academically focused students can take accelerated courses of the highest level.

A rich history of boarding

Many schools have an established history of boarding that continues today. Boarding schools enjoy the diversity that students from rural and international settings bring.

Country students often bring considerable practical experience and have generally had the opportunity to take greater responsibility throughout their life. This can greatly benefit students from the city who have not had such opportunities. While international students often bring a culturally different focus to their education and this often has the effect of lifting the overall academic standing of a cohort of students.

Cultural diversity

Local students can greatly benefit from living with students with a different heritage. Many schools are a strong reflection of the society in which they are located. In some cases this can be limiting for students. Boarding schools enjoy a demographic that is much larger than their immediate surrounds. Schools with boarders, while located in a specific suburb, can build a character and reputation much larger than what is typically associated with that suburb. 

Access to pastoral care

The best boarding schools have a culture of pastoral support, academic success, positive peer mentoring and care. This culture needs nurturing and requires a commitment from the students to positively contribute into their boarding community. Boarding is not a place for students who look to intentionally cause disruption or are unwilling to commit to being a positive part of a community. Boarding schools are unlikely to reform a rebellious child.

Academic advancement

In many schools boarding students are under the care of residential educational staff. This means students have access to a range of qualified teaching staff who can assist with out of hours school requirements. Supervised and managed study routines are implemented. In time this can lead to effective independent study skills that may benefit the student.

For more information on boarding at The Scots College, download a copy of our Boarding Prospectus.

The Scots College is a proud member of the following associations.

The Presbyterian Church (New South Wales) Property Trust T/A The Scots College, Sydney Australia
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William Elder


Mr Alan Elder was born in Scotland and migrated to Australia with his parents at a young age. He attended The Scots College for all his schooling, graduating in 1944. He played 1st XI Cricket and was a member of the College Cadet Unit. After leaving school Mr Elder studied accountancy and retained a life-long love of the College, especially the Pipes and Drums. Mr Elder never married, however the significant bequest he left will allow his Scots family to remember him through the Lang Walker Business Centre.