Enquiry Form

How Boarding Schools Can 'Save' Vulnerable Young People

Daily summary of the latest news and opinions from the world of independent education brought to you by Education Advisers...  

How Boarding Schools Can 'Save' Vulnerable Young People

Colin Morrison OBE, chair of Boarding School Partnerships and former Chair of the Royal National Children’s Foundation 2001-2016. writes for Huffington Post discussing 'how boarding schools can save vulnerable young people'.

“By the time I left school at the end of the 1960s to pursue my dreams of journalism and media, I had come to understand how fortunate I had been. The Royal Wanstead School had been founded in 1827 by a celebrated congregational minister Dr Andrew Reed, who also founded what became Reed’s School, in Cobham, and the Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability, in Putney. My school had a succession of Royal patrons (starting with Queen Victoria) and the local MP Winston Churchill was a long-time governor.

It was an amazing boarding school charity which supported hundreds of vulnerable, disadvantaged young people. Most had one or no active parents. Many had much more deprived backgrounds than me. But, only in 1971, when the school collapsed in a pile of debt, did I come to understand its true significance. Boarding schools were the very picture of privilege in 20th century Britain. But behind the insistent images of Tom Brown’s Schooldays, posh kids and bullying, was the secret world of charity-funded boarders like me.

At the end of the 1960s, when there was a total of 150,000 boarding school pupils in the UK, no fewer than 10,000 were being paid-for by local authorities. Essex County Council, which (with the Royal National Children’s Foundation) paid my school fees for 10 years, was itself supporting 100 other vulnerable children across England.

Now, with the passionate support of Schools Minister Lord Agnew, the BSP service is regularly used by some 50% of all local authorities. In June, we reported on research into the stunning success of 52 vulnerable young people funded by Norwich County Council at 11 boarding schools. We have now launched “Partnership Bursaries” with at least 45 boarding schools which will offer 40% bursaries to local authorities. It has been a fantastic response by so many of the country’s leading independent schools.

Sixty years after Essex County Council whisked me off to boarding school and helped to change my life, there is a real prospect that many hundreds more young people will now get the same opportunity from their local authorities.”

Read more at: https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/boarding-schools-vulnerable-people_uk_5b607cace4b0eb29100e5996

Top tips for transitioning to senior school

Bethany School's deputy head, Steven Winter, advises teachers on how to help pupils make a smooth transition to senior school.

Bethany School was founded in 1866 and therefore has many years’ experience in supporting pupils through the transition to senior school. A great deal of thought should be given to helping pupils and their parents to get to know the school and each other, and make the settling in process as easy as possible.

Starting a new school is an exciting time which brings new challenges; schools should take a proactive approach to help pupils cope with any bumps in the road. 

Read Bethany School's top tips… https://www.isc.co.uk/media-enquiries/isc-blogs/transitioning-to-senior-school/