Dorset House allows children to experience boarding from Year 5 to Year 8. Boarding at this age allows the children to gain valuable experience of being independent, learning to live in a community, developing self-confidence and it encourages self-discipline. As the majority of the schools we feed are boarding schools, it also provides valuable experience before children move on to their senior schools. If that weren’t enough, it is also great fun!
Our aim is to provide a safe, caring and friendly environment throughout the school. This means that our children ultimately feel happy. Following a busy school day, children enter the boarding house and enjoy spending time with their friends. They also enjoy the extensive range of activities which are on offer each evening.
Children of different ages talk and play together happily and we encourage children to enjoy friendships across different Year groups. Pupils feel fortunate to be part of such a close-knit Boarding House and respect the high expectations we set them in terms of being a responsible member of the community.
Flexi-boarding means that starting out as a boarder at Dorset House does not have to be the overwhelming experience, for both parents and children that full boarding can be. Children can choose to start with just one night a week when they feel ready and often this maybe organised with a friend who is new to the experience as well.
Dorset House offers ‘Flexi-boarding’ which is available from Monday to Thursday nights. Flexi-boarding allows children to experience boarding for the first time without having to be away from home all week.
Children often begin by boarding one night a week in Year 5 and then add nights as they progress through the school so that by the time they reach Year 8, it is not unusual for children to board on all four nights. Those who board more than once a week are encouraged to board on consecutive evenings where possible.
Dorset House prides itself on its pastoral care and we ensure that any problems are dealt with swiftly and effectively. Children can talk to a number of different people: Houseparents, Housetutors, Matrons, Gap students or our Independent Listener.
It is true that boarding is not necessarily right for everyone but we hope that children will be encouraged by all that they hear from their boarding peers. When the time feels right it is possible to have a taster night to get a feel for how boarding works before any commitment is made and of course, parents are always very welcome to visit the boarding house and ask any questions.