If there were basic reasons why Boarding Schools were initially set up, they are because of the following.
- Scarcity of schools in the past and the long distance of the available schools from homes.
- To assist parents who are usually not around due to business schedules in catering for their children/wards.
- To help monitor, guide and assist students in obtaining effective reading skills and cultures.
However, considering the trends of things going on in society and in some boarding schools. Especially in the recent time, parents who still can’t do without taking their children/wards to boarding school must first ask these questions below before making any move:
1. Will there be adequate security in the school?
I do not think it is enough that parents rely on the facade, that is, outer beautification of the school buildings or its environs, paramount attention should be paid to how adequate and strong the security of the school is.
How do we justify an incident of bandits breaking into the school compound to kidnap pupils and teachers or students getting involved in cult practices or acts of molestation? If there were tight securities, I believe such evils wouldn’t have been that rampant.
2. Will there be adequate care by the school for the child?
Parents, please do not just take a child to a boarding school because of the geographical location of the school or because of how beautiful the boarding facilities look, you should first endeavour to know how caring the staff, the school owners and the school management are.
For example, a caring teaching staff or non-teaching staff easily get alerted when anything goes wrong with a child while the non-caring ones may not be aware until there are damages.
3. How mature enough is the child for him to care for himself/herself
One of the big mistakes the current generation of parents are making is that they believe everything should be done for a child at boarding school, including bathing, dressing, brushing of teeth, when they are even aware that the children can’t do all those things at home.
I would recommend that a child below age 15 should not be taken to boarding school unless you are certain he can cater for himself.
4. Does the child have a special ailment that requires special attention?
I recall personally as a former school teacher, there was this parent who informed me about her son’s bladder problem. The boy was only 10 then, but urinates so frequently -almost every 2 hours.
Even though I may delay other pupils’ requests by 5 or 10 minutes before granting, I do not delay this particular boy for a second because I’ve been made to be aware of his condition and I understood him well.
Do you realise that the boy in question never for one day messed up himself in the class, despite his critical state of health?
If you are a parent whose child’s situation falls in a similar category, you won’t be doing yourself any good if you fail to inform the teacher, or the school management about it, to enable them to give him/her special care.
Aside from this, ask yourself whether the child will be able to cope with such a condition or not.