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    10 Best Boarding Schools in the US

    Are you a parent trying to figure out the best boarding school in the US for your child? You’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled a list of the top boarding schools in the US, based on factors like academics, affordability, and extracurriculars. 

    So whether you’re looking for the most prestigious boarding school or a more affordable option, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading to learn more!

    10 Best Boarding Schools in the US

    #1 Phillips Academy Andover

    phillips academy andover

    Situated in Andover, Massachusetts, 25 miles north of Boston, Phillips Academy Andover is one of the oldest boarding schools in the US. It was founded in 1778 and has a long tradition of academic excellence, with notable alumni including George W. Bush and Julie Andrews. Phillips Academy Andover is also one of the most selective boarding schools in the country, with an acceptance rate of just 13%.

    Tuition Fee$66,290 per year for boarding students, and $51,380 for day students
    Acceptance RateAcceptance Rate: 13%
    Average SAT ScoreAverage SAT Score: 1470
    Average ACT ScoreAverage ACT Score: 33
    Senior Class SizeSenior Class Size: 13
    Grades OfferedGrades Offered: 9-12, PG
    Demographic CompositionDemographic Composition: Out of about 1,200 students, one-third are students of color. Typically, entering classes in this boarding school in US include students from 40 or more states and 25 or more countries.
    Student to Teacher RatioStudent to Teacher Ratio: 7:1
    College Admissions Students have to first submit the online application through the Gateway to Prep Schools common application website by February 1, 2023. Then, they have to take the virtual admission interview. The admission decisions will be released by March 10, 2023.
    Academic Highlights Phillips Academy Andover offers a rigorous academic program with over 300 courses in the humanities, sciences, and arts. The school also has many unique programs, including the Janus Project which allows students to take courses at nearby colleges.
    Most Influential AlumniGeorge W. Bush (43rd President of the United States), Julie Andrews (actress and singer), John Kerry (politician and diplomat), and more.

    #2 The Hotchkiss School

    Entrance of the hotchkiss school

    The Hotchkiss School is a boarding school in Lakeville, Connecticut. It was founded in 1891 and enrolls about 600 students from across the US and around the world. Hotchkiss is known for its rigorous academic program as well as its competitive sports teams. The school also has several unique programs, including the Janus Project which allows students to take courses at nearby colleges.

    Tuition Fee$66,940 per year for boarding students, and $56,910 for day students
    Acceptance Rate13%
    Average SAT Score1420
    Average ACT Score32
    Senior Class Size12
    Grades Offered9-12, PG
    Demographic CompositionOut of 603 students, nearly 38% are students of color, and 13% are international students. The student body typically includes students from 20 or more states and 30 or more countries.
    Student to Teacher Ratio7:1
    College Admissions You need to submit the admission inquiry form and special interest forms (optional), schedule an interview and take a standardized test. The application deadline and the deadline to submit the application for financial aid is January 15, 2023. Admission decisions will be declared online and sent by mail by March 10, 2023. Students have to confirm the seat by April 10, 2023.
    Academic Highlights The Hotchkiss School offers more than 200 courses in seven departments: Classical and Modern Languages, English, Human Development, Humanities and Social Sciences, Mathematics and Computer Science, Science, and Visual and Performing Arts.
    Most Influential AlumniJohn F. Kennedy Jr. (lawyer, journalist, and son of President John F. Kennedy), Michael J. Fox (actor), Brooke Shields (model and actress), and more.
    Related Reading: How to Prepare Kids for the First Day of School: Effective Ways

    #3 Choate Rosemary Hall

    Churchbell and garden of the Choate Rosemary Hall

    Choate Rosemary Hall is among the best boarding schools in the US. It is situated in Wallingford, Connecticut, and was founded in 1890. The school enrolls about 865 students from across the world. Choate is known for its innovative curriculum, active campus engagement, and guided independent learning. The school offers 23 sports.

    Tuition Fee$65,820 per year for boarding students, and $50,910 for day students
    Acceptance Rate18%
    Average SAT Score1443
    Average ACT Score32
    Senior Class Size12
    Grades Offered9-12, PG
    Demographic CompositionChoate Rosemary has 865 students, including 37% students of color. This is a co-educational school.
    Student to Teacher Ratio7:1
    College Admissions Students need to submit the application for admission at Choate by January 15, 2023. It includes submitting the inquiry form online, scheduling an interview, submitting standardized tests, and applying for financial aid. The admission decisions will be available online on March 10, 2023. Admitted students will have to confirm their enrollment with the admission office by April 10, 2023.
    Academic Highlights The school allows you to choose your courses. It also offers signature programs in Advanced Robotics Concentration, Arabic & Middle Eastern Studies, John F. Kennedy Program in Government and Public Service, Arts Concentration, and Science Research Program.
    Most Influential AlumniJohn F. Kennedy (35th President of the United States), Paul Giamatti (Emmy Award-winning actor), Hilary Knight (2010 Olympic Ice Hockey Champion), and more

    #4 Groton School

    Groton School is a very exclusive boarding school in the US. This college preparatory school is located in Groton, Massachusetts. It was founded in 1884 and enrolls about 380 students from across the globe. The school’s rigorous academic program is cumulatively focused on developing character and leadership skills in its students. Groton also offers competitive sports teams and a variety of extracurricular activities.

    It has adopted the GRAIN (GRoton Affordability and INclusion) initiative which makes the school affordable and accessible to a broader range of families.

    Tuition Fee$59,995 per year for boarding students, and $46,720 for day students
    Acceptance Rate9%
    Average SAT Score1440
    Average ACT Score33
    Senior Class Size11
    Grades Offered8-12
    Demographic CompositionIt has 380 students, and more than 42% of them get financial aid. Groton students include 9% international students and 46% students of color.
    Student to Teacher Ratio4:1
    College Admissions The application deadline for the fall of 2023 is January 15, 2023. The application fee for Groton School is $50. Fill in the Groton School inquiry form, register for the student-led group campus tour that takes place in the summer, and attend a one-on-one summer admission interview via video chat.Connect with current Groton students in online information sessions. Complete the candidate profile through the online application system of Gateway to Prep Schools, submit the standardized test results, add recommendations, and complete and submit the application form.
    Academic Highlights Groton has two special programs: GEOs (Groton Educational Opportunities) where students explore the world during vacations, and GRACE (GRoton Accelerate Challenge Enrich) where students attend summer classes between Grades 9 and 10. This school offers wide-ranging art, service, and athletic programs.
    Most Influential AlumniFranklin D. Roosevelt (32nd President of the United States), Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. (Associate Justice of the Supreme Court), James B. Conant (American chemist and diplomat), and more
    Related Reading: Best First Day of School Activities for Students

    #5 Phillips Exeter Academy

    Phillips Exeter Academy Garden and main entrance

    Phillips Exeter Academy is a co-educational independent boarding school located in Exeter, New Hampshire. It was founded in 1781 and enrolls about 1,100 students from across the globe. The school offers a rigorous academic program that focuses on developing character and leadership skills in its students.

    Phillips Exeter is based on the Harkness education system, where student interaction happens in a conference format with minimal teacher involvement. The school has a competitive sports program and offers a variety of extracurricular activities.

    Tuition Fee$61,121 per year for boarding students, and $47,739 for day students
    Acceptance Rate10%
    Average SAT Score1440
    Average ACT Score33
    Senior Class Size12
    Grades Offered9-12, PG
    Demographic CompositionOut of about 1,200 students, one-third are students of color. Typically, entering classes in this boarding school in US include students from 40 or more states and 25 or more countries.
    Student to Teacher Ratio7:1
    College Admissions To apply to Exeter, you have to start the application process and schedule an interview in July. The financial aid application needs to be submitted from September 1 onwards. The deadline for submitting the completed Exeter application form is January 15, 2023. All the documents for the financial aid have to be submitted by January 31, 2023. The admission decisions will be declared by March 10, 2023.Families whose income is $75,000 or less do not have to pay anything.
    Academic Highlights Phillips Exeter Academy has 16 departments: Art, Classical Languages, Computer Science, Economics, English, Health and Human Development, History, Mathematics, Modern Languages, Music, Physical Education, Religion, Science, and Theater & Dance. It also offers the Exeter Innovates program where you can experiment and create interdisciplinary courses, and the Integrated Studies program where students can undertake field courses and special projects to explore their personal interests.
    Most Influential AlumniMark Zuckerberg (co-founder of Facebook), Adam D’Angelo (co-founder of Quora), Paul Romer (winner of the 2018 Nobel Prize in Economics), Greg Daniels (humorist), and more

    #6 The Lawrenceville School

    The Lawrenceville School Gruss Center for art and design

    One of the huge boarding schools in the US, The Lawrenceville School is located in the historic town of Lawrenceville in New Jersey. Its campus is spread across 700 acres and has 165 buildings. The school was founded in 1810 and today enrolls about 820 students from across the globe.

    Lawrenceville’s most distinguishing features are its classrooms designed like conference tables, and its House system, where students live in one of 10 Houses with their peers and faculty members. They allow Lawrenceville to offer the camaraderie of a small, personal school system as well as extensive educational and extracurricular opportunities that are only available in large schools.

    Tuition Fee$73,220 per year for boarding students, $60,250 for day students
    Acceptance Rate20.5%
    Average SAT Score1490
    Average ACT Score33
    Senior Class Size12
    Grades Offered9-12, PG
    Demographic CompositionIt is a coeducational school with 16% international students and 55% students of color. The student population is racially, ethnically, culturally, religiously, and socio-economically diverse.
    Student to Teacher Ratio7.5:1
    College Admissions To become a Lawrentian, complete and submit The Lawrenceville School inquiry form on its official website. Sign up for an interview, which is typically conducted from September to January.You can also attend online information sessions and schedule a campus tour in person or virtually. To attend in-person and virtual events, you have to visit their Travel and Events page. Approximately, one-third of their students receive need-based financial aid, which covers tuition fees, room and boarding charges, the Harkness travel program, on-campus activities, and more.
    Academic Highlights Lawrenceville has a discussion-based classroom model, where students are encouraged to listen and participate actively, share their ideas, and learn from their peers. It offers a robust selection of courses from nine departments: English, History, Interdisciplinary Studies, Language, Mathematics, Performing Arts, Religion and Philosophy, Science, and Visual Arts.
    Most Influential AlumniJon Meacham (Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and journalist), James A. Baker III (U.S. Secretary of State under President George H. W. Bush), Shirley Tilghman (19th president of Princeton University), and more
    Related Reading: Signs That Your Child is Struggling in School

    #7 St. Paul’s School

    St Pauls School in winter

    This episcopal private boarding school in US is situated in Concord, New Hampshire. It was founded in 1856 and today has a student body of around 500, hailing from more than 30 states and 20 countries. The school campus spreads around 2,000 acres.

    The SPS community meets in the Chapel four mornings a week. It has 70+ clubs and societies, and 18 houses fostering a sense of community among students. The school believes in 5 major pillars of excellence: respect, honesty, kindness, inclusion, and courage.

    Tuition Fee$62,000 per year
    Acceptance Rate12%
    Average SAT Score1410
    Average ACT Score32
    Senior Class Size11
    Grades Offered9-12
    Demographic CompositionOut of 535 students, 39% of students are receiving financial aid. They include students from 36 states and 13 countries. 15% of SPS students live outside the U.S. Diverse SPS student community includes 10% African or African American students, 17% Asian or Asian American students, 5% Latin, Hispanic, or Mexican American students, and 13% students of mixed heritage.
    Student to Teacher Ratio5:1
    College Admissions Complete the online inquiry form to receive the latest admission news and updates throughout the application season. You can take on-campus tours and interviews or take virtual tours on Zoom. The online scheduling portal will go live in early August.Submit your Candidate Profile through the Gateway to Prep School application well before the deadline. There are no application fees to apply to this school. Also, apply for financial aid at the same time you apply for school admission. You may submit standardized tests if you want but that’s optional in 2022-2023.Complete the application form and submit any supplementary materials, as applicable, if you are an athlete, musician, or ballet dancer. The deadline to complete the application process and submit the financial aid documents is January 15, 2023. The admission decisions will be posted online on March 10, 2023.
    Academic Highlights This co-educational residential school follows a unique SPS 360 approach, which calls for the integration of social, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual growth of each student. The areas of study available are Humanities, Languages, Mathematics, Sciences, and Arts. It also offers next-level Applied Science and Engineering Program and Classical Honors programs.
    Most Influential AlumniBill Bradley (former US senator), John McCain (US senator and 2008 Republican presidential candidate), Terence Winter (writer, producer, and showrunner of Boardwalk Empire), and more.

    #8 Noble and Greenough School

    Kids playing football in the soccer field of Noble and Greenough School

    This top boarding school in the US is located in Dedham, Massachusetts, and was founded way back in 1866. Nobles is a non-sectarian 5-day boarding school situated along the Charles River, just minutes outside of Boston. The school has two campuses – the Main campus, and the Lower Campus, which is for middle schoolers.

    It is one of the finest private boarding schools in Massachusetts and offers a rich and vibrant student life. Ice hockey is the school’s most popular sport. The school has produced many NHL players like Jack Eichel, Charlie McAvoy, and Noah Hanifin. It acquired 38 ISL titles in the last five years and 5 theatre productions each year.

    There are more than 70 clubs and activities on offer, including theatre, dance, music, painting, photography, Model UN, robotics, and more.

    Tuition Fee$61,700 for boarding students, $55,700 for day students
    Acceptance Rate24%
    Average SAT Score1410
    Average ACT Score33
    Senior Class Size12.5
    Grades Offered7-12
    Demographic CompositionNobles has a total of 630 students, including 44% students of color. 81% of Nobles’ students travel or study away from the campus. 29% of students receive need-based financial care.
    Student to Teacher Ratio6:1
    College Admissions Nobles is an academically rigorous institution. It seeks evidence of strong academic performance and having pursued interests outside of academics in a student’s application. Students have to apply online through Ravenna by January 15, 2023. Those who are applying for financial aid need to submit all documents, including the 2021 tax return of parents by March 1, 2023. Students can check admission decision notifications through Ravenna on March 10, 2023.
    Academic Highlights Nobles offers a Middle School program, Upper School program, and College Counselling. The Middle School program is meant for seventh and eighth graders and focuses on experiential learning. They learn math, English Via Latin, English, science, social studies, and Latin and/or a modern language (such as Chinese, French, and Spanish). Electives include drama, visual arts, music, and computers.In Upper School, students learn core subjects and can also choose more challenging AP courses in Environmental Science, Photography, Calculus, and many other subjects. The 30-month college counseling program at Nobles focuses on self-reflection. It starts with an 8-day wilderness expedition in sophomore year and continues with workshops, group meetings, and individual counseling sessions.
    Most Influential AlumniMiles Wood (Professional ice hockey player for the New Jersey Devils), Amor Towles (novelist), Ben Affleck (actor), Roger Putnam (American politician and businessman), and more
    Related Reading: Funny School Memes Every Student Will Love

    #9 Deerfield Academy

    Deerfield Academy boarding school

    Deerfield Academy is one of the best boarding schools in US. Located in Deerfield, Massachusetts, it was founded in 1797 and is one of the oldest private secondary schools in the country. The school has a rural campus situated on 450 acres of land.

    It is a member of the Eight Schools Association which includes some of the most prestigious boarding schools in the country. Other members of this association are Choate Rosemary Hall, Lawrenceville School, Phillips Exeter Academy, and more.

    It is also part of the Ten Schools Admissions Organization that includes Andover, Exeter, Hotchkiss, Lawrenceville, and more. This organization makes the admission process easier for students applying to any of these schools. As a member of the Six Schools League, it also competes against other members like Andover, Choate, Exeter, Hotchkiss, and Taft.

    It offers a variety of sports like football, lacrosse, basketball, and more.

    Tuition Fee$67,520 for boarding students, and $48,850 for day students
    Acceptance Rate16.8%
    Average SAT Score1420
    Average ACT Score32
    Senior Class Size12
    Grades Offered9-12, PG (for boarding students), 7-8 available only for day students
    Demographic CompositionIt has 663 students. 44% of them are non-white Americans. 14% are either foreign nationals or US expats. Its diverse student community includes students from 35 U.S. states and 47 foreign countries. 37% of its students receive financial aid.
    Student to Teacher Ratio5:1
    College Admissions Request a viewbook to learn about the academic breadth, student life, financial aid, and other opportunities Deerfield offers. Submit the online application to Gateway to Prep Schools. Once you submit the candidate profile, you will receive a link to access the Deerfield Admission Portal where you can submit other required material.Visit the campus or participate in a virtual information session. Also, schedule a one-on-one interview with the Admission Officer. Submit the standardized test results, and complete the remaining part of the application on the Gateway to Prep School portal by January 15, 2023.You are advised to send recommendation links to teachers after October 1, 2022.
    Academic Highlights Deerfield Academy has 119 faculty members and offers 172 courses. The school has a policy that for Level 100-200 courses, teachers can assign homework for a maximum of 50 minutes per class. For Level 300-400 courses, the homework limit is capped at 60 minutes. And for Level 500+ courses, teachers cannot assign homework for more than 70 minutes per class meeting.Deerfield courses are quite challenging. For those who are looking for an extra challenge, a wide range of accelerated and AP courses are available. Students can also choose to study abroad from their sophomore to senior years. Most students choose to do so during their junior year though.
    Most Influential AlumniPaul Johnson Calderon (television personality and fashion journalist), Jacob Lee (singer and songwriter), Allen Stack (Gold Medalist in 1948 Summer Olympics in swimming), and more.

    #10 Concord Academy

    Main gate of the Concord academy in Concord, Massachusetts

    Concord Academy is one of the best boarding schools in the US. Located in Concord, Massachusetts, it was founded in 1922 and is a coeducational private secondary school. It is a co-educational, independent, college preparatory school that focuses on the hands-on learning, experimentation, and intellectual growth of its students. It has world-class faculty and its alumni include famous authors, ambassadors, doctors, engineers, entrepreneurs, and dancers.

    Tuition Fee$66,510 for boarding students, $53, 270 for day students
    Acceptance Rate16%
    Average SAT Score1440
    Average ACT Score32
    Senior Class Size12
    Grades Offered9-12
    Demographic CompositionOut of 395 students enrolled here, 36% are students of color and 10% are international students. 65% of students come from private, parochial, or foreign schools while 35% of students come from public or charter schools. 26% of students are receiving financial aid.
    Student to Teacher Ratio6:1
    College Admissions CA does not offer class ranks, prizes, or academic awards. Instead, it encourages students to have clear goals, make informed opinions, and become lifelong learners. At Concord Academy, students discover their passion. It offers a rigorous academic curriculum with wide-as-you-can-dream elective choices. Students can choose any course across departments within a common skill development framework.
    Academic Highlights Students can visit the campus or take a virtual campus tour. They can also attend admission interviews on campus or through a virtual event. Concord’s application review process is highly individualized. There’s no minimum GPA or test score requirement. Students’ interviews, letters of recommendation, personal statements, and comments from parents or guardians are all taken into consideration during the application review process.You can apply to Concord through the Ravenna account. It also accepts applications from the Gateway to Prep Schools application, as well as the Student Application Online (SAO) in which case they do not need to complete the Ravenna application forms. But they still need to create the Ravenna account.The deadline for completing the application form and submitting all the required documents is January 15, 2023.
    Most Influential AlumniKhalif Diouf aka Le1f (rapper and producer), Daysha Veronica (viral video maker, award-winning writer, director, and producer), Lucy McFadden (NASA investigator), Queen Noor of Jordan, and more

    You should choose the boarding school in the US based on your requirements and preferences. Consider the location, tuition fee, student-to-teacher ratio, college admissions process, and the school’s academic and extracurricular offerings. Also, look at the school’s alumni to see if it produces successful individuals in fields your child is interested in.

    Related Reading: Best Back to School Supplies for Kids

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How to choose the best boarding school for my child?

    The best boarding school for your child is the one that best meets their needs academically, socially, and emotionally. To find the best fit, you’ll want to research schools thoroughly and visit campuses to get a feel for the culture and community. You should also consider your child’s academic strengths and interests when choosing a school.

    What are the benefits of attending a boarding school?

    The best boarding schools in the US feature small class sizes, a supportive community, and opportunities for personal growth. Boarding schools also offer a unique opportunity for students to live and learn together, fostering lifelong friendships.

    What is the average cost of attending a boarding school in the US?

    The average cost of tuition at a boarding school in the United States is $33,140 per year for a 5-day boarding school and $37,590 for a 7-day boarding school. However, there is considerable variation among schools, so be sure to research the cost of each school you’re considering. Financial aid and scholarships may also be available to help offset the cost of attendance.

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