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What school year should my child join a UK boarding school?

This is how most conversations with families who are considering making a boarding application to a British boarding school starts. Deciding when the best year is to join a boarding school, understanding the British curriculum for each age and stage of education and making comparisons between the academic elements of schools in your own country, when compared with UK schools. These are frequently asked questions for those starting out on their UK boarding school choice journey.


Many parents struggle to get to grips with the timeline for new applications to boarding school, how far in advance to apply, as well as how the testing works and when it will take place.


Understanding the pre-prep, prep, junior school, senior school, sixth form terminology, as well as which school year is for which age are all common areas of confusion.


Should I choose to follow the IB curriculum, offered as an alternative in an ever-increasing number of British boarding schools, or choose the more traditional pathway of UK qualifications such as GCSE and A levels or BTEC?


There is so much information about this topic on the internet, it can be very confusing for parents who are not familiar with the UK education system or private schools.


We are here to help…


Below is our helpful infographic timeline which explains each UK school year and stage of your child’s future prep or senior boarding school journey. It highlights key points for parents to consider for each age and stage, as well as when to start planning your future school and boarding application and giving your child the confidence for future entry tests and interviews.


Once you have had time to read the timeline, please do get in touch to arrange a complimentary call with one of our team of expert boarding school consultants to discuss your child and family’s boarding application.


We very much look forward to speaking to you soon.


education consultants

education consultants

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