Why Great Britain?
The reasons for studying abroad in the UK are multiple. Most students have a desire to improve their ‘school English’ and are often surprised that British Boarding Schools have much more to offer than simply an English language course.
Those who have chosen to attend a school in England have experienced much more than expected. Due the personal engagement of the teachers, the students gain a sense of joy in their studies. The student experiences that school is not just about learning the subject material but also, they understand and comprehend it. Students have experienced that their teachers bridge the gap between being a student’s ‘friend’ and their role as a ‘teacher’. They facilitate open communication with the students during the lessons---after class and on weekends.
The increasing independence and the resulting self-confidence enhance the development of the student’s personal character, which also pleases the parents.
Swiss students: Depending on the individual goals of the student, the ‘when’ is best at some time during the middle-/secondary- school years and when the student is mature and willing. Each decision is made on a ‘case-by-case’ evaluation of the student’s situation. Out of our experience, we can say that the majority of students who leave their homeland schools and enter a British boarding school are positively influenced in their performance throughout the rest of their studies.
Some have had such an amazing experience so that they choose to complete their A-levels or IB in the UK. (In Switzerland, many Universities recognise and accept these academic achievements where the student’s course selections are pre-determined by checking with the further education institution.)
The School Year in the UK is divided into 3 Terms or ‘trimesters’:
Michaelmas Term (Sept. through mid-Dec.)
Lent Term (Jan.-through March)
Summer Term (end of April-through beginning of July)
*In between are ‘Exeates’ or term breaks when the children may return home. They have a change of scene: meet up with friends and family, enjoy their favourite home-cooked meals and take care of the necessary appointments (dentist, orthodontist, hair-cuts, etc.).
Language Immersion: In other cases, where the student has opted for a Swiss apprenticeship or vocational/higher education pathway, a language study course is an excellent way to increase their professional opportunities, gain independence and boost self-confidence. They return with a new outlook and experience in life and, none-the-less, a better level of English.
The answer to this question depends on many factors. If a child stays for only 3 months or for 3 years, they will most definitely profit from their stay in England!
Every child is unique and we acknowledge this fully---that’s why we advise and counsel you extensively and individually.
Short stays of 1-2 Terms provide the student with an impression of Boarding School life and most often are able to return seamlessly to the academic level from which they left. They will have gained more English language knowledge and seen a glimpse of British culture.
One-year study is ideal for students who wish to achieve a fluency level in both speaking and writing in English. The school days are academically well-structured and rounded out with sport and leisure time activities, including enough time for completing their homework assignments. Friendships are formed and independent learning becomes a naturally occurring side effect!
Two years or a ‘longer stay’ ideally covers the completion of the student’s GCSEs or their A-level/IB diploma (equivalent of the ‘Swiss Matura’). This is the optimal preparation for University studies, regardless if the student chooses to remain in the UK, return to Switzerland or pursue higher education elsewhere. Students graduate and leave the school entering their next phase in life with great self-confidence and perfect English.