In today’s interconnected world, competition between nations, professionals – even students – is more intense than ever before. Parents who want the best for their children have to start early, enrolling them in schools that will prime them for entry to leading universities around the world.

The past decade has seen an enormous uptick in the number of Asian primary and secondary students enrolling at overseas boarding schools. Earlier this year, the Wall Street Journal reported that nearly 24,000 Chinese students now attend private high schools in the US. This is up more than 500 percent from 2008, and it’s a trend that’s likely to continue through the next several years.

Geelong Grammar Schoolq
Pic: Geelong Grammar School.

We’re seeing similar data from other regions. For example, the South Korean government reports that the number of elementary and secondary aged students who studied abroad more than doubled in the first ten years of the 21st century.

With data like this posting across Asia, it’s clear that families across the continent are starting as early as possible to groom the next generation for success. Attending an acclaimed boarding school carries a variety of advantages – not least the opportunity to develop independence, responsibility and individualism. And that’s just the beginning.

The benefits of attending an international boarding school
Any highly acclaimed primary or secondary school is going to encourage students to develop discipline and important personality traits early in their lives. But enrolling overseas has other advantages. To begin, when young students are immersed in a second-language academic environment, they develop near-native skills. By the time they graduate, they’ll be functionally bilingual. While their peers are working on their TEOFL scores and playing catch-up, these students will be poised for a seamless transition to university campuses around the world.

Primary students at GGS
Pic: Primary students at GGS.

Furthermore, highly acclaimed boarding schools offer world-class facilities. They’re also staffed by some of the finest educators in their respective fields. Backing by the best instructors in some of the world’s most advanced learning environments sets young pupils up for success.

Choosing the best boarding schools
Reputation matters when searching for the best boarding schools. The best are highly selective, and that means the mere fact of admission indicates that a student has promise. Choosing the best school for your student depends a great deal on their age and aspirations.

Institut auf dem Rosenberg, Switzerland
Pic: Institut auf dem Rosenberg, Switzerland

For younger students, geography plays a strong role in school selection. Relatively few international primary schools accommodate young boarders, which means a family member needs to relocate with them. Australian institutions are strong candidates in this situation, given the relative proximity to countries in South and East Asia. For older students who already have an idea of their intended career path or university preferences, it makes more sense to travel farther if doing so places the student within the network of their onward academic destination.

With that in mind, the following institutions are among the leading boarding schools for Asian students:

GEELONG GRAMMAR SCHOOL – AUSTRALIA
Based in the state of Victoria, GGS is ideally located for pupils across Asia. Its situation in the Asia-Pacific region makes GGS a top candidate for parents who would like their children to grow up with the benefits of a highly esteemed Western education without sending their children halfway around the world in the process. Read the full profile here…

Senior School students at GGS
Pic: Senior School students at GGS.

STRATHALLAN SCHOOL – SCOTLAND
Strathallan School’s international reputation for academic excellence is 100 years in the making. The school opened in 1913 and moved to its current location just outside of Perthshire, Scotland a few years later. Today, Strathallan ranks as one of the top independent schools in Scotland. Boys and girls between the ages of 9 and 18 can enrol as boarding or day students. The school’s reputation is hard-earned and achieved by fostering a nurturing environment backed with the support of teachers and tutors who are as passionate about their subjects as they are about student welfare. Read the full profile here…

SEDBERGH SCHOOL – ENGLAND
Sedbergh School is internationally acclaimed remains a leading choice for parents who will settle for nothing short of a world-class education for their child. The school is located in Cumbria, England, where it has educating youth for more than 400 years. Sedbergh offers full boarding to students aged eight and above.

INSTITUT AUF DEM ROSENBERG – SWITZERLAND
Founded in the 19th century, the Institut auf dem Rosenberg accepts students from six year and up and offers an incredibly favorable student-to-faculty ratio. Multiple curriculum tracks are available. Parents and students can choose which system they prefer, with curriculum from Switzerland, Italy, Germany, the US and the UK on hand.

BRANKSOME HALL – CANADA
This independent girls’ school accepts boarding students from the junior kindergarten level through grade 12. This is the only all-girls boarding school in the world that follows the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. A residence program is available for grades 8 through 12.

EF INTERNATIONAL ACADEMY – INTERNATIONAL
EF Education First is a world leader in international education, and it operates the network of EF International Academy schools. It operates four campus locations at Oxford (UK), Torbay (UK), New York (US) and Vancouver (Canada). Students are noted for their high performance marks, with 90 percent gaining admittance to their top-choice universities.

PHILLIPS EXETER ACADEMY – USA
Phillips Exeter Academy is a highly acclaimed secondary school in the US state of New Hampshire. It opened in 1781 and employs an unconventional (but highly effective) approach the academic environment. Lectures are practically non-existent; instead, students sit around oval-shaped tables and are active participants in classroom discussions.