“Private and state schools cater to different markets…so, if it is handled sensitively, long term relationships can be successful”
The UK boarding school sector, home to approximately 29,000 international pupils requiring a Tier 4 Visa to study in the UK is criticised in some quarters for the perceived lack of ‘sharing’ of resources & expertise with pupils attending state-run schools in the UK.
This builds domestic political pressure on the sector as only 7% of children in the UK attend private/boarding schools. But what is the reality?
One scheme worthy of note is the Boarding School Partnerships (BSP) programme that advises local authorities on how, when and where to place vulnerable young people in boarding schools. Some pupils are already in the care system, having been removed from their families, whilst others may be close to the edge of care.
According to Colin Morrison, founding Chair of the Department for Education’s three-year-old boarding School Partnerships (BSP), there are approximately 750 young people currently being supported in state and independent boarding schools by specialist charities and an additional 1,500 by local authorities.