Help-son's school imploding-boarding school alternatives?

Since you said to assume money is no object, you might consider top-class UK boarding schools like Eton, Harrow, Wellington, and Marlborough.

Just wanted to agree with this, there are a whole bunch of schools in the US that are not Andover or Exeter but are still strong academic prep schools, and decidedly not reform schools. My own school was pretty insistent that they only wanted students who wanted to bet there, and I don’t think that’s outside the norm. Again I admit my admissions info is out of date, but I’d be really surprised if you couldn’t find a handful of US schools that meet your criteria and that would be happy to talk to you. Especially if you are willing to go outside the usual New England names.

I’m also not saying this is the best option, it sounds like you have many other choices, I just would think it’s a shame to rule out all US schools that have a deadline on their website.

My sympathies. I have a niece and nephew there and my sister and her husband are teachers. Luckily, niece and nephew (twins) are graduating.

I didn’t know there was talk of closing the school.

I teach at a boarding school in New England. Most of the schools have the accepted kids commit on April 10th, and then move on to their waiting lists if they need more kids. It is quite probable that there are still schools with spots available for new 11th grade students, especially if you don’t need a scholarship. There are a ton of boarding schools in New England, and if you’re interested, I can give you the names of some ones to look into.

At least in my state, a public school is going to require either a custody order or a guardianship before allowing a non-parent to enroll a child. Not terribly difficult to accomplish if both parents are in agreement and there’s a willing relative, but it is another hoop to jump through…

So, I went to Northfield Mount Hermon as a nerdy 10th grader from an international background and did reasonably well; it was (at least 25 years ago) more relaxed than you hear about other New England prep schools and had a fair number of international kids.

Something that is probably not on your radar are a couple boarding schools in India - Kodai and Woodstock ( and - my brother and sister both went to Kodai, which was kind of a family tradition; they were originally schools for the children of Western missionaries but now are mainly for Indian expatriates. Regardless, they’re definitely set up for international parents. They also are (or were) a hell of a lot cheaper than a US or European boarding school. They definitely have an IB curriculum but I don’t know how much advanced math and physics they’d be able to set your son up with.

I do remember my brother and sister talking about how Kodai had been taking a turn towards the more Evangelical in a way that they were not comfortable with - this is a pretty vague memory; if you’re interested I will ask them to clarify that for me.

Odd option: Have him take the GED this summer, then enroll at a community/junior college affiliated with a major state school. I’d suggest Austin Community College (University of Texas, Austin) or Blinn Junior College (Texas A&M University). If a school is “open admissions” they often actually mean it.

Hey, hi again! I recall that 4-5 years ago we made a connection in this forum regarding the fact your sister was a teacher at my son’s school. I want to be careful not to contribute to rumors about the school, so since you have a connection to all of this, let me clarify a few things:

First, my son attends a different school now than he did when this came up earlier, so he was either at the school where your sister teaches then, or he is now. But if your sister teaches at the school where the molestation story is unfolding, then yep - that’s where my son is currently enrolled.

Second - no one (that I know of) is SERIOUSLY talking about closing the whole school next year (rumor-mongering in social media is another story; they are saying anything and everything, no matter how wild). The early childhood program has already been closed by the Ministry of Education, however. Kids can complete the current school year ending in June, but it will not start up again in August. That’s the current status.

While anything could happen, I don’t expect the high school to be closed any time soon. But as you may have heard, the school is being sued for USD 12 million, there is tremendous animosity in the community against the school, and new allegations are being investigated. All of this is very damaging to the well-being of the school community, even if the allegations are subsequently disproved or it is found that the school is not culpable.

My concern is not so much that the school will literally close its doors in the next 12 to 24 months. It is more that it will become impossible to get a first rate and safe education there (the place is already a fortress and now they have to make security even tighter.)

A “wait and see” approach would be best, but waiting a year and seeing that the school is indeed in terrible shape means that my son would have to transfer between 11th and 12th grade, or stay at a school that wasn’t meeting his needs.

Anyway, that’s the view from here. If you talk to your sister and her husband, please pass on my sympathy to them. I can only begin to imagine how upset school personnel are right now.

I sent you a PM with some info from my sister.

You may want to look into boarding schools in Singapore - there are a couple that offer IB for boarding students.

Also - 10th / 11th grade is what - 15 or 16? You will be able to find a relatively reputable private boarding option for him in Singapore and enroll him at a public school that accepts fee paying students

What burden? He’s a nice kid, her nephew, she offered… as PastTense said, pay her if she’ll accept payment, but as my paternal aunt once told my Dad “tell your wife to stop talking stupid.” (My parents had gone to ask her for a loan, she’d offered before Dad had been talking for a minute, Mom was talking about “interest” and “payment schedules” - FTR, the loan was paid in full within a perfectly reasonable time)

I agree. In Minnesota (where I am and I’m most familiar), Saint John’s Prep is a good boarding school. I’m sure they don’t fill every bed. (SPA used to have boarding, and is a really good school, but seems to have dropped boarding).

The Webb School in Tennessee got my daughters information and has been pretty relentless in their recruitment - its far beyond the admissions deadline, but they are still calling to see if we want to submit an application (she looked into it and decided to stay with her friends at public school). From the info they have been sending, it looks good.

If you want a school in the U.S., I’d start calling. I’m certain that there are schools out there getting even mid-year admissions from ex-pats because that’s the nature of their parents jobs - "I’m fine with her in an IB school in Singapore, but we are moving to Saudi Arabia - and I’d be more comfortable with my teenage daughter in the U.S…) Its a matter of finding them.

If you want your son to continue with the IB program, there are only two boarding schools in the US that you should bother looking at - George School in Newtown, PA and New Hampton School, and New Hampton, NH. George School is a Quaker school, and New Hampton School has no religious affiliation. Both are reputable schools with good science programs and both schools recently renovated their science buildings.

Boarding schools pretty much fall into three tiers. The main way you can tell if a school is bottom tier, is if the majority of their boarding students are from Asia. This means they’re hurting financially and filling beds with whoever can pay. Your son wouldn’t have a problem getting into one of these schools. It is unlikely that your son will get into any of the top tier schools, such as Deerfield, Choate, Exeter, Andover, Hill, etc at this time of year.

I recommend calling or emailing the admissions departments for the middle tier schools. They will give your son an excellent education, and will also do a better job than any American public school in preparing him for college and helping him apply to colleges. I work at a middle tier boarding school, and we do offer AP physics, chemistry, biology, and computer science. In math, the highest level math classes we offer are multivariable calculus, linear algebra, and differential equations.

I am familiar with George School. It’s top notch, but much lower key than some of the famous schools mentioned.