Impactful Boarding Schools that produce ambitious graduates

Sending your child off to boarding school will always be hard, but parents can be safe in the knowledge that their child will receive the best possible education experience. Such experience and self-discovery will prove invaluable to graduates as they reach further education and begin exploring adult life.

Boarding school students are presented with the chance to become self-sufficient and independent with their learning, while forging deep understanding and relationships with faculty and students who often come from all around the world.

The schools below are exceptional institutions that are striving to help students become the best that they can be in later life, developing unique skills and aspirations that will drive them towards success…


Founded in 1884, the Annie Wright Schools provide a first-class education for students from age three through to high school. The Annie Wright Lower and Middle schools both offer co-ed programs in Preschool to Grade 8, while separate Upper Schools for boys and girls offer day and boarding options in Grades 9 through to 12.

The Annie Wright Schools make their home in the picturesque North End neighbourhood of Tacoma, Washington. The  campus includes an indoor pool, two gyms, science and technology labs, art studios, a theater, recording studio, outdoor gardens, play areas, athletic fields and open space.

Annie Wright offers rich and internationally-recognised programs that are designed to welcome students from around the world. The school is only one of 17 continuum schools across the US to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum in each division: Lower, Middle and Upper schools. The IB coursework aims to develop a spirit of inquisition within pupils. Such programs encourage students to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners.

Annie Wright prides itself on doing things differently, and that is the basis of having two separate Upper Schools, one for boys and one for girls. The newly launched boys’ school started in the 2017-18 school year and is designed as a separate and unique experience from the Upper School for Girls. Despite separate schools, boys and girls also have opportunities for intersection, through arts activities and social events.

Both of Annie Wright’s upper schools provide students with an extraordinary and enduring academic experience, incorporating international standards of excellence and providing students with the perfect opportunities to explore their interests and hobbies. Graduates are experienced and highly sought-after, with 100 percent of last year’s cohort gaining admission to some of the world’s top universities – including Stanford and NYU.


Archbishop Riordan High School is a Catholic Marianist institution that views education as a transformative process. Opened in 1949, the school is founded on beliefs of courage, spirit and compassion, where students are taught to embrace diversity, mutual respect and to lead by example.

Teachers here are committed to providing a 21st century education for all students, imparting knowledge to help the children navigate today’s world. The school deploys a number of challenging innovations, exploring alternative instruction and assessment. There is a cutting-edge 1:1 iPad/iTunes program keeping students at the forefront of technological learning. The iPads offer a platform for educational apps and interactive resources for students and faculty to expand their learning environment, and connects to all the school’s current online technology.

Students here learn to think critically, express themselves clearly and identify overlapping themes among different disciplines. The curriculum at Archbishop Riordan High School encompasses a liberal education, with each course identifying the essential questions of each field, emphasizing an inquiry-based approach to subjects. A hands-on approach is encouraged at the school, with students taught how to apply their studies to real life situations.

Archbishop Riordan offers 14 Advanced Placement courses to qualified students in the sophomore, junior and senior years. These courses offer an additional option for students, with each course culminating with the AP exam – which confers advanced standing and credit towards a baccalaureate degree at more than 1,500 colleges and universities.


Founded in 1845 as a secondary school for boys and girls, this school has served many purposes since its establishment. It has been a coeducational boarding school, a boys’ boarding school, a public school, a female college, a junior college, and a secondary school with both college and general courses. In 1970, the school became co-educational once again, and now challenges students to embrace and navigate our ever-changing and diverse world.

Tilton School is a recognised leader of independent schools, known for providing students with the best possible opportunity for success in later life. Graduates from the Tilton School are sought by well-regarded colleges and universities worldwide.

The school believes in the intrinsic value of a close community enriched by a range of students from all over the world, each providing support and friendship to one another. Students here develop exceptional skill, curiosity, knowledge and understanding around critical thinking, communication and creativity – preparing them for further education and beyond.

Tilton offers engaging and challenging programs in STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics), business, entrepreneurship and sustainability. The school consistently challenges and improves its educational experience through constant review, which enables Tilton to recognise where it can improve the experience for students and faculty.

In 2015, the school launched a new initiative called the Tilton Experience (TEx), which uses authentic assessment of a student’s aptitudes, skill, interests and learning preferences to help create their own personalised learning experience. The student-centred program focuses on developing five Essential Skills within the student – communication, critical thinking and decision making, creative engagement, innovation and design thinking, and mindfulness.


The mission of The Knox School is to provide the opportunity for capable students to excel within a liberal arts program infused with artistic and athletic pursuits. The school inspires a love of learning within each student, who continually develop the necessary skills to lead happy, confident, and successful lives as they grow into adults.

‘Semper ad Lucem’ is Knox School’s Latin motto, which translates to ‘always towards the light’, reminding the staff and students to always strive for greatness in their academic, artistic, athletic and personal pursuits. An engaging and hands-on curriculum inspires students to think independently and develop a unique set of skills to take into further education.

The academic demands and expectation to be self-directed in their studies challenges students to be forward-thinking and prepares them for the requirements of college and beyond. Knox strives to fill each student with the confidence to believe in themselves and their abilities, and to aspire to achieve every goal that the student sets themselves and more. Knox students enjoy experiences of discovery and learning, establishing interests and hobbies that are supported by the school.

Knox’s small faculty-to-student ratio provides students with an invaluable opportunity to receive nurturing and mentoring from faculty and administration that care for and guide them through their academic studies.

The Knox School is located in the village of Nissequogue between the shores of Stony Brook Harbor and the Long Island Sound – a serene environment acting as the perfect backdrop for reflective and concentrated study.

*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International

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