LAS Journal

Why attend a Swiss Boarding School?

The tradition of Swiss boarding schools goes back over a hundred years. Swiss boarding schools combine order, discipline, open-mindedness, and an emphasis on personal and academic maturation in order to produce students who are both culturally refined and equipped to handle the challenges of the global economy.


Cultural Diversity

Families from around the world send their children to be educated in Swiss boarding schools. For generations, this climate has cultivated tolerance, given students a practical education in conflict resolution, and helped them to develop a global perspective. Making friends from other countries has a number of immediate and long-term advantages, perhaps most important among the latter being the ability to develop a broad social network from which to draw support later on in life. Many of the schools are bi- and multi-lingual, which creates additional opportunities for students to deepen their cultural understanding and approach the world with equanimity.

Switzerland's geographic position in the center of Europe is also an important factor. The location affords ready access to cities of historical and cultural significance, and schools capitalize on this opportunity by incorporating cultural travel programs into their weekend curriculum. At the same time, Swiss boarding schools are isolated enough to let students concentrate on their academic studies throughout the year with minimal distractions other than outdoor recreation.

Academic Versatility

Nearly all of the students who attend a Swiss IB boarding school will go on to attend top universities, most in the United States and a smaller number within Europe itself. Swiss boarding schools prepare students for the transition by offering a variety of degree programs, including the International Baccalaureate (IB), the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE), Advanced Placement (AP), A-Levels, the Swiss Federal Maturity, the French Baccalaureate, and the German Abitur. Students must know where they want to pursue their post-secondary education when they decide on which Swiss boarding school to attend since not every school offers the same combination of degree choices.

Opportunities to Become Well-Rounded

Their close proximity to the slopes allows IB Swiss boarding schools to combine academic coursework with ample opportunities to engage in outdoor sports. Students may devote set time each week to learn winter sports like skiing, snowboarding, and ice skating during the season; other major sports, such as horseback riding and swimming, are also available. Although schools vary in their approach to incorporating physical activity, it always plays a strong role at Swiss boarding schools -- the same as it does in the Swiss way of life.

In addition to recreational opportunities, Swiss boarding schools offer a variety of other extracurricular activities, with a particular emphasis on the performing arts. Students also learn compassion by engaging in charitable work, which helps them to develop a strong ethical foundation for life and a broader socio-economic perspective. Even dining and living in dormitories teaches students important lessons in manners, civility and respect for others.

A Proven Standard of Excellence

Swiss boarding schools have the luxury of being able to hire only the most qualified and dedicated English speaking instructors. Students receive specialized attention in each of their classes since the teacher-student ratio is exceptionally low, often less than 10 to 1. Moreover, the schools prioritize their university placement programs, giving students the chance to create strong applications that are tailored specifically to the school of their choice.

Overall, what makes attending a Swiss boarding school so beneficial is the holistic approach to learning in a setting of stunning physical beauty. This last feature cannot be emphasized enough. Beauty inspires individuals to achieve great things and appeals to their better self. The constant backdrop of stunning scenery, in combination with good old-fashioned discipline and superb academic instruction, makes Swiss boarding schools an excellent choice for any student who wishes to expand their cultural knowledge and gain admission to a top school in the United States or Europe.

  • IB
  • Student Life
  • academics


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