11 Best California Boarding Schools in the USA | 2022 Ranking

Giving your kids the best of education isn’t one out of the moon, conscious efforts like sending them to good schools are essential. Boarding schools in California is a secure environment for kids, as they groom and expose children to all-around learning, thus, equipping them for tomorrow.

Asides from the fact that your kids will get the best of education academically, California boarding school exposes children to sufficient extracurricular activities. You sure know the benefits.

With over 25 top college-prep and junior boarding schools in Southern California and California as a state, serving 7,759 students, you’re quite assured of quality education.

The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS) reports that 87% of boarding school students report being very well prepared for college academically, which is a greater percentage than those who attend private day or public schools.

Now that you know why California is an ideal location for students, let’s take a look at the best boarding schools in California.

See the table of contents below.

Why You Should Choose A Boarding School In California

Ideally, boarding schools offer children a secure environment in which to exercise greater control and freedom over their life and activities.

This is because the idea of leaving home early is to help the child acquire a sense of independence, create new friendships, and concentrate more on all-round learning.

Here are a few benefits of why you should choose a boarding school in California.

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Benefits Of Attending A Boarding School In California

Boarding schools in Californias offer excellent educational opportunities. With a mix of academics, compulsory athletics, and a wide range of extracurricular activities, children learn about various social and cultural activities.

Moreso, boarding schools take your child’s safety and well-being very seriously. While your child is at school,  24/7 guidance is assured in a boarding school in California.

Boarding schools in California California, are known for their high academic standards and commitment to helping children become the leaders of tomorrow.

Here are strong reasons why a boarding school in California is good for your child…

1. Closer supervision and support

In boarding schools in California, teachers and staff monitor and support the students under their care in any way they can. Therefore, attending a boarding school offers children full access to school facilities.

It helps to create a learning environment where students have easy access to libraries, computers, and teachers.

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2. Full participation in the school’s activities

Children get to engage entirely in the extracurricular activities of the school such as; drama, athletics, singing competitions, art exhibition, and much more.

Many specialized interests, such as ballet, soccer, or music require training from a young age. Boarding schools introduce such activities in their curriculum to allow children to achieve excellence with like-minded peers.

Additionally, boarding schools lessen distraction to children’s academic work by reducing the need for extended travel/time off school to reach them.

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3. Classes are small—and the work is challenging.

Most boarding schools in California maintain small interactive class size. With this type of learning, the teacher gets to interact with the students closely making the sessions lively and something you won’t want to miss.

The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS) also found that 91 percent of boarding school students stated their school to be “academically challenging” (compared to 70 percent of private day school students and 50 percent of public school students).

Boarding school students in California also spend an average of 17 hours a week on homework.

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4. It is highly accomodating and flexible

As well as allowing for flexibility in curriculum choice, boarding schools in California take into account a variety of distinct family or lifestyle considerations. Children with specific learning or emotional needs are eagerly attended to.

Particularly important is the way in which boarding school eases parents of the day to day strains of dealing with children’s problems, making time spent together more pleasant.

Practically, parents whose job demands them to travel extensively, live in remote areas or abroad may consider boarding schools in California a useful way of ensuring consistency and continuity in their child’s education.

5. Have Fun And Make New Friends

The boarding schools in California can also be a lot of fun just like your home where you get nasty with your siblings. In boarding schools, it is ideal for your dorm mates to become your dearest friends and supporters.

6. It helps develop a child’s character and self reliance

Attending a boarding school in California helps strengthen a child’s character and equips him or her for leadership positions.

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Under strict guidance, children set out to bid for the top spot with their peers. This helps bring out the best character and attitude like; hard work, truth, self-discipline, punctuality, tolerance, etc.

Furthermore, the child gets to value independence as much as teamwork. Boarding school students in California quickly learn how to carry out domestic chores and complete school assignments by themselves.

Thus, preparing them for college life and professional adventures.

What Is The Perfect Age To Enter Boarding School In California?

In California, boarding schools for students below the age of 13 are called junior boarding schools and are relatively rare. Other boarding schools are meant for high school age students, usually of ages 14–18. 

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How Much Does Boarding School Cost In California?

If you’re a parent looking at boarding school options for your son, you’ve probably noticed that picking a school is more than an education decision – it’s also a financial one.

Paying for boarding school is a big expenditure involving financial preparation and consideration of return on investment. However, the typical boarding school education in California cost ranges from $35,000 to $60,000.

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Do Boarding Schools In California Offer Students Financial Aid Opportunities?

Boarding school education is of outstanding benefit to young students. Today, the decision to attend a boarding school in California comes at a cost. However, there are variety of ways in which families can fund boarding school education.

For some, the annual fees may sound like too much of a roadblock to even consider a boarding school in the first place. After all, with an average cost of $48,050 a year, a boarding school education now looks like a college.

So how do other families work it out? The National Association of Boarding Schools affirms that nearly 37% of boarding school students get yearly aid.

With assistance from the school’s financial aid packages, along with merit-based and foundation scholarships, the issue of the cost of boarding school education becomes one to forego.

There are several categories of boarding school financial aid:

Need-Based Financial Aid

Need-based financial aid is presented as a grant and does not have to be refunded. The money comes from the school’s budget and students’ families are to demonstrate in detail why they need it.

The majority of TABS member schools use the Parents’ Financial Statement from the School and Student Service for Financial Aid (SSS), regulated by the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS). Learn more at www.nais.org.

Merit Scholarships

Ideally, some schools offer merit scholarships to exceptional students. These scholarships are typically highly competitive but do not require reimbursement.

Tuition Loan and Financing Program

Tuition loans are granted by a few schools, banks, or other lending agencies. Such loans are collateral-based, which means the loans are subject to credit checks and must be returned-with interest over time.

Payments are spread over a pre-determined period of time. However, interest rates for boarding school loans are generally more favorable than rates for most consumer loans.

Tuition Payment Programs

A good number of financial agencies offer tuition payment programs to help families accomplish boarding school expenses.

These programs are not technically considered loans. Basically, tuition payment programs permit installment payments of tuition fees over the course of an academic year. The installments are interest-free, but there may be some entry fees.

Check Out: Top 10 Most Popular And Cheapest Boarding Schools In The World 2021

Are Boarding Schools In California Open to International Students?

With over 25 boarding schools in California, international students make up about 15% of the population of their member schools.

Boarding schools in California provide exceptional opportunities that help to deepen cultural understanding and build global friendships. They provide a conducive environment where international students fit in well.

Furthermore, ESL (English as a Second Language) classes taught in boarding schools also help international students learn English more quickly. ESL courses are meant to improve an international student’s speaking, reading, and writing ability.

In a nutshell, boarding schools in California don’t just avail international students learning opportunities, they make expose them to people of different religious, geographic, and linguistic backgrounds.

What Are Boarding Schools In California Like?

Asides the fact that boarding schools in California are beautiful, well equipped, and full of wonderful teachers, they offer educational opportunities that may not be found elsewhere.

In addition, they also allow children to grow in many ways by letting them discover various social and cultural activities.

Most boarding schools in California appeal to students and families who want the best possible education. They offer a more rigorous option than their home school can offer.

That is to say, their exposure is more developmental intensive. In addition to challenging classes, boarding schools in California do have a structured schedule of extracurricular activities and time for study.

Within California, there are a variety of boarding schools that are known for their high academic standards and focus on helping youngsters become the leaders of tomorrow.

How Many Boarding Schools Are In California?

The most populous U.S. state and the third-largest by area houses 25 top college-prep and junior boarding schools located throughout California, serving 7,759 students.

These boarding schools provide exceptional educational opportunities to children in California. Here’s a list of the top boarding schools in California.

Best Boarding Schools In California

The most populous state in the United States has a good number of boarding schools. Therefore, parents who are looking for unique educational opportunities for their children in California, are on the right page.

These schools were selected based on the following ranking factors;

The student to teacher ratio – This represents the number of students assigned to a teacher. It is agreed that a smaller class size enhances learning.

Accreditation – This accreditation status of a school ensures that the school is authorized to function.

Acceptance rate – The acceptance rate of a boarding school in NC shows the percentage of students the school admits yearly.

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1. Amerigo Los Angeles, Bishop Montgomery High School

Amerigo is a private boarding school in Southern California that provides students with an incredible opportunity to get a world-class education in Los Angeles, a city known for its natural beauty and thriving culture. 

At Amerigo Los Angeles, students have access to rigorous academics, robust extracurriculars, and a supportive environment, all while enjoying the incredible natural beauty and unique cultural opportunities of Los Angeles.

With opportunities for students in both Middle School and High School, students are prepared for a bright future. 

Hence, Bishop Montgomery High School came top as one of our best boarding schools in California.

The Co-ed school offers grader 9-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 1:7. The boarding school in California holds accreditation from; Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), Western Catholic Education Association (WCEA).

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2. Amerigo Napa Valley Justin-Siena High School

Justin-Siena is a Catholic high school in the Lasallian tradition that provides educational excellence in a loving, Christ-centered community that prepares students to serve and to lead in an ever-changing world.

Situated just outside of the San Francisco Bay Area, Amerigo Napa Valley blends a rigorous academic program with a scenic, supportive environment.

Students who attend Justin-Siena High School take advantage of an encompassing college-preparatory curriculum intended to train students for competitive colleges and universities.

Under the guidance of our experienced campus teams, students in the Amerigo program profit from a residential and social atmosphere designed to aid their development and support them as they achieve their goals.

Students live in state-of-the-art facilities with professional dorm parents on-site and experience a good number of weekend activities, including sports and recreational activities, off-site excursions and immersion trips, community service, and various American cultural celebrations.

With a 57% acceptance rate, the Co-ed school offers grader 9-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 1:7. The boarding school in California holds accreditation from; Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), Western Catholic Education Association (WCEA).

From our list of the best boarding schools in California, Justin – Siena High School came top as one of our best boarding high schools in California for grade 9-12.

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3. Woodside Priory School

Woodside Priory School was established in 1957 by a group of seven Hungarian Benedictine monks from Saint Martin’s Archabbey. It is the only co-ed Benedictine College Preparatory boarding school in California! With an outstanding faculty and a rigorous college-prep curriculum, Woodside set the stage for a balanced educational adventure.

With an average small class with 6:1 student to teacher ratio, students get to engage deeply in intellectual discussions with their well-qualified teachers. The school’s acceptance rate is 57%.

It holds accreditation from; Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), California Association of Independent Schools (CAIS), Western Catholic Education Association (WECA), The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS).

From our ranking of the best boarding schools in California, Woodside Priory School came top as one of our best boarding high schools in California for k-12 to grade 6-12.

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4. Amerigo San Francisco Saint Patrick-Saint Vincent Catholic High School

Founded in the traditions of the Dominican Sisters and the Congregation of Christian Brothers, Saint Patrick-Saint Vincent Catholic High School instill academic excellence in the minds of her students.

Students at SPSV find the academic challenges they are looking for; 99% of them will attend college. All educational programs are rigorous and demand that each student thinks, learns, and performs at the highest possible level.

Furthermore, students deepen and expand their classroom learning through student clubs for art, music, French and Spanish, science, speech, sports medicine, and other fields.

SPSV students also enjoy an innovative school-wide leadership program.

In addition, SPSV is currently carrying out a multi-year technology plan including new classroom technology, a new wireless infrastructure, the introduction of a 1:1 iPad program for students, and extended communication with our families via e-mail and e-news.

Families will also have prompt access to student progress using our online grading program.

The Co-ed school offers grader 9-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 1:7. The boarding school in California holds accreditation from; National Catholic Education Association (NCEA).

From our ranking of the best boarding schools in California, Saint Patrick-Saint Vincent Catholic High School came top as one of our best boarding high schools in California for k-12 to grade 9-12.

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5. Army and Navy Academy

This boarding school in southern California is an all-boys military school that encourages and shapes boys to be their best.

Their core curriculum is based on the University of California’s entrance requirements and their college-preparatory curriculum includes Advanced Placement (AP) and honors courses.

Academics extend beyond the classroom. Teachers are available for tutoring immediately after classes end and in the evenings during study hall.

They also coach or supervise sports and clubs, so they get to know students outside of the classroom.

With 15:1 student to teacher ratio, their students get the best of knowledge and go on to succeed in any endeavor.

The all-boys Co-ed school offers grader 9-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 15:1. It maintains a 57% acceptance rate.

The boarding school in California holds accreditation from; National Catholic Education Association (NCEA).

From our ranking of the best boarding schools in California, Army and Navy Academy appeared as 5th best boarding high schools in California for grade 9-12.

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6. The Athenian School

Located on 75 beautiful acres at the base of Mt. Diablo, Athenian is the San Francisco Bay Area’s only nonsectarian school with a high school boarding program.

The Athenian School prepares students for the rigorous expectations of college and for a life of purpose and personal fulfillment.

Additionally, they cultivate the personal features of each student to become an integrated human being with integrity, strong moral character, and physical well being.

Athenian boarding school in California is a place where you’ll get to know yourself well, including how you prioritize, collaborate, and handle responsibility.

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With 25 teachers, their families, and pets living on campus (more than 70 people), a little guidance is always available.

Living with a diverse group of peers from about 20 countries, you will gain group living skills while learning about other cultures and customs.

Someone to help with homework or play soccer on the field is never far away.

With a 57% acceptance rate, the Co-ed school offers grader 9-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 1:7.

From our ranking of the best boarding schools in California, The Athenian School is the 6th best boarding high schools in California for grade 9-12.

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7. Besant Hill School

Besant Hill School is more than just a school, they foster a culture of caring, learning, and empowerment.

Besant Hill School is an environment where teens can grow efficiently. Here, students are urged to take what they learn and integrate new knowledge about the problems they are facing.

Besant Hill School students gain lifelong skills that allow them to adapt to change and new learning.

With a 99% acceptance rate and 1:4 faculty to student ratio, Besant Hill school enrolls a total number of 100 students spread across 13 states in the U.S and 17 countries in the world.

Besant Hill School of Happy Valley is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the California Association of Independent Schools (CAIS) and is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS).

From our ranking of the best boarding schools in California, Besant Hill School is the 7th best boarding high schools in California for grade 9-12.

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8. Cate School

Cate School merges the academic rigidity of East Coast prep schools with the adventurous spirit of the West Coast.

The college-preparatory boarding school in California offers students an exclusive boarding school experience.

In freshman and sophomore year, you will develop fundamental skills, taking courses in English, history, humanities, art, math, science, foreign language, and human development.

Then you get to choose from more than 35 elective courses to explore your personal interests and pursue greater mastery of a subject.

With a 57% acceptance rate, 5:1 student to teacher ratio, the Co-ed school has a total number of 320 students.

Cate School holds accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS).

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9. Dunn School

Founded in 1957, Dunn School is an independent boarding school in Southern California.

The mission of the Dunn School community is to educate the whole student to his or her fullest potential in preparation for a life of learning and responsible leadership in society.

Dunn School is a caring community of teachers and learners, with a focused approach to whole-student development — all in a beautiful and safe setting in northern Santa Barbara County. The activities of Dunn Middle School aims at preparing students for a life of learning and responsible leadership in society.

With a 57% acceptance rate, 5:1 student to teacher ratio, the Co-ed boarding school admits students from grades 6-12.

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10. Santa Catalina

Santa Catalina School is a top-rated, private, boarding, all-girls, Catholic school located in Monterey, CA.

The school challenge students to achieve excellence in every arena, from excellent academics — including a marine ecology program that takes advantage of access to Monterey Bay — to competitive athletics in 12 sports to an arts program with professional-quality facilities.

Boarding at Santa Catalina is filled with new experiences, with unique opportunities that our students make their own. They learn life skills with values that are only really learned by living in a community.

Santa Catalina has 216 students in grades 9-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 8 to 1. After graduation, 100% of students from this school go on to attend a 4-year college.

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11. EF Academy Pasadena

This is one of the boarding schools in Southern California.  The new Pasadena campus is set in a peaceful community with a diverse landscape and stimulating learning environment.

EF Academy is everything you would expect from a world-class boarding school – modern facilities, qualified teachers and globally recognized academic programs.

As a student of EF, you will evolve as a person and develop the skills essential for success in the globalized 21st century.

With a 100% acceptance rate and 7:1 student-teacher ratio, students explore different ideas and perspectives in class and during co-curricular activities. The boarding school in Southern California is highly accredited.

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Conclusion

Giving your kids the best of education isn’t one out of the moon, conscious efforts like sending them to good schools are essential. Boarding schools in California is a secure environment for kids, as they groom and expose children to all-around learning, thus, equipping them for tomorrow.

FAQs On Best California Boarding Schools in the USA

What is the perfect age to enter boarding school in California?

In California, boarding schools for students below the age of 13 are called junior boarding schools and are relatively rare. Other boarding schools are meant for high school age students, usually of ages 14–18. 

What are boarding schools in California like?

Boarding schools in California are beautiful, well equipped, and full of wonderful teachers, they offer educational opportunities that may not be found elsewhere.

How many boarding schools are in California?

The most populous U.S. state and the third-largest by area houses 25 top college-prep and junior boarding schools located throughout California, serving 7,759 students.

How much does boarding school cost in California?

The typical boarding school education in California cost ranges from $35,000 to $60,000.

References

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