In a typical US school setting, there are practically unlimited distractions, temptations, and attractions to undesirable habits that can keep boys from getting started on the right path in life, academically and personally. However, the case is different at Military schools for boys in the USA.
Here, students receive structure, discipline, and an atmosphere that allows them to excel and meet their goals in a nurturing and effective environment.
As a parent or guardian who wants to send your son or ward to a military school for boys in the USA, we’ve got you covered as we’ve ranked in the top 10 in the country.
Nowadays, a lot of parents are seeking alternatives when it comes to their high school son’s education. So, most parents end up asking the question:
Is a military school the best option for my son?
Generally, military schools offer strict discipline, counseling, or self-destructive behavior therapy that may be needed to get your son back on the right track.
To be more precise, most military academies and schools aim to help young people reach their potential and become aware of and open-minded about their future options.
Students at military schools are taught to gain the self-confidence to accept challenges and the perseverance to get back up time and again without getting discouraged.
There are a lot of benefits you enjoy when you enroll your son in one.
So this article will throw more light on these benefits and provide vital information on the top military schools for boys in the USA.
Here is a quick glance at what to expect:
Table of contents
- What is Military School?
- Why Enroll Your Son in a Military School?
- Who is the Ideal Candidate For a Military School?
- How Much Does it Cost to Attend a Military School For Boys In the USA?
- What are the Top 10 Military Schools For Boys in The USA in 2023?
- #1 Valley Forge Military Academy and College
- #2 St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy
- #3 Massanutten Military Academy (MMA)
- #4 Fork Union Military Academy
- #5 Marine Military Academy
- #6 Camden Military Academy
- #7 Fishburne Military School
- #8 Army and Navy Academy
- #9 Hargrave Military Academy
- #10 Missouri Military Academy
- FAQs On Top 10 Military Schools For Boys In USA | 2023 Ranking
- AUTHOR’S RECOMMENDATION
What is Military School?
According to Wikipedia, a military academy or service academy (in the United States) is an educational institution that prepares candidates for service in the officer corps. It normally provides education in a military environment, the exact definition depending on the country concerned.
With their rich heritage and bright future, today’s military schools basically represent a unique educational alternative to conventional college preparatory schools.
In addition to a strong academic foundation, military schools integrate military principles into the curricula. Here, students learn valuable skills that prepare them for college and lifelong success within a safe and nurturing environment.
As high-quality, reputable educational institutes, military schools are known to produce independent thinkers, accountable leaders, and engaged citizens.
It is also important to note that not all military schools are created equally.
Sometimes referred to as military prep schools or military academies, today’s military schools offer a college preparatory curriculum for students in grades 6-12. However, there are some military schools for elementary-age children, but they are less common.
Furthermore, while military schools have historically been for boys due to military tradition, many of them are now coeducational.
Some military schools also have a religious component.
Here is another interesting fact about military schools you should know.
Contrary to the belief of many, military schools are not meant for troubled teens. In fact, they will not tolerate boys or girls that will cause trouble on campus or in the classroom.
Why Enroll Your Son in a Military School?
Military schools have consistently been a solid choice for parents, and more recently, military schools have also become college prep programs. Academic standards in these schools have increased, and military schools are even more choosy when selecting applicants than before.
Families that choose military schools do so for a variety of reasons. So, whether your goal is to help your child build self-esteem or develop lifelong leadership skills, today’s military schools offer both challenges and opportunities to young people.
Also, regardless of the differences among military schools, they all share a common imperative.
And that is to provide a quality education for the “whole” student.
At military schools, students are held to a high academic standard and are prepared to meet and exceed these expectations. They are also taught respect, teamwork, and how to succeed in every aspect of life.
Secondly, leadership training and character development are core components of military school education and integral to the academic experience.
Furthermore, values learned in military school stay with students throughout their lives.
Conclusively, military schools, be it boarding or day, create Young Men of Character!
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Benefits of Enrolling Your Child in a Military School
Here are five crucial, lifelong benefits of enrolling your child in a military school.
- Students Learn Leadership Skills: One of the basic ways military boarding schools teach leadership is by modeling it. Many instructors and adult leaders here have strong military backgrounds, having served as leaders in the United States Armed Forces.
So, these experienced role models mentor the students, teaching them the utmost personal and professional conduct by example.
- Students are Given Boundaries: In military boarding schools, students basically thrive on a structured schedule. Here, students have assigned times for wake-up, meals, class, homework, physical activity, recreation, and lights-out.
This routine, in turn, instills time management skills, responsibility, accountability, and motivation within each student and peer group.
- Students are Taught Discipline: Students here are taught to follow specific rules, which are in place to help them achieve their goals. Discipline at military school is not harsh or punitive as people think. Instead, it focuses on helping each student build inner strength by managing his actions and reactions.
- Students are Given Plenty of Personal Responsibility: Students in military boarding schools learn to take responsibility for themselves in a manner that’s not typically required at other boarding schools. For instance, they must maintain meticulous care of their uniforms, rooms, and personal hygiene and learn to be on time for every class, meal, and formation.
- Students Learn the Value of Integrity: Finally, military boarding schools operate under a strict code of conduct. In fact, every student is responsible for behaving with respect toward superiors and peers.
Should I Choose an All-Boys Military School?
In a single-gender military school, your son will experience reduced social pressure and have the freedom to express himself without fear of embarrassing himself in front of girls that he wouldn’t be able to achieve at a co-ed school.
High school is a turbulent time for young boys as they develop physically and emotionally, and placing them in an environment that specifically caters to teenage boys’ needs has been proven beneficial.
Who is the Ideal Candidate For a Military School?
Any student can attend a military school; however, students that a military education would best serve to include:
- Students who are struggling academically.
- Students who require hands-on attention.
- Those who work well in social environments.
- Students with an athletic mindset.
- International students seeking to improve their understanding of American culture.
- Students who require structure and training.
- Students with low self-confidence.
How Much Does it Cost to Attend a Military School For Boys In the USA?
As a starter, it’s essential that you know that the cost of attending a military school will be more than public schools. In fact, in some cases, it will cost considerably more.
Basically, a military day-school program can cost more than $10,000 per year in tuition alone and room, while the boarding school can run from $15,000 to $25,000 r even $40,000 per year.
What are the Top 10 Military Schools For Boys in The USA in 2023?
There are several military schools for boys in the USA. However, for the sake of this article, emphasis will be laid on 10 of them.
So, to effectively rank these top military schools, we made use of some factors. The ranking factors for the top military schools for boys in the USA include:
The grades a military school offers can determine the level of facility it operates with. That is if it has a low or high facility.
It is often said that students in lower grades usually have more facilities and hands than others.
This refers to the military school’s number of students in an academic year.
This means the students to teachers ratio. That is, the number of students one teacher can take if the students are shared among the teachers in the military school.
Here are the best military schools for boys in the USA:
- Valley Forge Military Academy and College
- St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy
- Massanutten Military Academy
- Fork Union Military Academy
- Marine Military Academy
- Camden Military Academy
- Fishburne Military School
- Army and Navy Academy
- Hargrave Military Academy
- Missouri Military Academy
#1 Valley Forge Military Academy and College
Teacher Ratio: 1 to 10
Valley Forge Military Academy and College are made up of three fully accredited schools, a middle school (grades 7-8), a high school (grades 9-12), and a two-year military junior college. Each of the schools provides commuting and residential options.
Before we look at the schools, here is what you need t know about Valley Forge.
Firstly, Valley Forge is one of only five military junior colleges and offers a direct commission into the army after only two years of study (through the army’s Early Commissioning Program).
That is, students at Valley Forge can begin their military indoctrination at a very early age and carry it through college.
Secondly, like most military schools, students are a part of a corps of cadets and abide by a strict, no-nonsense honor code. Each year, Valley Forge admits about 280 students.
Thirdly, one of the five cornerstones at Valley Forge is academic excellence, and as such specific emphasis is placed on students’ success in the classroom.
Also, as a college preparatory leadership institute, Valley Forge seeks to educate, train, and equip students for excellence in college and future career success through a values-based, rigorous academic curriculum focused on critical thinking, problem-solving, and professionalism.
Furthermore, future students are to note that acceptance to the Academy and to the College is competitive.
So, applicants should have a record of academic accomplishment and letters of recommendation for the Academy and SAT or ACT scores for the College.
Now, let’s get an overview of the Valley Forge schools!
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Valley Forge Military Academy (VFMA)
Founded in 1928, Valley Forge Military Academy (VFMA) is an independent, private school for grades 7-12 offering day and boarding options. Located in Wayne, PA, VFMA’s idyllic campus provides a safe, convenient, suburban location 12 miles from Philadelphia.
Basically, VFMA has a long tradition of fostering personal growth and instilling values to prepare tomorrow’s business, military, and political leaders.
With a challenging curriculum, dedicated faculty, small classes, and individual attention, cadets have an environment conducive to attaining academic success.
Valley Forge Military College (VFMC)
Founded in 1935, Valley Forge Military College (VFMC), also known as the Military College of Pennsylvania, is a private, coeducational, two-year military junior college.
VFMC’s mission is to prepare educated, responsible, self-disciplined young men and women to transfer to quality four-year colleges and universities with the personal motivation and time management skills they need to succeed.
Also, VFMC offers programs leading to the Associate of Arts degree, the Associate of Science degree, or the Associate in Business Administration.
#2 St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy
Teacher Ratio: 1 to 3
Since its establishment in 1884, St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy has been actively helping young adults become great leaders with exceptional character.
It is a private, prestigious, coed preparatory school focusing on leadership development and college preparation. About 265 students are accepted yearly at St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy.
Here, all students adhere to a regimented education system and participate in mandatory athletic programs. The very well-structured, military-styled environment at St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy shapes young men and helps them reach their full potential.
Also, St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy places a great amount of emphasis on academic excellence. And as such, coursework is challenging, and study and hard work are mandatory.
The exceptional class ratio of nine students for every teacher allows students to receive more individualized instruction and help for any subjects they might be struggling with.
St. John’s Northwestern aims to develop exemplary citizens who understand fundamental values like teamwork, integrity, a good work ethic, honesty, and critical thinking.
So, all students graduate from St. John’s Northwestern with a good idea of what it will take to find success in a constantly changing and challenging world environment.
#3 Massanutten Military Academy (MMA)
Teacher Ratio: 12 to 1
Grades: 6-12, PG
Established in 1899, Massanutten Military Academy is a coeducational boarding and day school located in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. It has a long tradition of helping students reach their full potential.
Their holistic approach to education helps your student excel academically and grow as well-rounded human beings. Here, they focus on character development, leadership, and service to help students develop to their fullest potential.
Here are some interesting facts about Massanutten Military Academy.
Massanutten Military Academy is fully accredited through the Virginia Association of Independent Schools (VAIS) and Advanced-Ed, formerly the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).
About 120 students are accepted each year at Massanutten Military Academy, and the school’s mission is to prepare these cadets for their success by delivering a structured and superior educational experience.
In fact, programs are designed to foster respect between the cadets, faculty, and staff and nurture the cadets’ potential.
Also, while MMA offers a military structure, its main focus is academics. So, as a cadet, you will be given individual attention from faculty and staff.
In addition, through various academic and mentoring programs, students learn to focus and work independently.
#4 Fork Union Military Academy
Student to Teacher Ratio: 10:1
Grades: 7-12, PG
Founded in 1898, Fork Union Military Academy is a Christian, college preparatory, military-style boarding school in Fork Union, Virginia. It is one of the leading US college preparatory boarding military schools for young men in Grades 7-12 and postgraduates.
Fork Union Military Academy offers high-quality academics and athletics within a structure built around character development, self-discipline, responsibility, leadership development, and Christian values.
Also, FUMA strives to keep its tuition as low as possible so that military school costs are affordable for as many families as possible.
There are about 367 students from 34 states and 11 countries at Fork Union Military Academy.
Check this: 10 Best Middle School Boarding Schools For Boys & Girls | 2023
Reviews from Fork Union Military Academy Alumni
Here are some reviews from Fork Union Military Academy alumni!
Fork Union Military Academy alumnus #1
Fork Union is a tough place to be but a great place to be from. As a young man, you learn accountability, discipline, and how to follow directions.
Fork Union Military Academy alumnus #2
Fork Union will change your son’s life. I’m not exaggerating. I’m not using hyperbole. I have no vested interest in convincing you of this fact.
FUMA is a special place, and it will take the boy you send it, make him into an honorable man, and send him into the world prepared to model decency and success.
Fork Union Military Academy alumnus #3
There is no other school in the country that takes immature boys and turns them into total men.
Body/Mind/Spirit are the three core values that FUMA strives to advance, and they do one helluva job at dutifully crafting each.
#5 Marine Military Academy
Teacher Ratio: 11:1
Founded in 1965, the Marine Military Academy is a private college preparatory academy located in Harlingen, Texas, US, offering a college preparatory curriculum for boys in grades 7–12 plus one year of post-graduate study. It is one of the top military schools for boys.
Since its inception, the Marine Military Academy has been helping young men realize their full potential.
The Marine Military Academy offers both solutions and opportunities for all types of boys. MMA can tackle many issues and lead boys to success.
In fact, the main goal at Marine Military Academy is to inspire positive academic, physical, and moral growth in every cadet. To achieve this, they provide a disciplined, distraction-free setting that allows cadets to focus on their educational and personal development.
So throughout this journey, cadets learn to take ownership of their lives and develop the tools they need to succeed in college and life.
Also, the proven educational model helps young men earn higher grades, develop exceptional character and maturity, and plan their future short and long-term goals.
#6 Camden Military Academy
Teacher Ratio: 1 to 8
Founded in 1958, Camden Military Academy (CMA) is a private, all-male, military boarding school located in Camden, South Carolina, United States. It is currently one of the best military schools for boys in the USA.
This premier military school in South Carolina focuses on academic and personal success.
The school’s mission is to educate and inspire their corps of cadets so that each cadet will have an opportunity to achieve his maximum potential and gain the educational foundation to succeed in college and life as productive, contributing citizens.
In fact, Camden Military Academy’s primary vision is to accept boys with unfulfilled talents and to shape them into outstanding men for the future.
Cadets can do their best work with encouragement, close supervision, individual attention, and small classes. Also, the college-preparatory curriculum provides an outstanding framework to help our students.
In addition, Camden Military Academy believes in its cadets. So their task, therefore, is to develop the whole man so that he is fitted not only academically but also emotionally, physically, and morally to face the trials and meet the opportunities that will be his after he leaves the school.
The Camden Military Academy admits about 300 students each year.
#7 Fishburne Military School
Grades: 7-12, PG
Founded by James A. Fishburne in 1879, Fishburne Military School is the oldest and smallest private military school in Virginia.
The school is proudly situated in the center of historic Waynesboro, Virginia, and is currently one of the best military schools for boys in the USA.
The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the Virginia Association of Independent Schools accredit Fishburne Military School.
At Fishburne Military School, academic success increases as class sizes decrease. For this reason, the School admits about 175 young men, which translates to average class sizes of between 8 and 12. Small classes, in turn, mean more one-on-one instruction.
Also, this all-male school offers students boarding and day attendance options. In addition to its well-respected academic offering, the school has a Raider Team, two drill teams, and more than 10 different athletic programs.
It is also important to note that Fishburne Military School graduates lead the way in virtually every walk of life.
#8 Army and Navy Academy
Teacher Ratio: 1 to 7
Founded in 1910, Army and Navy Academy is a college-preparatory boarding school for boys, grades 7–12, in Carlsbad, California. It is currently one of the top military schools in the USA that prepares boys for college success and beyond.
At Army and Navy Academy, students can participate in a wide range of adventures and experiences that challenge them to set goals that will take them further.
In fact, Army and Navy academies believe that learning is so much more than academics.
So, the boarding school environment allows them to help students realize their potential inside and outside the classroom.
For over a century, the Academy’s emphasis on responsibility, accountability, and motivation has provided a life-changing experience for many young men.
Also, note that the Army and Navy Academy admits about 300 students each year.
Read this:38 Best Military Schools for Girls around the World
#9 Hargrave Military Academy
Teacher Ratio: 1 to 6
Grades: 7-12, PG
Founded in 1909, Hargrave Military Academy (HMA) is a private, all-male, military boarding school located in Chatham, Virginia. Hargrave is affiliated with the Baptist General Association of Virginia, emphasizing Christian values that focus on a college and the army preparatory program.
Hargrave is a school where boys strengthen their faith, build their character, learn to lead, and realize their full potential.
Basically, Hargrave offers a comprehensive program of college preparatory studies that sets a foundation of knowledge for lifelong learning.
It also maintains a military program that provides organization, structure, routine, discipline system, and leadership opportunities to challenge and develop Cadets’ potential.
The school was accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools – Council on Accreditation and School Improvement via AdvancED and the Virginia Association of Independent Schools.
Also, note that the Hargrave Military Academy admits about 230 students each year.
#10 Missouri Military Academy
Teacher Ratio: 1 to 7
Founded on November 22, 1889, the Missouri Military Academy (MMA) is a private preparatory school in Mexico, Missouri. It is one of the top college preparatory military boarding schools for boys, grades 7-12, in the USA.
Missouri Military Academy has provided the ideal environment for boys to grow into the kind of men we can all be proud of — good husbands, fathers, citizens, and leaders.
The Missouri Military Academy operates four distinct yet closely linked programs: the high school for young men in grades 9-12; a middle school for boys in grades 7-8; a summer program that offers camps for boys ages 8-17; and a for-credit summer academy for students in grades 7-12.
It is, however, essential to note that all of these programs exist to motivate students to reach their full potential, build self-confidence and develop academic and life skills that will lead to success in college and beyond.
Furthermore, each year, the Missouri Military Academy admits about 250 students.
FAQs On Top 10 Military Schools For Boys In USA | 2023 Ranking
A military school is an educational institution that prepares candidates for service in the officer corps. It usually provides education in a military environment, the exact definition depending on the country concerned.
Basically, a military day-school program can cost more than $10,000 per year in tuition alone and room, while the boarding school can run from $15,000 to $25,000 r even $40,000 per year.
The top 10 military schools for boys in the USA are:
1. Valley Forge Military Academy and College
2. St. John’s Northwestern Military Academy
3. Massanutten Military Academy
4. Fork Union Military Academy
5. Marine Military Academy
6. Camden Military Academy
7. Fishburne Military School
8. Army and Navy Academy
9. Hargrave Military Academy
10. Missouri Military Academy
Unlike typical schools, military schools provide students with structure, discipline, and an atmosphere that allows them to excel and meet their goals in a nurturing and effective environment.
They offer strict discipline, counseling, or self-destructive behavior therapy that may be needed to get your son back on the right track.
As a parent, there are other benefits you’ll enjoy from sending your son to a military school.
The article above provides you with vital information on the top military schools for boys in the USA.
I hope this helps you in your decision-making process.
Good Luck And Success!!!
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