– A guest post by Ms Pallavi Saikia Farwell

The decision of sending a child to a boarding school might be the toughest call for any parent. This is a major transition for the family as well as for the child.

Being attached to boarding schools for the past 18 years, I can assure you that although it seems to be a tough decision at first, such schools provide stronger foundations for the development of a child. This is a great hub for information and interactions. The people you live with, eat with, and see every day become a huge part of your life.

Every child is different. We as parents need to understand and be sensitive to the individual needs of our children. Before sending a child to any boarding school, it is important to speak to them openly about it and understand their point of view. Further, we should be confident about the school we are sending our child to. We should share as much information about the school with the child, take him on a tour to the school, and let him interact with people there.

Make sure you highlight about the advantages of having a boarding school experience. Tell them that along with enhancing self-esteem, confidence and decision making skills, they will be provided with guided study hours and opportunity to make friends from different cultural backgrounds.

However, it is also essential for parents to tell a child that he will always be missed at home. Parents should ensure creating strong and loving relationships with their children, which will help in the transition. It will build confidence in the child and provide stability and security during this tough phase.

In my so many years of being in boarding schools, I have learnt the greatest lesson of my life, being respectful to each other. Here, I have also seen children growing into confident young adults with nurturing and disciplined way of life.

So, whenever you decide to send your child to a boarding school, remember to help him acclimatise with the changed surrounding even before he joins the school. Preparing a child beforehand will surely go a long way.

Ms Pallavi Saikia Farwell is Head of Human Resources and Public Relations at Sehwag International School. She comes with 18 years of boarding school experience and has worked with schools such as Assam Valley School, Sarala Birla Academy, The Sanskar Valley School and Birla International School.