Boarding School vs Day School: Which Option Is Better for Your Child

Written By Ketan | Edited By Varsha & Adi | Updated on 16th Feb, 2024

Thinking about whether to send your child to a boarding school? Unsure which option would suit best for your child’s education and future? Well, the debate between boarding schools and day schools is a tricky one, with each having its pros and cons. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer, it all comes down to what your child needs, prefers, and can afford.

In this blog, we’re going to dive into the ins and outs of both boarding and day schools, giving you the lowdown on what makes each unique. We’ll also showcase some of the top-notch boarding schools and day schools out there, giving you a well-rounded view to help you make the right decision for your child. So, let’s jump right in and explore your options together!

Quick Summary

Boarding School vs Day School: Which Option Is Better for Your Child

  1. Concept of Boarding School
  2. Understanding Day School
  3. Comparative Analysis
  4. Tips to find the right fit
  5. Conclusion
  6. FAQs

1. Concept of Boarding Schools

Mainstream schools are public or private schools that follow a standardized curriculum and assessment system. They typically focus on academic subjects, have a structured curriculum, and use standardized testing. Mainstream schools may also offer sports and extracurricular activities and often emphasize college preparation. They typically require regular attendance, use standardized grading systems, and have specific graduation requirements.

2. Unique Offerings of Boarding Schools

Boarding schools offer unique features and advantages that set them apart from day schools. Here are some of the unique offerings of boarding schools:

  • Residential Experience: Boarding schools are like places where students live and learn together. This creates a strong community and a friendly atmosphere among them.
  • Structured Routine: Boarding schools typically have a structured daily routine, including classes, study time, meals, and extracurricular activities, helping students develop time management and organizational skills.
  • Extensive Extracurricular Activities: Boarding schools often offer a wide range of extracurricular activities and sports programs, providing students with opportunities to explore their interests and talents beyond the classroom.
  • Global Exposure: Many boarding schools have a diverse student body, exposing students to different cultures, languages, and perspectives, preparing them for a globalized world.
  • Enhanced Independence: Boarding schools help students develop independence, self-reliance, and responsibility by providing a supportive yet structured environment that encourages personal growth and maturity.
  • Support System: Boarding schools offer a support system, with faculty and staff members living on campus and providing guidance, mentorship, and care to students.
  • Preparation for Higher Education: Boarding schools provide a comprehensive educational experience that prepares students for higher education and future careers by developing academic skills, time management, and personal qualities.

Challenges of Boarding Schools

While boarding schools offer unique opportunities and advantages, they may also present challenges for students, families, and faculty members. Here are some of the common challenges associated with boarding schools:

Homesickness: Living away from home can be challenging for students, leading to homesickness and feelings of loneliness.

Adjustment to a New Environment: Adjusting to a new environment, including a different living situation, new people, and a structured daily routine, can be challenging for students.

Strict Rules and Regulations: Boarding schools often have strict rules and regulations, which can be challenging for students to adapt to and follow.

Competitive Atmosphere: The competitive atmosphere in some boarding schools can be intense, leading to stress, anxiety, and social pressures among students.

Limited Privacy and Personal Space: Living in a residential setting with other students can lead to limited privacy and personal space, which can be challenging for some students.

Distance from Family: The physical distance from family and loved ones can be challenging for students, especially during times of personal difficulties or crises.

High Academic Expectations: Boarding schools often have high academic expectations and a rigorous curriculum, which can be challenging for some students.

Expense: Boarding schools can be expensive, which can be a significant challenge for many families.

Cost of Boarding schools

Boarding schools cost more because they include things like where students stay and their meals. Families should think about whether the extra expenses are worth the advantages. It’s like deciding if the benefits of a boarding school, such as a full-time learning environment and a strong community, are worth the higher price. Families need to consider both the educational benefits and the financial side before choosing a boarding school.

Some of the best boarding schools in India.

Here is a list of the best boarding schools in India:

1. The Doon School in Dehradun

The Doon School is one of the most prestigious and oldest boarding schools in India. It’s only for boys and is connected to the ICSE and IB boards. The school is famous for creating leaders, thinkers, and successful people in politics, business, arts, and sports.

2. Jain International Residential School

Jain International Residential School (JIRS) is one of the finest schools in Bangalore, offering CBSE, IBDP, and CIE curricula in a holistic learning environment. JIRS provides a variety of academic, co-curricular, and sports activities guided by a dedicated and well-qualified faculty. It is a school that prepares students for a challenging and promising future.

3. BGS International Residential School

BGS is one of the finest boarding schools in Bangalore, providing excellent boarding facilities. Situated on a sprawling 100-acre green campus in Bangalore, the school is affiliated with the CBSE curriculum. It is ideal for your child’s overall development, offering exceptional care and modern facilities.

3. Concept of Day School

A day school is where students go to classes during the day and then go back home. Unlike boarding schools, there’s no living at the school – you live with your family. School happens within specific hours, and after that, you’re home. It’s a more straightforward setup compared to boarding schools, where students stay on campus. In day schools, you have a balance between school and home life.

Day Schools Unique Offerings

Day schools offer unique features and advantages that make them an attractive option for many families. Here are some of the unique offerings of day schools:

  • Familiar Environment: Day schools provide a familiar and comfortable environment where students can attend classes during the day and return home in the evenings, maintaining close connections with their families and local communities.
  • Flexibility: Day schools offer more flexibility compared to boarding schools, allowing students to balance academic commitments with personal activities, hobbies, and family time.
  • Family Involvement: Day schools provide opportunities for families to be more involved in their children’s education, attending school events, communicating with teachers, and supporting their academic and extracurricular activities.
  • Cost-Effective Option: Day schools are often a more cost-effective option compared to boarding schools.
  • Balanced Lifestyle: Day schools allow students to pursue a balanced lifestyle, engaging in academic, extracurricular, and personal activities while maintaining their home life and family connections.

Challenges of Day school

Day schools also have some challenges that parents and students should know about:

  • Fewer Different People: In day schools, there may be fewer chances to meet people from different backgrounds. Most students come from the local area, so students might not get to know others with diverse cultures and experiences.
  • More Distractions: Day schools could have more distractions since students have more freedom. Friends, media, or other things might tempt them to do stuff like smoking or drinking, making it harder to focus on school.
  • Limited Access to After-School Support: Day school students might have less access to teachers or support staff after school hours for extra help or guidance.

Cost of day schools 

Day schools usually cost less because they don’t include staying overnight or meals. Families pay for the regular school day, and students go back home afterward. While the tuition is lower, there might be additional costs for after-school activities or care. Families should think about the overall expenses and if the more affordable option of day school meets their child’s needs. It’s like balancing the lower tuition with any extra costs that may come up for things like after-school programs. This helps families make a decision that fits both their budget and their child’s education.

Some of the best day schools in India.

1. National Public School

It is a group of schools that follow the CBSE curriculum and have a reputation for academic excellence and discipline. They have branches in Indiranagar, Koramangala, Rajajinagar, and HSR Layout., Bangalore.

2. St. Agnes’ Loreto Day School

St. Agnes’ Loreto Day School is one of the oldest and most reputed schools in Lucknow for girls. It is affiliated to the CISCE board and offers classes from Nursery to XII.  The school has a beautiful campus, with modern facilities and resources. The school has a strong focus on empowering and educating girls and nurturing their potential and talent.

3. Dhole Patil School for Excellence

It’s a day school affiliated with the CBSE curriculum, aiming to provide an excellent education that instills values in students, enabling them to pursue their dreams. The school is located on Dhole Patil College Road, Kharadi, Pune, Maharashtra.

4. Comparative Analysis

FactorBoarding SchoolDay School
Academic OutcomesBoarding students may have higher academic performance and achievement than day students, as they have access to world-class facilities and resources and round-the-clock guidance and support from teachers and mentors.Day students may show similar or lower academic performance than boarders due to fewer diverse experiences, more distractions, and temptations in their studies.
Personal DevelopmentBoarding students may have higher personal development and growth than day students, as they have exposure to diverse cultures and perspectives.Day students may have less personal growth than boarders, but they have more freedom and independence in their lives and stay closely connected with family and community.
Social-Emotional Wellbeing

Boarding students’ feelings depend on how well they handle challenges like being away from family, adapting to new surroundings, and dealing with academic pressure.
Day students’ emotions vary based on family and peer relationships. They face challenges like limited exposure and more distractions.
CostBoarding schools generally incur higher costs than day schools, covering accommodation, food, utilities, and other amenities. The average annual fee for a boarding school in India ranges from Rs. 3 lakhs to Rs. 15 lakhs.
Day schools are generally more cost-effective than boarding schools, covering only tuition and other fees. The average annual fee for a day school in India ranges from Rs. 50,000 to Rs. 2 lakhs.

5. Tips to find the right fit

Choosing between boarding and day schools can be a difficult and personal decision for parents and students. Here are some tips that can help you find the right fit for your child. Some of them are:

  1. Make sure your child will be happy by picking a school that fits their personality. If they like being around a lot of people, maybe a boarding school is good. If they prefer staying close to family, a day school might be better. Choose a school that supports what your child enjoys.
  1. Check if the school has good teachers and facilities. Look at how well students do in their classes. See if people like the school based on reviews and awards.
  1. Go see the school to know what it’s like. Talk to teachers and students to learn about the school’s rules and what it feels like to be there.
  1. Choosing a school can be tough. Get help from parents or people who know about schools. They can make it easier to pick the right one for your child.


In conclusion, boarding schools and day schools have their advantages and disadvantages, and there is no definitive answer to which one is better. The best choice depends on your child’s individual needs, preferences, and goals, as well as your family’s circumstances, values, and budget. Therefore, you should consider all the factors and tips mentioned above, and make an informed and rational decision that will benefit your child’s education and future.


Q1. What are the types of boarding schools?

There are different types of boarding schools, including:

  • Military boarding schools: Emphasizing discipline, leadership, and patriotism.
  • Religious boarding schools: Incorporating faith and spirituality into their education.
  • Therapeutic boarding schools: Catering to students with emotional, behavioral, or learning difficulties.
  • Arts boarding schools: Focusing on developing student’s talents and creativity in music, drama, dance, or visual arts.

Q2. Can parents be part of a boarding school experience?

Yes, parents can talk with teachers, attend meetings, and join events to be part of their child’s education journey.

Q3. Are day schools less expensive than boarding schools?

Generally, day schools tend to be less expensive than boarding schools since they do not cover the costs of accommodation and meals.

Q4. How do boarding schools handle homesickness?

Boarding schools have support systems in place, such as counseling services and doctors to help students cope with homesickness.

Q5. Are there rules about weekends and holidays in boarding schools?

Yes, boarding schools often have specific rules and activities planned for weekends and holidays to ensure a balanced and engaging experience for students.

Varsha & Adi

Hi, we are Varsha and Adi, and we’re on a mission to help parents make the right choice for their kids’ education. Picking a school is like a 10-year commitment, and we realized parents needed clear, no-nonsense info. That’s why we created Candid Schools, where you can get the real deal on schools without the fancy jargon. Our goal is simple: to give parents the info they need to make the best choice for their little ones.

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