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Boarding School Interview Questions

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Interview preparation for top boarding schools requires reflection on a student’s broad life experiences and goals. You can find a range of tips and tutorials, as well as dedicated interview questions, in our 11+ Interview Online Course & Question Bank.

Boarding School Interview Questions: School and Subjects

What are the most important facilities in a school?

I think that this question depends on who’s answering it – different students will have different focuses and interests. However, I believe that all students will benefit from good sports pitches, which they can access easily, where they can run and practice and stay healthy. I think being able to get to a park or green area is vital as children get older and can leave school on lunch breaks. I believe that some form of space for quiet reflection is important as well, where children can think and spend time alone – be that a chapel or other such space. Lastly, a good library is vital, as students can both work there and read or study books. 

What makes you want to attend a boarding school?

I really like the prospect of being more independent, and being surrounded with friends all the time. Quite a few of my extended family have boarded, so I’m used to the idea and always assumed that I would start boarding. I am already quite independent and like doing things alone or with others my own age, so I’m ready to spend some more time away from my parents and really throw myself into school life. I think that as a boarder it’s easier to really feel part of the school, and I believe there’s a great chance to form memories for life.

What makes you a good fit for our school?

I believe that I am a good fit for the school because I am motivated, kind, and work hard. I will do my utmost to succeed in each of my academic subjects, and I know that this is a very academic school. I will also work hard at sports – I’m the captain of the 1st XI for football at my school, and play in the As for rugby as well. I want to play sports at as high a level as possible, and I know that the school prides itself on its sports teams. I’m also very independent, and used to spending time away from my parents with others my own age, having boarded at my prep school for the past two years.

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Boarding School Interview Questions: Knowledge and Current Affairs

What do you think about Brexit?

I understand that Brexit is a difficult issue. I’ve spoken to my parents about it and they agreed that it’s more complex than we might first think. I think that Brexit wasn’t the right decision, but I can understand why people would vote for it – there were lots of promises made which would have seemed attractive to people at the time. I don’t think that everyone that voted Brexit did so for the same reasons, and nor did everyone that voted Remain. There are lots of different issues on both sides, which would make it very different for a fisherman, for example, versus a banker, or a student versus a farmer.

Should we educate boys and girls in the same way?

Boys and girls should have the same education – there shouldn’t be any differences between the sexes when it comes to education, as this wouldn’t be equal. That means that old-fashioned ideas like girls learning home economics whilst boys do design and technology should be changed, and instead girls and boys should both be able to pick the classes that best fit them, and that they are most passionate about. That doesn’t necessarily mean that boys and girls have to go to the same schools – I think that that is a different issue. 

Tell me about a particular issue in the news that you are passionate about. How would you try to help or become involved in the future?

I am very passionate about ensuring that other children my age who are less fortunate have enough. Recently, this has been in the news after Marcus Rashford campaigned for free school meals –  he was able to convince the government to do more, and offer less privileged children free meals, but more needs to be done. I hope to help others in future by raising money for charity, and by volunteering at charity shops or food banks as I become older.

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Boarding School Interview Questions: Interests, Hobbies, Volunteering​

What have you done to help others?

I make sure to help others as much as I can. As well as bicycling 12 hours for charity with my father recently, where I managed to raise £400 for Help for Heroes, I also regularly make sure to donate old clothes and items to charity, as this way they are not wasted. I hope to be able to do more charity work as I get older and can do it more independently. In school, I make sure to help others whenever I can as well – I’m a prefect, which means that I look out for others and give them support. In particular, I’ve helped a few new students who were struggling in their first year of prep school, and taken them under my wing to make sure that they get used to school and do well. 

What books do you like to read?

I really like reading fiction, as I believe that a good work of fiction can teach us in just the same way that a work of nonfiction can. In particular, I like reading books by JRR Tolkien, who I find to be a very compelling writer. At the moment, I am reading The Grapes of Wrath which is by John Steinbeck. It’s about a poor family in the Great Depression in America, and their journey to get to California to escape that poverty. I also recently very much enjoyed reading Of Mice and Men, which is also by John Steinbeck. It focuses on two labourers in America, one of whom has severe learning difficulties, and the difficulties that they face.

What extracurricular activities have you been involved in that you are proud of?

I have been involved in a number of extracurricular activities that I am proud of. One of my favourite activities is playing on my school’s rugby team. I have been playing rugby since I was young and have always loved the sport. Being a part of the team has allowed me to work on my skills, be a part of a group, and compete against other schools. I am also a member of the school’s science club. We work on various science experiments and projects outside of class. I have learned a lot about the scientific process and have even won an award for a project I worked on with the club. Lastly, I volunteer at a local animal shelter. I love animals and it feels great to be able to help take care of them. It is a lot of work, but it is worth it to see the animals happy and healthy.

Do you play any solo sports?

Yes, I enjoy solo sports as well as team sports. I find that solo sports give me time to myself where I can really push myself, and also focus on something entirely. They offer a great contrast to the team sports that I play. In particular, I enjoy combat sports like boxing, as well as climbing, and athletics. Each is a different challenge, but each involves challenging yourself as much as competing against anyone else. I believe that they help one to become more resilient, and help one to be independent as well.

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