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25 of America’s Most Expensive Boarding Schools

25 of America’s Most Expensive Boarding Schools

When you hear the words “boarding school,” visions of Hogwarts or rich yet emotionally neglected children may come to mind. But what are America’s most expensive boarding schools really like—and more importantly, how much do they cost?

Well, it’s time to seriously look into launching an enterprise that will transform you into a millionaire, because you’ll find hefty tuition fees—along with amazing opportunities for your children to learn new and exciting lessons—on this list of 25 of America’s most expensive boarding schools.

1. Walnut Hill School for the Arts

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    The boarding tuition expense for the 2014–2015 school year is $53,000 for this private boarding high school, according to the Walnut Hill School for the Arts website. Nestled in Natick, Massachusetts, students aren’t far away from bustling Boston as they choose to study subjects such as visual arts, media arts (covering writing and film) or theater, dance and music.

    2. San Domenico School

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      The San Domenico School is situated within the scenic hills of Marin County, California, and their total 9th- through 12th-grade tuition totals can range up to $54,800 per year. The school’s Virtuoso Program boasts an impressive list of universities that certain students of the boarding school have gone on to attend – as well as quality Marin Symphony guests.

      3. The Webb Schools

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        The boarding student tuition for these schools—which are separated into one for only boys and another for all girls—are $53,575 for the 2014–2015 school year. If you’ve got a budding paleontologist on your hands, the Webb Schools have their accredited Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology directly on their campus.

        4. Blair Academy

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          While the name might remind us of a main character from the 1980s sitcom The Facts of Life, the annual fee for Blair Academy could turn smiles serious for those considering sending their children to the location in Blairstown, New Jersey. The boarding student costs for the 2014–2015 academic year that covers tuition, room and board is $53,600. The dorm life includes social activities like trips to the movies and holiday parties—not to mention dining services that are replete with “Blair Angus” burgers, Texas toast and a “protein zone” menu for post-athletic student endeavors.

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          5. Suffield Academy

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            Tuition for boarding students at Suffield Academy is $52,300 for the 2014–2015 academic year, but you’d better add the cost of an Apple laptop onto those fees, which is a requirement for students. Located in Suffield, Connecticut—just 17 miles north of Hartford—this school features a 20,000–volume library, a new lifestyle yoga/Pilates center named The Balance Barn, and a plethora of outdoor fields for soccer, football, softball and more.

            6. Brandon Hall School

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              The Atlanta-based Brandon Hall School is a college preparatory boarding school that is rumored to cost $62,300 per year, and requires students to complete the application process for at least two colleges in order to graduate. This process of creating practical methods of going on to higher education is why the school boasts 100% of its students going on to attend college, so prepare to study up on cashing out your annuity in order to help your kids make the grade for this high-cost institution.

              7. Brooks School

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                Boarding students in this North Andover, Massachusetts, school may face a tuition cost of $53,420; however, with 10 dormitories, a long list of extracurricular activities and plenty of “Afternoon Programs” in the bucolic location above Lake Cochichewick, it could be well worth the fee.

                8. Cushing Academy

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                  The 2014–2015 tuition and fee costs for Cushing Academy boarding students is $53,700—and this private school has been praised for providing 21st century leadership skills—as well as a bunch of different dorm activities (like pizza parties and powwows) that help students bond.

                  9. Williston Northampton School

                  Williston Northampton School

                    The 2014–2015 academic year tuition for an upper school boarding student is $52,900 for the Williston Northampton School located in Easthampton, Massachusetts. The family-like environment features a merit scholar legacy program for alumni family members that meet certain stipulations and standards.

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                    10. Hebron Academy

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                      Students who live in the United States or Canada will pay a 2014–2015 boarding tuition of $53,900—while international counterparts outside those areas pay $56,900 to call Hebron Academy their boarding school home. With a top-class athletic center, ice-skating arena and extensive trails, this top tier school is located in Hebron, Maine.

                      11. The White Mountain School

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                        The boarding tuition for the 2014–2015 academic year is $52,000 for the White Mountain School, which is perfect for those who love the picturesque and rugged countryside of Bethlehem, New Hampshire. The lessons taught in the academy’s sustainability study teach students about life from the cradle to the grave.

                        12. Holderness School

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                          You’ve probably heard of Upward Bound; well, the Holderness School has a special program called Artward Bound that allows students to express themselves through all measure of artistic endeavors. The charge for tuition, room and board for this Plymouth, New Hampshire-based school for the 2014–2015 academic year is $54,100.

                          13. Portsmouth Abbey School

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                            This Rhode Island school for 9th to 12th graders has a boarding tuition for the 2014–2015 academic year of $52,730. Founded in 1926 by a Benedictine monk, the Portsmouth Abbey School sits on an idyllic 525–acre campus close to the beautiful shores near Newport. With a wide range of sports and visual arts programs, the institution includes community service internships as well.

                            14. New Hampton School

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                              Boarding tuition and fees for the 2014–2015 school year for New Hampton School are  $53,700. The New Hampton, New Hampshire-located school offers a special international exchange program whereby a handful of students, along with a couple of faculty advisors, travel to China.

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                              15. Wilbraham & Monson Academy

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                                Wilbraham, Massachusetts, is the stomping grounds of the aptly named Wilbraham & Monson Academy, whose 2014–2015 tuition for upper school boarding students is $52,985. Little details make the school special, such as the “family meals” that the students have each week with other students in the dormitories in order to foster stronger relationships and learn how to serve one another.

                                16. George School

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                                  George School boarding students tuition and fee amounts for the 2014–2015 academic year are $53,600—an amount that will also cover room and board. Although Quakers located in Newtown, Pennsylvania, founded the school, “GS” doesn’t seek to convert children to a path of Quakerism. Instead the focus remains on fun art activities, academics and athletics—all married with a sense of understanding.

                                  17. The Thacher School

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                                    The 125–year–old Thacher School is located in gorgeous Ojai, California; however, students get the choice to take an entire year to study elsewhere, either in the United States or overseas. The boarding tuition and fees for the 2014–2015 school year are $53,500.

                                    18. Deerfield Academy

                                    The total tuition costs for the 2014–2015 school year of $54,580 that boarding students pay for Deerfield Academy covers a wide range of items, such as academics, room and board—as well as lab equipment use, art supplies and lots of the weekend campus perks. Perhaps the biggest bonus of attending this school is that certain alumni go on to attend Ivy League schools such as Harvard and Yale.

                                    19. The Masters School

                                    masters

                                      Expect to shell out $55,050 for boarding costs, tuition and special event fees for the 2014–2015 school year for this Dobbs Ferry, New York, academy that houses boarding students from all over the world as well as those closer to home. Placed within 96 acres and woods that have a vantage point above the Hudson River, The Masters School is an ideal environment for learning.

                                      20. Sandy Spring Friends School

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                                        The Sandy Spring Friends School sounds like the perfect place to meet new acquaintances and academic ideals, and for tuition costs of $54,600 for 7–day boarding of students from grades 9 through 12, plenty of opportunities for bonding arise in this school that focuses on outdoor learning and athleticism in Sandy Spring, Maryland.

                                        21. Tabor Academy

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                                          The Tabor Academy boarding students pay $53,375 for tuition and fees during the 2014–2015 school year to learn a variety of subjects, including up close and personal marine biology studies conducted during two-week-long winter breaks in the Caribbean. Beyond that, the Marion, Massachusetts “School by the Sea” focuses on language arts, athletics and a great measure of subject areas to keep interest from waning.

                                          22. Mercersburg Academy

                                          mercersburg

                                            Count notable actors such as Jimmy Stewart and Benicio del Toro—both Oscar winners—among the illustrious former students of Mercersburg Academy in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania. And while you’re counting, plan for tuition, room and board costs of $52,700 for the 2014–2015 school year for this 300–acre campus that prides itself on birthing students that go on to attend highly competitive colleges.

                                            23. Oregon Episcopal School

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                                              At the Oregon Episcopal School in scenic Portland, Oregon, tuition for the 2014–2015 school year is $53,498 for boarding students in the 9th through 12th grades. The combination of small class sizes and an emphasis on global exchange programs along with college prep instructions makes this a valuable place to pick up values and educational skills.

                                              24. The Winchendon School

                                              winchendon

                                                The Winchendon School costs $54,080 for boarding tuition and fees for the 2014–2015 school year, and for that cost, “The Winch” provides its attendees with a big education in digital literacy, top-notch athletics, arts and college-prep classes at the New England boarding school.

                                                25. St. George’s School

                                                stgeorges

                                                  Rounding out the list is St. George’s School, another Newport, Rhode Island-helmed boarding school that costs $54,100 for the 2014–2015 academic year for boarding students. “Because the journey matters,” reads the tagline of this Episcopal school by the sea that allows more than half a dozen students to travel the Atlantic shoreline on board Geronimo, a large marine research vessel. Perhaps the pledge to act with truthfulness and honor in the student’s honor code is what draws parents the most to this learning facility—along with all the additional academic and spiritual offerings.

                                                  Featured photo credit: Suffield via media.cdn.whipplehill.net

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                                                  Last Updated on July 4, 2019

                                                  25 Killer Sites For Free Online Education

                                                  25 Killer Sites For Free Online Education

                                                  Whether you’re five or ninety five, the internet has a lot to offer. Particularly when the topic is education, the resources on the internet are endless.

                                                  Best of all, many high quality sites are completely free. From history to coding, excellent free online education awaits on the following 25 sites.

                                                  1. Coursera

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                                                    Coursera is a website that partners with universities and organizations around the world. This brings a wide variety of topics and perspectives to one searchable database.

                                                    Coursera is a powerful tool for free online education, and includes courses from many top universities, museums and trusts. This gives the site an extremely wide range of in-depth courses.

                                                    Coursera is extremely useful if you’re looking to study many different topics, or want courses from different schools and groups.

                                                    2. Khan Academy

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                                                      Partnering with many post secondary schools, Khan Academy offers a useable, well organized interface. Also curating many courses from around the web, Khan Academy offers impressive depth on many different subjects.

                                                      Among the more well known educational sites, Khan Academy is also incredibly useable, which may make it easier to keep learning goals.

                                                      3. Open Culture Online Courses

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                                                        If you are struggling to find exactly the material you are looking for, try Open Culture’s listing of free online education courses. The page highlights 1000 lectures, videos and podcasts from universities around the world. The site features a lot of material found only on universities private sites, all in easy to browse categories. This means you can find hundreds of university courses, without having to visit and search each university’s own site.

                                                        Open Culture’s list features courses from England, Australia, Wales and many state universities around the United States. A very helpful resource for finding many courses in one area of study.

                                                        4. Udemy 

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                                                          Udemy’s free courses are similar in concept to Coursera’s but additionally allows users to build custom courses from lessons.

                                                          Working with many top professors and schools, the site mixes the customizable platform of other sites with a heavy emphasis on top quality content. This is another site however, that mixes free and paid content.

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                                                          5. Academic Earth

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                                                            Another site with courses from many different schools is Academic Earth. Much like the three sites above, Academic Earth brings together top notch courses from many different sources, and focuses on offering a wide variety of subjects.

                                                            Academic Earth lists courses by subject and school, so it might be easier to find what you’re looking for.

                                                            6. edX

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                                                              Another great option for free online education is edX. Also bringing together courses from many different schools, the site has impressive, quality information for everyone. edX covers a great range of topics.

                                                              7. Alison

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                                                                Unlike the previous sites on this lists, Alison is a free education site offering certification in some areas. Alison offers courses mainly in business, technology, and health, but also includes language learning courses.

                                                                It’s a great option if users need certification for their learning as Alison also offers school curriculum courses.

                                                                8. iTunesU Free Courses

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                                                                  A very convenient place for free online education is iTunesU, because it integrates seamlessly with your iPod, or any app-ready Apple mobile device. On iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch, users download the iTunesU app.

                                                                  Desktop users can access  iTunesU on the upper right hand corner of the iTunes Store. iTunesU is also convenient because the store is categorized much like iTunes.

                                                                  Users can search learning materials in many different ways, including genre and topic. However, courses are often a mix of free podcasts or videos, and paid content.

                                                                  ITunesU does include courses on a pretty wide scope of topics, but does not integrate with Android, Google or Windows mobile devices.

                                                                  9. Stanford Online

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                                                                    Your hub for all the online offerings from Stanford University, Stanford Online offers self-paced and session based courses. While Coursera features some courses from Stanford, many classes are only available via other hosts. Some courses require iTunes, but most are completed in your web browser.

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                                                                    Stanford Online is a great site for high quality courses, though the topics are somewhat limited compared to sites partnered with more than one school.

                                                                    10. Harvard Extension

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                                                                      Like Stanford Online, Harvard Extension features free online education courses from Harvard only. This is another excellent source for top notch course material, though the course variety is less rich than multi-school sites.

                                                                      Additionally, Harvard Extension allows you to search for courses by professional certificate. This makes it much easier if your online education goal includes certification.

                                                                      11. Open Yale Courses

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                                                                        Open Yale Courses echoes Harvard Extension and Stanford Online, in that it offers only courses from Yale. While the site is similarly limited to topics taught at the school, Open Yale Courses offers a lot of videos of actual campus lectures. The availability of videos makes the site a great option if you’re looking for quality courses, but learn better by watching than by reading.

                                                                        12. UC Berkeley Class Central

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                                                                          Much like the other schools on this list, UC Berkeley has a variety of free online education options. The school has slightly fewer courses than the schools above, but includes some supplementary lectures, webcasts and RSS Feeds, making it easy to keep up with the topics you choose.

                                                                          13. MIT OpenCourseWare

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                                                                            Similarly, MIT offers a variety of free courses. The school has a comparable number of courses to the schools above, plus includes very in-depth course materials on the subjects available. MIT also offers free RSS feeds, a convenient way to continue learning.

                                                                            14. Carnegie Mellon Open Learning Initiative

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                                                                              Carnegie Mellon’s free online education site is comparable with the other school’s on this list, however, Open Learning Initiative also covers a smaller range of topics. But for the topics that are covered impressive, in-depth material is available.

                                                                              15. Codecademy

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                                                                                Codecademy is a website dedicated specifically to teaching coding. Where other coding sites follow an example/practice session workflow, Codecademy includes a live practice window. This means you can practice coding while still viewing the lesson material.

                                                                                The courses at Codecademy are well written and easy to follow and the website is organized very nicely. Codecademy features a centralized dashboard where you can monitor your progress, plus organizes lessons into complete modules. This lets you learn an entire language without needing to pick the next course manually.

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                                                                                16. Code

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                                                                                  Code is another website focused on coding and app writing. A site with high quality courses, Code also features learning options for kids.

                                                                                  In addition to kid friendly courses, Code offers free online education classes on a wide variety of technology topics. These classes include app writing, robotics and Javascript.

                                                                                  Most of the courses are also geared in a such a way that they can be useful in a classroom setting. This makes Code a great resource for harder to find coding topics, as well as various learning settings.

                                                                                  17. University of London Podcasts

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                                                                                    The podcast page on the University of London website is another great source for free education. While the courses are limited to podcasts, the site features podcasts from it’s own campus, as well as eleven universities in and around London. This gives learners a wide base of topics and lectures, but still ensures in-depth material.

                                                                                    18. University of Oxford Podcasts

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                                                                                      Similar to the University of London, the University of Oxford features many different podcasts. Most are public lecture series or lectures from visiting professors, with several different recordings available.

                                                                                      The advantage to this particular site is that podcasts are organized into series, making it easy to subscribe to multiple lectures on one topic. Another good site for thoroughly in-depth lectures.

                                                                                      19. BBC Podcasts

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                                                                                        For the more casual learner, the BBC offers a wide variety of podcasts on many different topics. Most podcasts are updated weekly, and focus on everything from finance, to sports, to current events.

                                                                                        Through the World Service line of podcasts, there are also many in different languages. The focus of these podcasts are less in-depth and theory based, which may be more accessible to the average person.

                                                                                        20. TED-Ed

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                                                                                          Another great destination for more general learning is TED-Ed. From the same people that brought you the all encompassing, motivational web series, comes a site chocked full of educational videos. Most include impressive animation, and all are ten minutes long or less.

                                                                                          Not only is TED-Ed an excellent site for the curious, it also includes supplemental materials and quizzes on the videos. This makes the site extremely useful in formal education settings, as well as in entertaining ways to brush up on new discoveries and topics.

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                                                                                          21. LessonPaths

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                                                                                            LessonPaths is another great tool for those looking for a more usable and convenient way to access learning material. On this site, users create link playlists of their favorite learning materials from other sites. Users then rank these collections, making it easy to find many different high quality, accessible sources on a given topic.

                                                                                            22. Memrise

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                                                                                              Another impressive free online education site offering ease of use and convenience is Memrise. Available both on desktop and as an app, Memrise is a particularly powerful tool if you are studying a language. The site encompasses many other topics as well, though some of the course material is user generated content.

                                                                                              Part of what makes Memrise special is their integration of games into the learning materials, mixing learning with entertainment.

                                                                                              23. National Geographic Kids

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                                                                                                The kids site for National Geographic is another site that makes free online education applicable for younger users. For those looking for kid friendly education, a large variety of games, puzzles, videos and photos keeps kids interested on this site.

                                                                                                National Geographic Kids doesn’t organize learning into courses, making materials available by topic and medium instead. This makes National Geographic Kids a good option for those looking for a more casual learning environment.

                                                                                                24. Fun Brain

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                                                                                                  Fun Brain is another good option for kids who want to learn online, but focuses on games and fun puzzles. Particularly focused on math and reading, Fun Brain’s game based approach can be valuable if the child in question struggles to pay attention.

                                                                                                  Fun Brain offers rewards and challenges as well, and is another site aimed at a casual learning experience for kids K-8.

                                                                                                  25. Whyville

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                                                                                                    Similar to the sites for kids free online education is Whyville a destination for preteen online learning. The site includes a variety of social features, with a focus on learning materials geared for young teens.

                                                                                                    Whyville also mixes in educational games, to make the site a well rounded option for kids too old for simple games, but too young for heavy reading based material.

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                                                                                                    Featured photo credit: Dai KE via unsplash.com

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