- Parents of children enrolled in boarding schools may pay thousands of dollars each year in tuition and boarding costs.
- The country’s top boarding schools can cost upwards of $US60,000 per year, more than the annual tuition at some colleges or universities.
- We found the most expensive boarding schools among Niche’s ranking of the top 100 private boarding schools in the United States.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories .
Paying for a child’s secondary education can be extremely expensive.
In fact, some of the top boarding schools in the US can end up costing parents upwards of $US60,000 per year, more than the annual cost of some colleges or universities.
The most expensive college in every state
To find the country’s most expensive top boarding schools, Business Insider consulted Niche’s ranking of the 100 best boarding high schools in the country and then ranked them according to the boarding tuition cost listed on the schools’ websites, which included five or seven-day tuition, room, and board.
A majority of the boarding schools on the list were located on the East Coast. However, three out of the five most expensive top boarding schools were located in California.
Here are the 50 most expensive top boarding schools in America according to Niche, listed from the lowest tuition price to highest.
50. Asheville School
The Asheville School has a strong boarding program – over 80% of students live on campus. Located in beautiful Asheville, North Carolina, students at the elite boarding school have access to gorgeous mountain trails as well as Asheville’s thriving downtown area lined with quaint shops, restaurants, and coffee shops.
Location: Asheville, North Carolina
Niche ranking: 60
T49. Mercersburg Academy
Mercersburg Academy is both a boarding and day school located in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania. There are currently 442 students enrolled at Mercersburg Academy. The school has a whopping $US297 million endowment and 50% of students receive some form of financial aid.
Location: Mercersburg, Pennsylvania
Niche ranking: 63
T49. Deerfield Academy
Deerfield Academy is a selective boarding school located in Deerfield, Massachusetts. Approximately 40% of Deerfield’s student body identifies as US students of colour, and while a majority of the school’s 655-student community lives on campus, 84 local students from Pioneer Valley attend as day students.
Location: Deerfield, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 8
48. Annie Wright Schools
Nestled in the naturally beautiful North End neighbourhood of Tacoma, Washington, Annie Wright Schools offers day programming as well as five-day and seven-day boarding, allowing students flexibility.
Location: Tacoma, Washington
Niche ranking: 80
47. Western Reserve Academy
Western Reserve Academy is a top boarding school in Ohio known for its academics and beautiful campus. The school is ranked as the No. 1 private school and boarding school in Ohio, as well as the No. 1 school for STEM programming in Ohio. Western Reserve Academy has 10 different dormitories on its campus, which the school says range from “historic to homey.”
Location: Hudson, Ohio
Niche ranking: 35
46. Episcopal High School
Episcopal High School has been around for more than 175 years and has taken that time to foster a deep sense of pride in the school’s community and lengthy history. Boarding students make up 86% of the school student body. Around 440 students from 17 countries and 30 states, including Washington DC, attend Episcopal High School.
Location: Alexandria, Virginia
Niche ranking: 36
45. Choate Rosemary Hall
Students from over 38 states and 46 countries attend Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford, Connecticut. The school awards $US12.9 million in financial aid, with awards ranging from $US1,000 to full tuition. The school has an endowment of $US389 million as of June 30, 2018.
Location: Wallingford, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 3
44. George School
George School in Newtown, Pennsylvania, is attended by 550 students, 53% of whom live at the school as part of their boarding community. The school is co-educational and diverse – 40% of students are people of colour and 29% are international students.
Location: Newtown, Pennsylvania
Niche ranking: 50
43. Westtown School
Westtown School, located 25 miles west of Philadelphia, is an operating Quaker school in West Chester, Pennsylvania. The school was established in 1799 by the Philadelphia Quakers as a “safe haven” for young Quaker students. However, only 7.2% of students at Westtown School identify as Quakers, and the school admits students of all faiths. Facilities include a tennis stadium with 14 courts, a 25-metre swimming pool, an instructional organic farm, and a 14-acre lake complete with a beach and a boathouse.
Location: West Chester, Pennsylvania
Niche ranking: 38
42. The Hill School
The Hill School‘s beautiful campus covers more than 200 acres of land. The grounds include two artificial turf fields, an eight-lane track, and 11 new faculty homes. Both a boarding and a day school, most students live on campus. The student body is made up of 54% boys and 46% girls, with students from 32 states and 32 countries.
Location: Pottstown, Pennsylvania
Niche ranking: 39
T41. Lake Forest Academy
Lake Forest Academy in Lake Forest, Ilinois, has an endowment of $US30 million and a student body of 435 students. Of those 435 students, 48% live on campus. The campus is made up of more than 30 world-class buildings, including dormitories and athletics facilities.
Location: Lake Forest, Illinois
Niche ranking: 32
T41. Dana Hall School
Dana Hall is an all-girls boarding school located in Wellesley, Massachusetts. A cluster of four dorms for all grade levels is located in the centre of campus overlooking the campus’ pond. Larger house dorms feature spacious living rooms and kitchens, where juniors and seniors live and socialise.
Location: Wellesley, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 59
40. The Hockaday School
The Hockaday School is an all-girls boarding and day school founded in 1913. Student amenities include spacious dorm rooms and common areas equipped with flat-screen TVs and full kitchens, as well as plenty of places for boarding and day students to socialise around campus.
Location: Dallas, Texas
Niche ranking: 18
39. Hackley School
Hackley School instructs students in years K-12 and focuses heavily on global education, diversity, and “ensuring that students learn from the varying perspectives and backgrounds in our community and the world.”
Location: Tarrytown, New York
Niche ranking: 21
38. The Loomis Chaffee School
Located in historic Windsor, Connecticut, the Loomis Chaffee School is a renowned New England boarding school located on a 300-acre campus. Around 480 boarding students live in the 13 dorms located on the school’s tree-lined campus. In 2019, the Loomis Chaffee School raised $US4.5 million from alumni, students, parents, and friends of the school.
Location: Windsor, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 13
37. Milton Academy
Milton Academy is a boarding and day school in Massachusetts. Of its 730 students, 44% identify as students of colour and 12% are international students. Milton is just eight miles from downtown Boston, a huge draw for students who want to experience traditional campus life and explore a more urban metropolis.
Location: Milton, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 14
36. St. Paul’s School
St. Paul’s School is a co-educational boarding school with a student body of 525 students from all over the world. The historic campus sits on more than 2,000 wooded acres. According to the school’s website, some of St. Paul’s state-of-the-art sports facilities include a 95,000-square-foot fitness centre, an eight-lane indoor swimming pool, two rock-climbing walls, two hockey rinks, squash and tennis courts, a 2,000-metre rowing course with boathouse, and nine athletic fields.
Location: Concord, New Hampshire
Niche ranking: 6
35. Georgetown Preparatory School
Georgetown Preparatory School in North Bethesda, Maryland, is the nation’s oldest Catholic school and only Jesuit boarding school. Though the boys-only boarding school admits students of all faiths, their core religious principles lie at the heart of what the school hopes to accomplish through service, community, and exceptional education.
Location: North Bethesda, Maryland
Niche ranking: 42
T34. Saint Andrew’s School
Saint Andrew’s School has been operating for about 86 years. This historic institution differs from some other boarding schools with day student options in that 100% of students live on campus. Students at the school become a close-knit community and meals are served family-style.
Location: Middletown, Delaware
Niche ranking: 15
T34. The Thacher School
More than 200 boarding students and 30 day students attend The Thacher School. The school is selective – only 11% of applicants get in. Of the students in attendance, 48% are from outside of California. Despite being one of the most expensive top boarding schools in the country, $US3,948,950 is allotted for financial aid, and the average award is $US52,652.
Location: Ojai, California
Niche ranking: 19
33. Miss Porter’s School
Miss Porter’s School has an average class size of 12 students and a faculty to student ratio of one to six. Of the 332 students enrolled at Miss Porter’s School, 225 are boarding students. The elite boarding school has an endowment of $US128 million and an operating budget of $US28,665,701. More than $US4 million is awarded in financial aid to help students afford the high tuition costs.
Location: Farmington, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 52
T32. The Putney School
Located in Putney, Vermont, the Putney School has a total enrollment of 232 students, 170 students of whom live at the school. The co-educational school is for grades 9-12, and the average class size is just 12 students.
Location: Putney, Vermont
Niche ranking: 93
T32. Peddie School
Despite costing more than some college educations, Peddie School does allow students and parents to pay through a payment plan of varying installments. The school’s website reads: “We believe that each family will fund the child’s education to the extent that they are able, and our financial aid program is designed to aid families after they have considered their own resources.”
Location: Hightstown, New Jersey
Niche ranking: 20
31. The Taft School
The Taft School is a private Connecticut boarding school founded in 1890. In the 2018-2019 school year, the school raised $US4,810,512 for its annual fund. Alumni gave a total of $US2,291,955, while current parents raised a record $US2,057,855. There are currently 587 students enrolled in Taft.
Location: Watertown, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 25
30. Pomfret School
Located less than an hour from Boston, Hartford, and Providence, and only three hours from New York City, Pomfret School is a boarding and day school of 350 students in grades 9-12. This classic New England campus exudes historic charm, from the ivy-covered brick buildings to the maple trees and stone walls that line the campus.
Location: Pomfret, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 31
29. The Cambridge School of Weston
Founded in 1886, The Cambridge School of Weston in Weston, Massachusetts, is a progressive day and boarding school where everyone is on a first-name basis, even the head of school. The school values diversity and gives its students ample leadership opportunities to shape their own lives while at school.
Location: Weston, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 70
28. Portsmouth Abbey School
Portsmouth Abbey School was founded in 1926 by the English Benedictine community, and ever since this Catholic boarding school has committed itself to educating students in reverence, respect, and responsibility. The school is located on a 525-acre campus along Rhode Island’s Narragansett Bay, allowing students the opportunity to take in everything that the New England coastline has to offer.
Location: Portsmouth, RI
Niche ranking: 73
27. St. George’s School
St. George’s School may cost a lot on paper, but the school claims to cater to families’ financial needs and “is committed to providing admission to talented, motivated students regardless of their family’s ability to pay.” In 2019, $US5.56 million was awarded in financial aid and the average boarding grant was $US51,000.
Location: Middletown, Rhode Island
Niche ranking: 64
T26. The Hun School of Princeton
The Hun School of Princeton is a private, co-educational boarding school for students in grades 6-12. The school is an hour from New York, Philadelphia, and the beach, and it has the following motto: “Our boarding program is big, but our community is small.”
Location: Princeton, New Jersey
Niche ranking: 55
T26. Suffield Academy
Located in the quaint New England town of Suffield, Connecticut,Suffield Academy offers facilities for rock climbing as well as a high- and low-ropes course. The school also has a lifestyle centre offering extracurricular activities including yoga, meditation, Pilates, and barre classes.
Location: Suffield, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 87
T26. Brooks School
Core values at Brooks School include empathy, engagement, integrity, passion, confidence, and creativity. Roughly 70% of students live on Brooks Schools’ campus in one of the school’s 10 dormitories. Enrolled students hail from 31 states and 23 countries. Though students may be far from home, dorm parents are known to cook up homemade meals that make residential life much more enjoyable.
Location: North Andover, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 58
T25. Salisbury School
Located in northwest Connecticut, Salisbury School is an all-boys private boarding school with “world-class facilities” and a “beautifully maintained campus.” The school has an average annual enrollment of 310 students, roughly 36% of whom receive financial aid.
Location: Salisbury, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 91
T25. The Madeira School
The Madeira School in McLean, Virginia, is located on 376 acres overlooking the Potomac River. The school has six dormitories, an indoor competition-size pool, and a state-of-the-art turf field. Roughly 52% of the school’s student body population lives on campus.
Location: McLean, Virginia
Niche ranking: 44
T25. St. Mark’s School
St. Mark’s School is a co-educational preparatory school with both boarding and day students. Founded in 1865, the school is one of the oldest private boarding schools in New England.
Location: Southborough, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 24
24. Westminster School
Westminster School has an endowment of $US100.5 million. The school has a financial aid budget of $US5.86 million and 34% of students receive financial aid. At Westminster School, 75% of students live on campus.
Location: Simsbury, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 61
23. Avon Old Farms School
Avon Old Farms is an all-boys school founded in 1927. Around 400 male boarding students live on Avon Old Farms’ historic campus.
Location: Avon, CT
Niche ranking: 96
22. Cushing Academy
Cushing Academy is a co-educational school founded in 1865. The school’s student body is 91% boarding students. Notable alumni from Cushing Academy include Bette Davis, Nate Berkus, John Cena, the King of Bhutan, and captain of 2018 U.S. Women’s Olympic Hockey Team and gold medalist Meghan Duggan.
Location: Ashburnham, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 62
T21. The Governor’s Academy
The Governor’s Academy, located in Byfield, Massachusetts, has been operating for over 250 years. It is the oldest boarding school in New England and sits on a naturally beautiful 456-acre campus just 33 miles north of Boston and five miles south of Newburyport.
Location: Byfield, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 86
T21. Westover School
Westover School is an all-girls boarding school located in Middlebury, Connecticut. It has 189 students in grades 9-12 and a student-teacher ratio of 4-to-1. It was voted No. 3 on Niche’s list of the Best All-Girls High Schools in Connecticut.
Location: Middlebury, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 72
20. Fairmont Preparatory Academy
Fairmont Preparatory Academy is a co-educational private school founded in 1993. The school’s website touts that it has won awards as the “Best Private School” in Orange County in Parenting OC’s Readers’ Choice Awards for four consecutive years.
Location: Anaheim, California
Niche ranking: 56
19. Emma Willard School
Emma Willard School is an elite all-girls school located in Troy, New York. With an operating budget of $US20,335,901 and a huge endowment of $US103,690,339, this school has the means to provide the best possible experience for both its boarding and day students. With bowling, hiking trails, and a downtown area just a short walk away, students can enjoy themselves on and off-campus.
Location: Troy, New York
Niche ranking: 27
T18. Forest Ridge School of the Sacred Heart
Forest Ridge School of the Sacred Heart is an all-girls middle and high school. Up to 28 students in grades 9-12 live on campus in the school’s dormitory. According to the school’s website, Forest Ridge is the only school in Washington state with a Catholic, independent, all-girls residential life program.
Location: Bellevue, Washington
Niche ranking: 77
T18. Oaks Christian School
Oaks Christian School is a private day and boarding school serving grades 5-12. The school’s website says that 99% of Oaks Christian School graduates are accepted into college, “often to highly-selective, top-tier schools.” The campus is located near mountain ranges and is minutes from the Pacific Ocean.
Location: Westlake Village, California
Niche ranking: 83
17. Middlesex School
Middlesex School is just 20 miles outside of Boston and accepts both boarding and day students in grades 9-12. The school, located on a 350-acre campus, has an enrollment of 408 students, 70% of whom are boarding students.
Location: Concord, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 10
T16. Berkshire School
Berkshire School‘s campus is located at the foot of Mount Everett in Sheffield, Massachusetts. Four hundred students are enrolled in the school, and the school’s boarding community includes students from across the United States and 30 different countries.
Location: Sheffield, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 57
T16. Blair Academy
Founded in 1848, Blair Academy has an extremely selective acceptance rate of just 18%. The school’s endowment is $US105 million and roughly 80% of all students live on campus.
Location: Blairstown, New Jersey
Niche ranking: 40
15. Concord Academy
Concord Academy in Concord, Massachusetts, has a more evenly split population of boarders and day students – 60% of students call the campus home. Despite the high tuition, only 25% of students receive financial aid. However, there is a $US5 million budget allotted for financial aid.
Location: Concord, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 17
14. Tabor Academy
As a selective and expensive boarding school, Tabor School takes into account students’ ability to pay when making the final decision on whether to accept them. On the school’s website, the school claims that the final phase in the selection process is “need-aware,” meaning the Admissions Centre weighs the student’s overall academic and personal strengths against available funds.
Location: Marion, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 97
13. Kent School
Kent School has a strong boarding student population – roughly 93% of enrolled students live on the school’s campus. A majority of teachers hold advanced degrees, and not only does the school offer 28 AP classes but they also have programs in five “multi-level languages” including Chinese, Latin, and Ancient Greek.
Location: Kent, Connecticut
Niche ranking: 41
12. Oregon Episcopal School
Oregon Episcopal School is located on a rural 59-acre campus. 870 students in pre-K through twelfth grade attend the school, which is located within a short distance of downtown Portland. Students living on campus enjoy a wide range of delicious food, from vegan and gluten-free options to Chinese, Indian, Mexican, and Thai cuisine.
Location: Portland, Oregon
Niche ranking: 34
T11. Cate School
Located in Southern California, Cate School was founded in 1910 and has a total enrollment of 210 students. According to Cate School’s website, 28% of students receive need-based financial aid. The student body is made up of 220 boarders and 60 day students.
Location: Carpinteria, California
Niche ranking: 9
T11. Northfield Mount Hermon School
Northfield Mount Hermon School is a co-educational prep and boarding school located in rural Massachusetts. According to the school’s website, Northfield Mount Hermon’s mission is to “engage the intellect, compassion, and talents of our students, empowering them to act with humanity and purpose.”
Location: Mount Hermon, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 37
10. San Domenico School
San Domenico School is a co-educational boarding and day school located on 515 acres in San Anselmo, California, just 35 minutes north of San Francisco. The school has a $US12.6 million endowment, and although the tuition price tag is steep, 39% of students pay below the top of the tuition index to attend California’s oldest independent school.
Location: San Anselmo, California
Niche ranking: 82
9. The Webb Schools
Founded in 1922, the headmaster of The Webb Schools in Claremont, California, touts the school’s excellent track record when it comes to students getting into the nation’s most selective colleges. “Our college placement into the Ivy League, into the best women’s colleges and small national liberal arts colleges, and, in fact, into the top 10 per cent of all colleges and universities nationwide, remains remarkable,” he says in his letter on the school’s website.
Location: Claremont, California
Niche ranking: 26
8. The Lawrenceville School
The Lawrenceville School is located on 700 acres in a historical section of Lawrenceville, New Jersey. The boarding school accepts students in grades 9-12 and has an endowment of $US470 million.
Location: Lawrenceville, New Jersey
Niche ranking: 4
7. Worcester Academy
Over 500 middle and upper school students attend Worcester Academy, and 35% of upper school students live on the school’s suburban campus. Though the boarding school is certainly expensive, the school’s website includes information on how to afford WA, saying, “if WA is the right place for your child, and finances are an issue, we’ll work with you to come up with a plan.”
Location: Worcester, Massachusetts
Niche ranking: 99
6. St. Albans School
St. Albans School in Washington, DC, opened its doors in 1909. This all-boys school currently houses 30 Upper School students, grades 9-12, from all over the world. As members of the only boarding school in Washington, DC, students of St. Albans School also enjoy a family-style lunch every day with their classmates and faculty members, fostering a stronger sense of community.
Location: Washington, DC
Niche ranking: 16
5. Stevenson School
Attending Stevenson School in Pebble Beach will cost you a pretty penny. The upper school’s tuition falls around $US67,500, while children entering the school’s pre-K program pay around $US17,100 per year.
Location: Pebble Beach, California
Niche ranking: 68
4. The Village School
The Village School spans a campus of more than 28 acres and has plans to expand even further. Boarding students are housed in a brand new, four-story dormitory. Each floor of the luxurious dormitory offers a full kitchen, vending machine area, and washer-dryers for student use, while the outside courtyard features a grill station and an entertaining area with outdoor cooking space.
Location: Houston, Texas
Niche ranking: 47
3. The Athenian School
Located in sunny Danville, California, The Athenian School offers an elite secondary school education and a close-knit residential experience. Of the 530 students that make up Athenian’s upper and lower schools, roughly 60 students live on campus. Nearly 59% of Athenian students are people of colour and the boarding student community is made up of students from 20 different countries.
Location: Danville, California
Tuition: $US68,700 (domestic), $US70,350 (international)
Niche ranking: 28
2. Woodside Priory School
Woodside Priory School costs more than $US70,000 per year to attend. Day students pay lower tuition on average – roughly $US46,100 per year. Residential life at Woodside Priory School is undeniably luxurious. According to the school’s website, student-favourite dinners include filet mignon and Malaysian crab. Features of Woodside Priory School dorms include pool tables, ping pong tables, flat-screen TVs, and access to the school’s heated swimming pool.
Location: Portola Valley, California
Niche ranking: 23
1. The Masters School
The most expensive top boarding school in the country according to the tuition listed on the school’s website, The Masters School offers an exciting boarding experience for its students. On the weekends, students can venture into New York City or hang out on this historic school’s beautiful campus.
Location: Dobbs Ferry, New York
Niche ranking: 51
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