New national minimum standards for boarding schools and national minimum standards for residential special schools come into force from 1 January 2013. These replace the previous 2011 standards following consultation with the independent and boarding school sector on the changes to be made.
Boarding schools are those that provide overnight accommodation arranged or provided by the school, at the school or elsewhere, but excluding accommodation for a brief school trip. Boarding includes pupils who are accommodated elsewhere under arrangements made by the school, whether or not the accommodation is in fact provided off site by a third party, e.g. a host family or landlord. Unless the accommodation arrangements are made entirely by the child’s parent(s), the welfare responsibility rests with the school.
Boarding schools which are specially organised to cater for pupils with special educational needs will need to refer to the national minimum standards for residential special schools.