Deep friendships are the overriding attraction of weekly boarding for King’s Year 12 student Eddie Poolman.
“You get really close to people because you get to know them so well,” he says and while he missed home at first, he quickly bonded with his fellow boarders.
“I was in a dorm in Year 7. People think it’s not a good environment but it’s where you make your good friends in those chats before lights out.”
He still feels the occasional pang of homesickness but says that family time is more special when it’s restricted to the weekend.
“The time you do get together is quality time. Most parents are working through the week and really busy so you’d just be in your room anyway. This is way better.”
Eddie’s family home is less than a half-hour drive away but the school captain says with his full schedule time has always been tight. Between work and a house full of children his parents were flat out, so boarding seemed like a good idea. Six years later, Eddie has no regrets.
“I wouldn’t be where I am now academically without compulsory study time,” he says.
Living on campus provides more than structure though, it allows students to establish informal connections with school staff that deepen the sense of community, Eddie says.
“You develop a great relationship with teachers who live on site. They ask you how you’re going and talk to you on a friendship level.”
Eddie says the boarding experience has affected him significantly. “It shapes you and gives you greater social confidence. I feel comfortable approaching any adult and shaking hands now. I was never a shy kid but you see it with some of the other boys: they’ve become a lot more confident since they’ve been boarding.”