Central to the ethos of life at Mowden Hall is the boarding tradition, and Mowden has a vibrant boarding community. Majority of the children in the Prep School board in some capacity throughout the year. However, there is absolutely no compulsion to board at Mowden. Children can be Day Pupils, Flexi Boarders, Weekly Boarders or Full Boarders. Boarding usually starts in Year 3, and by the end of Year 6, many children are regular boarders. Children may wish to transfer from being day pupils to boarders, and can do so at any stage. There is provision for flexi boarding on a nightly basis, which can prove to be a useful introduction to boarding for some children.
The Head of Boarding works with her Assistant Houseparent, Mateys and the School Nurse to ensure that the highest standards of care for all children are met.
For boarders, there is a busy and varied evening and weekend programme. We believe it is important to find the right balance between activities and opportunities for personal quiet time, but there is always a focus for Saturday evenings, and a good structure to the day on Sundays. In particular, the junior boarders (Years 3 to 5) are always kept well-occupied.
Our boarders share colourful and homely dormitories in the main building. They tend to share dormitories with children from their own year group, although sometimes they mix in with adjacent year groups. Time upstairs after the school day is relaxed and reflects the time children would usually spend at home. Children have the opportunity to do crafts, play games, watch a movie, develop imaginative scenes and play in their dorms, as well as chat with the boarding staff, relax over milk and biscuits and share stories about their day. Bedtime follows 15 minutes of quiet reading which helps to promote positive sleep and a restful night.
The Mateys take care of all boarders’ laundry, as well as the day children’s games kit laundry. Showers are taken daily by both boarders and day children after games, with the Mateys overseeing general hygiene and hair washing.
The School Nurse keeps relevant medical and dietary information for all children during their time at Mowden. She also runs a regular surgery to administer routine medications and first aid and ensures the smooth operation of all health and wellbeing matters within School.
Exeats and Contact with Parents
There is a half-term of at least one week in each term. In addition, there are two short exeats, or weekends out, in the Spring and Summer term. Dates of these are published well in advance. These fall either side of half-term, and usually last from Friday lunchtime until Monday morning. During the longer Autumn Term, there are four exeats, two either side of Half Term.
Boarders’ parents are positively encouraged to visit their children regularly, to watch concerts, plays and matches and stay for refreshments before or afterwards at school. Depending on Sunday activities, it is sometimes also possible to take them out to lunch. Permission should be sought from the Head for children to be out of school for special family occasions.
The children all have easy access to their own private email, and the school provides telephones for children to use in the evening after prep is finished.