As a full boarding school, Packwood is an attractive option for a number of overseas pupils, whether foreign pupils, children of ex-pats, or children of parents in the forces. We currently have pupils from Hong Kong, China, Japan, Russia, Spain and France. Boarding is an important part of Packwood. Most pupils board at some point during their time here, whether this is as a full boarder, a couple of nights a week or as a one off.
Packwood’s boarding houses are happy places: busy, yet calm and relaxed. Boarders enjoy a happy , supportive environment in which they thrive. They benefit from first-class pastoral care, support and stability provided by a dedicated and professional team of Houseparents, boarding tutors, matrons and Graduate Assistants.
Every effort is made by all members of the school community, from the Headmaster to teachers, the Houseparents and matrons, support staff and children, to help our overseas pupils settle in happily to life at school.
When you arrive on the first day you will be met by another pupil who is already a boarder and is in the same form as you, called your shadow. A shadow will stay with for the first week or so and make sure you get to the right places at the right times with the right equipment. They will introduce you to their friends and generally make you feel welcome. They are great at helping you to settle into the Packwood community and they often become one of your best friends.
English as an Additional Language
Our recommendation is that foreign pupils have at least some English before they arrive at Packwood, so that they can integrate and feel at home more quickly, as well as access the academic curriculum. As part of the admissions process English will be assessed and most overseas pupils will have specialist ‘English as an Additional Language’ lessons to start with. We will advise you on what is appropriate for your child.
We have dedicated members of staff who provide ‘English as an Additional Language’ lessons on a one-to-one basis or in small groups, and time is found to do this by withdrawing the children from lessons, normally instead of Latin or French. Support is also offered with subject content for other academic subjects such as History and Science.
Overseas pupils follow the same curriculum as all pupils at Packwood. Please see the curriculum section of the website for more details.
Weekends are a real strength with a large and vibrant full boarding community.
Saturdays – We have Saturday morning school followed by sport in the afternoon. After this the boarders enjoy free time where they can make the most of the extensive school grounds and facilities. On Saturday night the boarders enjoy film night with hot chocolate, snacks and noodles.
Sundays – On Sunday mornings boarders enjoy a lie in followed by a full English breakfast. Once every half term we have a ‘Sloppy Sunday’ (breakfast in pyjamas). Once a month we go to the local village Church where the choir performs. Sunday activities are often the highlight of the week these may include on site activities e.g. camp fire building in school, cooking, pottery making or off site activities e.g. Chester Zoo, Cinema, Go-Karting.
Overseas pupils are allowed to bring a mobile phone to school. They can use this to make phone calls/skype/facetime/we chat home on the school Wi-Fi network – although we recommend limiting this to no more than 3 times per week! For those in different time zones, if the evening does not work, we will find another time for calls, for example in break-time or after lunch.
Mobile phones are looked after by the matrons. A particular feature of life at Packwood is the fact that pupils are not allowed on mobile phones around the school site.
Parents are encouraged to keep in contact with House Parents with any questions or concerns, email is always the best first approach.
There is a private twitter feed for each Boarding House and weekly school newsletters are sent out to the whole school community.
The food at Packwood is fantastic and it is all home made at school. There is always lots of choice and plenty to eat. There is also a school food council where pupils can put forward their ideas. Meal times at Packwood give the children an opportunity to sit and talk to their friends and teachers whilst enjoying their food.
Exeats and half-terms
If an overseas pupil is not seeing parents at exeats and half-terms, he/she will often spend the time with a guardian, a member of the family, or a friend.
If travelling by plane, we are happy to make arrangements with one of our regular taxi drivers to transport the pupils to and from the airport. The taxi driver will remain at the airport until the plane has taken off. The nearest airport is Manchester, just over an hour away.
We prepare pupils for all senior schools and advise on scholarship requirements. Many of our Year 8 children gain a scholarship of one sort or another to their chosen senior school, be it academic, all rounder, sport, music, art or drama.
We are part of the Shrewsbury School family of Schools and a large proportion of our pupils will move on to Shrewsbury at the end of Year 8.
Where relevant, we will advise upon a suitable senior school for the pupil in consultation with parents. Registration at the school is the responsibility of the parents or the guardian. If requested to do so, we will arrange transport to and from the senior school for entrance exams.