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Boarding student handbook

There will be many different handbooks for boarding students depending on the type of school. Below is an outlined sample of what a Boarding Student Handbook could entail. This will help you develop a handbook and/or improve your current handbook at your school. 




Program Mission Statement

(Write one for your Boarding/Residential Program)


Note: Some Sections may have a link to show you an example on how it can be written.



  • Everyday life. (What's it like at your boarding program?)

  • Weekday Schedule (What happens from the time the students wake up to the time they have to be in their rooms for Lights Out?)

  • Weekend Schedule (Anything exciting goes on the weekends at your school? Enhance your program's offerings)

  • Attendance (What's expected for attendance? What happens when the expectations are not met?)

  • Dorm Closed During the Day (Are students allowed to return to the dorm during school hours? During Break? What are the policies?)

  • Meals (Where do students get their meals? Cafeteria/dining hall? Weekend Meals? What are the times these meals are served?)

  • Study Hall Expectations (How long is study hall? Which days? Can a student be excused from it and how? What time it starts and ends?)

  • Curfew / Lights Out (Weekdays? Grade Level? Weekends? Prefects?)

  • Where in the Dorm Can I Go? (Can girls visit the boys room and vice versa?) Where can there be co-ed interactions? What's not a go to place?)

  • Dress Code (For School? After School? Dorm? Weekend? Trips?)

  • Dorm Meetings (Weekly? Monthly? Where? Time?)

  • Use of English Rule (If you have many international students from countries outside of USA)

  • Permission to Leave Campus (not overnight) What form needs to be completed to leave off campus?

  • Permission to Leave Campus (overnight & weekends) What form needs to be completed to spend the night off campus?

  • Visitors to the Dormitories (When? Where? Times?)

  • Support

  • Prefects (What are their roles?)

  • Transportation ( When are students transported? Trips? Appointments?)

  • Vacation Travel / Airport Shuttles (When do you provide transportation? Only Breaks? Anytime for a fee?)



  • Co-curricular Activities and Athletics (What sports and activities are available to the students?)

  • Weekend Activities (What kind o f trips are you offering on the weekends? Do students pay extra or included in fees?)

  • Community Weekends (Are your students involved within the community? Volunteer work?)

  • Residential Curriculum (Are important topics being covered with the boarding students? Drugs & Alcohol? Bullying" Sex Education? Plagiarism? Time Management? Home Sickness? Making Friends? Middle school to High School to University Transitions?) 



Internet Access (Do students require to have their electronic devices registered to use the campus network? Filtering system? Scheduled time for internet usage? Restriction hours during the weekday and weekends?)

Cell Phones (When can students use cell-phones? Do they need to provide their number to staff?)

Video Games (Addiction in most cases. How is this monitored and regulated?)



  • Dorm Rooms (Can students decorate their dorm room? restrictions?  Where are the dorm rooms located on your campus? Boys? Girls? Co-ed?)

  • Roommate Assignments (How is this determined? Do you have a request form? Randomly Chosen? Student Survey to pair similar interests?)

  • Common Areas (Can students visit these areas? Certain times? Co-ed? No drinks or food allowed? Visitors allowed?)

  • Dorm Kitchen/Snack bar (What hours can they use the dorm kitchen/snack room? Any rules? Who is responsible to clean these areas?)

  • Washers and Dryers (Do students pay for these? School provides soap? Are the machines coin/money card operated? What hours and day can it be used? Girls Day? Boys Day? Do you provide this service?)

  • Dorm Chores (Teach students to be accountable and responsible) What time is the chores? What type of chore is a skill developing chore? Who oversees chores? What happens when chores are not completed?

  • Gym / Pool (Are these available to students? What time? What days? What staff is needed to supervise these activities? (e.g. lifeguard) 

  • Other Facilities (Are other areas on the campus available for students? Restricted areas? 



Dorm Infractions / Violations of Rules (What rules have zero tolerance and immediately same consequence across the board?

Suspension and Expulsion (When does it occur? Why? and how to prevent this stage to reach a student?)


  • Health & Wellness Services (Do you provide health services to students and when? How do you monitor the health of students?)

  • Illness & Injury (Do you have a procedure in place for illness and injury incidents? When do you take a student to the hospital? Who transport?)

  • Medical Insurance (Do you require all students to have medical insurance? Do the school provide basic health insurance?)

  • Doctor's Appointments (Who schedules this? Is the parent contacted each time? Who accompanies the student to the health center?)

  • Medications (Do you collect students' medication? What medicines are ok in their rooms? (e.g. vitamins, protein shakes, etc.) Foreign students' medication is translated? How?)

  • Bicycles, Rollerblades, Scooters and Skateboards (When and where can they use these recreational items? Where can they be stored?)

  • Security (How do students access the dorm? Key? Swipe Card? Check in with staff at the front desk? How do you keep track of students movement?) Boarding School software? 

  • Fire Code (How is this information communicated to the students? Do you have a fire safety trained staff personnel?)

  • Emergency Procedures (Lock Down Procedures? Fire Drills? EarthQuake Drills? Who conducts and keep record of these drills?)


Dorm Staff Contacts (Do students know who to contact in emergencies situations that does not require the local authorities?)

Jurisdiction of the School (Being your parent while your other parents are not present)

Disclaimer: "Lugo International School" is a fictional name used throughout documents for sample purposes.

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