Boarding School King's College 'Tenbury House'

Searching for the best Boarding school in Spain? Discover our extraordinary Boarding School, King's College Tenbury House, first-hand. Find all the information you need in our Complete Guide to Boarding Schools (Benefits, Costs & Considerations) below.

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Extraordinary Education

At King’s College Boarding School, Soto de Viñuelas, we equip our students with an international mindset and prepare them for successful global futures in an ever-changing modern environment. While residing in arguably the best boarding accommodation in Europe, our students are given the tools to capitalise on their outstanding British education and forge a path towards their goals.

Our school's commitment to educational excellence extends to all areas of our Boarding School in Tres Cantos. Our holistic, student-centred approach empowers young individuals to unleash their potential beyond the classroom, build upon their strengths, and become well-rounded, confident, creative, and highly-competent leaders of tomorrow.

Top International Boarding School Spain

Boarding Education at King's College Soto: Our Flagship School

A Home-Away-from-Home

Our Boarding School in Soto de Viñuelas is the largest in the King’s College group. Initially opened in 1969, the school moved to its present location in 1978 and is located in a leafy suburb just 30 minutes from the centre of Madrid. More than 1600 pupils attend King's College Soto's day and boarding schools, and learners range between the ages of 4 months and 18 years.

The King's College Boarding Residence is close to the main school site and offers a home away from home for up to 60 students from across the globe. It is exceptionally well-connected by road, rail and air, with Madrid Barajas Adolfo Suarez International Airport a short 20-minute drive away. Our educational philosophy underlines our commitment to academic excellence, exceptional student outcomes, and tailored learning.

Curriculum of Kings Boarding School

Boarding School Curriculum: A Levels & IB Diploma Programme

Boarding pupils follow the National Curriculum of England and Wales up to the (I)GCSE level in Year 11. At this point, our dedicated team of career experts works with students on a one-to-one (1:1) basis to help them decide whether to study A Levels or the IB Diploma Programme. Both programmes are delivered in English by British-qualified teachers, and we have an excellent track record of sending our alumni to the best university destinations across the UK, Spain, Europe, and several other countries worldwide.

School & Boarding Facilities

The Boarding School facilities cater to the personal preferences of each individual student through its wide range of activities. The campus itself boasts an array of modern facilities, including an AstroTurf field, an indoor heated swimming pool, and a recently inaugurated sports centre complete with a gym. It also offers horse riding facilities, an auditorium, and a variety of outdoor sports areas.

Boarding residence in Spain

Boarding Accomodation in Madrid

Our international purpose-built Boarding School in Soto de Viñuelas is nestled in the heart of the main school campus. Offering premium facilities and a safe, comfortable and welcoming atmosphere, our Tres Cantos Boarding House provides an idyllic home-from-home to 60 pupils aged between 11 and 18 years old. While residing at King's College Soto Boarding School, our students experience a nurturing and happy environment where they develop their skills and character while attaining their full potential both academically and in their different areas of interest. Our priority is to ensure that all students are supported, guided and cared for at all times.

Boarding School Activities

Sports at Boarding Schools

An Enriching Student Life As Part of Our Boarding Community

The boarding residence, Tenbury House, opened in September 2011. It offers an eclectic space that academically stimulates students while presenting an exciting range of extracurricular activities that inspire students to pursue their interests, talents, and passions. Our diverse boarding community fosters camaraderie, and students learn the importance of responsibility, independence, and intercultural life-long friendships.

Boarding Environment

Music at Kings Boarding School

Home-From-Home Residence Led by Caring Staff

Our modern boarding accommodation provides a comfortable and safe environment for our pupils and is led by on-site residential staff who tend to students’ needs 24 hours a day. Boarding and teaching staff liaise with each other to ensure continuity of information and high-quality care. At Tenbury House, students may access a supervised study area, allowing them to concentrate on their academic studies. One of the benefits of boarding education is the additional support of staff members, who oversee after-school learning and help students with homework if needed.

Boarding Rooms & Amenities

Activities for boarders in Tenbury House

Comfortable Student Rooms & Common Areas

At Tenbury House, pupils are allocated an en-suite bedroom. All rooms are equipped with heating, air conditioning, and wireless internet. In addition, our premium boarding facilities feature a dining room, common room, cinema room, kitchen, and laundry room. During the evenings and weekends, students have full access to these facilities. They may also enjoy many of the school’s sports and outdoor facilities, allowing them to practice their hobbies in world-class facilities.

Our Boarding House offers boys’ accommodation on one floor and girls’ on the other. Most students share a room with others of a similar age. Boarding staff also reside on each floor of the Boarding House along with their families. If they wish, students may furnish their rooms with laptops, fridges, and stereo equipment. They are not required to have a mobile phone to stay on campus.

We welcome you to our Boarding House for a tour of our boarding residence. Your time with us will give you the perfect opportunity to see how your child could benefit from leading boarding education, after-school academic support and access to world-class facilities that empower them to thrive in their interests.

Important Information

There are always two or more boarding staff members on duty, and an additional staff member is available on call. Boarding staff have chosen to live in Tenbury House, and they are entirely committed to delivering exceptional holistic education and upholding the high standards of our Boarding School.

Boarding staff collaborate with students to create a strong and supportive family-like unit in which everyone knows they are cared for and valued. While supporting our young residents, the team also guides and helps students during daily ‘prep’. They build a rapport with all members of the boarding community and organise weekend trips and outings to Tres Cantos or Madrid.

Many of our boarding staff possess a depth of knowledge of local cultural and historical sites and educate children during excursions. Full-time boarding staff members may also organise extended day or overnight excursions to nearby mountains and countryside. Students who wish to make independent travel and weekend arrangements must do so in advance and provide the Head of Boarding with a supporting email from their parents.

Parents are responsible for travel arrangements to and from school and any trips made at the beginning and end of the term. Parents are also responsible for arranging student Type D visas and Student Passes. At our international Boarding School, senior members of Tenbury House will welcome students upon arrival at Madrid Airport. At the end of the term, staff will ensure that those travelling get to the airport or station in plenty of time for their journey home.

A Complete Guide to Boarding Schools Benefits, Costs & Considerations

Information about boarding schools abounds. However, with so many different types and options, parents often struggle to get a clear picture of what student life is really like at a boarding school. How does it work exactly? What happens after class? Can students go home at weekends or during the holidays? Is it suitable for all ages?  

If you’re considering choosing this unique type of learning experience for your child, then this comprehensive guide to boarding schools should answer all of your questions.  

What is a boarding school

What is a boarding school exactly?

“A true home from home with a nurturing learning community where boarders acquire a wide range of skills and make friends for life.” 

A typical boarding school is, essentially, a residential school where students live and study throughout the academic year. The schools themselves are usually attended by both boarders (boarding school pupils who live on campus), semi-boarders (boarders who return home at weekends) and day pupils (students who return home at the end of the school day).

Boarding school pupils live in a house that is separate from the school itself, and this is where they eat all their meals (apart from their midday meal), relax in the communal areas, and sleep in single, double or even triple bedrooms. So apart from mixing with youngsters of their own age during daily lessons, they then live with students of different ages, as they would if they came from a large family. This feeling of belonging to a surrogate family is also fostered by the presence of caring adults, who act as house parents to the boarders in their care.

A private boarding school’s main aim is to create a nurturing learning community where students can study, develop a wide range of skills and make life-long friends. For most boarders, this type of institution becomes a second home and their careers and fellow students become a second family.

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How do boarding schools work?

Most boarding schools accommodate a broad range of nationalities, which creates an international environment and encourages students to develop an open mind and a natural curiosity towards different cultures.

At a private boarding school - notably in British schools -, pupils are assigned to one of the Houses. These Houses provide an even tighter family unit and a true siblinghood, with older pupils supporting the younger ones and helping them throughout their boarding years.

How do boarding schools work

“In this international context, boarders form tight family units with other youngsters of all ages and nationalities, thus developing much-needed multicultural skills for an increasingly globalised future”

The residential House system originated in the UK boarding schools but has been adopted by day schools as well. Each House consists of the boarders or day pupils themselves – students typically ranging in age from 11 to 18. On entering the school, each pupil is assigned to a particular House and will remain a member of it until they leave. Among the older students, a number of them will be selected by the teaching staff to act as Prefects, responsible for overseeing the younger pupils and helping them to adjust to the school. A housemaster or housemistress is in charge of the overall running of the House and provides the pastoral care of all the pupils belonging to his or her House.

The “vertical” organisation of the residential Houses (including pupils of all ages) contrasts with the “horizontal” organisation of classes, where all the pupils are of the same age. Children are encouraged to identify with their House and to take great pride in its achievements, whether in sporting events competing against other houses or in other kinds of competitive activities, of an academic or extracurricular nature.

Each boarding school also has a dedicated pastoral boarding team, whose members, such as the dorm parents, also live onsite and are always on hand to advise pupils on any issues or questions they may have.

Boarding School Age

“Offering a personalised experience to each student, boarding schools provide a safe and caring environment for students to thrive in."

Girls’ and boys’ rooms are typically split between different floors and each room type varies from one residence to the next. At King’s College, for instance, we offer single, double and even triple rooms, each with an ensuite bathroom, a desk and high-speed WiFi. There are also common areas for students to study or relax in.

During the school week, boarders begin their day by having breakfast in the communal dining room before starting their daily lessons alongside other day pupils. Lunch, on the other hand,  is usually served in the dining room at the main school. After school, boarders return to the residence, where they will partake in the different activities available and will also have some dedicated study time before having their evening meal with their fellow boarders.

A typical private boarding school will always offer different residential regimes for its pupils, ranging from the weekly boarders, who return home at weekends, or full-time boarders, who return home for the holidays or half terms during the academic year. Some boarding schools, such as King’s College, may also accommodate semester boarders, allowing students to study and live at a boarding school in a different country to their own for a semester before returning to their original school to continue their studies.

Otherwise, most private boarding schools strive to offer each of their students a personalised experience, which is why parents can always count on a certain degree of flexibility in order to choose the very best conditions for their child throughout their boarding years.

What age is best for boarding school?

“It is never too soon nor too late for youngsters to begin their journey to becoming healthy, happy and bright individuals.” 

Any age between 11 and 18 is ideal for the boarding experience and most private boarding schools are flexible in accommodating to parents’ wishes. Students will usually be able to attend boarding school at any point throughout their teens for 1 or 2 years or longer, depending on the institution chosen.

In their teens and earlier, youngsters can begin their journey to learning how to become self-reliant and independent, organise their time, and discover their strengths and priorities in a supportive environment. Good habits can be formed at this age in a boarding school, not just regarding academic work but also physical activity and healthy eating patterns that are fostered by the communal experience of this kind of school.

The friendships made at boarding school last a lifetime. A boarding school offers a safe and healthy environment for teenagers to develop friendships and their social skills generally, with the guidance and care of the caring professionals looking after them.

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Advantages of a Boarding School

Is boarding better than day school? Advantages of attending a boarding school

Family circumstances sometimes make boarding school the best and most stable option for a youngster’s education, but any child can benefit from living and learning in a communal setting.

“At a boarding school, pupils enjoy a family-like setting with the convenience of having both school and extra-curricular activities on the doorstep - a wide range of fun learning opportunities with no extra effort or travel involved.”

Living alongside other like-minded children and teenagers and helped by the experience of Prefects, who act as older siblings in guiding and supporting youngsters in the early stages, makes the boarding school a home from home - with the added bonus being the provision of a range of academic and other activities to nurture the growing student.

The convenience of having both school and extra-curricular activities on the doorstep should not be under-estimated. Boarders can take advantage of the sporting and other activities offered outside class hours with no extra effort or travel involved. After their daily lessons, students can enjoy any of the wide range of activities on offer, use their free time to do homework or engage in games with their fellow boarders. At weekends, boarding schools usually offer a range of varied activities and day trips always aimed at further enriching the life of the boarders. These activities may include sporting events or excursions into nature, as well as a range of cultural outings to cities and towns at a convenient distance from the boarding school. Weekends are carefully planned by the boarding school’s staff to ensure students not only have great fun, but also have the chance to continue developing their skills in a more laid back setting.

Because pupils from different parts of the world attend boarding school, boarders learn to live and learn with people from different backgrounds and develop skills that are difficult to acquire in the family home. The cooperation and empathy needed to make communal life smooth and enjoyable can only really be learned at this age in this particular setting, with the help of professionally qualified staff and experienced Prefects, housemasters and housemistresses to guide and support the boarders as they mature.

The multicultural skills developed during this period as a boarder will stand each youngster in good stead in the future, being highly valued not only by employers in our increasingly globalised world but by the individuals themselves, as they navigate their personal and professional relationships in the future.

Boarding house fees in Spain

How much does it cost to go to a boarding school? Is it worth it?

“The opportunity to grow alongside other international youngsters while enjoying a wide range of fun and educational activities is a fruitful investment for any parent seeking a bright future for their children.”

The cost of a private boarding school is, of course, generally higher than that of any day school but it goes without saying that everything included in a boarding school experience - not only a topnotch academic programme, but also daily meals, accommodation, extra-curricular activities and trips - exceeds what a regular day school offers by far.

Parents may choose a boarding school for their child because their work takes them away from their home town or country, and the boarding school can provide a stable environment for their children for shorter or longer periods.

Another reason may be that there is a lack of quality educational institutions nearby that their children can attend as day pupils, so it makes sense that parents seek a better school further from home.

Others may choose a boarding school for their children simply because they know that, very often, boarding school is the best experience they can offer their child – a unique opportunity to grow and learn in the company of like-minded pupils from different parts of the world.

Whatever the specific reasons why parents choose to send their children to a boarding school, all will be convinced that this is the best investment they can make for their children’s future success and happiness. The outstanding quality of the educational and social opportunities offered at a boarding school – and the convenience of having everything provided in the same place – makes this the smartest option for parents concerned about their children’s future.

Investing in a unique life experience such as this one will bring a never-ending return throughout any child’s life.

Why choose King’s College boarding school?

King’s College has an outstanding record in preparing its pupils for the best universities in the UK, Spain and elsewhere.

The school receives pupils from a wide range of countries, attracted by the high quality of the education and care provided, making it a hub for Primary and Secondary School education for pupils from all over the world.

“With both the A-Level and the IB programme, King’s College is the only British school in Madrid offering access to any leading university in the world.”

As the only British school in Madrid offering both the possibility of sitting the A-Level exams (required to access UK universities) or following the prestigious IB programme, students at King’s College can choose among world-recognised education options that will allow them to continue their studies at leading universities across the globe.

The boarding school prides itself on upholding traditional British values such as solidarity, compassion and environmental awareness, instilling a sense of civic duty in students through different projects and actions that will allow them to become responsible, well-rounded adults. But despite this strong sense of tradition, innovation is also at the heart of King’s College and the school continuously evolves and adapts to offer the best preparation for the current and future world our youngsters will face.

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In addition to its academic programme, King’s College’s range of extra-curricular activities makes it the ideal place for pupils to learn – and to live. The sports facilities on campus (including a swimming pool and riding school), the amenities at the school and the high quality of the teaching, as well as the design of its residence, Tenbury House, make it an ideal place for youngsters to grow and mature.

Tenbury House – like King’s College – is a co-educational establishment, where boys and girls share communal spaces (dining room, common room, cinema room and ICT suite) but are lodged on separate floors (boys on the first floor and girls on the second) in individual or shared bedrooms equipped with en suite bathrooms.

“State-of-the-art facilities and an unmatchable location between the mountains and the city of Madrid make King’s College the perfect setting for students from all over the globe to receive a well-rounded British education - continuously innovating to adapt to the current and future world our youngsters will face.”

In addition to its state-of-the-art facilities, the school’s outstanding location is also key to the boarding experience: King’s College is set in 12 acres of grounds in the countryside between the Guadarrama mountains and Madrid. Boarders therefore enjoy a peaceful, natural setting at a very convenient distance from the heart of the Spanish capital and the city’s international airport.

Such a privileged location allows for a great number of varied weekend events and trips both in the countryside and in Madrid and other cities nearby - from go karting and paintballing to visits to art galleries, concerts and even ballet. However, these activities vary according to our boarders’ needs and likes, and are always evolving to ensure they cater for all tastes and cultures. After all, the main purpose of our extensive social programme is to encourage students to mix with other boarders, develop their social skills and build their self-confidence in a fun, relaxed and safe setting.

Providing an unmatchable environment for young students to thrive in, King’s College has been ranked as one of the best schools in Spain by prestigious publications such as Forbes, and is consistently chosen by parents from all over the world as the best investment they can make towards their children’s future.

Quotes from Past and Present Boarders

What does living in Tenbury House mean to our Boarders?

“… that there is no such thing as nationality, and even if there were Tenbury House would have its own.”

— Student Boarder

“… sharing feelings, fun, good times and bad times, having lots of friends all of the time, keeping secrets and promises all together, and living in a “BIG family”.

— Student Boarder

“… getting to know people from other countries and being able to share your home with all of them.”

— Student Boarder

” … a lot to every one of us. You are living away from home and without your parents. However there are many people, new friends and teachers, there to help you get through it. Friends and teachers support you in education and social life.”

— Student Boarder




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Our Boarding School in Madrid is underpinned by excellence and supports students to achieve success in their studies, interests, talents and passions. Discover how your child can benefit from world-class boarding education.