Boarding

We feel our boarding replicates a family environment better than anywhere else you’ll find. We have three houses where around 90 boys and girls come to learn new skills, make lifelong friendships and do as much ‘growing up’ as they would at home.

Dollar Academy

Argyll House

Sitting right at the school gates, overlooking the lawns and playing fields, Argyll House is home to an enviable living space that brings together delicate period design with the cosy familiarity of a real family home. During term time it comes alive with up to 21 girls, from ages 10 to 18.

All of the facilities of the school, including the gymnasium, swimming pool, tennis courts and the school art studios are virtually on the doorstep, ready for the girls to make the most of. The property itself boasts a movie and games room, a large common room, study areas, an ample number of individual shower rooms and baths, as well as a kitchen-diner (ideal for snacking and socialising in the evening).

Not forgetting the computer suite, of course. This room is well equipped with high-speed Internet access and video calling facilities – meaning that keeping in touch with relatives is easy. Younger girls can look forward to sharing a bedroom with one or two others, whilst older girls can take advantage of a private single room that is ideal for studying.

Heyworth House

With space for up to 23 girls, Heyworth House offers a fantastic environment for boarders to socialise and study in. Located just on the edge of our campus’ verdant lawns, this beautifully restored example of Victorian architecture is just a short walk from the school’s ample range of facilities, not to mention the cafes and shops of the local village.  The House itself has extensive gardens, ideal for the summer weekends when the BBQ comes out, and the books get put away for a while.

This is a very friendly boarding house and the girls get on well in an environment of interdependence, understanding and mutual respect with a keen understanding of the strengths of those around them. There’s a distinctly modern feel to Heyworth with its range of double and single bedrooms, dining kitchen and communal spaces. Wi-Fi access is available throughout the house and there’s also a computer suite with high-speed internet access and video calling facilities – so there’s no excuse not to call home, no matter how much they’re enjoying things!

McNabb and Tait House

Warm, welcoming and situated on one of the oldest, fully restored Georgian streets in Scotland, and just a stone’s throw from the main Playfair building, McNabb & Tait House is home to all the boys of the Dollar boarding community. The caring, family ethos of the house means no boy is ever forgotten and all are encouraged to aim high in whatever they choose.

Consequently, there’s a strong focus on the pursuit of each boy’s co-curricular interests, alongside their academic demands and, as with the girls’ houses, the wide variety of campus facilities are all within close distance. McNabb & Tait House, and the boarders who call it home, have built a reputation for making a big impact within the school.

The rooms make for a comfortable and practical place to balance life’s personal and academic sides. There is room for up to 47 boys in McNabb & Tait and rooms are comfortable, modern and colourful. Younger boys share, usually two to a room, while most of the older boys have single rooms, some with en-suite facilities and all recently refurbished in the last few years.  Outside, the House boasts its own floodlit 5-a-side football pitch and a terraced BBQ area, perfect for our numerous communal get-togethers.

Dollar Academy

Any question that are still unanswered?

Visit our FAQs section

  • What are the entry requirements?

    Entrance is by assessment and parents are encouraged to contact the school to discuss the interests and abilities of their child. Applications are accepted at any time of the year. Scholarships and bursaries are available.

  • Are there any 'weekly boarders'?

    We have a few, but most of our boarding pupils are full-time. We can offer flexibility, however, as parents' and pupils' needs change over time.

  • Are there bursaries and scholarships available?

    Yes. There is more information here.

  • How are new boarders helped to settle in?

    There is a full programme of social and team building events and new pupils are paired with an existing boarder of the same age to help them in the first few weeks.

  • Do boarding fees include full board, cleaning and laundry?

    Yes. All meals and snacks are provided. A full laundry service is provided on-site, including mending and ironing. Dry cleaning is by separate arrangement. Bedrooms are cleaned daily. Bed linen is changed weekly, or more frequently if required.

  • What does a boarder need to pack?

    Unlike some schools, we do not place a limit on the amount of personal belongings that our boarders may bring with them. There are some items that are considered essential, however. These are listed here - School uniform; One large suitcase and a smaller suitcase for holidays; One school bag, rucksack or sports bag for books and equipment; Sufficient underwear; Two pairs of pyjamas/sleep-wear, one dressing gown and one pair of slippers; One hot water bottle (optional); Spare name tapes; Toilet bag with all toilet requisites; Alarm clock; One duvet and two duvet covers; One pair of polyester cotton fitted single sheets and two polyester cotton pillow cases; Two bath towels and one sports towel.

  • Is a guardian necessary?

    Boarding pupils from outside the EU will need a visa and are required to have a guardian. We also recommend that pupils from within the EU have an appointed guardian within the UK, but this is not essential. The school can provide a list of suggested guardianship agencies if required, however we cannot make specific recommendations. Guardians can offer a point of contact in an emergency, support during term time and an alternative holiday destination for short breaks. They can be friends or relatives appointed by the pupil's family or a professional guardianship agency.

  • Who looks after our boarders?

    Being in a boarding house at Dollar Academy is like being in a large family. Each house has its own live-in Houseparents; significantly they are known as ‘House parents', rather than House 'masters' or 'mistresses'. They are assisted by House Tutors who are teachers at the school and several Assistant Housestaff. Older pupils support the younger ones, and there are pupil Heads and their Deputies to help run the houses. The Rector (Headmaster) and Deputy Rector are in overall charge and visit the houses regularly to meet the pupils and staff.

  • What makes boarding at Dollar special?

    Boarders are a defining feature of life at Dollar and the school was one of the first day and boarding schools in the world to accept both boys and girls on a co-educational basis. We have three boarding houses, which are all decorated and equipped to the highest standard and offer pupils access to outstanding teaching and facilities. The boarding community at Dollar is very friendly and our boarding pupils benefit from the enjoyment of living in a community of friends and the opportunity to gain confidence and independence with the support of a large team of Houseparents and House tutors who enable them to do their best. Our boarding accommodation is of the highest standard. We have three boarding houses, which are all decorated and equipped to the highest standard and offer pupils access to outstanding teaching and facilities. The boarding community at Dollar is very friendly and our boarding pupils benefit from the enjoyment of living in a community of friends and the opportunity to gain confidence and independence with the support of a large team of Houseparents and Housetutors who enable them to do their best.

  • What is the accomodation like?

    Boys and girls live in separate houses, although they mix freely at school and are allowed to visit each others' houses. Seniors usually have their own room, while younger pupils share with one or two others. Each boarder has their own bed, desk, wardrobe and drawers. There is lots of storage and rooms are all spacious and bright. There are plenty of shower rooms and bathrooms and each boarding house has its own computer suite, living rooms and dining kitchen. Each boarding house also has its own large, private garden with barbecue and patio areas.

  • Why do pupils decide to board at Dollar?

    Many pupils board with us because they wish to benefit from the teaching and facilities on offer at Dollar Academy but their family home is too far away for them to attend as day pupils. A reasonable number of our boarders live locally and choose to board in order to maximise their chances in examinations by saving travel time and having specialist teaching staff available to help with homework. Senior pupils often choose to board to prepare for university, to build confidence and independence. Some pupils board because of their parents' work commitments; the family benefit from the caring home-from-home environment offered in our boarding houses.

  • What is there to do during the weekends?

    There are plenty of activities to keep our boarders occupied at weekends. Many will choose to be involved in sports fixtures on Saturday morning. Every Sunday afternoon there is a full programme of trips to interesting places and fun events, including sporting events, theme parks, paintballing, go-karting, laser quest, treasure hunts, climbing walls, shopping trips, the cinema, shows and concerts. Boarders can make use of the excellent sports and recreational facilities on site including grass and all-weather playing surfaces, a fitness suite, swimming pool, sports halls and music rooms. They can also visit day pupil friends, or go into town, within reasonable limits and with permissions in place. Senior boarders are permitted to visit Edinburgh and Glasgow for the day. All organised excursions are accompanied, and pupils are always given safe and appropriate guidelines for their own activities.

Overseas Applicants

We’re incredibly proud of our international links. Not only do the boarding places reserved for overseas applicants mean we can guarantee our high standard of education to a selection of pupils from outside the UK – but they can also bring their perspective here and contribute to the mutual broadening of our experience as a community.

Next Steps...

We’re delighted that you’re considering boarding at Dollar for your child. Our admissions process welcomes children of all backgrounds and stages in their education.

To really get a feel for life at Dollar, we encourage you to get in touch to arrange a visit. Term-time is ideal when you can meet with Houseparents, teaching staff and pupils in order to get a sense of day-to-day life at Dollar. We realise that is not always possible though, and are very happy to welcome you at other times of the year too.

To arrange a visit, or for further information, please contact Boarding Admissions directly:

Mrs Elaine Gallagher, Boarding Registrar and PA to The Rector
Email: rector@dollaracademy.org.uk
Phone: +44 1259 742511