The Foreign Service Journal, December 2011

98 F O R E I G N S E R V I C E J O U R N A L / D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 1 S CHOOLS S UPPLEMENT new Foreign Service family has just been assigned to a small embassy in South America. The parents quickly contact the international school that most of the embassy and other expa- triate students attend. When they describe their daughter’s special needs, they are told that the program at that school cannot accommodate her. What can they do? One option they can consider is boarding school. While the Department of State and other foreign affairs agencies do not provide any education allowances for families assigned to the United States, they do offer an “Away-from- Post Education Allowance” for Foreign Service families assigned overseas. In recent years, the Family Liaison Office has fielded an increasing number of inquiries about boarding school options, especially for high school students. This education choice often provides much-needed continuity for students, both academically and socially. Boarding school is also an attractive alternative when stu- dents are looking for special programs (e.g., sports, arts, or music) that may not be available at international schools overseas. And quite often, the boarding school option works W HEN B OARDING S CHOOLS A RE AN O PTION B OARDING SCHOOLS OFTEN PROVIDE MUCH - NEEDED CONTINUITY FOR F OREIGN S ERVICE FAMILIES . B Y L EAH W ALLACE A