Guardianship and Host Family Service

Why is Guardianship necessary if my child is at St. James’?

Within a school term, there are always two exeat weekends and one half term when the boarding houses are closed. During this time, all boarding pupils leave school and either stay with their family or stay with the host family allocated to each pupil by the school. All International Students, as per the guidelines from the UKBA, require a UK based Guardian.

Parents are advised to ask their agents about this if they have no friends or relatives living in the UK, as they often have companies that they use regularly. St. James’ also offers a full guardianship service. Please contact for more information regarding this service

St. James' Host Families .... How do you choose a family for our child?

We ask you to give us as much information about your child as possible so that we can find the right family for them. We take into consideration a great many factors including their age, hobbies, any specific likes and dislikes, medical conditions and whether they prefer to be with other children or on their own.

Most of our guardian families will have an association with the school through being parents, past parents or employees. We try to ensure that the students stay in the local area so that they are close to friends and also, for the older students, are in a town centre that they know so that they are free to go out.

We always ensure that we have feedback from the students and host families following each and every exeat and half term break to ensure that they continue to be happy with the arrangements made. One of the best things about being with St. James’ is that once a family has been allocated to your child then we will try to ensure that they go to for all exeats and half terms as needed so that they can really build a relationship with them.

It is important that your child understands that our host families are very carefully selected. We choose only caring and friendly families who will open their home to them and treat them as they would their own children. In return, we ask that your child treats them with the appropriate amount of respect, and is aware that they will be expected to keep their room tidy and to leave the bathroom clean and tidy when they have used it. They may also be expected to help to lay and clear the table at mealtimes and wash or dry up the dishes used during the meal.

St. James' Host families ... What happens if my child becomes ill?

If your child becomes unwell when they are with their school appointed host family they will take good care of them until they are better. They may need to go to the Host family’s local doctor to be checked over; if this is the case the Host family will let the school know and we will make sure that we keep in contact to check on how they are feeling until they are well enough to return to school.

For any serious illness or concerns your child may be taken to the local hospital. They will always be accompanied in these situations by a member of the host family and the school will be kept fully informed. We will keep you informed of any news as we have it. In the case of emergencies, and when signing for any medical consent forms, we will ask parents to give the guardian families consent to do this. Either the Host family or the School will of course always endeavour to contact you before such action is taken. This is, again, why it is so vital for us to have complete and up to date medical information for your child.

We do ask you to complete a detailed Medical Form for your child when they join our school, and then we may send you a ‘Medical Update Form’ to be completed and sent back to us. We are sure that you will appreciate that it is vitally important that we have up to date information in relation to any medical conditions that your child may have, together with details of any current medication that they may be taking when in the UK.

St. James' Host Families ... What information will you receive from us?

  • Full details of where your child will be staying
  • Full contact details for the person looking after your child
  • Details of how your child will be travelling to and from the Host family’s home

It is vital that you or they let us know if they have alternative plans as soon as possible. Their appointed family will have made arrangements to be at home for your child, possibly cancelling other plans that they may have had, and will have bought in extra food etc. for the stay.