A couple of private schools have equestrian facilities which rival some of the best in the world. If your child is an equestrian, you will want to take a look at these schools as you develop your short list of possibilities. Be aware that each of these schools has high admissions standards. You need to be both a good student and a good rider to get in!
Acceptance Rate: 45% Location: Asheville, North Carolina Enrollment: 260 School Type: Coeducational, day school
Acceptance Rate: 80% Location: Willoughby, Ohio Enrollment: 300 School Type: Coeducational, boarding/day school
Dana Hall's Riding Center has been around since the 1930's. What more can one say about such a program except that it is the sine qua non of programs. The location just outside of Boston gives you ready access to a host of superb cultural and academic offerings. Just make sure your daughter's marks are as good as her riding skills because this school has high admission standards.
Western-style riding has been a part of Fountain Valley School's programs for over 75 years. On the other hand, English-style riding is fairly new to the school. By the way, you can 'pasture' your horse here too.
Set in the rolling horse country of Virginia just west of the nation's capitol, Foxcroft has had a riding program since 1914. This is another highly competitive school with academic standards and achievements which bring honor to the school's sterling reputation.
Located in the foothills of the Berkshires just 2 hours from Manhattan, Kent School enjoys the fruits of many years of hard work. After all, hard work is what the founder, Father Sill, was all about. Now that the boys' and the girls' campuses are consolidated, all the facilities are nicely integrated and accessible. The Kent School Riding Stables offer indoor and outdoor rings and are beautifully managed.
"Madeira fields a varsity and junior varsity riding team and competes in several interscholastic show series including the Tri-State Equitation League, the Mid-Atlantic Show Series, the National Interscholastic Equestrian Association, and the Interscholastic Equestrian Association on the national level." I think the school's Web site states the case pretty succinctly. This is a serious riding school with academics to match. Great location just a few miles from D.C.
A 26,000 acre working ranch for a campus? Don't tell me that doesn't make for a serious equestrian program. There isn't much about horses you won't know if you go to this school. Solid academic focus as well.
Is Saint Timothy's the only private school which offers participation in the local fox-hunting events? It seems to be the only one which mentions a hunt. In any case it gives you an idea of the depth and breadth of the school's equestrian program.
Photo © Stoneleigh-Burnham School
Stoneleigh-Burnham School was established in 1869 and traces the roots of its riding program back to the early 20th century. A small New England girls' school with boarding and day options in both the middle and upper school, Stoneleigh-Burnham is known nationally for its riding program. The Stoneleigh-Burnham Riding Program supports a variety of levels and interests. Girls who ride at Stoneleigh-Burnham are pleasure riders, interested beginners and serious competitors. The proximity of the Equestrian Center to the main building (on the main campus and about a two minute walk from the dormitories) allows students the opportunity to access the barn during the day as well as after school.
Combine English-style equitation with real western horsemanship and you have the unique riding program at The Thacher School. Oh, and did I tell you they have Percheron draft horses too?