Marianne McKnight – Director of Boarding Welcome

Iona College has an excellent reputation for pastoral care. We believe that girls perform best when they are happy and secure, and we have systems in place to ensure this.

Their psychological wellbeing is every bit as important to us as their physical health. The principle aim of boarding is to give the girls the confidence and skills to be the best they can be, in an environment which fosters achievement, acceptance, respect and individuality.

We neither expect nor want our girls to turn out the same. We encourage them towards self-acceptance and to remain true to themselves.

We have a boarding team that reflects a diverse and wide range of experiences and personalities, and is dedicated to the care and welfare of our girls. For the staff to be effective, girls need to feel that they are valued and supported.

There is the opportunity in their senior years for girls to take on leadership responsibilities. They are encouraged to use this time for personal growth and development as well as giving back to the boarding environment.

Throughout the years, the girls have the freedom, within boundaries, to learn to make responsible decisions and to gain in self-knowledge from any transgressions. We understand that they will not always get things right, and that this is a normal and valuable part of their development and often when the best learning occurs. They have the opportunity to develop the tools to become more resilient and robust. Desirable attributes and patterns of behaviour are modelled by staff and senior students, with expectations clearly stated and represented.

It is recognised that parents have an enormous influence on the lives of their daughters, and lines of communication are always open and dialogue encouraged. It is imperative to have a mutually supportive relationship for the girls to thrive. It matters to us all that our boarders not only achieve their academic, cultural and sporting goals, but that they have fun along the way, forging strong and lasting friendships that will sustain them throughout adulthood. It is a real privilege to be involved in the lives of these young women, to see them grow in confidence and to flourish in the boarding environment, ready to face the challenges and excitements of the world beyond the school gates.

Marianne McKnight
Director of Boarding

In the Iona Boarding House we encourage our girls to

  • Respect others

  • Respect themselves
  • Accept responsibility
  • Display a positive attitude

  • Embrace challenges
  • Be true to themselves
  • Cherish our diversity

  • Create positive energy
  • Lead by example
  • ​​​​​​​Make healthy choices

  • Rise to the occasion
  • Actively engage