With several hitherto highly ranked boys boarding schools including Mayo College, Ajmer, Scindia School, Gwalior, Bishop Cotton, Shimla and St. Paul’s, Darjeeling among others transferred to the new vintage legacy category, there’s been a major rearrangement of seating in this league table
The history of modern primary-secondary education has been profoundly influenced by boys boarding schools. Initially boarding schools were promoted in 15th century England to provide board and lodging to orphaned children of the working class obliged to farm the sprawling estates of nobility, slog in coal mines and serve as household menials. Soon the English upper class, stiffly unanimous that children should be seen and not heard because they may distract them from their Downton Abbey and Bridgerton-style round of balls, soirees and dinner parties, discovered the virtues of packing male children off to elite boarding schools such as Eton (estb.1440), Harrow (1572) and Winchester (1382) among others to learn upper class conformity, discipline, self-reliance and healthy disdain for the working class.
With the passage of time and as imperial Britain more by happenstance and luck evolved into a major military and industrial power, this lonely wind-swept country’s elite boarding schools acquired a legendary reputation for shaping battle-winning generals and administrators of the British empire. Author Thomas Hughes glorified Rugby College in his enduring bestseller Tom Brown’s School Days and the Duke of Wellington famously attributed his glorious victory in the Battle of Waterloo (1815) to his education on the playing fields of Eton.