Prince William, like his father Prince Charles before him, was shipped off to live at boarding school as an "early boarder" at the tender age of eight. It had been expected that William's son Prince George, now only 5 years old, would follow in their footsteps in three years' time.
What the British royals do regarding their children's education is largely followed in kind by the majority of upper-crust British parents - and those who aspire to the upper crust. Currently, 73,000 children reside in Britain's 478 boarding schools.
But the times, they are a-changin'. Criticism of early boarding has been growing more and more vocal in Britain in recent years as numerous psychological studies - and traumatized former boarders - have attested to the lasting emotional damage inflicted on children who are sent away at such a young age: so-called "Boarding School Syndrome", in which children who attend the institutions learn to repress emotions and empathy and assert dominance over anyone weaker, has even been blamed for Brexit. There is a push by some politicians to ban early boarding altogether.
Kate didn't start boarding school until she was 14; she was bullied there so badly that she had to transfer to a different school after just one semester. William transferred from his first boarding school to the prestigious Eton at age 13; while there aren't reports of him having been bullied, his father Prince Charles was, quite severely, all through his miserable boarding school days (Charles attended the spartan Gordonstoun in Scotland, not Eton).
It's possible that William and Kate could have George and his brother Louis continue as day students until they are ready to start at Eton when they are 13 (and have a similar arrangement for Princess Charlotte at a girls' school). Or they may start them all at co-ed boarding school Brighton College - the day school George currently attends is a feeder for Brighton - when they are 11.
Doing either would almost certainly sound a death knell for early boarding in Britain; if the royals don't need to send their kids away as 8-year-olds to be properly educated, well, then, day school would surely be good enough for other socially privileged 8-year-olds, too.
So what do you think, ONTD - is it ever OK for eight-year-old children to be sent away to boarding school?