Tilda Swinton Will Have You Know That Harry Potter Lied and British Boarding Schools Are Awful

Did you spend years of your childhood yearning for your invite to Hogwarts? Well, Tilda Swinton will have you know that in fact you didn’t miss much, because boarding schools are nowhere you want to be.


The Telegraph reports that Swinton recently spoke to The Scots Magazine and the alum of West Heath Girls’ School, where her classmates included the future Princess Diana, did not have positive things to say about the British boarding school experience.

“I think they are a very cruel setting in which to grow up and I don’t feel children benefit from that type of education,” she said.

“Children need their parents. That’s why I dislike films like Harry Potter, which tend to romanticise such places,” she added, seemingly missing the irony that it was only within the warming embrace of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry that orphaned Harry Potter truly found an adoptive family of his own.

What’s best about this quote is not the image of Tilda Swinton slowly leaning over a child’s shoulder and informing him that, actually, he should be grateful he hasn’t been shipped off to one of the United Kingdom’s dreadful, drafty old boarding schools. (Which is correct.) What’s best about this quote is how defensive the Telegraph instantly became on behalf of Hogwarts and the whole damn Harry Potter Franchise, noting that in fact it’s supposed to be irony Harry Potter found the first loving atmosphere of his life at the school, okay?

The Telegraph also noted that:

Although Hogwarts does ensure that its students board, given that the school is located in the wilds of Scotland, Rowling pointed out last summer that it isn’t a fee-paying school as the Ministry of Magic covers education costs for young witches and wizards.

And: “Unlike Swinton, plenty of Harry Potter fans would very much like to attend Hogwarts, which has partially inspired the popularity of ‘real life’ Hogwarts recreations, such as this one in Poland.”

Okay, Tilda? Is that okay with you?

The Daily Mail notes that Swinton has set up “a liberal independent school near her home in Nairn, Scotland. Drumduan Upper School, which opened in 2013, has no tests or exams and students spend their days building boats and planting trees rather than sitting behind desks.”

Senior Editor, Attic Haunter, Jezebel



My granny was sent to boarding school by her parents and she never got over it. She was so bitter about it, and she resented them her whole life, said they only sent her away so they could go off travelling.

Lots of kids love that environment, but it’s certainly not for everyone.