#1 School district - why all the fuss?

By
Real Estate Agent with Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 NRDS ID#641625055

As a real estate agent, I often anticipate the buyers' request to limit the home search to those properties found within the boundaries of the very best school district. Naturally, I respect that wish as I'm lining up houses to show.  

 

 

  

Still, I can't help but wonder why that preoccupation exists . Please understand that I'm not advocating failing schools nor those with a reputation for violence - only delightful, ordinary neighborhood schools.

 

Years ago, we didn't worry about these things. Whatever school you were zoned for is the one you attended. And most of us grew up just fine, achieved and even prospered over the course of a lifetime.

 

As a former educator and part of a family of educators, literacy and achievement has always been top on my  list. Coming from one who read to her babies in utero, I've always been sold on the importance of education and its crucial role in presenting options when one is trying to rise above difficult circumstances.

 

Ideally, I believe that a nurturing home environment, conducive to learning is where education starts and families who frequent the local library and other educational sites are building a strong foundation for successful future endeavors. Children can sense when a premium is placed on knowledge and, as they grow, with an allowance for normal age-related hiccups, they will mirror the values displayed in their households.

 

A love for education takes time to nurture and grow. It begins for the very young with outside positive reinforcement - the "gold star" of yesteryear. If you're lucky enough to cross paths with someone who can ignite in you the passion to learn, learning for its own sake, you'll be set forever. The person who "sees" something in you and is willing to devote some time can be a trusted teacher or anyone else.

 

Obviously, we can't all live within the borders of the #1 school district. Supply and demand insure home prices remain exorbitant and Long Island's annual taxes, for example, average a hefty $16,000 a year and rise much, much higher.

 

I can't emphasize enough the competitive nature that exists in the most exclusive school districts and I question whether what often amounts to a cut-throat environment is in every child's best interest. How much better to be a big fish in a small pond during adolescence when physical, emotional and social growth is fraught with insecurities and stress?

 

Certainly, the school district must be a factor in your choice of neighborhood -  one factor, amongst many. As one of my commenters, below, astutely stated, " I still believe that one of the best indicators of a good school is a list of the colleges and technical programs that the graduates have been accepted into. "

 

Always consider other variables that make up quality of life like affordability, proximity to family and friends, parks and recreation, etc. Teachable moments are not limited to the inside of a classroom but are found everyday and everywhere.  The most enduring life lessons can be transferred to other fields and adult life.

 

 

 

 

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CHARLES RUTENBERG REALTY INC.  *****  516-575-7500  *****

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Graduate REALTOR Institute 

Jill Sackler, NYS Real Estate Broker Associate based on Long Island's South Shore
 
 

Sunny Isles, Fl 

 

  

     Specializing in Lifecycle Real Estate Transitions

"When your family doesn't fit your family home, I can help."
 
 
 
 
 
   
   

   

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Rainmaker
752,541
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

@Dorte Engel - Yes, that would make a difference.

@M.C. Dwyer - I just love your sentence, "In the Silicon Valley, buying in the best school districts weighs heavily on parents' minds."

Gene Riemenschneider Your response was popular as it was well summarized.

Theresa Akin District websites are a good starting point as they'll have,  normal info about classes, teachers and instruction,  along with photos of extracurricular activities that may be of interest to some.

Leslie Campos You would definitely know best coming from the background of an administrator. "One of the best indicators of a good school is  a list of the colleges and technical programs that the graduates have been accepted into." Thank you for your input. It's a great addition to the post. I didn't think of it.

Jun 05, 2015 06:45 AM #36
Rainmaker
1,537,488
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

I think test scores are highly overrated. Would I want my kids focused on learning the answers to a test instead of learning how to learn about whatever might interest them? Nope. 

Would I want them cramming for tests in place of going on field trips that spark their curiosity? Nope. 

I believe you are absolutely right - kids who learn to read, love to read, and have a healthy dose of curiosity can go anywhere. And - I believe that starts in the home long before school-age. Why should kids have to wait until they're 5 or 6 to learn to read, write, and count? It makes no sense to me.

I pulled both of my boys out of the public school and did home study during the elementary years. They learned more in fewer hours per day - and we got the added bonus of not dealing with continual colds and flu all winter.

Jun 05, 2015 06:51 AM #37
Rainmaker
752,541
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Lyn Sims Thank you. No, you can't but people do. It takes a village is appropriate here.

Keith Whited It is an obsession of sorts, isn't it? I agree with you that Gene summarized it well.

Jan Green Thank you. They're entitled to get what they want as long as they can afford it. Only when compromise is in order can it become complicated.

 

Jun 05, 2015 06:51 AM #38
Rainmaker
752,541
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Marte Cliff I salute you for successfully homeschooling. I've known a few who have done it but it seemed to me like an immense commitment. I remember one co-worker who was reported by her postman to school officials for her children's alleged truancy. That nonsense was eventually sorted out.

Jun 05, 2015 06:59 AM #39
Rainmaker
1,537,488
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

When I first got fed up enough to take my older son out of school I tried to get permission and tried to get information on curriculum, books, etc. Getting permission became easier after I pointed out the grammatical error in a letter from the Superintendent's office. 

They were no help with curriculum, but fortunately I learned about Calvert Schools - a school that supplies books and materials to missionaries, etc. They really simplified things for me,and since tests went back to them for grading, our local school couldn't complain.

It is a huge commitment, but no more so for me than having to organize our lives around the school. I loved being able to take our own "field trips" without asking permission from anyone. 

Jun 05, 2015 07:23 AM #40
Rainmaker
1,060,712
Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

Schools are enormously important when you sell your home;  therefore, they should be important when you purchase your home.

Jun 05, 2015 08:38 AM #41
Rainmaker
560,290
Chris B Johnson REALTOR®
Allison James Elite - Moorpark, CA
5 Star Rated REALTOR® Quality, Not Quantity

Thankful I live in California with Prop 13.  I am just "educating" my clients who are reolating from Rhode Island on this. 

Jun 05, 2015 10:19 AM #42
Rainer
477,014
Kimo Jarrett
WikiWiki Realty - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

We can all agree that education is priceless and we should all know that there is a difference in leadership regardless of the industry.

While education starts at home, how many parents inspire their children to read, write and teach them life's lessons using math and comprehension of the written word?

Schools that have high scholastic achievement records produce smarter kids who can take advantage of opportunities to prepare themselves for a bountiful and successful financial future. 

The value of a high achievement school is priceless to parents who value the administrative leadership, the teachers and their teaching methods, discipline and expectations of their students. 

The University of California at Berkeley has a population of 49% Asian students, so why is that? It isn't because those students went to regular high schools that were not scholastically rated.

On the contrary, they attended highly rated schools and  probably sacrificed a lot of hours studying their curriculum.  And their parents understand the value of highly rated schools and they will buy homes in the area that that school serves, so why can't all schools be highly rated, that's the real challenge, isn't it?

Jun 05, 2015 11:12 AM #43
Rainmaker
532,921
Eve Alexander
Buyers Broker of Florida - Orlando, FL
Exclusively Representing ONLY Orlando Home Buyers

Excellent blog.

The reason that school ratings are so important to homebuyers is that the parents prioritity is to become the childs "friend"....they no longer act as real parents...they expect the school to do that.

Mom and Dad are usually divorced with too many computers and phones to play with so they depend upon the teachers to shape their child.

In the old days parents raised their own kids.

Eve

Jun 07, 2015 12:43 AM #44
Rainmaker
752,541
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Marte Cliff Lol - " the grammatical error in a letter from the Superintendent's office" should do it. Glad it all worked out. Home schooling is more popular in some parts than in others.

Sharon Parisi Yes, if the home is best meant for a family

Chris B Johnson I'd have to do some research. I'm not familar.

 

Jun 09, 2015 01:00 AM #45
Rainmaker
752,541
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Kimo Jarrett  Great. We're not so far apart.  "We can all agree that education is priceless." 

"why can't all schools be highly rated, that's the real challenge, isn't it?"

I'm afraid so. In theory is never the same as in practice and many households depend on the school system to not only educate their kids but raise them, as well.

Mike & Eve Alexander I know what you mean. I suppose the pressures are different now but it sure would be nice to go back to where everybody does their part.  Everything is cyclical anyway so who knows what the future of education will shape up to be? They could save money and improve equality if some of the many tiny school districts on LI were to merge but that idea comes with huge opposition.

 

Jun 09, 2015 01:10 AM #46
Rainmaker
560,290
Chris B Johnson REALTOR®
Allison James Elite - Moorpark, CA
5 Star Rated REALTOR® Quality, Not Quantity

Yes, Mike & Eve Alexander , I believe we do not "need a village" what we need, as you said, is personal resposibility.

Jun 09, 2015 01:12 AM #47
Rainmaker
232,179
Dale Taylor
Re/Max 10 New Lenox Illinois - Frankfort, IL
Realtor = Chicago Illinois Homes Townhomes Condos

I applaud your courage to write about this touchy subject.  I serve some very affordable communities where the schools are not in the top 25%.  I have used some of your very words when addressing the Parent's concerns about the school ratings.

Jun 09, 2015 11:13 AM #48
Ambassador
4,300,186
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Jill Sackler- that's what I tell my buyers - always.

"Always consider other variables that make up quality of life like affordability, proximity to family and friends, parks and recreation,"

Some of them listen and some wants to be in that specific school district only!

Jun 09, 2015 03:47 PM #49
Rainmaker
99,710
The Julie Morales Team
RE/MAX Cinco Ranch - Katy, TX
Real Estate Questions? Call (832) 367-3412

Fellow Rainier who found you on G+. Really like this blog! It caught my attention. You are completely right that there seems the be a bit of madness in the air for the top-rated schools. I never stopped to truly think about the idea until now. I am a big believer in good schools, but there is only so far a good school will take you. The rest lies in the hands of the home environment and ability and determination of the child.

Jun 18, 2015 08:53 AM #50
Rainmaker
752,541
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Dale Taylor  Thank you. If it can help, I'm happy.

Praful Thakkar  I know. The pull to be close to the best is very strong. It's a big personal undertaking to take charge and may seem scary to some. Also, the top school district gives you bragging rights.

Julie Morales  Thanks so much for the follow, Julie and welcome to AR. " home environment and ability and determination of the child" - you nailed it.

 

Jun 18, 2015 09:40 AM #51
Rainmaker
3,247,788
Lou Ludwig
Ludwig & Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC

Jill

Having a good school district is important to many families . . . . What is really important to make a good school district . . . . and to have a successful and productive school experience is  for the student . . . . is involved parents . . . . an exception that student respects the teacher . . . . the other students . . . . and yes participle.

Amazing can happen . . . .

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Jun 18, 2015 01:19 PM #52
Rainmaker
1,490,704
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

It is certainly beneficial for house value to have a good school neigh-by. Families are willing to pay more for a home to get into a well-rated public school. They see themselves saving $10,000 to $40,000 year in private-school tuition. 

May 24, 2016 02:59 AM #53
Rainmaker
752,541
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

That is exactly the thought process. You hit it on the head.

May 24, 2016 10:49 PM #54
Rainmaker
1,490,704
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

Whether you have children or not, it pays to buy in an area with great schools. 

Aug 24, 2016 07:02 AM #55
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Jill Sackler

LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate
Long Island Living - Where Memories Are Made
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