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Homeownership School District Considerations

What To Look for in a School District Before Making a Move

Moving to a new area is hard on little ones. Make it an easier transition by giving them a quality education in an environment where they can thrive.

March 1, 2024 at 7:07 AM PST
Homeownership School District Considerations

What To Look for in a School District Before Making a Move

Moving to a new area is hard on little ones. Make it an easier transition by giving them a quality education in an environment where they can thrive.

March 1, 2024 at 7:07 AM PST

Relocating to a new area is an exciting yet daunting endeavor. And adding children to the mix only exacerbates the challenges that often accompany a big move.

Among the many, many factors to take into account when you moving with kids, one of the most critical is the quality of the school district. Whether you’re moving to a new state or a new country, understanding what to look for in a school district is the best way to ensure your children receive the quality education that they deserve.

To learn what to look for in a quality school district, here are seven factors to take into consideration.

Three young graduates smiling for the camera
Photo credit: Josiah Matthew 

1. Academic Performance

When deciding between school districts, take into account the academic performance of the schools within the districts. For example, you can review factors like standardized test scores, graduation rates, and other academic indicators to gauge the quality of education your child would receive.

There are state education department websites and others like GreatSchools.org where you can conveniently review comprehensive data and ratings for schools in varying districts from the comfort of your home. This makes it easier to compare academic performance without doing too much leg work.

2. Local Governance and Leadership

Because district administrators are mainly in charge of your child’s education, it’s important to do ample research on the governance structure and leadership of the school district you’re eyeing.

Take a careful look at the school board, superintendent, and administrative leadership to get a feel for their priorities, vision, and approach to education. School districts that have strong leadership are those that put student success, innovation, and collaboration among stakeholders at the forefront of their plans.

3. Boundaries and Zoning

Knowing how school boundaries and zoning work is of utmost importance because it determines which schools your children will attend depending on where you live. To better understand this, take a look at school district maps and boundaries to make sure that the home you have your eye on is within the boundaries of desirable schools.

A young boy writing in a classroom
Photo credit: Santi Vedrí 

4. Curriculum and Programs

To ensure your kids have the best education, research the curriculum and programs that the schools within the district offer. A quality school district should have a well-rounded education that includes a variety of academic, extracurricular, and enrichment programs. Additionally, you should look into schools that provide plenty of opportunities for advanced coursework, extracurricular activities, and special education services if needed.

5. Facilities and Resources

A quality school district should have top-tier facilities and resources available for its students. To ensure this is so, you can take a tour of the schools you’re eyeing to evaluate the condition of their facilities. Check out the quality of the classrooms, gyms, laboratories, and other facilities your child will be using throughout the school year.

Make it a point to ask what resources the school provides like technology, textbooks, extracurricular equipment, and support services. That way, you can narrow down your list to ones that are equipped with the necessary resources to support your child’s learning and development.

6. Safety and Well-being

The safety and well-being of your child when they’re in school are the most important factors to consider when doing your research. A school that prioritizes its student body is likely to have safety measures, emergency protocols, and disciplinary policies already in place. And if your school of choice implements campus security, bullying prevention initiatives, and mental health support services into its curriculum, even better.

A teacher giving a high-five to a student
Photo credit: Katerina Holmes

7. Diversity and Inclusivity

Another highly important factor to consider when shopping for school districts is diversity. This is especially important for Black children as research indicates that diversity in schools can lead to better outcomes for minority students.

When comparing districts, make special note of the ones that encourage diversity and inclusivity, not only among students but also among staff and even families. To determine whether a school district is right for you and your family, review its demographic diversity, cultural awareness initiatives, and equity and inclusion policies to make sure your child receives not only a quality education but a healthy overall experience as well.


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