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Old 04-21-2015, 10:02 AM
35 posts, read 53,476 times
Reputation: 13


Hi All. In 2007 my husband and I moved from MA to Widefield with our (then) four children. We were staying with family until we found a house of our own. Our two school age kids attended M.L.King Elementary and did ok there. The neighborhood was older, but safe and friendly and there were plenty of children to play with. We didn't hesitate to let our school age kids ride their bikes a few streets away to visit a friend and vice versa.

A year later, we moved to a nice house in the airport area (very close to Holiday Inn) with little knowledge of the area, but it looked nice and we didn't have any input to deter us until AFTER people found out where the house was and the ink was dry. That being said, we had regrets within the first couple of weeks, but had signed a lease so we bit the bullet and tried to adjust our sails.

One of our kids went to Bricker Elem. and the other went to Panorama Middle. We were NOT impressed and Panorama was so bad, we pulled our daughter out and home schooled her the remainder of the year. The neighborhood was not very friendly or welcoming and we found out that there was drug activity just one street over which was on our kids' route to school.

On a few occasions, the police were called to a couple of the neighboring houses and one night, a prowler jumped a fence into our backyard and scared the wits of out of my daughter! Needless to say, we had big misgivings about letting them play outside alone and I frequently walked them to/from school. Thankfully, our landlord was very understanding and admitted that she bought the house as a flip, knowing nothing of the area and allowed us to end our lease early. Our intention was to return to Widefield area, but a family crisis on the East Coast sent us back here. We've now been back in MA for over 6yrs in a very small fairly tight knit town that has good schools and a family oriented community.

All that being said, we still have family in COS who would love it if we'd move back and there is a part of us that wants to. The two school age children we had back then are now grown and our babies we had back then are now elementary age; one will start middle school in the fall. IF we were to move anywhere, this summer would be the time to do it. We need a bigger home and can't afford one where we are, we miss the slower pace of life and outdoor living opportunities of CO. We came to this place only expecting to stay 2mos before moving back to COS, but husband's job hasn't made that possible.

Here are my concerns: We want good schools for our kids. In all the school ratings sites that I've read, D3 schools are not good. For the most part, they are a 2-3 out of 10 compared to where we live now which is 7 out of 10. Special education is a concern for us because we have a child with autism. Though his needs are not great compared to some, he does need strong support in place at school. Home schooling him is an option, but for socialization, we have him in school because when I did home school him, he became withdrawn and would not participate in home school social groups at all.

We do want a safe, family oriented neighborhood for our family to grow in. Our town is filled with families, but in our neighborhood of about 40 homes, we have the only children. It's very important to us that our kids have other children to play with; we feel that having that element in our own childhoods was a vital part of our upbringing. Safetey is a big concern. When we lived there, we knew that our neighborhood in Widefield was safe and we don't know how much has changed.

Are there areas to avoid now in District 3? What are your thoughts on schools? Any idea why they rate to so low?

Overall, we are open to other areas if we return to COS, but we are a blue collar family and I'm only able to work part time so our budget isn't suited to areas like Briargate, Monument, Centennial etc. Much can change in this many years so we'd like to really have more to go on before we decide if moving back is the right choice for our family.

I appreciate your input :-)

Last edited by Mike from back east; 04-21-2015 at 11:35 AM..
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Old 04-21-2015, 07:29 PM
5,023 posts, read 6,723,958 times
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D3 is honestly just fine. Why they rate low is because they have average test scores and is indeed a diverse, bluish-collar district. D3 neighborhoods are also all fine. I'd say I live in probably what most consider the low end neighborhood of D3 and there is very little to worry about here - here being down near the Big R on Fontaine. There are some pretty high end new construction neighborhoods in D3 too. I went to D3 schools, my nieces and nephew are in them now and I have a brother that works in them and we have no complaints aside from one or two inexperienced teachers over the years that we didn't love. D8 is also fine. D2 is the one district that I'd personally try to avoid for housing and schooling. D11 is also fine if you stay out of the region that feeds into Mitchell High School. Every where else in the city is decent or better.
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