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Old 01-02-2012, 11:31 AM
 
109 posts, read 407,994 times
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(sorry folks! I see someone asked this but I guess my focus would be more on good public schools. Sorry to repeat a common question!)

I'm a widowed mom with two children (13 and 3) and I'm looking for a fresh start. We currently live in Portland, Oregon and I'm not happy with the public schools here and the climate has a lot to be desired as well.

I have read up on Boulder and it sounds like you can't really go wrong with the schools...but I'm open to other suggestions as well.

I am looking for all the usuals: Safe, good public schools, and family-friendly. I like the idea of being close to town versus out in the burbs. Job supply is really not an issue for me because I work for myself from my laptop. We do have a dog and likely always will so a dog-friendly area is important.

Also, important to note that I plan to rent and my rental budget max is around $1200 for large apartment/townhome/or smaller house.

Is Boulder a good choice here? Anyone have other suggestions?

Thank you!

Last edited by ThanksABunch; 01-02-2012 at 11:44 AM.. Reason: forgot
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Old 01-02-2012, 12:40 PM
 
20,308 posts, read 37,790,850 times
Reputation: 18082
Use padmapper.com to see if Boulder prices suit you, chances are they will not.

ALL of the Boulder Valley School District (BVSD, search on that acronym - in the Boulder forum) is excellent, you only need to live in the district, not Boulder proper, which has a reputation for overall priciness and in the college area, a lot of student carrying-on, etc.

Nearby towns of Louisville, Longmont, etc offer much more for the dollar.

There are tons of threads in the Boulder forum on all these cities.

If Boulder is you main interest, I'll move this to that forum if the topic heads that way.

What kind of work do you do and/or where is it located? That may determine a lot as far as generating good replies.

Don't overlook COLO SPGS either, it has a lot of fine schools, as does the entire metro Denver area....
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Old 01-02-2012, 12:54 PM
 
Location: Littleton, CO
3,108 posts, read 4,660,177 times
Reputation: 5389
Quote:
Originally Posted by ThanksABunch View Post
(sorry folks! I see someone asked this but I guess my focus would be more on good public schools. Sorry to repeat a common question!)

I'm a widowed mom with two children (13 and 3) and I'm looking for a fresh start. We currently live in Portland, Oregon and I'm not happy with the public schools here and the climate has a lot to be desired as well.

I have read up on Boulder and it sounds like you can't really go wrong with the schools...but I'm open to other suggestions as well.

I am looking for all the usuals: Safe, good public schools, and family-friendly. I like the idea of being close to town versus out in the burbs. Job supply is really not an issue for me because I work for myself from my laptop. We do have a dog and likely always will so a dog-friendly area is important.

Also, important to note that I plan to rent and my rental budget max is around $1200 for large apartment/townhome/or smaller house.

Is Boulder a good choice here? Anyone have other suggestions?

Thank you!
I don't think you can get a place for that price in Boulder.

I am not sure what you mean by being close to town. If by close to town, you mean close to Denver, then Boulder is 30 miles away from downtown Denver.

Boulder is a college town that has a small downtown-type area. There are other areas in metro Denver that have similar small downtown-type areas including Arvada, Golden, Littleton, Englewood, Aurora, Louisville, Morrison, Castle Rock and Parker.

Of those areas, only Englewood and Aurora are districts that I would consider to be not-so-good. Louisville Louisville is in Boulder Valley school dist., Arvada, Golden, and Morrison are in Jeffco school dist., Littleton is in Littleton school dist., Castle Rock and Parker are in Douglas County school dist.

You cannot escape the suburbs in the Denver metro area. The vast majority of the area is suburban.
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Old 01-02-2012, 01:57 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
1,627 posts, read 3,618,931 times
Reputation: 1777
Quote:
Originally Posted by ThanksABunch View Post
(sorry folks! I see someone asked this but I guess my focus would be more on good public schools. Sorry to repeat a common question!)

I'm a widowed mom with two children (13 and 3) and I'm looking for a fresh start. We currently live in Portland, Oregon and I'm not happy with the public schools here and the climate has a lot to be desired as well.

I have read up on Boulder and it sounds like you can't really go wrong with the schools...but I'm open to other suggestions as well.

I am looking for all the usuals: Safe, good public schools, and family-friendly. I like the idea of being close to town versus out in the burbs. Job supply is really not an issue for me because I work for myself from my laptop. We do have a dog and likely always will so a dog-friendly area is important.

Also, important to note that I plan to rent and my rental budget max is around $1200 for large apartment/townhome/or smaller house.

Is Boulder a good choice here? Anyone have other suggestions?

Thank you!
Not in or immediately near Boulder, I'm afraid...not without ending up in the 'burbs. Boulder is EXPENSIVE.

Dog friendly shouldn't be a problem in most places because Colorado in general is extremely dog friendly. If you're looking for a yard of any significance, however, you are back to looking at the 'burbs. That said, there are a lot of parks in cities along the Front Range (more than in a lot of places.)

I don't know about the school districts, and it's not a lot cheaper, but have you looked at Golden? Also, there may be places close to downtown Littleton. I'm a Denver man myself (love it here), but I don't know enough about school districts to advise on that. You could try Longmont, but it's a bit sleepy and suburban for the most part, though I understand it does have something of a main street if you can get close enough to it. It's also not *too* far from Boulder if you're eyeing that town for a reason.
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Old 01-02-2012, 04:12 PM
 
Location: On the sunny side of a mountain
2,970 posts, read 6,607,413 times
Reputation: 5679
Here's a link to Colorado School Grades, a site that shows the ratings and allows you to compare all schools in Colorado.

Colorado School Grades
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Old 01-03-2012, 10:00 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
20,792 posts, read 37,451,783 times
Reputation: 20814
I'd do Loveland (preferred) or Ft Collins. (being close to WY has advantages if you like non-crowded recreation destination)s

Colorado Springs if you want something bigger, yet closer to Mtns. Check out the areas near Olympic Training center, there are some really 'homey' neighborhoods.
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Old 01-04-2012, 08:13 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,095,377 times
Reputation: 9065
One can not ignore the fact that Colorado remains entrenched in a serious fiscal crisis that is negatively affecting school funding in this state, and will continue to do so for a lot of years to come. Higher education is taking the brunt of those hits right now, but the primary and secondary schools are not going to be spared. If well-funded schools with reasonable class sizes, decent facilities, and educational opportunities beyond the basics are your primary goal, then Colorado is not the state for you--the long-term funding just isn't there and is not going to be. One nearby state that seems to have its act much more together as far as education is concerned is Nebraska. A friend of mine relocated there a couple of years ago from Colorado, and he was amazed how much better the school system is there academically--and he lives in a rural town with a small school system/
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Old 01-04-2012, 11:43 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
20,792 posts, read 37,451,783 times
Reputation: 20814
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
One can not ignore the fact that Colorado remains entrenched in a serious fiscal crisis that is negatively affecting school funding in this state, and will continue to do so for a lot of years to come. Higher education is taking the brunt of those hits right now, but the primary and secondary schools are not going to be spared. If well-funded schools with reasonable class sizes, decent facilities, and educational opportunities beyond the basics are your primary goal, then Colorado is not the state for you--...
true, and for OP, fleeing Oregon (which has a perpetual funding problem for schools) and entering Colorado at this time would be 'same-ole-same-ole'; tho CO has far better options than Oregon and HAS had decent edu for many yrs.

OP also is considering WY, which has pretty decent edu funding and system. WY schools take a bigger hit than NE largely due to social issues of transient school population due to energy jobs and a larger transient workforce.

NE is a fine state with good quality of life, stability, and low unemployment. BUT... NE is very tax burdensome. As OP, I would exhaust options in WY before heading east to NE. (I have lived in all three + now a border resident of WA, and am in OR everyday. all my news originates from Portland, so it is often that we are told of OR school woes).

Another state for OP to consider is TX, as it has pretty well funded schools and has some continuing ed options for in-state grads. I know 3 OR teachers who relocated their families to TX in 2011. OP mentions the desire of diverse Vibrant / 'Portland like' culture; so Austin is the natural choice in TX.
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Old 01-07-2012, 10:56 AM
 
1,316 posts, read 938,530 times
Reputation: 3379
I would say Durango, because they're super obsessed with kids there (even though I don't like that town, I can see it's probably a good place to raise kids), but it's not the most welcoming of places.
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Old 01-07-2012, 09:40 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,095,377 times
Reputation: 9065
Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
NE is a fine state with good quality of life, stability, and low unemployment. BUT... NE is very tax burdensome. As OP, I would exhaust options in WY before heading east to NE. (I have lived in all three + now a border resident of WA, and am in OR everyday. all my news originates from Portland, so it is often that we are told of OR school woes).
Wyoming does combine a low resident tax burden with a pretty well-funded school system (all that mineral tax revenue really helps). But, Wyoming is very much an acquired taste as a place to live for most people. The climate can be especially unforgiving. I liked my time living there, but I'm used to living in some pretty rigorous climates and in relatively isolated areas.

Nebraska does have a relatively high tax burden for a Plains state, but those taxes seem to be pretty well-managed. From what I hear from Nebraskans (and I have friends and relatives who live there), most people think that they are getting a pretty good bang for their buck. There are some very nice and pretty socially well-adjusted communities in Nebraska, too.

Beautiful as it is scenically, I don't consider Durango, Colorado as very well-adjusted place socially at all. I wouldn't live there with kids. A friend's relative was a school administrator there for years. That school administrator didn't consider what Durango turned into in the last 20 years very socially healthy, either.
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