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Old 10-11-2008, 11:03 PM
 
Location: Out of DE (ha!)
29 posts, read 176,267 times
Reputation: 35

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I'm a native Delawarean who's planning to return home. I've been looking for schools for my child.

Here's the problem: I'm looking for selective schools, and the "good" private schools I've seen have all been in Wilmington.

By "good" schools, I mean schools that send their graduates off to selective, ivy league schools--like the ones I went to.

My problem is that I have no desire to live in Wilmington.

Camden seems to have more affordable housing that matches my taste and budget. Of course, it's too far from Wilmington for my children to go to school there.

Someone please tell me that students from public schools like CR and/or Dover end up going Ivy like the kids at Tatnall and Tower Hill.

Yes, I've become a bit of an elitist since leaving good ol' DE, but years of traveling in ivy league circles will do that to a person.

So, what advice can you give?
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Old 10-12-2008, 05:32 AM
 
Location: Wilmington Delaware
121 posts, read 469,922 times
Reputation: 84
I have lived here all my life and do not know of any schools in Kent or Sussex County that are the caliber of Tatnall and Tower Hill. The Dover school district is very good but is not in the category you are seeking. You can live in New Castle County and not be in Wilmington. You could live half way and commute to work or the schools. There are always options.
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Old 10-12-2008, 05:39 AM
 
Location: Greenville, Delaware
4,726 posts, read 10,294,023 times
Reputation: 2594
If you inculcate academic achievement motivation in your children and send them to a decent (not actively substandard) public school system, they should be able to get into competitive universities, especially with the increased emphasis on diversity that we see today in university admissions. I do wonder if there are any good Catholic schools at all in Kent County (assuming you definitely don't want to go the public system route)?

What's wrong with the Wilmington suburbs, BTW? You left DE because it was boring and blah, and now you want to stick your kids in less than the most advantaged part of the State? And might you not get just a little bored living down in Hicksville?
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Old 10-12-2008, 09:17 AM
 
Location: Out of DE (ha!)
29 posts, read 176,267 times
Reputation: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by doctorjef View Post
If you inculcate academic achievement motivation in your children and send them to a decent (not actively substandard) public school system, they should be able to get into competitive universities, especially with the increased emphasis on diversity that we see today in university admissions. I do wonder if there are any good Catholic schools at all in Kent County (assuming you definitely don't want to go the public system route)?
Hey, there Jef!
I definitely agree with your initial assessment: A motivated child will do well no matter where s/he goes. I also realize most public schools offer AP and selective classes that can give them a bit of an edge. I simply like the idea of having my children in schools that selective colleges actually visit! I've admitted to becoming a bit of an elitist. I'm that parent who sends my children to residential summer camps abroad and of course, they're in private schools now. They're well-traveled and take classes in ettiquette.

I'll also admit to first viewing the list of college acceptances before determining whether or not I would consider that private school for my children. I was woefully unimpressed with the college visit list of Dover and CR High Schools. I mean, they listed UD as a SELECTIVE school
Only in DE

I'm completely okay with moving my children to the "most disadvantaged" part of the state (is that really how you see Dover/Camden) because it's laid back and we travel abroad often--broadening their horizons. Furthermore, there are/will be frequent quick trips to major cities like NY and Philadelphia, so life in slow DE will offer a sense of much needed calm.
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Old 10-12-2008, 09:20 AM
 
Location: Out of DE (ha!)
29 posts, read 176,267 times
Reputation: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by ron del View Post
I have lived here all my life and do not know of any schools in Kent or Sussex County that are the caliber of Tatnall and Tower Hill. The Dover school district is very good but is not in the category you are seeking. You can live in New Castle County and not be in Wilmington. You could live half way and commute to work or the schools. There are always options.
Thanks for the response Ron.

I certainly considered the idea of moving to a suburb of Wilmington that would get me much closer to the promised land, but according to the real estate websites I've been searching, I'll get much more bang for my buck in Camden or Dover. Of course, the housing market will be different by the time I plan to move in a year or so, so I'll see what's going on then. I even considered Smyrna, thinking the housing there would be more affordable. Nope! Seems Camden real estate fits my style and budget.
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Old 10-12-2008, 03:22 PM
 
Location: rural North Carolina
272 posts, read 683,346 times
Reputation: 329
I'm not a fan of Ivy League schools; You get much better bang for the buck at quality public schools like the University of California system (UCSD '91). You have to ask yourself whether Ivy is worth the investment of $150-200k/kid. Either you have to pay that or you're going to saddle your kids with the debt - and very few starting salaries justify that kind of debt. That debt limits them; it will rule out rewarding but less lucrative professions in favor of better paying but less satisfying ones.

You will not find public schools like Tatnall and Tower Hill. They simply don't exist. There are good public schools although not in DE. I'm not a fan of the public schools here.
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Old 10-12-2008, 03:30 PM
 
Location: Out of DE (ha!)
29 posts, read 176,267 times
Reputation: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by jskirwin View Post
I'm not a fan of Ivy League schools; You get much better bang for the buck at quality public schools like the University of California system (UCSD '91). You have to ask yourself whether Ivy is worth the investment of $150-200k/kid. Either you have to pay that or you're going to saddle your kids with the debt - and very few starting salaries justify that kind of debt. That debt limits them; it will rule out rewarding but less lucrative professions in favor of better paying but less satisfying ones.

You will not find public schools like Tatnall and Tower Hill. They simply don't exist. There are good public schools although not in DE. I'm not a fan of the public schools here.
Great food for thought! But I--like many others before and after me--managed to make it through the Ivies without being saddled with debt and loans. The type of education and exposure you receive at those schools are well-worth the money, in my opinion. The people you meet and connections you make are invaluable. And, of course, an Ivy league school on your resume opens doors that others find closed to them.

Too bad there are no "good" public schools in DE. Guess my children will have to use the legacy edge to their advantage. (Ivy apps generally want to know if your parents attended their schools, giving applicants a bit of a leg up.)
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Old 10-12-2008, 03:49 PM
 
968 posts, read 2,265,527 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Karen71 View Post
Great food for thought! But I--like many others before and after me--managed to make it through the Ivies without being saddled with debt and loans. The type of education and exposure you receive at those schools are well-worth the money, in my opinion. The people you meet and connections you make are invaluable. And, of course, an Ivy league school on your resume opens doors that others find closed to them.

Too bad there are no "good" public schools in DE. Guess my children will have to use the legacy edge to their advantage. (Ivy apps generally want to know if your parents attended their schools, giving applicants a bit of a leg up.)
Or perhaps geographic diversity ?? The Ivies and other 'national caliber schools' ( Stanford, Chicago, Northwestern as examples) could fill their freshman classes with the Top graduates from so called 'great ' high schools ..but they don't .They do seek enrollees from regions and areas that aren't typically feeders.. Legacy edge will help , but , as I recall and experienced , CR sent students to Harvard, Swarthmore, U of Chicago, Middlebury, and Yale during my brief stay there .. it was a while ago , but it wasn't isolated ..Future classes sent students to Princeton and Dartmouth and to equivalent caliber schools every year . Don't write 'non-selective' public schools off, especially in smaller areas where the student body represents a wide spectrum of economic and life experiences.
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Old 10-12-2008, 05:20 PM
 
Location: Out of DE (ha!)
29 posts, read 176,267 times
Reputation: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoylekim View Post
Or perhaps geographic diversity ?? The Ivies and other 'national caliber schools' ( Stanford, Chicago, Northwestern as examples) could fill their freshman classes with the Top graduates from so called 'great ' high schools ..but they don't .They do seek enrollees from regions and areas that aren't typically feeders.. Legacy edge will help , but , as I recall and experienced , CR sent students to Harvard, Swarthmore, U of Chicago, Middlebury, and Yale during my brief stay there .. it was a while ago , but it wasn't isolated ..Future classes sent students to Princeton and Dartmouth and to equivalent caliber schools every year . Don't write 'non-selective' public schools off, especially in smaller areas where the student body represents a wide spectrum of economic and life experiences.
Thanks for the thoughtful response.

It really gave me the reassurance that I needed.

I wasn't aware that CR sent students to such schools. Well, that makes me feel so much better and breathe much easier. How great to be able to save on private school tuition and just make sure my children take advantage of the challenging courses at the local public school.

How long ago did you attend CR?
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Old 10-12-2008, 05:23 PM
 
Location: Out of DE (ha!)
29 posts, read 176,267 times
Reputation: 35
One more thing: Your response also proved that it's not the school but the CHILD (and parents) that determines the student's success.

After all, Tatnall and Tower Hill graduated many, many students who went off to local and less selective schools. My knee-jerk, snooty reaction was "What was the point of spending tens of thousands each year just to send them off to a school the local public schools could have sent them to?"

Of course, that feeling passed and I realized the child received a quality education, which is the important thing.
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