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Old 12-09-2008, 05:38 PM
 
Location: the Great Lakes states
798 posts, read 2,175,375 times
Reputation: 534

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Hi, I'm soon graduating with a teaching degree, and am beginning to look for the right school/ town to call home for a good long while.

I'm happiest when working in small towns, but I really believe in individuality and free expression... so at least in the Midwest its hard to find a small town that feels comfortable. I suppose that although I'm not a "hard line liberal" the more comfortable places would be liberal communities, if there are such things. I kind of hate labeling myself that way because I really don't enjoy politics.



I'm open to considering any area of the nation. It's a fairly good time in my life for me to consider a move. Here is my short list:



- A town with a rural / small school. I like the feeling of small town schools where kids have some pride in the school, where everyone goes out to the football game on Friday nights, and where the younger kids have a lot of ways to get involved too (music program, sports, FFA, etc.) I like the size of small town schools too. To me I think having about 400-500 students in a school is about the best size, there can still be a feeling of continuity and community.

- A town where life doesn't center on religious views. I absolutely respect the value of church/community in people's lives, but one of my values is the separation of church and state in the public schools so that every person really has the right to practice religion how they wish without feeling uncomfortable. I've been in too many schools where the Ten Commandments are posted in the entryway or the library.

- I also have a number of gay friends, and know all about their struggles, so I simply can not tolerate an atmosphere where gay kids (or staff members) face discrimination or are just "not talked about" and swept under the rug. My ideal school/community would have a GSA or at least have already broken the silence about gay issues and rights.



Another way of looking at this is: I live a much mellower life now in my 30's than I did as a teen or 20-something. But, I need to work side-by-side with peers who have lived a little, too. I've substitute taught in many small schools. I just hate feeling like I'm the only teacher who likes indie flicks, listened to Sonic Youth, and doesn't regret my past experiences.

I'm not in the wrong profession - I love what I do, and get very good reviews from administrators and peers, including conservative and established teachers and principals.

But I really hate feeling alone in my experiences when I go to the teachers lunchroom, or out in the town at the end of the day. I'm looking for an atmosphere with well rounded people as neighbors and colleagues.



Would I consider a bigger community? Grudgingly. The largest high school that I felt that "worked" was about 600 kids. I really want to avoid working in a big school if I don't have to.



Any thoughts let me know!

Thanks!

Last edited by summer22; 12-09-2008 at 06:24 PM..
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:08 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC (in my mind)
7,946 posts, read 15,043,716 times
Reputation: 4482
Try Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:14 PM
 
56,595 posts, read 80,890,793 times
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Try the small communities outside of Ithaca, NY. School districts like Trumansburg, Dryden, Newfield and Groton would seem to fit that bill. Also, look at Watkins Glen in Schuyler County nearby.

Another community that might fit what you are looking for is Tully, NY about 15 miles south of Syracuse.

Here's some information on those districts:Tully School District

Dryden Central School District

NCSD District Office (http://www.newfieldschools.org/DO.htm - broken link)

Trumansburg Central School District

Groton Central School Home Page

Watkins Glen School District

Here's another district that is the other Schuyler County school district:Odessa Montour Schools

Hope this helps.....
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:15 PM
 
Location: Nashville
840 posts, read 2,047,320 times
Reputation: 378
Ann arbor, mi
santa cruz, ca
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:25 PM
 
Location: the Great Lakes states
798 posts, read 2,175,375 times
Reputation: 534
Thanks. I'm surprised there ARE some small towns that might fit what I'm looking for. I appreciate it, and, I have had some good vacations/visits to the upstate NY area so that might really be a good lead.
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:27 PM
 
56,595 posts, read 80,890,793 times
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Another district to check out is Hamilton in Madison County, NY. It is home to Colgate University and the district has less than a 1000 students. Here's info. on that district:Hamilton CSD
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Portlandia "burbs"
10,234 posts, read 13,984,394 times
Reputation: 25884
Ashland, OR.

Santa Cruz, CA was a good suggestion, too.
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:41 PM
 
56,595 posts, read 80,890,793 times
Reputation: 12505
A few more in NY to think about:Morrisville - District Home (Has a state college in the community)

AACS Web Page (Has a private 4 year college in Alfred University)

Southern Cayuga CSD (Has a private 4 year college in Wells College that was all female until a few years ago in Aurora)
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Old 12-10-2008, 05:57 AM
 
520 posts, read 2,292,049 times
Reputation: 308
one thing to keep in mind, it's very difficult to obtain a teaching job in New York, especially if you do not know anybody there
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Old 12-10-2008, 12:32 PM
 
Location: Fishers, IN
6,495 posts, read 10,800,578 times
Reputation: 4060
There are plenty of small university communities in the Midwest that lean liberal. Two quickly come to mind: Bloomington, IN, and Lawrence, KS.
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