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Washington, DC suburbs in Maryland Calvert County, Charles County, Montgomery County, and Prince George's County
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Old 05-07-2009, 06:54 PM
 
13 posts, read 51,110 times
Reputation: 18

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I love Prince George's County. Just like any other place, it has its good and bad parts. I am a product of the Prince George's County School System. Next Saturday, May 16, 2009, I will receive my Bachelor's Degree in Architecture and Environmental Design from Morgan State University. I have lived here basically all my life and have seen much progress. The past summer I interned with the Prince George's County Planning Department and plan to work with the organization full-time. I was afforded the opportunity to understand the planning, zoning, and development of the county. There is an old Prince George's County that existed 10 years ago, then there is a new Prince George's County. This encompasses an upgrade in the quality of living, from schools, to homes, to retail and restaurants. The home developments have residents who are "New Money, New Attitudes". They live/desire the quality of living seen in other neighboring counties, Fairfax, and Montgomery. They desire the golf-course communities, Oak Creek and Beechtree, and/or the conveniences of Metro Place (Branch Avenue Metro). The "New Money, New Attitude" people desire the conveniences of betters schools like Charles Herbert Flowers High School or even Dr. Henry A Wise High School, with the shared experiences of the rising Woodmore Towne Centre or even the National Harbor. Hyattsville is no exception. The Mall of Prince George's has been upgraded with a Target, Ross, Marshalls. A few blocks over is the University Town Center, with a 14-screen movie theatre and plenty of eateries like 3 Brothers, Five Guys, Carolina Kitchen, and Qdoba. Directly in front of/and beside The Mall of Prince George's has mixed-used development occuring from new apartments/and condos to new eateries. The school system has made much progress over the past several years and continues to do so in the future. This is the new "Prince George's County". My goal is to continue this upgrade in quality of living for Prince George's County by bringing new ideas/concepts to the county applied what I have learned in college.
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Old 05-08-2009, 11:17 AM
 
Location: Silver Spring,Maryland
884 posts, read 2,456,563 times
Reputation: 636
Greg
Is the big development in Greenbelt --Greenbelt station. Still in the works?
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Old 05-08-2009, 01:12 PM
 
Location: Burke, VA
269 posts, read 932,038 times
Reputation: 105
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpterp View Post
As I mentioned above, Bowie and Largo (which are relatively expensive places to live, even for the DC area) are nice. I think Greenbelt would be the perfect balance of location, low-moderate crime, access to transportation (right off I-95/495, plus Metro and MARC), and quality of life. Northern PG overall isn't too bad, just remember not to venture too close to the DC border (Hyattsville, Langley Park, even Riverdale). Further out Laurel, which is located in Howard, PG, Anne Arundel, and Montgomery Counties, is pretty nice as well.
In Spring 2006 my husband & I moved from Chicago to Brentwood, MD without knowing a whole lot about it, and we never had any bad experiences. Brentwood is right next to Hyattsville, and I still feel that PG Plaza is the BEST mall in the area (Macy's, Target, Marshalls, GAP, etc. etc. everything was there) and that area has really gotten built up nicely. We loved having IKEA being not too far, we loved the affordable rent ($950/mo for a 2 bedroom), and the commute was a DREAM because I could walk out my door to Rhode Island Ave. and catch 1 of 4 buses straight to the Red Line and be downtown at work (Metro Center) w/in 40 minutes give or take.

Since I needed to take some Acct'g classes in Largo (working towards my CPA), we decided to move to Northhampton Apartments, and we looved staying there for the year we had! Nice swimming pool, wonderful peaceful community, decent commute via bus and metro, and great shopping in general (Bowie Town Center, movie theater, restaurant and Lowes/Target/Giant complex w/in walking distance, etc.). Our goal was to stay at least 3yrs., but then with the $8,000 1st-time Homebuyer Tax Credit, and the very low interest rates and great prices for homes, we ended up looking to buy instead of rent.

Sadly, we found after much research that the schools simply weren't up to par, and though our son is only 10 mos old we knew it was important to buy into a good school district with a good reputation to avoid the expense of Private Schools (because we're planning for a large family of 3-4 kids and can't swing private tuition). We ended up buying a home in Fairfax County, but I'll still always be fond of Prince George's County if the schools turn-around we'd definitely consider moving back!
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Old 05-08-2009, 01:12 PM
 
512 posts, read 1,503,387 times
Reputation: 221
Greg you sound like me. I've lived pretty much my whole life in the county. While we do have our share of ridiculous folks it's actually has some good spots as well. I guess my only hold up is the schools. For those with kids in the system what do you think? I guess I wanted to get some feedback from folks. I heard that when Deasy(Fmr Superintendant) was leading things did improve. But how far did they improve. I guess my point is I don't want to yank my child out of decent school system, and hope and pray P.G. get's there act together along the way. Like I said before. I think after looking at Greatschools.net Charles County has a lot of 3-5 rated schools pretty much like P.G. So what is the difference at this point.
Quote:
Originally Posted by greg212 View Post
I love Prince George's County. Just like any other place, it has its good and bad parts. I am a product of the Prince George's County School System. Next Saturday, May 16, 2009, I will receive my Bachelor's Degree in Architecture and Environmental Design from Morgan State University. I have lived here basically all my life and have seen much progress. The past summer I interned with the Prince George's County Planning Department and plan to work with the organization full-time. I was afforded the opportunity to understand the planning, zoning, and development of the county. There is an old Prince George's County that existed 10 years ago, then there is a new Prince George's County. This encompasses an upgrade in the quality of living, from schools, to homes, to retail and restaurants. The home developments have residents who are "New Money, New Attitudes". They live/desire the quality of living seen in other neighboring counties, Fairfax, and Montgomery. They desire the golf-course communities, Oak Creek and Beechtree, and/or the conveniences of Metro Place (Branch Avenue Metro). The "New Money, New Attitude" people desire the conveniences of betters schools like Charles Herbert Flowers High School or even Dr. Henry A Wise High School, with the shared experiences of the rising Woodmore Towne Centre or even the National Harbor. Hyattsville is no exception. The Mall of Prince George's has been upgraded with a Target, Ross, Marshalls. A few blocks over is the University Town Center, with a 14-screen movie theatre and plenty of eateries like 3 Brothers, Five Guys, Carolina Kitchen, and Qdoba. Directly in front of/and beside The Mall of Prince George's has mixed-used development occuring from new apartments/and condos to new eateries. The school system has made much progress over the past several years and continues to do so in the future. This is the new "Prince George's County". My goal is to continue this upgrade in quality of living for Prince George's County by bringing new ideas/concepts to the county applied what I have learned in college.
Rate this post positively
 
Old 05-09-2009, 03:57 PM
 
13 posts, read 51,110 times
Reputation: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigbluelandrover View Post
Greg
Is the big development in Greenbelt --Greenbelt station. Still in the works?
The development has begun to start. They have built a bridge off of Greenbelt Road, but I think it has awhile to become fruition. While at the Planning Dept they didnt really speak much of it. I just heard more talk of the Woodmore Towne Centre, Brandywine Crossing, and the National Harbor, while there.
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Old 05-09-2009, 07:51 PM
 
Location: N/A
1,359 posts, read 3,431,320 times
Reputation: 574
Quote:
Originally Posted by greg212 View Post
The development has begun to start. They have built a bridge off of Greenbelt Road, but I think it has awhile to become fruition. While at the Planning Dept they didnt really speak much of it. I just heard more talk of the Woodmore Towne Centre, Brandywine Crossing, and the National Harbor, while there.
I think it's stalled I pass it on the Metro daily and there has been no activity for at least six months. It reminds me of the huge Watkins Mill TC project in Gaithersburg, which hasn't seen activity for at least a year. That one really looks weird since they dug out a lake, built a bridge over the rail tracks (it's adjacent to a MARC station), and even put up three townhome models.
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Old 05-11-2009, 07:33 AM
 
Location: Accokeek, Maryland
127 posts, read 341,881 times
Reputation: 157
Of all the places to live in the world, I'd have a hard time recommending PG county. That said, of all the places to live in the DC area, I think PG is the best, unless of course you want the oh so boring (and ohhhh so expensive) white-bread culture of Northern VA or Montgomery County.

The best kept secret in PG is as far south as you can go ... Accokeek, MD and the Moyoane Reserve across the river from Mt. Vernon ... the neighborhood is protected from development by Federal scenic easment in property price are still incredibly low.
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Old 06-08-2009, 12:07 PM
 
Location: Northwest Suburbs of Denver
434 posts, read 1,019,784 times
Reputation: 293
I'm joining this discussion rather late, but I've enjoyed reading through it. I live in University Park and just LOVE it. We could afford to move to Chevy Chase, but don't want to. I find that living here helps keep me "less Washington." There's such a tendency to get caught up with keeping up with the Joneses, having kids go to the "right" school and having the right purse/job/whatever in the Washington area - and I've lived here for 18 years of my adult life and still feel this way. But somehow, living in P.G. County keeps it real for me. I do admit that Univ. Park is a bit on an oasis: our own little bit of Leave it to Beaver in the middle of P.G. County.

With my oldest about to start kindergarten, I think about the school situation a lot. Here's the internal monologue I have with myself:
When talking about the “best” schools, here are some things to consider:
School rankings are based on test scores, and the test scores of any given child are directly related to the education level of the mother. In the entirety of the D.C. Metropolitan Area, there are pockets of extreme wealth (with highly educated mothers) and there are pockets of lower wealth (with typically less educated mothers). You can’t really look at school rankings here like you can in other, less urban, areas. There’s also some positives to being at a low ranking schools. Low ranking schools are often Title I schools and therefore get more funding. More funding means more teachers, paraprofessionals, and supplemental funding for after school programs.

Further, many school districts in the DC area typically cross several neighborhoods with varying levels of socio-economic status and that skews the rankings.

Bottom line? My kid will do just fine in P.G. County schools. They will learn what they need to learn. Maybe every few years they'll have to luck to be in a small class or with a really exceptional teacher and that year they will thrive. The rest of the time it's up to my husband and I to supplement their learning with experiential activities. I would echo what a previous poster said and validate that I do think it's tough for children with special needs, depending on the school and their situation, of course.

Loved cool rob's post. Ditto.
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Old 06-08-2009, 03:24 PM
 
512 posts, read 1,503,387 times
Reputation: 221
Well you know what you think just like me. I can tell you P.G. county is as real as they get around this area. Here is how I feel about schools. I think that you can get a decent education out of P.G. People forget we do have magnet programs and International Bacularette (IB curriculum) in the system. I think sometimes people in P.G. does not demand excellence from the school system nor do we demand it from our kids. It's a two way street. I don't understand why the people except mediocrity from it's schools. Look P.G. is not a broke county. Our neighboring counties have better schools and we pay a lot in taxes. I don't understand what's up with that. Anyway, enough of my ranting. I just think that when the level of expectation and pressure goes up our elected officials, should be albe to focus on the schools. Anyway I will say this I would put my kid in the P.G. school system. I think it really is up to us as parents to reinforce what the kids learn. The problem I find whether your in a good or bad school district is that people do not take the time to take an interest in the childs education. I know a couple of teachers and there main complaint is parental envovlement. They take all of the heat but the support is not there. So with that being said I agree with where your coming from.
Quote:
Originally Posted by scrapper105 View Post
I'm joining this discussion rather late, but I've enjoyed reading through it. I live in University Park and just LOVE it. We could afford to move to Chevy Chase, but don't want to. I find that living here helps keep me "less Washington." There's such a tendency to get caught up with keeping up with the Joneses, having kids go to the "right" school and having the right purse/job/whatever in the Washington area - and I've lived here for 18 years of my adult life and still feel this way. But somehow, living in P.G. County keeps it real for me. I do admit that Univ. Park is a bit on an oasis: our own little bit of Leave it to Beaver in the middle of P.G. County.

With my oldest about to start kindergarten, I think about the school situation a lot. Here's the internal monologue I have with myself:
When talking about the “best” schools, here are some things to consider:
School rankings are based on test scores, and the test scores of any given child are directly related to the education level of the mother. In the entirety of the D.C. Metropolitan Area, there are pockets of extreme wealth (with highly educated mothers) and there are pockets of lower wealth (with typically less educated mothers). You can’t really look at school rankings here like you can in other, less urban, areas. There’s also some positives to being at a low ranking schools. Low ranking schools are often Title I schools and therefore get more funding. More funding means more teachers, paraprofessionals, and supplemental funding for after school programs.

Further, many school districts in the DC area typically cross several neighborhoods with varying levels of socio-economic status and that skews the rankings.

Bottom line? My kid will do just fine in P.G. County schools. They will learn what they need to learn. Maybe every few years they'll have to luck to be in a small class or with a really exceptional teacher and that year they will thrive. The rest of the time it's up to my husband and I to supplement their learning with experiential activities. I would echo what a previous poster said and validate that I do think it's tough for children with special needs, depending on the school and their situation, of course.

Loved cool rob's post. Ditto.
Rate this post positively
 
Old 06-08-2009, 06:04 PM
 
Location: N/A
1,359 posts, read 3,431,320 times
Reputation: 574
It's all relative. In the Balt-Wash area the schools in PG (and Balt. and DC) might look inferior to the tops-in-nation schools in MoCo, Howard, and Arlington counties, but relative to the average school in the nation they are mostly excellent. Standouts such as Eleanor Roosevelt or Flowers are nationally ranked and match up to schools in the neighbouring counties. Money is also not (much of) an issue, as again while the county isn't as wealthy as top 20 Montgomery, Calvert, Charles, or Howard it is still pretty wealthy, and is the wealthiest minority-majority county in the country.
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