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Old 04-13-2012, 11:53 PM
 
Location: Macao
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Thinking this mostly in terms of kids going to school.

I'd imagine, that, in general, Ellicott City (seemingly affluent) would be better than anything else around it, regardless of the county.

How about Arbutus/Catonsville (Baltimore County) vs Elkridge (Howard County). These towns seem relatively similar.

However, is there really that huge of a difference if a kid goes to school in Relay or Oella or somewhere right on the Baltimore County side of the HC/BC border? Would a town like Elkridge (one of the least affluent of HC) still be that much better for kids attending school?
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Old 04-14-2012, 07:34 PM
 
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We attended a church based pre-school that also had a grade school K-5. A lot of the families in the pre-school continuing on at the elementary school were from Catonsville, Anne Arundel Co and Baltimore Co (parents worked in Columbia). Very few of the families districted for HoCo stayed at the privage school for K-5. We even had our end of year parties at the Tire Park in the Hilton Area of Patapsco St Park (Hilton Ave). Also, OLPH and Trinity (Catholic private schools) have a 'sizeable' portion from Baltimore county. (I don't have statistics only 'gossip' from the neighbors who attend these schools.)

I would say there probably isn't "too" much difference between the above avg Balt Co and avg HoCo school, at least you're not in Baltimore City schools. But you will definately pay more for housing in HoCo. However, if you have special needs children, then I would work 3 jobs to be in HoCo for their services and programs.
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Old 04-15-2012, 11:44 AM
 
Location: Columbia, MD
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Yes, there is one huge huge difference.

In Baltimore County (this may be a Maryland thing, but to my knowledge it's Baltimore County only) if a school does not make adequate progress on the MD standardized tests, then any parent in that school has the legal right to request their child be educated at any school in the entire county.

People focus on the costs of teachers in Baltimore County, but nobody talks about the fleets of buses that transport kids, literally from places like Rosedale or Randallstown across the county to Hereford Zone schools or whatever every day.

So, there is a general trend in Baltimore County where the bad schools are getting worse, then receive a failing grade, and there is a diaspora of students in clumps to all the good schools in the county.

Instead of the desired result of affording students the opportunity to be better served at a better school, they bring the schools they're bused to down.

I'll save the soapbox, but the net result is all schools are brought down, and this phenomenon is more Baltimore County than anywhere else in the state. Teachers at the good or great schools aren't equipped to deal with a student population who have the sorts of issues (food/hunger, family issues, personal issues, gangs, special needs which have been ignored). That's why so many in BC send their kids to private school, a trend which should accelerate over the coming decade.

It doesn't happen in Howard County, to my knowledge.
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Old 04-18-2012, 12:23 AM
 
Location: Macao
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trickymost View Post
Yes, there is one huge huge difference.

In Baltimore County (this may be a Maryland thing, but to my knowledge it's Baltimore County only) if a school does not make adequate progress on the MD standardized tests, then any parent in that school has the legal right to request their child be educated at any school in the entire county.

People focus on the costs of teachers in Baltimore County, but nobody talks about the fleets of buses that transport kids, literally from places like Rosedale or Randallstown across the county to Hereford Zone schools or whatever every day.

So, there is a general trend in Baltimore County where the bad schools are getting worse, then receive a failing grade, and there is a diaspora of students in clumps to all the good schools in the county.

Instead of the desired result of affording students the opportunity to be better served at a better school, they bring the schools they're bused to down.

I'll save the soapbox, but the net result is all schools are brought down, and this phenomenon is more Baltimore County than anywhere else in the state. Teachers at the good or great schools aren't equipped to deal with a student population who have the sorts of issues (food/hunger, family issues, personal issues, gangs, special needs which have been ignored). That's why so many in BC send their kids to private school, a trend which should accelerate over the coming decade.

It doesn't happen in Howard County, to my knowledge.
This is interesting about Baltimore County and schools.

Anyone else to confirm on that? Or have opinions on that?
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Old 04-18-2012, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
12,405 posts, read 23,404,909 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trickymost View Post
In Baltimore County (this may be a Maryland thing, but to my knowledge it's Baltimore County only) if a school does not make adequate progress on the MD standardized tests, then any parent in that school has the legal right to request their child be educated at any school in the entire county.
That is the restatement of the No Child Left Behind federal law, so it's not just a Baltimore thing. But the law is not just "any school", but one with space available. And, I don't believe the County is require to transport the students. In other places it is left to the parent to get the child to their desired school. I would need to see proof that the county is actually busing that many studenets.
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Old 04-18-2012, 09:19 AM
 
Location: Macao
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Originally Posted by goldenage1 View Post
That is the restatement of the No Child Left Behind federal law, so it's not just a Baltimore thing. But the law is not just "any school", but one with space available. And, I don't believe the County is require to transport the students. In other places it is left to the parent to get the child to their desired school. I would need to see proof that the county is actually busing that many studenets.
With all the talk I hear of overcrowded schools, it's difficult to imagine any school having open spaces available for more students.
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Old 04-18-2012, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Columbia, MD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goldenage1 View Post
That is the restatement of the No Child Left Behind federal law, so it's not just a Baltimore thing. But the law is not just "any school", but one with space available. And, I don't believe the County is require to transport the students. In other places it is left to the parent to get the child to their desired school. I would need to see proof that the county is actually busing that many studenets.
The county is required to transport the students. Call up the principals at Carroll Manor, Jacksonville or Sparks Elementary and ask them yourself.

For Jacksonville, there are presently 2 full buses, 65-ish kids brought in from all over the county.

For Sparks, last I heard it was more than 2 buses, but about as many students.

Look at the FARMS data for elementary schools on the BCPS website if you don't believe me. There are schools which have about 0% FARMS year in and out, and then bam, one year it starts to escalate and never returns down to the previous levels. That's the tell.

Space is created by this process. Once 2 buses of students from poor parts of town show up, right or wrong, parents pull their kids for private school, opening space for more children to be bused in.

If it reaches a tipping point, the school will be brought down in terms of test scores and academic development of the students. So far that's only happened in places where there is ample section 8 housing, but eventually, if more comprehensive education reform isn't enacted, the overall quality of all public schools will go down significantly. JMO.
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Old 04-18-2012, 03:18 PM
 
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I've never hear of this happening in Howard County schools and I know that some schools - particularly out west are underutilized (70-80% capacity).

July 20, 2010 52 Howard County Elementary and Middle Schools Make AYP
As a result of their MSA performance, 52 of 58 Howard County public elementary and middle schools have met Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) as required by the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

I didn't dig to find out which 6 schools didn't meet.
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Old 04-18-2012, 03:22 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
12,405 posts, read 23,404,909 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trickymost View Post
Look at the FARMS data for elementary schools on the BCPS website if you don't believe me. There are schools which have about 0% FARMS year in and out, and then bam, one year it starts to escalate and never returns down to the previous levels. That's the tell.
OK, I am learning. FARMS = "Free and Reduced Meals Students".
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Old 04-18-2012, 05:33 PM
 
Location: Ellicott City MD
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It's not a question of affluence, it's a question of school management. I've met several parents of elementary school students from Catonsville, and while they are happy with their schools they tell me that the class sizes have gotten VERY large and that the population in the school continues to grow. For that reason alone, I'm glad I'm on the HoCo side. They don't handle growth perfectly, but my elementary school kids still haven't had a class size over 25 and that's better for them.

Of course, since both have new school superintendents coming in, things could change.
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