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Old 09-13-2007, 12:48 AM
47 posts, read 156,805 times
Reputation: 21


My husband and I are seriously considering a position in Dallas at UT Southwestern. We just returned from a very fast trip. I spent a day and a half with a realtor. Whew!!!! This would be a very exciting opportunity for my husband, however when we ruled out suburb areas (Southlake, Plano, etc.) due to my husband's extreeme dislike of commuting, our options seem to be extreemly limited. They are flying us out for a third visit and we want to narrow the search.

What are the options for excellent Public schools right outside of Dallas?

When the realtor drove me thru the Park Cities area I fell in love with the community like feeling (parks, local pool and schools within walking distance). The downside is the outrageous real estate. We are just trying to way the pros & cons. Financially we could afford (LOW END) to live in the Park Cities.

Here are my concerns..........

*We have a 2 1/2 year old and a 5 year old daughter.

1. I'm American but my husband is origionally from Sri Lanka & London.
How diverse is the area?????? (Husband is M.D. Ph.D and I'm a former teacher w/ master's degree, down to earth people with Education being our biggest concern with relocation)

2. Where can one find quality Public Schools within Dallas Proper????

Thank you for the future advice... very helpful and much appreciated!!!
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Old 09-13-2007, 12:59 AM
Location: Eagan, Minnesota
751 posts, read 1,071,465 times
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I think Richardson would be a good choice for you. It is only 15 miles from downtown and I hear their schools are good. It is an older suburb though, older homes and more established. If you dont care about showing off and keeping up with the Jones, it would probably be a good place for you. It borders Dallas, and it is close to a few DART stations.
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Old 09-13-2007, 05:00 AM
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If you want to stay in Dallas Proper, your best bets are going to be Highland Park and Park Cities. You might also try the Lake Highlands area. You'll want to stay away from the South Dallas area.

...but yea, your options are limited. I wouldn't totally dismiss the idea of living in the 'burbs totally though, often living in dallas proper is just as long a commute as living in richardson/plano (speed limits, traffic lights, etc.). It would probably take about 30-45 minutes to get to UT-Southwestern from Plano, and about 20-30 minutes from Richardson.

Don't focus on the DART railway stations. Time-length wise, driving and taking the train are the same (i've found the train a bit slow sometimes, actually). It just reduces the amount of stress involved (i.e, you can totally tune out on your iPod on your way to work). Dallas is still primarily a driving city though. Use our big free ways to your advantage!
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Old 09-13-2007, 06:00 AM
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I would do University Park or Far North Dallas in the Brentfield Elementary attendance zone. It's a Richardson ISD school. Very very good. Many folks who have to bail from the Park Cities because of cost (although they might have grown up there) turn to the Brentfield Elementary area. It's roughly bounded by Preston, Coit, Hillcrest and the Collin County Line to the north. Roughly. Not quite.
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Old 09-13-2007, 08:13 AM
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HPISD is not diverse all at all. Look at Lakewood. It's got some of the same atmosphere of the Park Cities (small town in the city, very involved parents and organizations, school spirit, long traditions, historic and new homes of all ranges, large trees, great parks - including White Rock Lake, not cookie-cutter, independent shops and restaurants) without the pretensions and the prices (average $500K - with multi-million dollar estates mixed in). The best schools are Stonewall Jackson, which serves the M-Streets and vicinity and Lakewood Elementary, which serves most everything east of Abrams to the lake. They feed into probably the most famous school in Dallas, Woodrow Wilson High -- see: Woodrow Wilson High School (Dallas) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia and note section on feeder patterns.

We have a lot of people in the medical profession due to our proximity to Baylor Medical Center. We also have many professors from SMU and people working in the Arts.

Other alternatives include North Dallas -- look for the good schools in the Hillcrest and White High School feeder systems. North Dallas can be more expensive if you are looking in the Preston Hollow area.
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Old 09-13-2007, 08:31 AM
Location: Addison, TX
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The Texas Education Agency has rated these DISD schools as "exemplary" for 2006-2007. This means all students and each student group meeting minimum size meets the 90% standard for each subject on the TAKS test and that the school had a dropout rate of 0.2% or less and a completion rate of at least 95%:
Callier Center for Pre-School
Bonham Elementary
Frazier Elementary
Hexter Elementary
Lipscomb Elementary
Peabody Elementary
Wheatley Elementary
William B. Travis Elementary
Dealey Middle
William B. Travis Middle
Early College High
School for the Talented & Gifted
School of Science & Engineering
Irma Rangel YWL School
School of Health Professions

Check out Welcome to the Texas Education Agency for more information.
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Old 09-13-2007, 08:50 AM
16,086 posts, read 39,407,108 times
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Bonham and Lipscomb are in East Dallas - Bonham serves Knox-Henderson/Vickery Place (east of central) and Lipscomb serves Swiss Avenue, Munger Place and Junius Heights in the Lakewood vicinity. The schools I mentioned previously, Stonewall and Lakewood, are both recognized but have mostly people of your economic level and the most social activities and involved parents. Also Mount Auburn in East Dallas has been ranked exemplary for the last few years but slipped to recognized this year. Robert E. Lee was recognized but is now acceptable. When you get into the middle and high school the rankings don't mean as much because of the many subgroups present.

This year Texas Monthly named four as the "Best in Texas": Lakewood, Lipscomb, Mount Auburn and Stonewall Jackson.
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Old 09-13-2007, 10:16 AM
Location: White Rock Valley - Dallas
197 posts, read 1,104,595 times
Reputation: 81
You should alos look in 75238 -- White Rock Valley area of Lake Highlands. Minutes to White Rock Lake and the park. White Rock Elementary is part of RISD and is very good. I go to the UTSW area quite a bit and it takes me 20-25 minutes at 8am, and no freeways.

Good luck!
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Old 09-13-2007, 10:46 AM
Location: West Bloomfield
418 posts, read 1,722,787 times
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Lake Highlands, hands down. It is in Dallas proper, but in Richardson ISD. You have to know the good schools from the bad, though. I'd look into areas in Moss Haven Elem., Merriman Park Elem., Wallace Elem. (just named a blue ribbon school), White Rock Elem., or Lake Highlands Elem.

Good luck! We lived in LH for 7 years, and as SOON as we can get back to Dallas (which I pray is in a couple of years) we'll be right back in LH. Love it!

You could also check out the Lake Highlands Early Childhood PTA. Lhaecpta.org It caters to families with children ages 0-6, and is a great way to get involved in the area and meet people.

If you are interested in the area and have questions, feel free to PM me. My daughter went to Wallace Elementary, and I was involved in the LHAECPTA for years.
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Old 09-17-2007, 10:40 PM
47 posts, read 156,805 times
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Thank you for all of the wonderful advice! The picture of Dallas is becoming a bit more clear. Coming from Arizona I guess we are spoiled with an average 15% appriciation rate over the past 4-5 years.

Our realtor commented on the average appriciation rate of Dallas (including suburb areas) to be around 2%. He then stated the Park Cities averages with a 20% yearly appriciation rate. Anyone have thoughts on this one? I'm always a bit leary when there is an alterior motive, however there may be some truth to this one????

We don't know how long we'd live in Dallas for so the idea of having a decent appreciation rate is nice. After all this is typically one's largest financial investment!
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