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Old 09-12-2017, 06:40 AM
 
1 posts, read 681 times
Reputation: 10

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Hello

My family and I are quite likely moving to America next summer. We are equal parts nervous and excited with the prospect!
The question is where to live; it’s mind-boggling how many options are available. I would really appreciate suggestions and advice. So here goes..!

My husband will be covering a fairly large area from Albany to Mahwah to Reading approximately, focused mostly on Hudson Valley. We’ve heard that we are better off living in PA but unsure where to base ourselves and not add unnecessarily to his commute.

Our kids will be 7yrs and 9yrs by then. What age do children go to middle school? It would be great if they could have at least one year together starting into a new school.

We live in a town of 30k population right now and would prefer not to go smaller than that. We live in the town centre and enjoy the hustle and bustle. However it seems difficult to live in a town centre and have our kids in a good school. The schools in suburbs and the countryside rank better overall from what I’ve read. Still I’m hoping someone can recommend a few town schools.

So priorities are:
Kids’ school, hubby’s commute and living somewhere with a bit of craic and life about it. There you go not asking for much

Any other hints and tips are welcome too, thanks.
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Old 09-12-2017, 07:12 AM
 
12,936 posts, read 30,008,917 times
Reputation: 7591
Welcome to the forum! You've hit the nail on the head with the problem of living in a city and having good public schools. That's going to be a tough choice. If you are set on staying in the city, and can afford it, check out the private schools. We've never lived in a city but love our small town. In my mind the advantages of that is that we have a good size yard for a garden and our dog, great neighbors that we can socialize with if we choose to and the nice small town feel. When we had school age kids, it was very easy, as new people to make friends and get involved. I don't know if you get that in a city. We often go to any of the local small cities for entertainment and good food. I feel it's the best of both worlds. Our schools are great and teachers get to know the kids. In small schools too, the kids can belong to many different groups. I know several boys in High School that played football in the fall and then performed in the HS musical in the Spring. That's not as common in the large schools.

Middle School is usually 6th to 8th grade, but sometimes just two grades. In my school district (Southern Lehigh) it's just 7th and 8th grades. Kids in sixth grade are usually about 11 or 12 years old. The cut off for this area is a child must be six years old by (or around) September 1st for first grade.
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Old 09-22-2017, 08:23 PM
 
6 posts, read 5,618 times
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Grew up in Reading and now live just outside of Allentown (Salisbury Township). Reading to Albany is 4+ hours (much worse with traffic) so even living halfway isn't commutable on a daily basis. Living in Lehigh Valley is ~1 hour to Reading and 3+ hours to Albany (with lots of traffic along the way). Rt 78 gets you into NJ and towards NY. PA is much cheaper (housing, car insurance, probably taxes) than NJ. Lots of small towns around. Emmaus is a small town with a larger (probably good) school district (East Penn) that includes the suburbs.
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