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Old 07-26-2013, 12:03 PM
 
64 posts, read 122,968 times
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Here is why it matters. It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. One of the most important things is who your kids have in their peer group. Kids that value education come from parents that value education. Parents that value education tend to move to the "good" districts.

If you want your kid to be in an environment where it's not "nerdy" to be a good student, where you are not a "loser" if you work hard in school, you want to be in one of the better school districts. The most important factors in your kids success are what you do at home and who their peer group is. In the better school districts you will be dramatically improving their peer group as relates to value of education.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:12 PM
 
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My best friend went to a top ranked high school, and ended up being the poor kid in a rich town that his parents scraped the barrel for. Having the lowest profile in town, he passed through the system virtually an outcast and ended up dropping out in April of his senior year to get his GED.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:20 PM
 
1,041 posts, read 2,798,029 times
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My last comment on the subject.

Schools count, don't get me wrong. If I had 2 mil for a house, id live in the Somerset Hills somewhere in a heartbeat. All I am saying is, schools are not the end all be all. If you can afford to live in Millburn, god bless you. You have done well. My point is more for the "regular, average, non millionaires". The people who have $500k budget and try to buy the crappiest shack in a Millburn type town and instead becoming what HubCity describes above. Schools are an important piece, but not the end all be all many on this board obsess with.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:21 PM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 19,960,320 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BorisBlack View Post
Here is why it matters. It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. One of the most important things is who your kids have in their peer group. Kids that value education come from parents that value education. Parents that value education tend to move to the "good" districts.

If you want your kid to be in an environment where it's not "nerdy" to be a good student, where you are not a "loser" if you work hard in school, you want to be in one of the better school districts. The most important factors in your kids success are what you do at home and who their peer group is. In the better school districts you will be dramatically improving their peer group as relates to value of education.
i think this is all true, to some extent, which speaks to the socio-economic portion of the environment. but those teachers at a good school have an impact as well. that's not to say that there aren't great teachers at "bad" schools (i'd like to clarify that when speaking of NJ, i think even our "bad" schools are pretty good compared to other states).

peer group is definitely important (to most students).
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:21 PM
 
550 posts, read 876,175 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HollaGeo View Post
A lot of kids who get into Harvard or whatever Ivy League school get accepted because one of their parents are an alumni or they gave a nice donation. It's not the school, it's also family connections.
We had a debate about this in graduate school once. My stance was that if it’s in the admissions formula and your child can benefit, then why not. But it’s ultimately up to the child to take advantage of the opportunity.

Admittedly, I probably should be more worried about toilet training our second child at this time.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:30 PM
 
64 posts, read 122,968 times
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I dont buy that the teachers are "better" in the better schools. They might be more engaged, but that is a reflection on who they are teaching and the level of parental involvement. If you switched the teachers from the "best" school and the "worst" school, the kids at the "best" school would still perform much better.

This isnt to dismiss the importance of teachers. They are vitally important. But there are great teachers at poor performing schools and terrible teachers at some high performing schools. The difference is parental involvement and student motivation. These are much higher in the good districts.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:35 PM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyStarksNJ View Post
My last comment on the subject.

Schools count, don't get me wrong. If I had 2 mil for a house, id live in the Somerset Hills somewhere in a heartbeat. All I am saying is, schools are not the end all be all. If you can afford to live in Millburn, god bless you. You have done well. My point is more for the "regular, average, non millionaires". The people who have $500k budget and try to buy the crappiest shack in a Millburn type town and instead becoming what HubCity describes above. Schools are an important piece, but not the end all be all many on this board obsess with.
I can get on board with this. I thought you were saying something else in your previous posts.

I think the main issue in NJ is people don't realize how good our entire school system is. so to stress over the NJ rankings...it's a waste of time.

but if you're saying...maybe i'll move from NJ to NC with my 5 yr old....then I think the discussion is warrented.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:45 PM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 19,960,320 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BorisBlack View Post
I dont buy that the teachers are "better" in the better schools. They might be more engaged, but that is a reflection on who they are teaching and the level of parental involvement. If you switched the teachers from the "best" school and the "worst" school, the kids at the "best" school would still perform much better.

This isnt to dismiss the importance of teachers. They are vitally important. But there are great teachers at poor performing schools and terrible teachers at some high performing schools. The difference is parental involvement and student motivation. These are much higher in the good districts.
you're on to something, and i don't disagree entirely. but if you took all the kids from newark and put them in with all the kids at millburn, with all the teachers from millburn, and all the programs, i think you'd see more of the newark kids succeed.

there are so many factors involved, so it's not a matter of just switching schools/teachers, but teachers have a huge impact.

i agree that there are great teachers at poor schools, but i'm not sure i'd agree that "terrible" teachers are at the great schools.

but i'm with you on parental involvement and student motivation. my point simply is, if you have good teachers, you have a shot at overcoming the lack of motivation or substandard parental involvement. if you have bad teachers, parental involvement is only gonna go so far. and if the student isn't motivated + a bad teacher...forget it.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:46 PM
 
Location: NJ
31,776 posts, read 36,128,454 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d_vader123 View Post
I have seen a bunch of these "Town A vs. Town B" threads over the years here and understandably, one criteria for choosing a town to buy a home in is whether or not it has a good school district.

My question isn't about what makes high school A better than high school B, but rather it is about whether any of it really matters.

If your child gets straight As in a school with a "bad" rep like Dwight Morrow High School in Englewood, NJ (sorry), will you still get into Harvard? If yes, then, to me, that makes Dwight Morrow High a very good school.

What's the point in sending your kids to Tenafly High School if they'll just be a small fish in a big pond with other straight A kids. It's possible they may end up being a very smart kid who happened to get straight Cs, and the kid from Hackensack with straight As, who may not be as smart, will end up in a better college.

I guess my real question is this. Does high school reputation really matter in the college admissions process? Is it worth moving to Ridgewood or Tenafly even if it means the competition is higher than say Hackensack or Paterson or even Fort Lee High or Ridgefield High?
i think it matters very much.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:49 PM
 
Location: NJ
31,776 posts, read 36,128,454 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bradykp View Post
you're on to something, and i don't disagree entirely. but if you took all the kids from newark and put them in with all the kids at millburn, with all the teachers from millburn, and all the programs, i think you'd see more of the newark kids succeed.
why would you expect more newark students succeed if they are put into the mix in millburn?

of course, the first thing id imagine would happen is that every parent in millburn that can get their kid out of that school will. then you would have successfully turned a good school into a bad school. i believe thats what happens a lot in new york city.
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