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Old 05-10-2014, 07:20 PM
 
177 posts, read 257,841 times
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I am new to VA, and would like to know how risky for my address downgraded to a worse school?

If I spend a lot of money to buy a house in good school district, how risky that my address will fall under different school?

Thanks.

FCPS Boundary Locator

This web site identifies which Fairfax County Public Schools and Advanced Academic elementary and middle school Centers serve a particular address. Please note that attendance areas/boundaries are periodically changed by the School Board. FCPS provides no guarantee that any residential address will continually be served by the same elementary, middle and/or high school(s) or Advanced Academic Centers. Attendance at an advanced academic center school is subject to student eligibility requirements.
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Old 05-10-2014, 07:41 PM
 
Location: Tysons Corner
2,772 posts, read 3,990,458 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmssm View Post
I am new to VA, and would like to know how risky for my address downgraded to a worse school?

If I spend a lot of money to buy a house in good school district, how risky that my address will fall under different school?

Thanks.

FCPS Boundary Locator

This web site identifies which Fairfax County Public Schools and Advanced Academic elementary and middle school Centers serve a particular address. Please note that attendance areas/boundaries are periodically changed by the School Board. FCPS provides no guarantee that any residential address will continually be served by the same elementary, middle and/or high school(s) or Advanced Academic Centers. Attendance at an advanced academic center school is subject to student eligibility requirements.

Are schools that share a boundary currently really that different in Fairfax? Honest question, I dont have children so I don't know, but the county as a whole seems fairly gradient, its not like one school district is drastically different from another next to it is it?

I went to Braddock, if I had gone to either W Springfield or Robinson, I doubt it would have really affected me much. Same with elementary, went to Old Keene Mill, if I had gone to Orange Hunt or whatever the other one was, I doubt the school would have been fundamentally worse.

I might be naive about this kind of thing though.
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Old 05-11-2014, 06:40 AM
 
Location: Chester County, PA
1,077 posts, read 1,618,909 times
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I thought about this same issue last year when we bought our house. There are some others on here who can speak to this better than I can, but I think redistricting is something that routinely happens and will likely happen in the future. One reason for this is that as time passes, some schools become more crowded and others less crowded. As those demographics shift, the school board has to do something about it. You might find the capacity utilization maps on FCPS's website useful - see the links on the bottom of this page: FCPS - Department of Facilities & Transportation Services - Facilities Planning Services - Maps

One could surmise that those schools that are significantly undercapacity on those maps are the schools most likely to have neighborhoods redistricted into them while schools that are overcapacity are the most likely to have neighborhoods redistricted out of them. But, that is probably somewhat oversimplifying it because a lot of the undercapacity schools tend to be clustered in the same areas. And, another point to keep in mind is that schools themselves can change over time - just because a school is considered desirable or undesirable today doesn't mean that will be the case in the future.

I suppose it really depends on your time horizon and whether your primary concern is children you currently have or plan to have or whether your primary concern is home resale value. If you currently have kids, it seems unlikely to me that any boundary change is going to happen without some advance notice. If you are thinking about kids you may have in the future and/or resale value in 10+ years, well, it's really probably outside your control. You can try to pick a neighborhood where you think the schools are unlikely to change, but you never know what the future will hold.
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Old 05-11-2014, 10:12 AM
 
1,339 posts, read 3,242,403 times
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You can't reallu guarantee against redistricting, but you can try to buy a house sufficiently far inside the current school boundaries for beating the odds.
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Old 05-11-2014, 10:45 AM
 
406 posts, read 566,469 times
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Absolutely there will be further redistricting. The county just published a study on projected enrollment and capacity at every school (factoring in planned construction projects). While we hear so much about overcrowding, it doesn't exist on a county-wide basis.

Our area was just redistricted before we bought last year so hopefully we will be stable for a while.

To 'tysonsengineer' - the perception at least is absolutely yes. Look at the last two rounds of movement where the rich people threw temper tantrums and defeated potential moves of the Fairfax Station "island" (to Robinson if I recall?) and the new Pulte development at Vienna metro (from Oakton to Falls Church HS)
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Old 05-11-2014, 11:45 AM
 
5,117 posts, read 9,355,353 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acgood View Post
Absolutely there will be further redistricting. The county just published a study on projected enrollment and capacity at every school (factoring in planned construction projects). While we hear so much about overcrowding, it doesn't exist on a county-wide basis.

Our area was just redistricted before we bought last year so hopefully we will be stable for a while.

To 'tysonsengineer' - the perception at least is absolutely yes. Look at the last two rounds of movement where the rich people threw temper tantrums and defeated potential moves of the Fairfax Station "island" (to Robinson if I recall?) and the new Pulte development at Vienna metro (from Oakton to Falls Church HS)
Actually, the Fairfax Station attendance island that sits in the middle of the Robinson SS district, but goes to Frost/Woodson, is being eliminated. Those kids will go to Robinson this fall, unless they are rising 8th graders at Frost or rising 11th or 12th graders at Woodson. The "temper tantrums" did not work.

The Metro West development is more or less within walking distance of Oakton HS and many people bought there understanding their kids would go to Oakton. As part of the same boundary study that moved the Fairfax Station island to Robinson, FCPS floated the idea of moving the Metro West development to Falls Church HS, since kids from Fairfax HS were being moved to Oakton and there was concern with future overcrowding at Oakton. In this instance, FCPS dropped the idea after parents objected. I don't think people buying at Metro West are necessarily "rich," but FCPS did seem to recognize that depriving kids of the ability to walk to school or redistricting right after people had bought into a brand new development probably wasn't a great idea.

Adjacent high schools where boundary changes would probably generate the most opposition, if proposed or adopted, would be (1) Woodson or Lake Braddock to Annandale, (2) West Springfield or South County to Lee, and/or (3) McLean, Marshall, Madison, Oakton or Woodson to Falls Church. In each case, the assigning schools would have considerably higher test scores and fewer low-income students than the receiving schools, and "temper tantrums" predictably could be expected to follow. But it's a county-wide system, and ultimately it's up to the School Board, not individual parents, to decide how enrollments at the various should be balanced.

In terms of what's actually on the horizon, the answer is probably a lot, given the enrollment growth in many different parts of the county, ranging from Bailey's Crossroads to the areas near Tysons to western Fairfax. The planning document that you mentioned previews some of the potential changes. The biggest change will occur if/when the county builds the planned new high school in the western part of the county.

Last edited by JD984; 05-11-2014 at 11:55 AM..
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Old 05-11-2014, 11:57 AM
 
406 posts, read 566,469 times
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Thanks for the correction JEB on the "island"

You note the other rationale used to justify Metro West staying with Oakton (walking distance) - but while this was the politically savvy argument made by the community, there was a deep undercurrent of "WTF, I paid HOW much for this townhouse and now you are moving me to THAT school?" A prime example of why builder's are (or should be) pretty careful not to make broad promises on school districting to potential buyers.

And on the flipside, we saw Penderbrook fall all over themselves to get moved from Fairfax to Oakton HS this last go-around
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Old 05-11-2014, 12:11 PM
 
5,117 posts, read 9,355,353 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acgood View Post
Thanks for the correction JEB on the "island"

You note the other rationale used to justify Metro West staying with Oakton (walking distance) - but while this was the politically savvy argument made by the community, there was a deep undercurrent of "WTF, I paid HOW much for this townhouse and now you are moving me to THAT school?" A prime example of why builder's are (or should be) pretty careful not to make broad promises on school districting to potential buyers.

And on the flipside, we saw Penderbrook fall all over themselves to get moved from Fairfax to Oakton HS this last go-around
You're right about Metro West. It seemed to me pretty stupid of some Metro West parents to make those types of statements when they had good argumenrs on the merits to stay at Oakton. They came fairly close to backing the School Board into a corner where they would have had to redistrict the area to Falls Church to avoid appearing as if they'd been swayed by crude appeals.
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Old 05-11-2014, 01:33 PM
 
4,711 posts, read 11,781,644 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JEB77 View Post
Actually, the Fairfax Station attendance island that sits in the middle of the Robinson SS district, but goes to Frost/Woodson, is being eliminated. Those kids will go to Robinson this fall, unless they are rising 8th graders at Frost or rising 11th or 12th graders at Woodson. The "temper tantrums" did not work...

Unfortunately for the Woodson Islanders, the rest of the Board can't stand Schultz and McLaughlin. Historically, the Board has acquiesced to members on issues that affect only that member's district, but not with those two. I don't think they could get a motion through to declare a sunny day to be a nice thing.

OP: The only guarantee on school redistrictings involves the City of Fairfax....no city kid will ever be moved out of City schools (which are operated by FCPS). They also seem to leave the Langley pyramid alone....I wonder why? LOL

As somebody mentioned....buying a house across the street from the school you want the snowflakes to attend greatly reduces the risk of them being moved....
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Old 05-11-2014, 07:37 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, NC, formerly NoVA and Phila
9,397 posts, read 14,255,021 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by car54 View Post

OP: The only guarantee on school redistrictings involves the City of Fairfax....no city kid will ever be moved out of City schools (which are operated by FCPS). They also seem to leave the Langley pyramid alone....I wonder why? LOL
And while not a guarantee like City of Fairfax is, there is an "understanding" that Town of Vienna folks will only go to Madison High School. But this is unofficial and could change in the future - you never know. Although my guess would be if they did get "redistricted" it would be to Oakton or Marshall, pretty comparable schools.

The best bet you have in general is moving as close to a school as you can and/or hopefully near another school that would be acceptable to you.
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