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Old 02-28-2008, 12:22 PM
Location: Scranton
2,937 posts, read 3,161,915 times
Reputation: 570


From all of the news stories about teachers being assaulted by students in Philly schools, I would recommend a bullet-proof vest and some riot gear if you plan on teaching in Philly public schools.
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:25 PM
3 posts, read 15,448 times
Reputation: 13
A great area to consider living is NW Philly. This would be the neighborhoods of Germantown (zip 19144), Mt. Airy (19119), and Chestnut Hill (19118).

We live in G'town which is by far the most affordable of the three...lots of great history here (like the 1st public protest against slavery). It's more 'gritty' than the other two, but we have lots of great neighbors, are part of a wonderful community garden, can walk to the bank, post-office, library, grocery stores, shopping, etc...

Mt. Airy is more diverse, eclectic, and established with a popular food co-op, local coffee houses, restaurants, and interesting shops. It has more of a vibrant community feeling and thrives on its diverse population. It's a bit more expensive but you can probably still find a good deal.

Chestnut Hill is by far the most expensive. It's known for it's shopping, which is on the historic Germantown Ave. and has lots of higher end retail stores. It's probably one of the most beautiful parts of the city in terms of the natural environment blending with the urban. The Wissahickon woods connects all three of these neighbor hoods and has miles of trails for hiking, cycling, and dog walking.

Here's a site with some images from different neighborhoods in Philly.

Okay. Schools. My husband is a teacher in Philly. I would not suggest the philadelphia school district, as it's a mess, with little support for teachers...unless you were able to get into one of their magnet schools which are good. I would also not suggest looking into parochial or private schools, unless you don't need to earn a liveable wage. There are some good Charter School options.

Wissahickon Charter School (http://www.wissahickoncharter.org/home.html - broken link) is an environmentally focused school. Our son goes there, and we're very impressed with the whole school environment and community.

Green Woods Charter, is another option. They are unique in that they are located at Schuylkill Environmental Center, a 600+ acre environmental center located in the Roxborough neighborhood of Philly.

Independence Charter School is another one to look into.

Folk Arts - Cutural Treasure Charter is one more to check out.

Hope this helps. Good luck!

EDITED TO ADD: I just realized you're a high school teacher. You may like to consider one of the Friends Schools as options. (Germantown Friends School, Friends Select, Friends Central, William Penn Charter, etc...) or one of the suburban school districts (Lower Merion, Haverford) or one of the suburban private schools (Episcopal Academy, The Shipley School). Also the Phila. School District has some good magnet high schools. (Central, School for Peace & Justice, Constitution High School, CAPA- Creative & Performing Arts - High School) Sorry...not time for links.

Last edited by zaynab; 03-01-2008 at 03:33 PM.. Reason: more info...
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Old 03-02-2008, 03:42 PM
36 posts, read 180,029 times
Reputation: 28
trust me.... you do not want to teach in Philly. Very difficult to get teaching positions in the suburbs because the pay is so high. Philly is a terrible place to live anyway. Good luck.
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Old 03-02-2008, 05:06 PM
12,767 posts, read 28,906,844 times
Reputation: 7341
The Principal at my son's high school told us at a Parents meeting that she will only get a couple of dozen qualified applicants for each postings at our school. Secondary ed, especially math and science teachers are harder to find. She said the elementary school will easily get 100 applicants for each opening. We have a great school, not rural (well, except for the cornfield next to the school) not urban, recently renovated so not overcrowded. Secondary ed is a different ball game then el ed.
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Old 03-05-2008, 11:41 AM
Location: West Mount Airy
160 posts, read 740,559 times
Reputation: 47
From what I understand, it's very difficult to get a suburban teaching job right out of school. You might want to try full-time subbing first in your district of choice, but know that the money will be terrible comparatively. It seems to be what you just have to do. If you want the city, check out Roxborough and Chestnut Hill sections of Philadelphia. Much more of a family feel,though Chestnut Hill is expensive. Some parts of NE Philly are good too, such as Fox Chase/Castor Gardens area. Some neighborhoods and homes are better than others,but in general, it's safer than north or west philly
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