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Old 04-25-2016, 08:29 PM
 
Location: Liverpool, NY
6 posts, read 7,467 times
Reputation: 15

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My husband and I moved to the area in Oct 2014. Our son is about a year and a half old. We are now planning to buy a house and have started looking in several areas.
I'd love to hear more insight on school systems in the area. We have friends that live East of Syracuse and hubby works in East Syracuse, so I lean that way, but we are open in terms of location. We would like to keep his commute under 20-30 mins. Hoping to find a house in a district that has good programs/curriculum, with diversity being equally important to us.
Friends have recommended Bville, FM, and West Gen, and JD. I've heard Liverpool is great, but also that its not so great. Same for N Syracuse. It seems everyone I've spoken to has a personal bias, so looking for more input.
Anything you might be able to add is appreciated!
TIA
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Old 04-26-2016, 08:33 AM
 
93,978 posts, read 124,814,196 times
Reputation: 18307
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tstowell View Post
My husband and I moved to the area in Oct 2014. Our son is about a year and a half old. We are now planning to buy a house and have started looking in several areas.
I'd love to hear more insight on school systems in the area. We have friends that live East of Syracuse and hubby works in East Syracuse, so I lean that way, but we are open in terms of location. We would like to keep his commute under 20-30 mins. Hoping to find a house in a district that has good programs/curriculum, with diversity being equally important to us.
Friends have recommended Bville, FM, and West Gen, and JD. I've heard Liverpool is great, but also that its not so great. Same for N Syracuse. It seems everyone I've spoken to has a personal bias, so looking for more input.
Anything you might be able to add is appreciated!
TIA
Jamesville-DeWitt is probably the best in regards to what you are looking for. What type of programs are you looking for? J-D is arguably the most diverse suburban school district in the area and is one of the most highly acclaimed as well. It does have a pretty strong SU/Lemoyne College influence due to its close proximity to both, as well as the hospitals on University Hill. It is also known for being the center of the local Jewish community in the area. It also has a strong sports program.


Liverpool and North Syracuse are very big suburban school districts that generally have good results, but due to the size, it may leave some students under the radar. Both have their share of relative diversity, with Liverpool being more so than North Syracuse and have long been districts middle class Blacks and other people of color have considered when leaving the city or coming to the area originally due to North Syracuse once having an active Air Force base that brought a degree of diversity to the Northern suburbs until 1983.


F-M could work as well, but it isn't as diverse as J-D. However, it is viewed as being one of the top school districts in Upstate NY and it does have a decent Asian student population with a few Black and Hispanic students.


B'ville and West Genny are pretty big, but not as big as Liverpool and North Syracuse. They are probably the least diverse of the districts mentioned, but it is slowly but surely changing in that regard.


East Syracuse-Minoa is alright and has also become a little more diverse as time goes on, but isn't as highly regarded as the other Eastern suburban SD's(F-M and J-D). It does have a wide range of programs that you may not find in other school districts from its own credit union to trade like programs such as Carpentry and Cosmetology, as well as a school based TV/Audio-Visual program. It supposedly has good special education programs as well. It is less pretentious, relatively speaking, in comparison to the other Eastern suburban SD's as well.


Westhill is another very good suburban school district that is smaller and is up there with any school district academically and in terms of its sports program. It is another SD that is slowly but surely becoming more diverse as well. It is in the Western suburbs just outside of the city though.


I hope this helps......
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Old 04-26-2016, 01:12 PM
 
Location: Liverpool, NY
6 posts, read 7,467 times
Reputation: 15
ckhthankgod, that was very helpful, thank you!! It was probably the least biased and most thorough answer I've heard
I haven't thought a ton about the types of curriculum/programs I'd like to see but I need to start thinking about that. Though I'm sure things will change by the time he gets to school age, and especially high school. I guess its important that there is a good range of opportunities so that he has a choice. I do like that ES-M has some vocational programs and hadn't thought to look for that kind of programming before. We hope that our son goes to college, but I think its super important for students to have options if college is just not right for them.
I like the idea of a smaller school (as long as its not so small its limiting) I didn't realize Bville was so big, that's really great to know, because my husband has been leaning that way thinking it was a smaller district. I also didn't know that JD was diverse.
Thanks again, this helps me immensely in where I need to delve further!
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Old 04-26-2016, 04:05 PM
 
93,978 posts, read 124,814,196 times
Reputation: 18307
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tstowell View Post
ckhthankgod, that was very helpful, thank you!! It was probably the least biased and most thorough answer I've heard
I haven't thought a ton about the types of curriculum/programs I'd like to see but I need to start thinking about that. Though I'm sure things will change by the time he gets to school age, and especially high school. I guess its important that there is a good range of opportunities so that he has a choice. I do like that ES-M has some vocational programs and hadn't thought to look for that kind of programming before. We hope that our son goes to college, but I think its super important for students to have options if college is just not right for them.
I like the idea of a smaller school (as long as its not so small its limiting) I didn't realize Bville was so big, that's really great to know, because my husband has been leaning that way thinking it was a smaller district. I also didn't know that JD was diverse.
Thanks again, this helps me immensely in where I need to delve further!
No problem.....If size is a factor, then J-D also does well in this regard, as there are 2928 students in the whole district. ES-M is a little bit bigger, with 3241 students in the whole district. F-M has 4157 students within the whole district. So, all 3 of the Eastern suburban school districts are big enough, but aren't too big.


Here is some information, that should help: https://data.nysed.gov/profile.php?county=42

Last edited by ckhthankgod; 04-26-2016 at 04:16 PM..
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Old 04-29-2016, 01:48 PM
 
93,978 posts, read 124,814,196 times
Reputation: 18307
Just for others looking for something similar in the area, smaller school districts that could fit are Onondaga Central and LaFayette south of Syracuse.

Onondaga Central gets the bulk of its diverse student population from Nedrow, a working/middle class suburb just south of Syracuse and just north of the Onondaga Nation that has a decent sized Black population/percentage, a relatively high Native American population and a couple/few Hispanics in terms of percentage thrown in. It also has some middle to upper middle class developments in the Onondaga Hill portion of the district.

LaFayette has a high Native American student population, with a couple of Black and Hispanic students in terms of percentage.

Both are more rural, but with suburban developments mixed in. Schools are generally solid/good. Both are probably the first SD's in the area outside of the Syracuse City SD to really show a visible degree of diversity as well.

Last edited by ckhthankgod; 04-29-2016 at 02:25 PM..
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Old 04-29-2016, 02:27 PM
 
2,440 posts, read 5,770,055 times
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To the OP: When you say diversity, what kind of diversity do you mean? Only racial diversity? Economic diversity? Cultural diversity? Curricular diversity? A blend of these?

In other words, what kind of educational experience are you most hoping for your child?
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Old 04-29-2016, 04:17 PM
 
93,978 posts, read 124,814,196 times
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I'm assuming that it is the usually cultural/ethnic/racial type of "diversity", but that is a good question.
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Old 04-29-2016, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Liverpool, NY
6 posts, read 7,467 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by proulxfamily View Post
To the OP: When you say diversity, what kind of diversity do you mean? Only racial diversity? Economic diversity? Cultural diversity? Curricular diversity? A blend of these?

In other words, what kind of educational experience are you most hoping for your child?
I would say a blend. Curricular diversity is difficult to find, however, in most public school systems (I was a teacher in a traditional and a charter public school in NYS).
I feel it is important for my child to grow up with people that are not necessarily just like him; culturally, ethnically, religiously, economically. I would venture to say its about of equal importance to me as the strength of the curriculum. Of course, safety and a healthy learning environment are paramount.
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Old 04-29-2016, 08:46 PM
 
Location: Liverpool, NY
6 posts, read 7,467 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by ckhthankgod View Post
Just for others looking for something similar in the area, smaller school districts that could fit are Onondaga Central and LaFayette south of Syracuse.

Onondaga Central gets the bulk of its diverse student population from Nedrow, a working/middle class suburb just south of Syracuse and just north of the Onondaga Nation that has a decent sized Black population/percentage, a relatively high Native American population and a couple/few Hispanics in terms of percentage thrown in. It also has some middle to upper middle class developments in the Onondaga Hill portion of the district.

LaFayette has a high Native American student population, with a couple of Black and Hispanic students in terms of percentage.

Both are more rural, but with suburban developments mixed in. Schools are generally solid/good. Both are probably the first SD's in the area outside of the Syracuse City SD to really show a visible degree of diversity as well.
We are actually going to an open house this weekend in the Onondaga School district to get an idea of what the area is like. I was worried that the district was not very diverse because I know it includes some pretty pricey areas -happy to hear there's more to it than just those areas!
Thank you again, for such great advice and info! It can be overwhelming to wade through everything that's out there and you've given me the ability to better navigate it all.
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Old 04-29-2016, 09:25 PM
 
93,978 posts, read 124,814,196 times
Reputation: 18307
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tstowell View Post
We are actually going to an open house this weekend in the Onondaga School district to get an idea of what the area is like. I was worried that the district was not very diverse because I know it includes some pretty pricey areas -happy to hear there's more to it than just those areas!
Thank you again, for such great advice and info! It can be overwhelming to wade through everything that's out there and you've given me the ability to better navigate it all.
I'd actually say that Onondaga Central has a pretty wide range, as parts are very rural(South Onondaga/Navarino, etc.), working to straight middle class(Nedrow) and solidly middle class to upper middle class(the portion in Onondaga Hill). So, you will get a wide setting and economic range within the district. that is along with some ethnic/racial diversity in comparison to other suburban/small town/rural school districts in Onondaga County. I was told that it has a good special education program and it has a preschool program at Rockwell Elementary in Nedrow.

What also makes the district different from most non urban school districts in the county is that due to Nedrow being a pretty diverse(and small) suburb, you have 2 or 3 churches that worship out of the African American tradition and it is close to the Onondaga Nation Arena, which is right on Route 11. In the rural areas, you can find horse farms off of Route 80 and Apple Orchards on Routes 20 and 80. Then, the Onondaga Hill portion can look like what you may have thought the whole district was in terms of not being as culturally diverse and more upscale.

I'd say that the school district's most famous alumni are David Muir of ABC World News Tonight, recent Pro Bowl running back for the Oakland Raiders Latavius Murray and former Indianapolis Colt running back and current Syracuse University assistant football coach Mike Hart. Muir is from the Onondaga Hill part of the district, while Murray and Hart are from Nedrow.

I'd say the thing that may make it a con for you is that the school district has only about 950 students. So, that may be something to consider.

I'm sure you can find more here: Onondaga Central School District
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