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Old 11-22-2007, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ
51 posts, read 166,803 times
Reputation: 45

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As stated in my last post - my husband is strongly considering accepting a position in the Tampa area - St. Petersburg and Palm Harbor areas. What are the best school districts in the Tampa area? Are there any public schools that are even close to comparable to a private school? What are the best private schools in the area?

Thanks!
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Old 11-24-2007, 06:27 AM
 
13,772 posts, read 35,118,337 times
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There are a lot of post here about schools, try doing a search on the different areas. There is also a link on one post.. I think from TampaKaren to a website where you can find info on different school ratings.
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Old 11-24-2007, 06:43 AM
 
26,798 posts, read 41,502,416 times
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My kid attends a Middle School in Wesley Chapel and that is really a great school. Previous he was in Elementary in Wesley Chapel (WCES) and we have also great experience over there and in our neighbor hood people felt awful the kids had to change to a new school. We had experiences with private school, which were not as good as the public school. I'm not sure if I can mention this great Middle school on this forum but otherwise you can email me.
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Old 11-24-2007, 07:46 AM
 
Location: Eastern time zone
4,469 posts, read 6,566,259 times
Reputation: 3494
Quote:
Originally Posted by dew2773 View Post
As stated in my last post - my husband is strongly considering accepting a position in the Tampa area - St. Petersburg and Palm Harbor areas. What are the best school districts in the Tampa area? Are there any public schools that are even close to comparable to a private school? What are the best private schools in the area?
Thanks!

Schools in the Bay Area are districted by county: Pinellas County covers both St. Pete and Palm Harbor. You could, conceivably, have a house in Hillsborough Co (Westchase area) or Pasco (Wesley Chapel, Trinity) if he were working in Palm Harbor (or liked insane commutes).
Pinellas is rezoning schools and moving attendance districts around to change from "choice" to neighborhood schools. None of the schools in the far northern part of the county are really dreadful. Most are decent, middle-class, not-terribly-racially-diverse, cookie cutter schools. Palm Harbor High is usually rated quite highly; other than that you could be anywhere in middle America.
St. Pete is a mixed bag. There are flashes of brilliance, and...mmm...a fair amount of non-brilliance. The money in this county has tended to stay north county, and the schools reflect it. Gibbs High School (Pinellas County Center for the Arts) is one of the flashes of brilliance. The Center for Advanced Technology at Lakewood High has pretty cool programs (robotics, a professional TV editing suite). Northeast and Bogie (Boca Ciega) have tended to have some issues, though someone may come on and say that's all better now.

County-wide, magnets are usually decent; don't know about the charters.

It also depends on where you're moving from. If you're coming from an area of the county known for fabulous public schools, keep in mind that this IS Florida, and we're not exactly ranked in the top ten. (Though there are good schools, individually, they still have to teach Florida's state-set curriculum.) OTOH, if you're coming from rural Mississippi or Louisiana...it's all good.

As for private schools...depends on what you're looking for. Can't swing a cat without hitting a Christian school. Some are excellent, some are thinly-disguised "white flight" vehicles. St. Paul's in Clearwater is known for being pretty darned good K-8. I've heard Central Catholic (High School) is good. The really highly reputable high schools (Tampa Prep, Berkeley, Jesuit) are in Tampa, and I know of a fair number of kids who commute.
There's a good Waldorf school for elementary grades in Palm Harbor, and Walden School in Gulfport is another option.

I don't know a whole lot about Pasco or Hillsborough. Pasco has, historically, had less than impressive schools, but that's probably changed in the newer parts of the county. Hillsborough has some pretty cool magnets, and Westchase Elementary's PTA has an absolutely insane budget so the school gets all kind of cool stuff.
I don't know too many people who will tell you "oh, my kid's school sucks, stay away from it!" because...well, then they'd pull him or her out.

Last edited by Aconite; 11-24-2007 at 07:54 AM.. Reason: grammar
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Old 11-27-2007, 12:30 PM
 
118 posts, read 413,940 times
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The schools in Florida are really not good at all. They also have school choice in pinellas and it is almost impossible to get a seat in a good school. stay away from trinity to the middle and high school is very poor as well. I moved to Trinity area from up north and there is no comparision from the schools up north to the ones in Florida. they are very far behind.
Trinity area homes look nice, but they were all put together really fast and many people are having alot of issues with their homes, not to mention the high school and middle school that serves trinity are really bad. they are rated high i think a or b schools, but trust me in florida that means nothing.

i would suggest actually going and walking around the schools and looking at the schools while kids are there. The best High school in the area is probably East Lake High school , but good luck getting in.

And wesley chapel has a ton of nudist colonies
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Old 12-05-2007, 09:34 AM
 
2 posts, read 12,414 times
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I Must Find The Best Elementary School In Tampa
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Old 12-05-2007, 11:33 AM
 
Location: East Tennessee
3,927 posts, read 10,640,138 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anncar View Post
I Must Find The Best Elementary School In Tampa
It's probably Mabry Elementary, but not having interviewed every school principal and surveying parents, that's not worth much. Not to mention that every parent has a different set of ideals for their children, so what I think will differ from others. And some people on this board will have nothing nice to say to whatever the question was. I have also observed that some of the best teachers will tend to migrate to the newer schools, and Tampa has plenty of those as well.

We have been very happy with Northwest Elementary in Carrollwood. My daughter attended Northwest and now her son is a student there. Along with the necessary school curricula, he can balance a checkbook and I think that's pretty progressive for an elementary school to teach to a 10-year old. After Christmas, the public schools will begin teaching the children in preparation for the state required FCAT test.

To me, one of the most disappointing and discouraging things about the schools in general (private as well as public) has always been the lack of parental participation (other than sports).

You can read about the Tri-County Public Schools for each County School District site at

Hillsborough County Public Schools (HCPS)

Pinellas County Schools

Welcome To Pasco County Schools


And you can read parent reviews along with some of the private schools information online at

GreatSchools.net

Finally, if you have decided on a particular school, make sure to check the property address to the school boundary lines. Some neighborhoods in smaller rural areas such as Odessa and Trinity will encompass as many as three different county school systems. It is better to call the school district directly to verify as newer schools are being built regularly and school boundaries can and do change frequently.

Last edited by TampaKaren; 12-05-2007 at 11:56 AM..
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Old 12-05-2007, 11:57 AM
 
Location: HOTHellHoleCalledFL
205 posts, read 929,302 times
Reputation: 82
FL public schools are well below par in general as compared to *most* of the rest of the U.S. You aren't going to find superior education anywhere here...mediocre is gonna be about the best you'll get.

I don't know anything about the private school system here...I know we can't afford it by a long shot, lol.







Quote:
Originally Posted by dew2773 View Post
As stated in my last post - my husband is strongly considering accepting a position in the Tampa area - St. Petersburg and Palm Harbor areas. What are the best school districts in the Tampa area? Are there any public schools that are even close to comparable to a private school? What are the best private schools in the area?

Thanks!
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Old 02-14-2008, 09:59 AM
 
1 posts, read 11,171 times
Reputation: 11
We are moving into the trinity area in the summer, we were wondering which elementary schools were the best. Also any info on the different housing areas would be great.
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Old 02-14-2008, 10:26 AM
 
849 posts, read 3,279,856 times
Reputation: 199
Default Palm Harbor

has the International Baccalaureat program in the HS. My husband has subbed there and says it's a good school.
I wouldn't even consider Hillsborough Co.because they bus and even you elem. kid could wind up far from home in a not so great place. Also if huby's job is in Pinellas co. you don't want to live in Tampa, ;et alone Wesley Chapel for the commute.

The IB program and all magnet programs, if your kid is accepted, is immune from neighborhood assignment. The Jewish community has day schools up to 8th grade in both counties if that is appropriate for you.

Aconite has posted about Bogie (Boca Ciega High) and Northeast in St. Pete. avoid at all costs. MY husband received a hate note at Bogie and they did nothing. It threatened our lives becasue of religion and ethnicity. Complete with lovely WWII symbols if you know what I mean. Even St. Pete High is not great outside the IB program which they also have. A nice family area is the city of Seminole right next to St. Pete. The schools are good for the most part.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dew2773 View Post
As stated in my last post - my husband is strongly considering accepting a position in the Tampa area - St. Petersburg and Palm Harbor areas. What are the best school districts in the Tampa area? Are there any public schools that are even close to comparable to a private school? What are the best private schools in the area?

Thanks!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
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