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Old 08-16-2012, 11:22 AM
 
1 posts, read 19,987 times
Reputation: 10

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Hello,

Our company wants to move us to St. Croix, and we are trying to decide what to do. We have some questions, and we would appreciate any guidance anyone can provide.

We have children and want the best education for them, for both elementary and high schools. Any recommendations? We are looking at St. Croix Country Day School. How is it, and what else should we look at?

Which areas should we consider living in? We plan to rent at first.

How integrated are mainland Americans with the Crucians?

Is there an expat community?

I am aware of the high crime rates. Do you feel that these are in pockets, or is it island-wide?

Thanks in advance for any help!
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Old 08-16-2012, 04:01 PM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 18,266,592 times
Reputation: 7740
Country Day is supposed to be a great school. I don't know that I'd look any further.

Many statesiders/expats live on the east end. And it is hot and arid there - and yes, before you ask, there are several climates in STX. My personal recommendation would be center island and up high. You get better breezes and less no-see-ums and mosquitoes, which can leave you absolutely miserable. Apparently it's a buyer's market there, so I'm assuming there are lots of rentals too. If you don't have pets, any of the condos would probably work for you if you can find a 3 BR that is open. I don't know if I've even heard of a 4 BR, but maybe there are some.

You need to search this forum thoroughly. There is a ton of information on STX on here, and pay particular attention to what people are saying now that Hovensa has shut down. Much of it is not good news. The up side is the water is beautiful, the weather is usually incredible, and you can pack all your sweaters up and forget about 'em!

I will be honest and tell you that a lot of mainlanders are not interested in integrating with the Crucians, and the reverse can also be said. As far as crime - don't know where you're coming from, but keep your head up and eyes open. I'm not trying to terrify you, I'm really not - crime is crime wherever you are, and it's everywhere. Folks don't run the streets until all hours of the day and night unless they are looking for a little trouble - you learn fast. For the jump ups, etc., park as close as you can, not down the dark alleys. Really, just use common sense. Pay attention, travel in small groups if on foot at night. Same kind of precautions you'd take in Chicago or New Orleans or Detroit.

If you need help with the search function, just holler. I think you will find a lot of what you need to know here. Some of us have been there, done that, and still have contact with friends on the island. We left in 2006 - I've been back several times since then, and not much has changed.
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Old 08-23-2012, 02:01 AM
 
Location: Hawai'i
1,392 posts, read 3,051,613 times
Reputation: 711
We just moved off St. Croix to Hawai'i; left STX Saturday morning and arrived here today at noon. My spouse lived there 34 years, myself 1-1/2 years, and we will never return for a variety of reasons.

The crime has escalated crazily; the police chief and a police officer were shot Saturday night after the perps robbed the patrons of a popular eatery. The same night, a security guard at another popular eatery was shot in the face and killed by someone who walked right in. It doesn't matter where you live on island, you can become a crime victim. We lived in a very "safe" area yet our home was burgled twice this year. Going out to eat leaves you vulnerable to armed robbery. The roads are horrific. Infrastructure is terrible. Our last week there, friends and ourselves had a hard time buying fresh food in the groceries that wasn't spoiled (meat, produce, etc.) and friends who own restaurants were complaining of the same thing...I don't know why that is happening now and as we were basically out the door, we didn't seek an answer.

Basically, the place is imploding. That breaks my heart...I moved there full of hope for a new life last spring, but once the refinery closed, all hell has broken loose.

I STRONGLY urge that you reconsider your move to STX. Feel free to send a PM if you'd like to discuss it further with someone who has just left within the past week and is in close contact with friends left behind.
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Old 09-25-2012, 06:15 AM
 
7 posts, read 67,113 times
Reputation: 21
Default The Situation on STX

HiloDiver overstates the situation on STX.
There are many fine people there and the crime is only a problem if you like to stay out late in the wrong places. Unfortunately, in many states and cities police officers get shot in the line of duty.

The place is only "imploding" if you worked for the refinery, have had a bunch of your friend move off island due to the refinery's closing, need shopping and smooth roads, or are easily frustrated by lackadaisical attitude found throughout the Caribbean, or...
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Old 09-25-2012, 06:26 AM
 
7 posts, read 67,113 times
Reputation: 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by CroixRoads View Post
Hello,

Our company wants to move us to St. Croix, and we are trying to decide what to do. We have some questions, and we would appreciate any guidance anyone can provide.

We have children and want the best education for them, for both elementary and high schools. Any recommendations? We are looking at St. Croix Country Day School. How is it, and what else should we look at?

Which areas should we consider living in? We plan to rent at first.

How integrated are mainland Americans with the Crucians?

Is there an expat community?

I am aware of the high crime rates. Do you feel that these are in pockets, or is it island-wide?

Thanks in advance for any help!
In answer....

There is no EXPAT community if you are from the States. It's a US Territory.

Country Day is the school of choice. Good Hope is a good second choice if you live in that direction.

Integration depends on your attitude and what you like to do. If you are a diver, 99% of that community is white. If you like local foods and festivals, and work with locals, "integration" happens. However, be prepared for racism coming from all directions, white on black, black on white, black on other black ("islandism"), hispanic, etc. It's a small place and cultures live close.

RENT first for sure. The East End is drier and buggier, and farther from everything, but many white people and vacationers live there. Northshore is my favorite. Mountains, rainforest. St Croix has many climates and terrains.

Crime is an issue is you are stupid, or live in an isolated house, or bad neighborhood, or like to hang out in bars late at night, or leave your stuff in your car at some beaches, or buy drugs. Other than that, it's not a big issue. Yes, it's higher than most place in the US, but that's the Caribbean for you.

We found it very easy to get to know people. People come and go so being able to make friends is a good skill most people practice. They're more open and friendly too...because they are like you: people who think living on an island is awesome, ...so there's an affinity.
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Old 09-25-2012, 07:18 PM
 
69 posts, read 160,420 times
Reputation: 25
Good Evening
Not sure if you have made any decisions yet, but as for schooling, I would seriously look at Good Hope. Yes it is farther out, but I feel it is the bette school. Should you choose to homeschool, there is a large homeschooling community here and those that do homeschool do not all do it for religious reasons.

No Expat community here as STX is part of the US and all who are born here are US citizens.

I am sorry HiloDiver had such an awful time here. I grew up here and only recently have felt not safe.

Yes, the grocery stores produce leaves a lot to be desired, but our local Farmer's markets are WONDERFUL.

Best of luck.
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Old 09-25-2012, 08:37 PM
 
17 posts, read 83,586 times
Reputation: 26
Enjoy your new adventure!

St Croix has some great people and opportunities for you and your family to meet other families with children.
One of the things we noticed years ago when we moved was the helpfulness of others to welcome you and your family into activities and events. Many networking opportunities to explore to help introduce yourselves even before you arrive on island.

Good luck and look forward to meeting you someday!
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Old 09-25-2012, 08:44 PM
 
17 posts, read 83,586 times
Reputation: 26
Good night Crossroads,

In regards to areas, we live on the east end and do know many families with children living out east that attend various private schools and some homeschooled so networking is available for you.

They also have similar events outside of school that they and their children attend, so a nice way to meet lots of folks. Everything from sports, summer day camps, "pony club" for horse lovers, sailing camps, and family boat outtings or family land based events. depending on ages of your children, also a younger Moms group that meets for play dates and family get togethers.

Hope that helps!
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Old 09-25-2012, 11:26 PM
 
Location: Hawai'i
1,392 posts, read 3,051,613 times
Reputation: 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by sundayonstx View Post
HiloDiver overstates the situation on STX.
I wish I was.

You don't ever have to wander into bad areas to become a victim.
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Old 09-26-2012, 08:38 AM
 
Location: St Thomas, US Virgin Islands
24,665 posts, read 69,682,675 times
Reputation: 26727
Quote:
Originally Posted by HiloDiver View Post
I wish I was.

You don't ever have to wander into bad areas to become a victim.
You didn't enjoy your brief time on STX. Many don't for many different reasons. I do agree though that you're overstating "the" situation while expressing "your" situation.
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