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Old 11-29-2010, 03:33 PM
VRV VRV started this thread
 
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The info I've gathered so far is that

Mt.Vernon, Yonkers and New Rochelle: not good- not sure why

Bronxville: good but very rich, snobby and homogenous

Larchmont: just plain good school - superficial folks in town

Mamaroneck: I'm not sure how it's different than Larchmont and whether there are more good schools

Tuckahoe- good school plus warm and nurturing from a parent who sends her children there- most teachers have Masters pretty diverse and down to earth

Eastchester: mixed reviews

Pelham: seems good

Pelham Manor: better

All significantly less competitive than NYC.

I need more details though. I am moving from Spain and currently unable to visit schools but would like to narrow down my search for when I do.

I am thinking of sending my children to the ECC of Sarah Lawrence college but they will be 3 and 5 so for my son it would only be for one year. Then I am considering public school so I' d like to move to a good school district. Any first hand info on ECC would be great too since I've only been able to research on-line. The best info has been from parents who send their kids to the school so I am especially interested in what they have to say. My husband has to commute so I think any farther would not be reasonable. Thanks in advance everyone.
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Old 11-29-2010, 03:58 PM
 
Location: Bellevue, WA
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Add White Plains to the not great list (not to offend anyone there).

Larchmont is a village IN Mamaroneck. Same schools for MS & HS. Elementary is good either way, but some have specific preferences.

Tuckahoe is tiny. Since I have a child with special needs, it won't work for us as some of the services that we need aren't there. Also, there are less choices/couse offerings. All stuff to think about. Some love a tiny district, others don't. For us, we can't do a small district like that or Rye Neck, but many do and love it.

I don't get Eastchester, personally. Greatschools ranks them quite high, and they look fine to me, but yes they do get grief on this board (as well as Westchester Magazine). Anyone??

Are you renting or buying? We were dead set on buying when moving from CA but are so glad we didn't. If you need a realtor, I can recommend one. Just PM me.
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:05 AM
 
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There are many more school districts in Southern Westchester. The OP's list is mostly SE Westchester, excepting Bronxville and Yonkers. Also, I don't get the "less competitive than NYC" thing. What are? The public schools?
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:10 AM
VRV VRV started this thread
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjinla View Post
Add White Plains to the not great list (not to offend anyone there).

Larchmont is a village IN Mamaroneck. Same schools for MS & HS. Elementary is good either way, but some have specific preferences.

Tuckahoe is tiny. Since I have a child with special needs, it won't work for us as some of the services that we need aren't there. Also, there are less choices/couse offerings. All stuff to think about. Some love a tiny district, others don't. For us, we can't do a small district like that or Rye Neck, but many do and love it.

I don't get Eastchester, personally. Greatschools ranks them quite high, and they look fine to me, but yes they do get grief on this board (as well as Westchester Magazine). Anyone??

Are you renting or buying? We were dead set on buying when moving from CA but are so glad we didn't. If you need a realtor, I can recommend one. Just PM me.
Thanks for responding.
I have heard that about White Plains although I know someone who is a repected teacher at one of the schools and says she loves to work in her district (and she commutes from NYC).

Could you elaborate on the differences between the schools in Mamaroneck/Larchmont. If you live in the district can you choose either of the schools. I know one is Murray Avenue- which is the other?

Tuckahoe was highly reccomended. Neither of my children have special needs (that I know of yet anyway). By small district I assume you also mean a small school and I would love that. Are there any other cons? and what services specifically do you mean? just special needs?

Eastchester is worth checking out I guess. Who knows the criteria people are using.

We are also dead set on buying. We have been living in Spain for 8 years and travelling non-stop - moving constantly and we need to just settle down so the thought of moving again in a year or so is sooooo unattractive to us. Plus it seems like a good time to buy. That's why we're trying to do a thorough search. What was your experience? Our budget is somewhat low for the areas we're looking at 6-800K. It seems like we could get more bang for our buck if we stepped out of the good school districts but we obviously don't want to do that.
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:14 AM
VRV VRV started this thread
 
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Originally Posted by TDNY View Post
There are many more school districts in Southern Westchester. The OP's list is mostly SE Westchester, excepting Bronxville and Yonkers. Also, I don't get the "less competitive than NYC" thing. What are? The public schools?
The reason I am not going west is that I've heard things about Indian Point and how that has affected the Hudson River and although we would still be in a relatively dangerous area obviously the farther the better. The river towns seem great otherwise but I think that would always nag at me. If someone could convince me otherwise I might consider it.

By less competitive I guess I meant less test driven.
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:39 AM
 
Location: Bellevue, WA
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Contrary to what many say, we've found the market for under $1M in Larchmont, Scarsdale and Rye extremely competitive. Many go for a wee bit under asking assuming that they are priced right, but Larchmont especially is still a feeding frenzy. You do not get to choose schools...you go to your zoned school, period. If you go to greatschools.net and search for Mamaroneck's district, you'll see that there are 3-4 I believe. Some love Central, some Murray, some Mamaroneck Ave (some don't like it at all because of the sizeable ESL population there).

Are you also accounting for a $20K+ annual tax bill? For $600-800K, you can take Larchmont off the table entirely, along with most decent parts of Mamaroneck. You could do the other 2 in that range, though.

Small district for Tuckahoe is like 250 kids in the high school. We need full-time aides and therapists on site intermittently, and the small ones don't have one FT. Again, if you love it, go for it. When we toured larger districts, we found that with big size, comes a lot of options and more experience - the ability to teach to different abilities, tons of extracurriculars, and a bigger pool to meet people (us and them). My kids would get 60 friends to choose from in that high school (in their grade).

Be very careful about rushing into buying though. Ask anyone on here that moved here sight unseen and I think you will find that a great majority wishes that they rented first. It's no fun, that I can tell you, but once you are here you might find that for instance, another 10 minutes on the train is worth more space and more down to earth neighbors. Or like mine, you might find that you absolutely hate the train/dealing with schedules and want to live near a station with more stops. Or that you want to live in CT instead. Buying here is also quite complicated and can take a long time with many delays, so now that we are renting we have more flexibility and less stress while we look.
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:21 AM
VRV VRV started this thread
 
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I know that Larchmont is expensive but we have found a couple of properties within our budget. Although they are not ideal, being in a good school district makes them desirable to us. Unless there is something horrible about these properties that I don't know, it seems that with the economic crisis, housing prices have dropped considerably so although it might be wise to rent, it also might be wise to buy. I do appreciate what you're saying though and will take it into account.

So what is the deal with the ESL population? Is this only Mamaroneck Avenue? I can imagine what people don't like about it but it would be interesting to know some firsthand experiences on what exactly the dynamic is and what is problematic about it.
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:47 AM
 
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Indian Point has very little effect on the Hudson River. What effects are you referring to? Did someone tell you that they dump nuclear material into the river? There is some concern that the hot water that they flush into the river causes fish deaths, and it probably does, is that what you mean?

As far as public schools go, most Westchester districts beat the city hands down.
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:49 AM
 
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Regarding ESL population, I don't know firsthand but one problem is that it can be a huge drain on resources. Often ESL students need extra services, at the very least English language help. I've heard this from teachers who work in those districts, but as a taxpayer it's something I would seriously consider.
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:51 AM
VRV VRV started this thread
 
73 posts, read 212,887 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TDNY View Post
Indian Point has very little effect on the Hudson River. What effects are you referring to? Did someone tell you that they dump nuclear material into the river? There is some concern that the hot water that they flush into the river causes fish deaths, and it probably does, is that what you mean?

As far as public schools go, most Westchester districts beat the city hands down.
Back in the 70s there was a leak and I'm not sure if there was a more recent one in the 90s but I think I read about a suspected leak that turned out to be nothing. However, another report indicated that shellfish did show levels of contamination. Anyway, maybe it's not a big deal but I just can't bring myself to head in that direction.
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