If you’re buying a home for your family, the quality of local schools will play a big role in your search.
But how do you evaluate schools, and what exactly should you be looking for? That’s often challenging for buyers.
Fortunately, there are quite a few resources that can help.
Are you looking to buy a new property for your kids to grow up in? Here’s how to research schools in the area and ensure you’re choosing the right ones.
1. Check TEA.
The Texas Education Agency has lots of resources to help Texans gauge school quality. You can use its School Report Cards, which are issued annually, and you can also look to the agency’s Accountability Ratings. The Texas Academic Performance Reports (also called TAPR) are also helpful and can give you insight into how students at a particular school are performing academically.
2. Look at school rating sites.
A few different websites offer school reviews and ratings. The most commonly used one is GreatSchools.org. The site looks at test scores, student progress, college readiness, and equity, and there are also parent reviews and other details you can dig through. Niche.com and SchoolDigger.com are similar websites that can also give you insights into school (and distinct) quality in any given area.
3. Ask locals.
Often, your best resource is parents whose kids go to or have gone to schools in the community. If you’re considering a neighborhood, ask your agent to refer you to another client they’ve worked with there. What has been their experience with the school district? What about individual campuses? If there’s a particular school you’re eyeing, you might also consider contacting the PTA for insights. They can give you an idea of what academics, athletics, extracurriculars, and other amenities are like on the campus.
4. Visit the schools.
When you’ve narrowed down a shortlist of schools or districts you’re considering, take a field trip to a few and feel them out. You can even ask for a formal tour with the front office. If your child is interested in theater or band or a particular sport, you should also ask to meet the coach or teacher for that subject area and see that department’s facilities. This will help you make the best decision for your child’s future.
Start the homebuying process today
Before you start researching homes and school districts, make sure to get pre-qualified for your mortgage. Get in touch with Park Cities Mortgage today to begin the process.
Park Cities Mortgage is an Equal Housing Opportunity lender. Sponsored by NTFN, Inc. 5950 Sherry Lane, Suite 230, Dallas, TX 75225 | NTFN NMLS 75333.