A major concern for many home buyers in the Silicon Valley is the quality of the school districts their children will be attending. Even for those without their own children, particularly teachers, child-care providers, or other professionals, the quality of the local schools is a vitally important factor in their home search. But with about 70 different districts in the area, how do you find the best, and what do you do once you’ve found it?
Do Your Research
The best way to start off finding the best district is to narrow down your search based on publications, reviews, reports, stats, and other data. You can find this information easily enough on comparison sites, like Niche.com, GreatSchools.org, or SchoolDigger.com, or from the US Department of Education.
Examine All Criteria
While strict statistical facts and data—like test scores, ratings, and graduation rates—provide beneficial information, they certainly don’t paint a complete picture. You’ll want to consider other criteria that might be important to you or your child, such as class size and school attendance, other available programs and activities, including sports, career education, community outreach, and creative or alternative education. Be sure to take your child’s specific learning style, strengths, and interests into consideration.
Visit & Ask
One of the best ways to learn more about a school district is to ask other parents whose children attend the district. You can do this online or through reading reviews. Even better, visit the schools in person to see for yourself what it’s like.
Consider the Neighborhood
Before getting excited about a particular school or district, be sure to take into consideration the area they serve. A great school in a location that’s too far from work or that doesn’t offer access to the other amenities you need might not be worth it. And likewise, a top-rated school in a neighborhood you cannot afford could create a stressful financial burden.
Ask Your Agent
Want some local expertise? Talk to a local expert! Your real estate agent will be experienced with helping buyers locate perfect homes—which commonly includes locating the perfect school district as well. And as such, they’ll know a lot about districts in the area. They might even have students in attendance. And what’s more, they’ll know how to locate neighborhoods within school zones you like that also fit your needs and your budget.
2017 Top-Rated School Districts in the Silicon Valley
We’ve started you off by pulling some recent data from school-rater Niche.com. On a recent survey of the best school and districts in America, Niche considered important criteria, including strength of academics, quality of teachers, resources and facilities, student life, and reviews. Three districts in the Silicon Valley—Palo Alto Unified School District, Los Gatos-Saratoga Joint Union High School District, and Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District—were listed as the top 3 Best Public School Districts in California. Additionally, San Mateo Union High School District was ranked #11 in California and #6 in the San Francisco metro.
Other top districts included Fremont Union High School District in Sunnyvale, Campbell Union High School District in San Jose, Milpitas Unified School District, San Jose Unified School District, and Santa Clara Unified School District, all of which ranked in the Top 30 districts in the San Francisco metro.
Searching for the Perfect Silicon Valley Home in a Great School District?
If you’re thinking of buying a home in the Silicon Valley and you want to make sure you find just the right home for sale, one that’s also in a top school district, then it’s time to contact Gary & Robert. As your experienced Silicon Valley real estate and lifestyle experts, we want to ensure that your Silicon Valley home buying experience goes off without a hitch!