Your Realtor And The School District

apple for the school teacherMost people, when beginning the search for their new home, always seem to have two things at the top of their list: safe neighborhoods and good schools. I say most people because there are a few, people who don’t have kids or have grown children who don’t care about the school district they’re in. They still want safe neighborhoods and my guess is that if you’re in a safe neighborhood you’re probably going to be in a good school district, too.

But, not always.

I don’t have kids in school, myself, so I don’t pay close attention to schools. I’ve heard, though, that there are some school districts that have excellent elementary schools but not-so-hot middle and high schools. I’ve heard of school districts that have great high schools but not-so-great middle and elementary schools. So, in my mind it’s kind of a crap shoot as to being able to find the house you might want to live in and have great schools all the way from kindergarten to high school graduation.

The School District Can Change

The other thing about school districts is that they change. The boundaries change meaning that the school you thought you were going to be able to send your kid to is no longer available for you. Quality changes. The great school in 2017 is perfect for your kid about to go to it. That might not be true in 2025 when your next kid is ready for the same school. It amazes me to no end when parents of infants and toddlers are shopping for a home in a particular area because of the school district. How can they know it’ll be a great school 5 or six years from now?

There are also things like funding for school programs. That changes over time. General demographics of the area. Teacher attrition and continuing education. All kinds of things that are really beyond anyone’s control.

Your Realtor’s Mouth Is Taped Shut

Because of all the changes that can happen and, let’s be honest, because it’s really impossible to know how each school in each school district  ranks in various areas, your Realtor is not supposed to make any recommendations based on the school district. Ditto crime and general safety of the neighborhood.

It would be just our luck to let you know that Glorious High School is the best school in the County and has a sterling record only to find out that there’s been a stabbing and a cheating scandal in the same year you bought your house. Talk about embarrassed. Talk about being sued for providing misleading information. Sheesh.

So, when you ask about “good schools” you really have to do your own research. There are lots of third party websites that provide information about school test scores and graduation rates and extracurricular programs. Look at more than one.

Good schools are important. Safe neighborhoods are important.  Both are things you kinda have to find out for yourself.

About Ken Montville

Ken Montville is a Realtor® and Associate Broker with RE/MAX United Real Estate in the beautiful Maryland Suburbs of Washington, DC. He has been selling nice homes since 1999. Way back in the 20th Century.

When Ken Is not doing the real estate thing he can be found all over social media in places too numerous to mention and he listens to jazz, reads a little (mostly non-fiction), hangs out with the Rotary Club of College Park, MD and can be found blogging at