Living near good schools will cost an extra $200K
April 19th, 2012
06:04 PM ET

Living near good schools will cost an extra $200K

By Tami Luhby, CNNMoney

(CNNMoney) - Want to live in a good school district? It'll cost you an extra $200k.

Home values are $205,000 higher, on average, in neighborhoods with high-scoring public schools versus schools with low scores, according to a new report issued by the Brookings Institution.

Homes in high-scoring neighborhoods typically have 1.5 additional rooms, and 30% fewer are rented, the study found. Housing costs average $11,000 more per year in areas with better schools.

Some of the areas with largest differences in housing costs also have the widest gaps in school test scores. The Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk metro area in Connecticut, for instance, has both the widest gap in test scores between higher-income and lower-income neighborhood schools and the largest difference in housing costs, at $25,000.

Not surprisingly, income has an impact on test scores. The average low-income student attends a school that scores at the 42nd percentile on state exams, while the average middle/high-income student goes to schools that score at the 61st percentile.

Poor students have become more concentrated in schools with other poor students since 1998, Brookings found. The average low-income student attends a school where 64% of fellow students are low-income, though they represent only 48% of all U.S. public school students. The percentage of economically integrated schools is less than 7%.

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soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. Rabbi

    No Israeli lacks for living space.

    What stupid Americans seem not to understand, is that Jews are chosen people.

    We will reap the rewards of our faithful service to Yahweh.

    The goyim of this world should be happy to fight over the scraps that we Jews throw from table.

    Israel will reign supreme over earth, and anybody challenging that assertion will be conquered, with the help of US military.

    You people may not like us Jews, but you WILL learn to fear us.

    If a few of you must die to save a few of us....that's a bargain I can live with. Your own nations agree with me on this.

    Your sacrafices are necessary to ensure the survival of the only democracy in the middle east. Be happy.

    Long may Israel reign.

    April 22, 2012 at 11:01 pm |
    • Starlite

      Who's talking about Israel?! Stop trying to interject Israeli propaganda.
      Get off this board you weirdo!

      April 23, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
  2. Starlite

    Those of you that think it's a race problem are so simple-minded. It's about socio-economic status.
    I've noticed with my own eyes that poor people of any background or race all tend to act the same or approach education in the same manner.

    My high school was ranked #2 in the state. It was attended by all different people- blacks, whites, Asians, Indians, etc- the common thread btwn everyone was our economic status. Everyone was from mid to high-income families. Parents instilled the importance of education to their kids. Kids knew their main responsibility was doing well in school. These families had access to money. Usually there was a stay-at-home mom that was there to feed the kids a healthy breakfast to get there day started right, the mom would be home when the kids came back to make sure they did their homework in the evening, one of the parents would then check the kids homework to make sure it was correct. If the kid was struggling, they would hire a tutor.

    Kids from poor families have a much harder time. Their parents are working 2 jobs, odd hours. The poor parents have other things to stress about and unfortunately they don’t have the time, energy or resources to encourage education.

    April 20, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  3. Debbie

    "Poor students have become more concentrated in schools with other poor students since 1998,"

    Welfare Breeding -Duh. Welfare Reform will stop this. People with No Money who CHOOSE to have 3,4,5,6,7 more kids -on someone else's dime, will of course have poor results.

    April 19, 2012 at 9:47 pm |
  4. Paul

    Article is total bunk. I live in an area that has moderate priced homes and in the US News and World Report Schools survey our 2 high schools were in the top 16. If I wanted to spend $200,000 more I would be in a district North of here with the same results. Its not money, its quality of education demanded by parents. You can spend 5 times the cost of my home and get lower quality education. Like I said, the article is totally made up bunk.

    April 19, 2012 at 9:43 pm |
    • analogkid

      The article deals with average results not absolute results. I appreciate that your school district is high performing with lower property values but the article indicates that your district is the exception, not the rule. Anecdotal evidence is personally very powerful but not very reliable.

      April 22, 2012 at 8:30 pm |
  5. Private

    I sold everything work a job, bought a small house and send my kids to private school. Enough of educators not educating by not being given the tools.

    April 19, 2012 at 9:42 pm |
    • Paul

      Sorry but private schools are not necessarily better. I suggest you find a good public school system.

      April 19, 2012 at 9:45 pm |
  6. Richard, Winston-Salem

    In short, it's a cruel world.

    April 19, 2012 at 9:15 pm |
  7. ellabulldog

    It is not just the $200,000 difference in home price it is also the extra taxes spent.
    Good School Districts are the result of putting successful smart people and their children together with the same.
    Poor School Districts are full of unsuccessful, dumb parents and their underachieving children.
    Compare it to sports. If you take the best athletes and put them on the A team and take the worst athletes and put them on the B team then the A team will always score better. Same thing for test scores in schools.
    More money spent won't help in the lower School Districts and the teachers in the better School Districts take too much credit.

    April 19, 2012 at 9:14 pm |
    • brainrubbing

      True, because money is never spent on improving teaching.

      April 19, 2012 at 9:20 pm |
    • Holly

      I completely agree about teachers taking too much credit for test scores in affluent areas. I will say that a great teacher can make ALL the difference in a low-soc/ec school.....

      April 19, 2012 at 9:28 pm |
    • Debbie

      I agree. Actually throwing LESS money at the problem, not more -will help it. Welfare Reform. No more 3,4,5,6,7, more kids supported by the tax payers for poverty breeders. This has to stop.

      April 19, 2012 at 9:50 pm |
  8. brainrubbing

    It's not the schools, it's the income! What a misleading headline! Please don't think that these schools are providing a high quality learning experience. Any academic "successes" their students produce - such as high SAT scores, low dropout rates, high college acceptance levels, etc. - are the result of their families' contributions, such as both parents being college grads and being able to send the kids to music lessons, tutoring sessions, soccer and debate camps.

    This enables the school systems to claim "greatness" while doing virtually nothing.This is a disservice to both the privileged and the under-privileged: the affluent student loses out on a quality, authentic education and the poor are marginalized and ignored.

    April 19, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
    • ellabulldog


      April 19, 2012 at 9:32 pm |
    • analogkid

      I think that you underestimate the ability of the educators in these high performing school districts. Sure the family and financial situation is is a huge advantage for these districts but these districts are also able to pay their educators well and thereby attract the brightest and most motivated educators in the area, often from nearby poorer school districts.

      April 22, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
  9. DougCollins

    It's not a cost of real estate, it's protection money.

    April 19, 2012 at 8:50 pm |
  10. Paul B

    Allow me to translate...

    "Good Schools" = Schools that have < 5% minority students. FACT: If your school district has a large percentage of black and/or hispanic students, then you can be sure that the curriculum has been dumbed-down.

    April 19, 2012 at 8:46 pm |
    • Andre Mrgan

      What a dumb comment. i live in an area with quite a few affluent black and latin people and it's all about the money. You are the type of person that makes me sick to my stomach....

      April 19, 2012 at 8:58 pm |
    • FatherXmas

      That is often true, though not ALL blacks and ALL Hispanics are dumb.

      April 19, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
    • angeldog

      I beg to differ, as a black student who attended public schools all my life. I had excellent grads and test scores. I was in the top 5% of the nation on my ACT scores. The difference in school performance has a lot to do with prep before school. I have a son who attended 3 years of pre-school before enrolling in public school Kindergarten; however 5 and 6 year olds who've never set foot in class/academic or event structured environments are enrolled and expected to compete. My son started reading at the age of 4, I think its unfair to both types of students to throw them together with a single curriculum and teaching structure as if they all have the same needs. The differences in preparation are hard to overcome. Some kids aren't fully aware their colors or their legal name, the expectations of classroom behavior. It plays with there confidence and young children are already insecure, once labeled "not good in school" or a "bad kid" whether by the school or the family its hard for children to overcome. You holding some kids back because your not providing an enriching environment, these students can become bored and less engaged while waiting for the others to catchup. On the other end of the spectrum, schools are critical because kids aren't craming the information fast enough, their punished for "acting out" yet no one has the time or effort to process and teach the efficient ways to deal with frustration, anger, disappointment, the other people have feelings and values and sometimes I hurt them.

      I've looked at the numerous private schools in my area, they are extremely different from public k-12, in the grade school years children have recess twice a day, gym everyday, class sizes of 6-7 students for math and reading instruction for all students-not simply those labeled at deficient, no standardized testing-NONE-until high school when they sit for SATs, ACTs. Society will label kids as lazy, or genetically disadvantaged, but all are not given access to quality teaching and educational environments, exposure to experiences that challenge them to think and apply academic lessons abstractly-yet we punish kids for failing to compete.

      April 19, 2012 at 10:16 pm |