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Introducing: The “Schools” Page

back-to-school-1416942Schools are an important part of family life.  Many parents make sacrifices so that they can send their children to the best schools they can.  School considerations are a big part of almost every real estate decision.  Do we leave our current school?  How will our kids adapt?  Will they make new friends?  What school will they attend? Is the new school a good school?  Will they be able to walk to school?  If not, are they eligible for busing?  Are there special programs available?
The good news is there are lots resources available on the web to help answer those questions.  The bad news is that it is scattered all over the place on a number of different web pages.  The good news is that I have done all the work for you and created a one stop information page to answer all your schooling questions when you are considering a move:




If you have clicked through to my schools page, you will see a number of “buttons” that will take you to various information pages.  Lets walk through them one by one:
Find a School
Once you click here you will be take to the Thames Valley District School Board website.  What you will see on that page is a form where you can enter in the address of any property within the board.  The website might have you refine which street as sometimes there is the same street name in several places and whether it is a court or a crescent or what not.  It look like this:
School Finder
After you click on “Search” you will see something like this (I chose a random address in Old North):
School Finder Results
Typically, the “ordinary” schools, both grade schools and high schools, that your children will attend will be at the top of the list.  Also included in the list are schools with specialized programs such as French immersion or perhaps trade oriented high school programs.  For the Catholic school board, you go to a different place.  Click on the button that looks like this:
Click Here for Catholic Schools
Once you click through you will be taken to a webpage that looks like this:
Catholic School Locator
At this point all you do is fill in a street name.  Depending on the street a number of things might happen.  You may be given a list of similar street names in different towns.  Select the street you want.  Once you have done this you may be given a range of street numbers to select from if that makes a difference for the street you are interested in.  Click on that you will be shown a list of schools for that address range.  When you select a school on the list, it will show you a picture of the school as well as a link to the website and contact information.
Catholic School Results
Now that you know in which school district a house that you are thinking about buying is located, you are ready to find out how that school is ranked in terms of educational outcomes by the well know Fraser Institute study.  If you click through on the next two buttons, one for elementary and one for secondary schools…
Fraser Click
…you will be take to the Fraser Institute website where what you will find is rankings for all the schools in Ontario (it is a matter of London pride that London Central SS is often ranked #1 or #2 depending on the year).  You can refine the list to see only London schools.  When you do, you will see something like this:
Fraser Institute Results
For many parents this is essential information when choosing an neighbourhood in which to buy a house.  Once you have an idea of where you will be living and which schools your children are likely to be attending, you may want to be in touch with the school and see some of what the school will be like through their websites.  The next two links will help you do just that:
Individual Schools
When you click on the link to public schools, you will be taken to this page with a long list of schools:
Click on the school
It is as simple as finding the name of your school on the list and clicking through where you will find an individualized school page:
School Website
From here you will have all the information you need to contact the school and get more information about attending.
With the Catholic Board, the web sites are available, but when you click the link and the Catholic board web site opens up, you will see a page that looks like this:
Catholic School FinderCatholic Where to Click
You will see two pull down menus on the right side of the page (they are not particularly obvious).  Once you use the pull downs to select first elementary or secondary, then the second pull down will allow you to select a specific school.  Once you select the school, the information will appear below the pull down menus with the school’s contact information and a link the school’s website:
Catholic School Website