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Importance of Students Attending Schools in Their Neighborhood

by Maria OCadiz

Sending your children to a neighborhood school can have large and lasting effects on their lives. In their study on the educational benefits of neighborhood schools, economics professors Dennis Epple and Richard Romano reveal a greater number of parents are willing to pay a higher price for houses in neighborhoods that have schools with a higher-ability peer group. The advantages of these institutions may justify why some educational institutions encourage parents to send children to neighborhood schools.

Safety and Financial Rewards

Parents may prefer neighborhood schools for safety and financial reasons. According to Deila Steiner, Lincoln Public Schools’ federal programs director, you can easily monitor what happens to your kids because they can be close to home in a neighborhood school. According to Epple and Romano, neighborhood schooling may also enable you to avoid incurring transportation costs. Students attending special focus schools, in contrast, may require private transportation where busing isn't available.

Diversity and Cultural Awareness

According to Andrea Creswell, a teacher at Randolph and Prescott elementary schools, students can benefit from diversity and cultural awareness that neighborhood schools promote. Creswell further argues that neighborhood schools enable quicker English acquisition than special focus schools do because students interact with students of different cultures. Jean Snell, a clinical professor of teacher education at the University of Maryland, encourages promotion of cultural diversity, arguing that it boosts the school experience.

Sense of Community

Neighborhood schools can easily foster friendships and keep communities together in and out of the classroom. Michele Langer, a teacher at West Lincoln Elementary, believes that neighborhood schools promote students’ ability to engage in activities that occur before and after school. The possibility for such participation is limited if children are bused during their trip to and from school. Neighborhood schools also enable siblings to stay together, according to Becky Mantonya, a West Lincoln Elementary school teacher.

Health

Neighborhood schools can enable the country to avert a health crisis because students can walk rather than take a ride to school. Students attending neighborhood schools may reduce the risk of becoming obese because they get exercise while walking to and from school. You may also help in reducing air pollution levels if you let your children attend neighborhood schools because you cut down on driving. The proximity of neighborhood schools reduces the need for buses or private transportation.

About the Author

Maria OCadiz has been writing professionally since 1982, most recently publishing for various websites on topics like health and wellness, and education. She holds a Master of Arts in Education. She is a former university professor, curriculum facilitator and teacher.

Photo Credits

  • Jetta Productions/Lifesize/Getty Images