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Moving to Austin with young kids.

Moving to Austin with young kids.

Old Jan 7th 2016, 11:01 pm
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Default Moving to Austin with young kids.

Hi Everyone,

There is a strong possibility that we maybe moving to Austin in the Summer.We have two kids aged 6 & 3. Both are currently enrolled in primary and preschool.

As I have never been to Austin, I was just looking for advice please regarding areas to live, schools., parks etc. Is it better to go with private schools or opt for the public system?

Many thanks in advance.



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Old Jan 7th 2016, 11:54 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Austin with young kids.

Welcome.
I've just moved to Dallas, so can't help with Austin specifically but give some basic guidance on schools.

We picked our specific area to live based on the reputation of the schools. You can move one district border and you find the school policies much different in terms of money spent, school size, location of schools etc etc.

There are a number of websites which review the schools. Take with a pinch of salt as you get the extremes, but you'll soon get a feel for a particular ISD (Independent School District).

We were happy to stick with the public system here. And so far its working.

We decided on a school and then used the house searching apps to find our house. There is NO choice of public schools. Your street address will determine it. Which as a renter is actually comforting because you can change schools a bit easier than those with a mortgage!

Now there is a downside... Texas is exacting with immunizations. You need to be on the schedule they demand or your kids can't register. This was specifically a problem for my daughter especially as she needed a number they insist on in Texas that we don't need in the UK. We also had an issue with our temporary medical insurance which meant she had 4 weeks out of school. Of course she loved this, we didn't!

You will also have to accept they may place your kids in the lowest classes. Though at your kids age this shouldn't be an issue.

Finally transportation is hit and miss. Check the policy of the local school district. It does depend on the sensibilities of the local parents and what they want their tax dollars spent on.

With your kids being young you shouldn't have a massive adjustment process, but ours (16 and 11) have adjusted quite quickly, but again I think that's down to the ISD I picked out: one which puts Sport 2nd, education first which is unusual for the Dallas Metroplex and one which has a limit on school numbers, so the high school here have max 1600 kids whereas some areas have super high schools of 6000!

As far as house hunting is concerned get a realtor in the local area you want to move to, to do all the work for you. They won't and shouldn't charge you, but will get commission from the person/company leasing the house. Best decision I made. That's how it works in Dallas, and I presume most of Texas.

Last edited by markcst; Jan 7th 2016 at 11:57 pm.
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Old Jan 8th 2016, 3:46 am
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Default Re: Moving to Austin with young kids.

Hi and welcome. We have a WIKI that will answer many of the general questions you have on schools (and might create a few more). Check it out here and let us know some of the other questions you might have.


Education: What do I need to enroll the kids in school? : British Expat Wiki
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Old Jan 10th 2016, 3:29 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Austin with young kids.

I am surprised that PF hasn't replied to you get as she is the most recent arrival I know to Austin and she has lots of useful info. Look for Petitefrancaise and read through her posts. Pre-k doesn't start here until 4 so the 3 yr will have to go to private daycare and you might have ask for your 6 yr to be tested to see which year they fit into. Getting into the right school district will be one of the first considerations. PF should be able to direct you in the right direction. What visa will you be coming over on?
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Old Jan 10th 2016, 11:00 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Austin with young kids.

Hi!

Austin rush hour traffic is HORRIBLE!! Where are you going to be working?

Mr PF and a couple of his colleagues leave at 7.00 sharp in the morning to go from NW Austin to SW Austin via 360, takes them 30ish minutes. Leaving at 7.15 and it will take them an hour and it's about 23 miles.

Austin is a lovely place to live and has some great places to live with really good schools in the right area. There are parks/trails/hills/woods all over the place.

Let me know where you're going to be working...
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Old Jan 12th 2016, 3:05 am
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Default Re: Moving to Austin with young kids.

Hi Everyone,

Many thanks for taking the time and effort to respond to my query. I appreciate it. Should it go ahead, My husband will be transferring with his job on a L1 visa.the postal code for where his office is based is TX78727
.

Basically we would love as short a commute as possible. Not sure if you know if any good residential areas near this postal code, but if you have recommendations, that would be very helpful. At the moment my husband cycles to work. He would love to continue this if possible.

Many thanks in advance.
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Old Jan 12th 2016, 1:23 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Austin with young kids.

My neck of the woods!

Easy peasy for recommendations then. Our local schools are known as the dream team in Austin. Excellent from elementary to high school.

Canyon Vista for Middle school is a MUST and either Laurel Mountain or Spicewood for elementary school. Look at the school boundaries v carefully before choosing a house as all of these schools are full and even if you are on the wrong side of the street, you won't get a place in them.

I have a couple of estate agents that I recommend for my clients, they both live in the area, have kids here and know the place really, really well. Finding a rental house in this area can be difficult and you're looking at about $2k per month. I would strongly suggest that you start receiving details about any available houses right now so you can see what you will get and start thinking about which elementary school you'd like.

Here is a link to the school district website with the boundaries.
https://roundrockisd.org/departments...ries-and-maps/

As for your youngest, there are some really good Montessori schools around. One that I know is good (my neighbour's children go there and she is v happy with it and my best friend teaches there) is Arbor Montessori on Jollyville Road. Arbor Montessori Academy - Austin, TX

Please feel free to pm me if you want some more info.
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Old Jan 14th 2016, 5:23 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Austin with young kids.

just wanted to add that I am originally from CA but I lived in Austin for 4 years before moving to London. Austin is a great place to live and I really hope you love it there. sounds like you've already been given info on the good schools in your area. I recommend checking out austin360 website to get a "feel" for what is going on in the city. its a great place to raise a family and I wish you all the best.
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