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Niche study reveals top 5 Chicago suburbs with best public schools in the country

(NEXSTAR) – For families with young children, settling down in an area with great public education can bring each peace of mind and hundreds of dollars in savings.

Parents searching for superior K-12 public education will want to start their search within the suburbs, in accordance with Area of interest’s annual study.

Leading all communities within the 2024 Places with the Best Public Schools in America is Scarsdale, a suburb of Latest York City and residential to roughly 18,000 people.

“I grew up in Eastchester after which moved to Scarsdale, it’s an exquisite, quaint town. Beautiful homes and city, the type you see in movies,” one commenter wrote.

The Westchester County town gets A+ grades for its public schools and family-friendliness, but living there isn’t low cost – the common home value was $1.61 million in February, in accordance with RedFin.

In second place is the Texas suburb of West Lake Hills, situated outside of Austin. With a population of three,360, West Lake Hills “offers residents a rural feel and most residents own their very own homes,” in accordance with Area of interest. While it received C+ grades for diversity and price of living, West Lake Hills was awarded an A+ for its public schools, family friendliness, jobs, and health & fitness. The Austin suburb also happens to be the highest place to retire within the state of Texas, in accordance with Area of interest.

See the highest 20 places within the U.S with the very best public schools in 2024:

Rank Name Location
1 Scarsdale Suburb of Latest York City
2 West Lake Hills Suburb of Austin, Texas
3 Rollingwood Suburb of Austin, Texas
4 Long Grove Suburb of Chicago
5 Lincolnshire Suburb of Chicago
6 Roosevelt Borough in Latest Jersey’s Monmouth County
7 Devon Suburb of Philadelphia
8 Berwyn Suburb of Philadelphia
9 Chesterbrook Suburb of Philadelphia
10 Buffalo Grove Suburb of Chicago
11 Woodbury Suburb of Latest York City
12 Lexington Suburb of Boston
13 Syosset Suburb of Latest York City
14 Radnor Township Suburb of Philadelphia
15 Hinsdale Suburb of Chicago
16 Fairbanks Ranch Suburb of San Diego
17 Rancho Santa Fe Suburb of San Diego
18 Del Mar Suburb of San Diego
19 Clarendon Hills Suburb of Chicago
20 Los Altos Hills Suburb of San Jose, California
(Courtesy: Area of interest)

For the complete 2024 rankings see the Area of interest report.

Area of interest relies on public data from the Department of Education, U.S. Census, National Center for Education Statistics and more, together with “tens of millions of reviews.” See more on their methodology here.

Education and the pandemic

American schools are still attempting to recuperate after COVID-19 upended in-person education and disrupted the educations of tens of millions of young people.

A December 2023 evaluation by the Associated Press found that there have been an estimated 50,000 students missing from U.S. schools, including public, private, and homeschool environments.

While it’s not entirely clear how these students fell through gaps within the education system, experts think many can have experienced homelessness, lost interest or motivation, or struggled with mental health. Others can have been forced to work or tackle adult responsibilities.

The newest data is from fall of 2022 and represents an improvement from the identical time the 12 months before, when the number of scholars unaccounted for was greater than 230,000.

Still, not all is back to its pre-pandemic “normal.” AP’s nationwide evaluation shows lasting disengagement from public school, as Americans turn to other forms of education. Roughly two-thirds of states keep credible enrollment data for either private or homeschooling. Amongst those states, private education grew nearly 8% and homeschooling grew greater than 25% from fall 2019 to fall 2022. Public school enrollment remained depressed, in accordance with the AP evaluation, down by over 1 million students.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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