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Top public schools: Under $100,000

From Texas towns to Southern suburbs, these top 10 cities offer families outperforming public schools and median home prices under $100K.

By GreatSchools Staff

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Webb City, Mo.

Webb City, Mo.

Education quality score: 78.13
Median home price: $88,160
Population: 11,302

This tiny town is massively accomplished — indoors and out. Webb City has one of Missouri's best farmers markets, three war-hero monuments, a recently renovated library, a state-of-the-art tennis and fitness club, an acclaimed band that marches in the Rose Bowl, abundant parks, street murals, and an amphitheater. The Webb City High School Cardinals are nearly invincible in football; they've won eight state championships in the past two decades. Academically, Webb City schools are recognized as an "outperformer" by Standard and Poor’s because they've exceeded state expectations in 13 of the past 14 years. One facility — Harry S. Truman Elementary — boasts a GreatSchools 10 score, and every other institution is at least an 8.

Webb City taxpayers are willing to invest in scholastic excellence — they recently approved a $2 million bond to build four additional classrooms. But the primary ingredient in the district's success is Dr. Ron Lankford, the superintendent for the past 12 years, with a total of 40 years served in the district. Lankford was elected 2009's Missouri School Administrator of the Year by the Missouri Association of School Administrators, lauded as "one of the most effective school administrators in Missouri" in the Turner Report blog, and praised by state Commissioner of Education Chris Nicastro as "respected for his expertise and leadership in financial management and academic issues." Sadly for locals, Lankford is moving up the ladder in August 2010 to become the state's deputy education commissioner.

Explore Webb City schools

Photo credit: Roadtripmemories


Comments from readers

"Yeah... If you're white and straight, Harrison, AR could be the perfect place for you! If you're not, you'd be lucky to survive the schools there. "
"This article should be deleted. Half the cities on this list are in a state that is re-writing U.S. history. I don't consider that 'rock-solid' education."
"Great... but, but, but, but, Anything in places where one would actually want to live?"
"This is a stretch to say the least."
"Thanks for the wonderful article. Harrison is great place to live and visit. Just would like to add a correction. Dr. Jerry Moody is the Harrison School Districts superintendent. Our teachers and staff are number one! Not sure whom the Brian Smith you speak is though. "
"I am very proud to say I live in Webb City, MO. my son has achieved many honors because of the team work at the Webb City School District!!! GO CARDS!!!"
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