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Moving to Portland


hbnurse08 September 24, 2010

My Husband and I would like to move our family out to the Portland area and I'm trying to do some research, but having a hard time picking out the real facts.

What are some safe, reputable cities/suburbs surrounding Portland that you would recommend raising a family in (i.e. a place you would feel comfortable letting your kids run outside and not worry). Low crime? West or east of the river?

Furthermore, what are some of the top choices of schools? Have you seen the Oprah episode with "Waiting for Superman"? I am determined to find a school that will present my kids with a great future and teachers that have a passion for what they do.

Thanks for your help.
Securing your future from hundreds of miles away is a huge task and I appreciate your help!!

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momfrompdx September 27, 2010

It is my personal opinion that the Beaverton School District is by far the best district in the state overall. If you choose any of the following schools you can't go wrong:
elementary - Ridgewood, West Tualatin View, Findley, Jacob Wismer
middle - Stoller, Cedar Park
high - Sunset High School, Science & Technology Magnet Program, Arts & Communication Magnet Program
Your children will receive an above average education, the neighborhoods are all really safe, and the park district has incredible programs for families. There are a great variety of neighborhoods to choose from that feed into these schools, from country-like acreage, to ranch style housing with sidewalks and streetlights. A lot of variety in price range as well. All three of my children attended Ridgewood, Cedar Park, and then Sunset. My oldest one is an MBA, my middle one a Lawyer, and the youngest one is in Medical School. These are all public school kids and they received a better education that any of the private schools around here.


ellebonjour October 25, 2010

Portland is a nice city to raise kids. Lake Oswego has some of the best schools and with an eye to high school the boast SAT scores that top some of the private schools. It has a reputation of being pricey but with the bust you can pick up houses for 1/2 of what they used to be. This is a great website to find out more info.


JJRothenberg October 27, 2010

Hi - Portland is an awesome place, but it's impossible to pin down the great neighborhoods because there are so many. Beaverton & Lake Oswego do have those suburban reputations for "better" schools, but I'm not really sure what that means... It all depends on what vibe you're looking for. There are some great close-in East side neighborhoods with highly rated schools - no doubt as good as those you'd find in the 'burbs. And Focus Options & Charter schools will offer even another list of interesting and viable options. I'd say if any sort of diversity is appealing to you then consider looking at some of the city (non-suburban) options. Not sure where you're moving from & what vibe you're looking for. I'd recommend doing an email blast or FB blast to friends to find friends of friends who are here & hopefully can give you an insider view. And as far as crime in neighborhoods, check out as it will give you the stats on any address. Generally speaking west side is more upscale, newer; east side is more creative/gritty with more sidewalks (and cheaper) - but exceptions abound. Good schools can be found either side of the river too. A conversation with someone in the know will yield much richer information - Good Luck!


KaterinaKat April 18, 2011

I agree with "momfrompdx", I attended the Beaverton School District from kindergarten (Jacob Wismer) to middle school (Stoller). I'm planning on going to the local public school Westview or the private school Catlin Gabel.

Anyways, I had a terrific experience at BSD. The kids are always friendly and eager to learn. The area is quite gorgeous, too, surrounded by lakes and mountains in the distance. There's a lot of neighborhood variety, from safe and plain suburbs near Rock Creek ES, to dozens of farms and hills along the Findley ES area. Near Jacob Wismer ES is the beautifully designed "Bethany Village", where there's QFC, Walgreens, many ethnic cuisine restaurants, toy stores, and just about everything.

There are great public schools and private schools but you must select the right ones. Among more prestigious, better, well known private schools are Catlin Gabel, Jesuit High School, OES (Oregon Episcopal), and Valley Catholic (K-8 are the best). Public schools include Westview HS and Sunset HS (both amazing public schools). Others are Southridge and Aloha and Beaverton, but they aren't quite as nice.

West Linn is a gorgeous place as well, but is quite upper class and expensive, but there are exceptions. Wilsonville is pretty and the schools are great but I'm kind of nervous about the area in general. Lake Oswego is also a beautiful area.

The area is extremely safe. My parents have no worries letting me out because nothing, even just mildly serious, has ever happened in the history of Beaverton. Around Bethany Village, the storekeepers keep a keen eye on the kids, and I assure you nothing has ever happened thanks to them. The community is also strong and protective and teachers and adults are always looking out for the kids.

The best part about the whole BSD area is THPRD, the recreation service. It offers anything from top notch soccer clubs to synchronized swimming, and athletic clubs for all BSD schools. The area is extremely safe and I've never heard of any crimes around. Kids spend their time in the local parks, in Bethany Village, and at the school playgrounds. There's so much to do. I highly recommend attending the BSD area.

I should also add that OES, Catlin Gabel, and Jesuit get pretty expensive although the education is worth it. You can have financial aid or apply for a scholarship. OES is the most expensive, Catlin Gabel is slightly cheaper, and Jesuit is significantly cheaper. Jesuit is a Roman Catholic school and is serious about sports and gives a ton of homework. Catlin Gabel is an independent private school, and is a more creative and artistic, and allows exchange students and country traveling field trips. OES is a more rigorous, pressurizing environment, from what I've heard.


Val5286452875 May 4, 2011

I just wanted to thank hbnurse08 for asking this question and thank those who have answered in such great detail! My family is considering a move to the Portland ( closer to Gresham) area and all this information is very helpful. Thank you so much!


sandlewood May 15, 2011

Hi KatarinaKat, MomfromPdx , (and all you others who answered the question):

Thank you for your extremely helpful information. My family & I are also moving to Portland (Portlandia) and your info about the schools was really helpful.

I was wondering if you'd answer one of our questions but I didn't want to post if publically--is there a way to have a private conversation?

Thank you in advance,
Michelle & Family

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