Learning more about schools and school districts

Posted by Dan Miller, REALTOR on Tuesday, October 17th, 2017 at 4:35am.

What is the best way to learn about schools and school districts in the Madison and Dane County area? The report card system put forward by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction is one online tool that can help you with your research. The DPI report cards offer comparative data about school and school district performance.

How to use the school report card system

First, go to the report system web page here: 


Then select a school district and school that you'd like to review. In this example we've selected Northside Elementary in the Middleton-Cross Plains School District. 

The DPI website will produce a report for your selected school which you can download for viewing (for an example, view the Northside Elementary report here). The first page of the report card provides an overall rating. 

It also provides a snapshot of the student population. 

Page one of the report also displays student achievement scores in 5 main areas. In 4 of these areas it compares the school score to the corresponding score for the entire state. 

Last, the report card produces a graph that compares the percent of students who are proficient and advanced in language arts and math to the percent who are proficient and advanced at the state level. 

The remaining pages of the report card offer a lot more detail and supporting data. Note you can also view report cards at the school district level. For example, here's a report card for the Middleton-Cross Plains School District

More ways to learn about schools and school districts

We encourage you to expand your research of schools and school districts beyond the report card system. Here are 3 other ways you can learn more about the schools and school districts in your area. 

  • First, continue your online research by viewing school and school district websites. In many cases you'll get a good sense for a school's culture and philosophies by reviewing its web page.  
  • Second, take a tour and meet with the staff at each school under consideration. Use this opportunity to get a feel for the environment and get answers to the questions that are most important to you and your family. 
  • Third, talk to parents whose children are attending each school. Getting a parent's perspective is a great way to learn more about each school that's on your list. 

Are you in the process of relocating to the Madison, Wisconsin area? If so, you're bound to have a ton of questions. There are many ways we can help you with your move to Madison. For more info, click here

This article is published courtesy of:
Dan Miller, REALTOR
Mad City Dream Homes & RE/MAX Preferred
610 Junction Road #205, Madison, WI, 53717

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