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Low school numbers could affect where people live

By Will Lewis, Reporter, WLewis@wfmz.com
Published On: Feb 04 2013 06:00:00 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 05 2013 08:29:05 AM CST

Some schools in the Lehigh Valley are not making the grade according to the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Some schools in the Lehigh Valley are not making the grade, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Twenty-two schools in Lehigh and Northampton counties are on the Low Achieving Schools list.

Will the troubles of these school districts hurt the likelihood of new residents putting down roots in our area?

When people move into the area, it's all about location and education.

"All businesses are always looking at a link to education," said Don Cunningham, president of the LVEDC. "Because at the end of the day, economic development is about quality of place, quality of people."

Each year the Pennsylvania Department of Education releases a low achieving schools list based on PSSA math and reading scores.

This year, the Allentown School District has 17 schools on the list including Dieruff and Allen High schools. Trexlertown Middle School is on the list as well.

The Bethlehem Area School District has five schools on the list including Broughal Middle, Marvine Elementary and Freemansburg Elementary School.

"There's 17 school districts across the Lehigh Valley," added Cunningham. "We basically had two that are having some challenges and there's a multitude of reasons why they are having their challenges."

One local realtor tells us if a student wants to do well in a low achieving school they will as long as they apply themselves.

They also inform customers to do their research.

Cunningham says people relocating will look at the numbers but because business is growing people will still move to the area.

"It's the reality of education, but I don't think it's troubling for us," said Cunningham. "Those issues are being worked on by the school districts and then we have a multitude of schools and school districts that are performing extremely well across the Lehigh Valley."

Now it's up to the school districts to improve their scores.