Minneapolis has topped yet another national list, this time rated by ZipRealty as the best place in the country for families to live, due primarily to its premier public education and low-cost housing.
 
The “Minneapolis area” ranked number one, with Westonka Public Schools identified as the standout school district. The performance of each district, including elementary through high school, was rated on a scale of one to 10.
 
ZipRealty, a national real estate brokerage, judged the districts on test-score data as well as student-to-teacher ratios. Westonka received a 9.6, the third-highest on the top 10 list, behind only the Boston area and a district in Westchester, New York.
 
Westonka Public Schools, located in the western suburbs of Minneapolis, have nearly 160 teachers, serve 2,200 students, and “offer lower class sizes and individual attention along with a wide variety of co-curricular opportunities and a full portfolio of honors and college-level courses,” according to the district’s website.
 
Although New York and Boston had higher school ratings, their median price per square foot of real estate were $250 and $321, respectively, versus $112 in Minneapolis, which landed the western suburbs as the best combination of education and affordable housing.
 
“We all know lots of factors, not just price per square foot, go into determining home values,” ZipRealty CEO and President Lanny Baker said in a statement. “Among the most important of these factors for many families today is the quality of local schools in relation to the price of their local real estate.”
 
“People continue to relocate to the Minneapolis-St. Paul area because of affordable housing prices, quality school systems, its many cultural activities, such as a booming music scene, and the burgeoning economic sector,” Baker added.
 
Following Minneapolis, Chicago, Portland, Philadelphia, and Austin rounded out the top five on ZipRealty’s list.
 
To view the complete list, click here.
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