5 of the Best and Most Underrated Elementary Schools in the Austin Suburbs

The Austin Metro Area is home to many public schools and over 1 million people. Austin is the 29th largest metropolitan area in the United States and contains many suburbs! So whether you’re moving to Austin or you already live there, if the suburban lifestyle appeals to you, you won’t want to overlook these top Austin suburban elementary schools.

Austin Suburb. Image: https://www.neighborhoods.com/blog/4-austin-suburbs-that-offer-big-city-living

In general, life in these suburbs is more affordable than living within Austin city limits. The average price per square foot of a home in Austin proper is $252, but, as you will see, this number is lower in the suburbs.

These suburban public schools are often underrated on the most popular school ranking sites, but the ratings you’ll see on sites like GreatSchools don’t tell the whole story. In fact, they tend to favor mostly white, privileged areas.

That’s because these sites leave out the single most influential factor when it comes to test scores: parent income. 

SchoolSparrow’s ranking system takes parent income into account when comparing standardized test scores, and that’s why our ranking system elevates socioeconomic and racial diversity.

Want to learn more? Check out this great story by Chalkbeat that explains the biases inherent in many dominant school ranking sites. Then, contrast that with how we rank schools at SchoolSparrow.

1. Hernandez Elementary – San Marcos, TX (41 minutes from Austin Capitol Building)

The top hidden gem is located in San Marcos, Texas, Hernandez Elementary has an A- overall grade on SchoolSparrow. They also have an A grade for 4th grade specifically. 

Hernandez Elementary. Image: https://www.facebook.com/HernandezSMCISD/photos/a.2577167072295988/2832973760048650/

This is an underrated school because GreatSchools only gives it a 5/10. This score is far too low– it should be a 10/10! All of the data suggests that Hernandez Elementary is one of the best elementary schools in the Austin suburbs. 

Much like the other schools on this list, Hernandez Elementary exceeds test score expectations, when adjusted for parent income. Texas schools with similar parent income profiles score an average 42.4% points, meaning 42.4% of their students meet or exceed state expectations. 

Hernandez, however, achieves an average of 48– an impressive 13% better than the expectation! Hernandez also has a great diversity score: 20.0 out of 40 possible points. 

Curious about homes in the Hernandez zip code? The average price per square foot of a home in the 78666 zip code is $157, much lower than the Austin average of $252. The average price of homes currently listed for this zip code is $269,900. This listing is an example of a 3 bedroom home, for a price significantly lower than the average.

Hernandez Elementary is one of the best elementary schools in the suburbs of Austin, and should be treated as such. Any parent looking to move into the Austin suburbs should give Hernandez Elementary a serious look as an option for their child.

Address: 333 Stagecoach Trail, San Marcos, TX 78666

Website: https://www.smcisd.net/Hernandez

2. Crockett Elementary – San Marcos, TX (37 minutes from Austin Capitol Building)

Coming in second is another school in San Marcos, Texas. This school is Crockett Elementary. Crockett gets an A- overall grade on SchoolSparrow and an A grade for both 4th and 5th grade.

Crockett Elementary. Image: https://www.smcisd.net/domain/416

GreatSchools gives Crockett Elementary just a 5 out of 10, which is far too low. All of the data that SchoolSparrow collects will show you that Crockett Elementary should have a 10 out of 10 score.

Crockett is another school that is quite diverse, with a diversity score of 20 out of a possible 40. Note that Crockett excels when it comes to test scores as well. 

Texas schools with similar parent income profiles score an average 49% points, meaning 49% of their students meet or exceed state expectations. Crockett, however, exceeds this score by 17%, achieving a score of 57. 

Crockett is located in the same zip code as Hernandez Elementary, with an average price per square foot of $157. That’s much lower than the Austin average of $252. The average price of homes currently listed for this zip code is $269,900. This listing is an example of a 3 bedroom home, for a price lower than the average.

Congratulations for the students, staff, and families at Crockett Elementary! It is one of the very best elementary schools in the Austin suburbs. This school should be on the shortlist for any family looking to move to the Austin area. 

Address: 1300 Girard Street, San Marcos, TX 78666

Website: https://www.smcisd.net/Crockett

3. Ruth Barron Elementary – Pflugerville, TX (21 minutes from Austin Capitol Building)

The next school on the list is located in Pflugerville, Texas. This school is Ruth Barron Elementary, which achieves an A- overall grade on SchoolSparrow.

Ruth Barron Elementary is perhaps the most underrated school on the entire list, because GreatSchools only gives it a 5/10. This score is just not accurate, as all of the data suggests that this score should be a 10/10!

Ruth Barron Elementary. Image: https://www.facebook.com/RuthBarronElementary/photos/a.296607430442570/296610450442268/

Texas schools with similar parent income profiles score an average 35.39 points, but Ruth Barron Elementary scores an impressive 18% better than this, with an average score of 42.

Looking for homes near Ruth Barron Elementary? This zip code is the most affordable on the list in terms of price per square foot, with an average price per square foot of a home of….. The price per square foot of a home in this zip code lands at $145 which is still well below the Austin average. The average price of homes currently listed in this zip code is $299,900. This listing is an example of a 4 bedroom home you can get within the boundaries of Ruth Barron Elementary, for less than half of the average list price!

Don’t look past Ruth Barron Elementary because of its 4/10 score on GreatSchools. It has a very deserved A- on SchoolSparrow, and is a school that any parent would be happy to send their child to. It’s one of the best elementary schools in the Austin suburbs.

Address: 14850 Harris Ridge Blvd, Pflugerville, TX, 78660

Website: https://www.pfisd.net/site/Default.aspx?PageType=7&SiteID=319

4. Claude Berkman Elementary – Round Rock, TX (22 minutes from Austin Capitol Building)

Claude Berkman Elementary is the first and only school on the list located in Round Rock, Texas. This school has an A- overall score on SchoolSparrow, with an A for grade 5.

Berkman Elementary. Image:https://activerain.com/blogsview/4355279/homes-near-claude-berkman-elementary-school-in-round-rock-texas

Claude Berkman is yet another school with an inaccurate 5/10 on GreatSchools. This score should be a 10/10! Berkman Elementary is also a diverse school, with a SchoolSparrow diversity score of 20 out of a possible 40.

Berkman students exceed test score expectations based on parent income by 20%, which is the second highest percentage on the list. The expected score for schools with similar parent income profiles is 35.1, but Berkman Elementary averaged an overall score of 42. Great work! 

Claude Berkman Elementary is located in another affordable zip code. The price per square foot of a home in 78664 is $149, which is much less than the Austin average of $252. The average price of homes currently listed in this zip code is $325,000. This listing is an example of a 3 bedroom home you can buy within the boundaries for Claude Berkman Elementary which matches the average list price.

Congratulations to Claude Berkman Elementary for being one of the very best schools in the suburbs of Austin. Parents, staff, and students should all be proud of this much deserved recognition. Claude Berkman is truly a gem in the city of Round Rock.

Address: 400 W. Anderson Ave., Round Rock, Texas, 78664

Website: https://berkman.roundrockisd.org/

5. Lagos Elementary – Manor, TX (20 minutes from Austin Capitol Building)

Lagos Elementary is a school that was just too good to leave off the list. For one, it is the closest school to downtown Austin on the entire list. Beyond that though, Lagos Elementary has a SchoolSparrow overall grade of an A-.

Lagos Elementary. Image: https://www.manorisd.net/Domain/11

Lagos Elementary has a score of 5/10 on GreatSchools. According to the data, however, this score should be a 10/10. Lagos is another diverse school, with a diversity score of 20 out of a possible 40. Students at Lagos exceed test score expectations by 12%. TX schools with similar parent income profiles score an average 41.96, but the score Lagos achieves is an impressive 47.

To go along with all of this, Lagos Elementary is located in an affordable zip code, especially when compared to downtown Austin. It’s actually the most affordable on the list in terms of price per square foot, with the average price falling at $137. This is over $100 less than the $252 average price per square foot in Austin. The average price of current listings in the 78653 zip code is $240,000. 

Interested in a home near Lagos? This listing is an example of a 3 bedroom home that can be purchased at a price just above the current listings’ average price.

Lagos Elementary is truly a gem. It is only a 20 minute drive from downtown Austin, affordable, and a great school academically. There is nothing not to love about this school, and it should be on the radar of everyone searching for schools in the Austin area. It is one of the best schools in the suburbs of Austin.

All of the staff and students at this school are entitled to great applause. Congrats Lagos Elementary!

Address: 11817 Murchison St., Manor, TX 78653

Website: https://www.manorisd.net/Domain/11

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