It is an issue that has slowly been unraveling in San Carlos over the past few years. In years past, many San Carlos residents who were assigned to Sequoia High School have freely transfered to Carlmont High School through intra-district transfers. With Carlmont nearing or at capacity many San Carlos residents who are assigned to Sequoia may not be allowed to transfer to Carlmont. Over the past 18 months many San Carlos residents have been caught off-guard by these new restrictions.
Looking strictly at a price per square foot basis, White Oaks and Howard Park, two of the highest priced areas of San Carlos, have homes that are assigned to Sequoia. The northwest part of San Carlos has many homes that are assigned to Carlmont. Many home buyers in San Carlos are now taking a closer look at the assigned high school of prospective homes. Having held many open houses over the last few months I can tell you that the frequency with which potential buyers are asking about the designated high school has increased dramatically. Some have even gone so far as to say that they would only consider a home that is already assigned to Carlmont.
The next logical question is to examine whether the disparity between Sequoia and Carlmont is justified. Going entirely by the APIs of 699 for Sequoia and 800 for Carlmont, there would appear to be some justification for a price differential. However, going by APIs alone is a mistake. There is much more to consider including facilities, teachers, administration, PTA, students, activities, focus, etc. The debate over the differences between Sequoia and Carlmont and whether the preference for Carlmont is justified is an entirely different topic. For many buyers considering purchasing a $1,000,000+ home, they want hard statistics to justify their purchase. So whether it is fair or not, APIs are king for many buyers.
Whether those homes that are assigned to Carlmont are able to close the gap on the prices in White Oaks and Howard Park remains to be seen. I think there will be a narrowing of the price differentials, the question is, to what degree.