We determined the best school zones based on a complex calculus of quantity and quality, averaging the scores for all elementary and secondary schools on the Fraser Institute’s provincial report card. Wealthy residential pockets dominate in this category, especially if they’re uptown—nine of the top 10 education hubs land north of Bloor.

The best neighbourhoods for schools are

1. Rosedale-Moore Park

The neighbourhood is a nexus of great schools with its proximity to Rosedale Heights School of the Arts, Branksome Hall and Whitney Junior Public School.

2. Lawrence Park South

Best School: Lawrence Park CI, ranked No. 29 in Ontario

3. Bathurst Manor

Best School: William Lyon Mackenzie CI, ranked No. 17

4. Lansing Westgate

Best School: Summit Heights PS, ranked No. 51

5. North Riverdale

Best School: Pape Avenue PS, ranked No. 42

The top-ranking primary schools are in the east end

Arbor Glen Public School, Hillcrest Village

Arbor Glen is open concept—the classrooms have no walls. It seems to work: less than 1 per cent of students fall below EQAO standards.

Kennedy Public School, Steeles

Kennedy has averaged a perfect Fraser Institute score for the past five years. It has excellent arts, science and literacy programs.

Cherokee Public School, Pleasant View

This techy east-end school offers Smart Boards in every homeroom, a popular eco club and after-school Mandarin classes for students.

East vs. West

East-siders are better educated by a hair, averaging 66 per cent post-secondary grads compared to 63 in the west end. The most east-end grads are in the Beach (82 per cent); in the west, it’s Kingsway South (89 per cent).

Downtown vs. Suburbs

Downtown averages 76 per cent university grads, versus 82 up north. The most downtown grads live in the Bay Street Corridor (89 per cent); north of the 401, it’s Willowdale East (86 per cent).

The best TDSB high school is in Bathurst Manor

William Lyon Mackenzie CI is a nerd’s paradise of AP programs in math and tech. Ninety-five per cent of its students are accepted into college or university.


Funds raised by Forest Hill Public School’s parents’ council during the 2012–2013 school year. That works out to $450 per student.

The fastest-improving schools are

Edited by Emily Landau. Designed by Brennan Higginbotham and Matthew Warland. Research by Richard Florida, Vass Bednar, Isabel Ritchie and Greg Spencer at the Martin Prosperity Institute. Interactive by Tim Burden and Jennifer Abela-Froese. Illustration by Chloe Cushman. Additional reporting by Simon Bredin, Rebecca Philps and Reanna Sartoretto.