As with most things, I have found that the best way to find/pick the best doctor, school and other essentials is to ask other mums (and go with a sense of peace).
As I started looking for a school here in Christchurch for our oldest child we went to the schools, hung out at the playgrounds after school and talked with mums. I asked them about their experiences, what made them chose that particular school and if they were happy with their choice.
I had the same experience with finding a doctor’s office. I emailed a group of mums and asked where they went. On both choices I have been thrilled and haven’t looked back. Each person’s experience is unique and helpful.
Here is some basic info that was useful to me in my decision making process…
www.zoodle.co.nz – This is a great site for finding what school zone you are in. You can enter a street address and get property information. At the bottom of the information page are a list of the local schools. It then shows whether the address is in the school zone or not. Keep in mind that sometimes an address may be zoned for the secondary school, but not the primary.
http://www.tki.org.nz/Schools – Here you can enter a school name and it shows you information about the school, including the decile rating. A decile rating indicates the socio-economic status of an area. 1 is the lowest and 10 is the highest. This isn’t necessarily an indicator of the quality of the school, but can be useful.
Other helpful links when looking for schools (give a list of schools in Christchurch)