Another great area to consider is Jamaica Plain.
Here are links to everything on the market in each of these are including maps so you can see location and proximity of each
Here is a great site for schools:
I hope that helps to get you started!
Is there a particular reason you chose to look in the areas you mentioned? Are you working there and want to have a short commute? Other reasons? Would you like to live within public transportation reach, or are you planning to drive? It all matters when choosing a place to live, especially when you are buying and plannign to stay there for a long time.
You can check crime statistics here:
and even compare neighborhoods (say, 2 neighborhoods within Boston, or to your own state, and get a feel what these numbers mean to you).
Others submitted links for you with info on schools. How old is your child/children? There might be some differences wether we are talking about elementary, middle or high school.
Are you planning to rent before you buy, to get a feel for the area, or are you planning to buy right away?
It's always very helpful to at least drive around a few towns and see how you like the neighborhood, and if you can picture yourself living there.
Stop by a playground, let your children have some time to relax, and meanwhile you can chit chat with other parents, I personally found it's a great way to tell what's going on in the neighborhood, how safe they feel, how they like the schools etc.
What is your budget and preferences (single family / condo etc)? That might also help you narrow down your choices.
I would be happy to discuss this with you further. If you have specific questions and don't feel like asking them in a public forum, here's my email:
Best of luck with your move, hope you fall in love with Boston!
There are a number of great schools in the Boston area. Roslindale, West Roxbury and Hyde Park would be really good safe areas.
If public schools worry you, there are several private and charter schools. I have attached a link with a community comparison for you.