I have a market insider feature on my site which will allow you to get community reports on any Mass community by entering a zip code. It gives school rankings and you can compare two side-by-side. If you choose to, you can sign up to have monthly updates sent to you via email.The link is below. I hope this helps!--Mike
I would say that there are cities close by that may be just as close to downtown Boston such as Cambridge, Somerville, Everett, Medford, Revere, and Winthrop. There is also a charter HS in Malden which may be close to the Orange Line.
While I cant comment on the schools I can say there is plenty to think about not just in the North End but within a couple mile radius too.