The Challenges of Rural Education

Because of the vast expanse of the USA, there can be many isolated areas such as small villages. The facilities which might be seen in such areas can be somewhat limited because of the low population numbers that are represented by these areas. As such, the educational organizations that operate in these locations can be of a smaller scale when brought into contrast with some of the schools which might be seen in more urbanized areas.

It could be said that the challenges which are associated with rural education should not be so profound - particularly because of the statistics which are associated with the numbers of students who go to school defined as in a rural area. In towns which have a population of less than 25,000, there are 33% of school students who go to schools which are in these areas. If you take ten percent of these populated towns and reduce the number of students who go to schools in a place where there are less than 2,500 people, you would learn that 20% of kids are here.

Because of how the numbers are significant, some would say more needs to be done in order to ensure that young people who are in these areas get an equal chance - particularly considering that nearly a third of students in these areas can be in poverty. Also, there can be less incentive for teachers in these locations to teach because of limited teacher resources and the reduced wages that an educator in these areas could expect.

Rural education situations vary from state to state, and so the challenges which different areas face is purely coincidental with the resources that these areas might already have. Unfortunately, there are some issues in states where parents are beginning to realize that the picture in these rural schools is not as clear as it should be, and so the numbers of student intake each academic year has been on the decline in some areas. Of course, this has been something of concern for those who are looking to move forward with education by ensuring that the playing field is more even.

The situation clearly has been made to get far worse than it should be - flying in the face of the philosophy that many have: 'every child matters'. As such, there are now questions as to whether more can be done to accommodate those who are living in more isolated areas by giving parents and students more of an incentive to receive a rural education. In some respects, it could be more of an advantage of a disadvantage with the right approach - with the staff to student ratios being lower, there could be arguments that some people could have the opportunity to get more of an individualized education which is relevant to their needs and ensuring that they get as much attention as they need to get good grades.

More Information On Rural Education

  1. Navigating Resources for Rural Schools
  2. Rural Education
  3. Rural Policy Research Institute