Education Week Reports on Why Rural Matters 2009

Last Updated: November 22, 2009

Education WeekEducation Week features Why Rural Matters 2009 in this October 28, 2009 article. In "Study Urges Regional Focus on Rural Schools," Education Week's Michelle R. Davis talks with Jerry D. Johnson, Rural Trust Policy Research and Analysis Manager, and Rural Trust Policy Director Marty Strange.

From the article: State and federal programs aimed at helping underprivileged students often miss their mark in high-poverty, rural schools, in part due to inaccurate stereotypes, according to a report on rural schools released today by a national research and advocacy group.

The report, by the Rural School and Community Trust, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization, also finds that a regional approach—instead of a statewide approach—might be the best way to make improvements in high-poverty, rural school districts.

Nearly 10 million students in the United States attend school in a rural district, or about 19 percent of the nation's total public school enrollment, according to the report.

The information collected in the report should dispel the notion that only a few students attend rural schools and that they are overwhelmingly white, said Jerry D. Johnson, a policy research and analysis manager at the Rural School and Community Trust.

"It's not uncommon for people to carry in their head a picture of a rural student as a white kid on a farm in Iowa," Mr. Johnson said. "The reality is that the rural student population is incredibly diverse, and in some places, rural student populations are incredibly economically disadvantaged."

Click here to read the complete article on the Education Week website.

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