Rural Policy Matters: February 2009

Last Updated: March 17, 2009

Fact and Figures About School Lunches in Poor Rural School Districts
What percent of students who attend school in the 800 poorest rural school districts qualify for free or reduced priced lunches?

Don't Miss REWG: Rural Education Working Group National Meeting
If you are a community activist, student or parent, teacher or administrator, member of an organization, leader or policymaker, or a person concerned about the quality of education and community life in rural places, the REWG national meeting is designed especially for you. You will meet dozens of other rural activists and thinkers who are working to improve their schools and communities and to ensure that strong educational opportunities are available to rural young people across the country.

Arkansas Communities Forge Revitalization Process
Three very different rural communities in Arkansas are partnering with the statewide rural education group ACRE to improve the economies, quality of life, and future prospects of their places. Read about what they have discovered is essential to the process...

A New School Funding Formula Proposed in New Mexico
A new funding formula that was produced by a legislatively funded study committee and its consultants would increase overall state aid by over 15%, according to a Rural School and Community Trust analysis...

Bill to Limit School Size in New Mexico
Under legislation introduced in the New Mexico legislature, state funds could not be used for new construction of any school with more than 900 students and a school district could only consolidate schools if it determines "that the consolidation is in the best interest of students served by each of the schools proposed to be consolidated."

Maine Consolidation Fight Twists Again
Maine's forced school district consolidation process continues down its rocky road.

There You Go Again
Lavina Grandon, Policy and Education Director of Arkansas's Advocates for Community and Rural Education to an editorial, responds to an editorial entitled, "There they go again," published in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette; February 10, 2009; page 16 (Editorial section).


National Rural Education Policy Agenda Wants Your Input
Don't miss your chance to express your views on the most important public policies affecting rural schools and communities. More than 100 rural activists from around the country have drafted five position papers on rural issues. These papers will be discussed, modified, and approved at the Rural Education Working Group national meeting April 19-21.

Encourage Teen-Driver Safety -- National Grant Competition
Project Ignition, sponsored by State Farm Companies Foundation and the National Youth Leadership Council (NYLC), is an annual competition for high school students to promote teen-driver safety.

Rural School Funding News

Alaska Still Denying Rural Students in Struggling Schools
Superior Court Judge Sharon Gleason has ruled that the state of Alaska is continuing to deny students in struggling rural schools the education they are guaranteed under the Alaska Constitution.

Arizona ELL Case to Go to U.S. Supreme Court
The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear the long-running Flores lawsuit on appeal from legislative leaders in Arizona and the state's Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Horne.

Oregon Court Rules State Not Obligated
The Oregon Supreme Court has ruled against a group of families and school districts that brought a finance lawsuit against the state in 2006.

Arguments Heard on Whether South Dakota Districts Can Sue State
The South Dakota Supreme Court has heard arguments on whether school districts can sue the state or finance a lawsuit against the state, a constitutional question related to the state's school funding lawsuit. A written ruling is expected soon.


2006-07 College Enrollment Status for the 10th Grade Class of 2001-02
Figures from the U.S. Department of Education show the college enrollment status for the 10th grade class of 2001-02.

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Education Funding in the Stimulus: An Overview
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provides significant additional funding for public schools. Details are still forthcoming, but we outline the basic funding streams and their requirements...