Thursday, March 5, 2009

Interdependence of rural schools and rural communities

See this Sacramento Bee story by Walter Yost from March 3, 2009. It tells of the schools around the Georgetown Divide area of El Dorado County, California, where the Black Oak Mine Unified School District is the largest employer in a 400-square mile, sparsely populated area. Tough economic times in California mean that some school employees are likely to get pink slips in the coming weeks, and a halt of school construction projects means less local revenue from out-of-town construction workers.

The story quotes Kai Schafft, director of the Center on Rural Education and Communities at Pennsylvania State University, on the interdpendence of schools and the community: "Rural schools and communities can face a real vicious cycle in which the decline of one leads to the decline of the other."

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