ERIC Number: ED368531
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
A Case Study of the Impact of a State-Level Policy Designed To Improve Rural Schools in the State of Vermont. Occasional Paper No. 36.
Carlson, Robert V.
This case study examines how rural K-12 single-unit schools in Vermont have responded to the twin pressures of higher state-level standards, required under the 1984 Public School Approval (PSA) policy, and limited fiscal resources. Chapter 1 provides background information on the study population, economic and educational conditions in Vermont, and PSA standards and review processes. In chapter 2, a literature review considers the diverse, special characteristics of small, rural schools. Chapter 3 describes inputs, process indicators, outcome indicators, and qualitative characteristics of the 10 K-12 schools studied and summarizes the impact of PSA on their finances and curricula. This section also discusses how two comparable schools coped somewhat differently with school improvement mandates and limited funding. The results indicate that rural schools are facing the challenge of small size and fiscal constraints with distance learning, independent study, cross-disciplinary teaching, and multi-age groupings. Chapter 4 considers various strategies for improving educational quality at an affordable cost, including funding strategies, financial management, school-community cooperation, distance learning technologies, the 4-day school week, and integrated services. The last chapter concludes that the PSA has had a substantial impact on K-12 schools in terms of personnel appointments, curricular revisions, and facility improvements, but that these gains may be short-lived if the contingent fiscal problems are not solved. Appendices include K-12 schools statistical data, school site statistical profiles, and school site visitation summaries. Contains 101 references. (LP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Appalachia Educational Lab., Charleston, WV.
Identifiers: Small School Districts; Vermont