ERIC Number: ED392586
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-Jun
Reference Count: 0
Exploratory Studies of Occupational Structure of the Workforce and Support of Public Education in Rural Appalachia.
Smith, Eldon D.; DeYoung, Alan J.
This paper focuses on the political economy of public education in depressed rural regions of the United States. The general hypothesis explored is that occupational composition of the community workforce and associated educational requirements for employment are significant elements of the sociopolitical environment for public education. Part I examines case study material on Pulaski County, Kentucky: employment patterns, public schools and related educational resources, adult population characteristics, financial support for schools, academic achievement, the dual system of an independent municipal district within the county district, potential impact of consolidation of the independent and county districts, direct support for public education by employers, local supply of technically proficient workers, and employment policies of local employers. The main finding is that major employers with needs for more highly educated workers tended to actively support improvements in the public schools. In Part II, 529 parents of high school seniors in 5 Kentucky and Virginia schools were surveyed concerning their educational attainment, occupational status, and participation in school support activities. Findings suggest that having a high proportion of well educated workers in a community reinforces support for good quality schools, and that this support comes through the overt direct participation of educated parents. Second, benefits of more and better education are mostly lost to a community when local employment opportunities for the educated are not available. Part III discusses implications for rural development policy. Contains 21 references. (SV)
Descriptors: Education Work Relationship, Educational Attainment, Elementary Secondary Education, Employment Opportunities, Human Capital, Labor Force, Parent Participation, Postsecondary Education, Public Education, Rural Areas, Rural Development, Rural Schools, School Community Relationship, School Support
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Cooperative State Research Service (USDA), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Southern Rural Development Center, Mississippi State, MS.
Identifiers: Appalachia; Occupational Structure; Pulaski County School District KY; Virginia