ERIC Number: ED234973
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Oct-16
Research Findings on K-12 and 1-12 Rural School Districts in the United States.
Barker, Bruce O.; Muse, Ivan D.
A 1982-83 study conducted at Brigham Young University compared K-12 rural schools with fewer than 300 students to those with enrollments of 301-900, using information from districts in 45 states. Of the 15,601 American K-12/1-12 public school systems, 1,414 (9.1%) were identified as enrolling 300 students or fewer, and 2,711 (17.4%) enrolled 301-900 students. A proportional random sample of 308 districts was selected from the smaller districts; a simple random sample of 508 districts was selected from larger districts. A questionnaire on the rural school district, school superintendent, teachers, programs, and student performance, mailed to school superintendents in both samples, was returned from 244 districts in the first sample (79.2%) and 398 in the second (78.3%). Superintendents in both samples reported that their number one challenge was securing adequate school finances, followed by the need to improve curriculum. Superintendents in the smaller districts reported that securing teachers was their third-ranked problem; those from larger districts ranked providing meaningful inservice instruction third. Both samples found difficulty in locating qualified math and science teachers their most significant staff recruitment problem. Both cited lack of motivation/goals/direction as more serious student problems than drugs, vandalism, sex, alcoholism, or cheating. Comparative research findings and state data are given in tables. (MH)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Administrator Characteristics, Administrator Role, Comparative Analysis, Curriculum Development, Educational Finance, Elementary Secondary Education, Inservice Teacher Education, National Surveys, Problems, Rural Education, Rural Schools, Salaries, School Activities, School District Size, School Districts, Small Schools, Student Problems, Superintendents, Teacher Recruitment
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Rural Education Association (75th, Manhattan, KS, October 16-18, 1983).