ERIC Number: ED319578
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
The Condition of Rural Education in Tennessee: A Profile.
Coe, Pam; And Others
With the exception of four major metropolitan areas--Chattanooga, Knoxville, Memphis, and Nashville--Tennessee is a predominantly rural state with 56% (or 79) of its 142 school districts classified as rural. A rural school district is defined as one in which 75% or more of the population lives outside Standard Metropolitan Areas or in which student density is equal or less than 10 pupils per square miles. Tennessee school legislation does not specify policies for rural education different from those for urban or suburban education. The state establishes a curriculum framework with courses outside the mandated curriculum being permissible if the individual school district wishes to be innovative. Lack of central office staff to work with the state department prevents most rural districts from using innovative methods. In general, most rural school students begin the day with a fairly long bus ride, may have parents who are unemployed or underemployed, are more likely to need special education services and less likely to be classified as gifted than urban students, and are likely to have parents who did not graduate from high school or only have a high school education. In comparison to their urban counterparts, rural school districts tend to have fewer schools and students, and to be less adequately funded. When school districts are ranked by quartiles based on student density, the least dense quartile is shown to have the lowest average personal income: approximately three-fifths of the average personal income of the most dense quartile of districts. In 1988, a group of 66 counties filed a lawsuit challenging the state's funding formula. The consequent court decision may radically change the foundation of educational aid in Tennessee. This document contains statistical data and 12 references. (ALL)
Descriptors: Elementary Secondary Education, Rural Areas, Rural Education, Rural Schools, Rural Urban Differences, Rural Youth, School Districts, School Law, State Aid, State Legislation, Student Characteristics
Appalachia Educational Laboratory, P.O. Box 1348, Charleston, WV 25325.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Appalachia Educational Lab., Charleston, WV.
Identifiers - Location: Tennessee