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ERIC Number: ED535987
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Aug
Pages: 9
Abstractor: ERIC
Make Rural Schools a Priority: Considerations for Reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act
Ayers, Jeremy
Center for American Progress
The public usually thinks of large urban schools when it considers reforms to the American education system. But rural students account for a large and growing segment of the school-age population, and their needs have too often been overlooked in school improvement efforts. Policymakers and the public must make rural education a priority if the nation as a whole is to make marked gains in student outcomes. Unfortunately, federal education efforts do not always consider the issues of rural students and schools in ways they could, despite their unique challenges. Congress has the opportunity to move forward on education reform by reauthorizing Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) to ensure all children achieve their greatest potential. ESEA is the largest and most significant federal education law supporting public schools. The law, currently known as No Child Left Behind, was due to be reauthorized in 2007. Congress now has the opportunity to fix numerous flaws in NCLB and to ensure the needs of rural students and schools are met. Congress should keep the following considerations in mind so that federal education law better addresses the needs of rural students and schools: (1) Ensure rural schools and districts have fair chances to receive and compete for federal education funds; (2) Make school-based wraparound services available to rural students in recognition of the special circumstances and sometimes limited capacity of rural schools; (3) Ensure options are available to rural districts for the successful turnaround of low-performing schools; and (4) Enhance supports for building the teacher and principal workforce for rural schools. These points are by no means exhaustive. Others have done important work on how to improve rural education. This paper offers a few key considerations for how a new ESEA can improve the way federal programs and policies serve rural interests. (Contains 19 endnotes.)
Center for American Progress. 1333 H Street NW 10th Floor, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: 202-682-1611; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Center for American Progress
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Elementary and Secondary Education Act; No Child Left Behind Act 2001
IES Cited: ED565612