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Rural Education

TFA Diarists Reflect on a Year in the Classroom
Blacksburg, Virginia, native Babak Mostaghimi is awed by his students concern for him following the Virginia Tech shootings; Will Hobart reflects on how his capacity for patience has grown, and Shani Jackson looks at the resiliency of middle schoolers.

Teach For America Diaries -- The Home Stretch
While Shani Jackson and Babak Mostaghimi cope with student fears and attitudes in the days leading up to state tests, Will Hobart gains an appreciation for inclusion practices.

Teach For America Diaries
Its crunch time as the diarists prepare students for high-stakes tests and deal with students pre-test-weariness and anxiety. At the same time, they continue to learn more about their students challenges, fears, and resilience.

The Growing Role of Online Learning
Enrollment in online and blended courses -- those that combine online and traditional learning -- will continue growing, a study says. Educators need training and schools need plans to ensure online learning is integrated effectively and efficiently into schools.

Teach For America Diaries
Mid-year brings the Teach For America Diarists more insights into their students troubles and dreams and an awareness of how much they can impact the youngsters in their charge.

A Look Back at the First Semester
The end of the first semester brought relief, reflection, and anticipation to the three Teach For America Diarists. While knowing they have a long way to go with their classes, they allowed themselves moments of satisfaction and celebrations of early successes.

Teach for America Diaries: October Presents New Challenges for New Teachers
Will Hobart forgets about a bad week after connecting with a student, Shani Jackson bids farewell to the rocky month of October and makes some changes to her teaching strategies, and Babak Mostaghimi becomes a daddy, a godfather, a cousin, and a confidant.

Students Go Back in Time for a Week
Wearing long skirts and straw hats, third graders from Woodstock Elementary School spend a week learning in a one-room schoolhouse the way youngsters did in the mid-1800s. From using quill pens to rolling hoops, it's quite an education.

Native American Schools Ponder, Assail Dropout RatesWith the high school dropout rate for Native Americans among the highest in the country, reservation and public school officials are searching for new ways to keep teens in school.

Treasuring Kids and Their Education on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina
As the smallest K-12 public school in North Carolina, Ocracoke School strives to provide diverse learning opportunities in a place that can be reached only by ferry or plane. The small number of students and the isolation on their island home on the Outer Banks foster a close relationship between the school and community.

Saving a Community's Heart: The Small Rural School
At the center of many small, rural communities is the school -- and as states look for ways to save money, more small districts are being consolidated. The Rural School and Community Trust, though, argues that rural students benefit from small, local schools.

Calendar Exposes School Financing Problems
When bake sales and walk-a-thons aren't enough to save critical school programs, what's a community to do? Members of the Long Tom Grange in Junction City, Oregon, found a solution: they "took it all off" for a calendar that's eliciting orders from around the world.

Rural Children, Real Challenges
"You can't build a house without a hammer and saw, and you can't expect an adult to build a successful life if the tools of learning and health weren't instilled in childhood," says Joan Benso of Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children. Her organization's recent report about the state's nearly 500,000 rural children suggests that many are dealing with challenges as difficult as those of kids in urban areas.

A View from the Rural Trust
Rachel Tompkins is president of the Rural School and Community Trust, a nonprofit educational organization "dedicated to improving student learning and community life by strengthening relationships between rural schools and communities and engaging students in community-based public work." Through advocacy, research and outreach, the Rural Trust strives for policies that enhance the climate for rural communities.

Reporters' Notebook: Native Americans Struggle, Build Pride
For the second installment in the Education World series Lessons from Our Nation's Schools, editors Diane Weaver Dunne and Ellen R. Delisio traveled to rural Maine to visit two Native American reservation schools. They learned about Native American culture, learning styles, and the people who teach and learn at these schools.

Teachers on Mission to Save Heritage
At the two Native American schools Education World visited in northern Maine, cultural heritage appears to be maintained by a diminishing number of tribal members who are fluent in their native languages and knowledgeable about their traditions. Students have responded eagerly to the introduction of Native American studies to the schools' curricula. Tribal leaders hope that the resurgence of native studies in many reservation schools over the past 18 years will help the next generation recapture its now struggling culture. This article is a part of a continuing Education World series, Lessons from Our Nation's Schools.

Reservation Schools Preserve Cultures, Boost Academics
Infused with state and federal money but facing more requirements and students with challenges, staff at two Native American schools in Maine talked with Education World about meeting their two missions: passing on Native American culture and boosting academics. This article is a part of a continuing Education World series, Lessons from Our Nation's Schools.

Native American Schools Ponder, Assail Dropout Rates
With the high school dropout rate for Native Americans among the highest in the country, reservation and public school officials are searching for new ways to keep teens in school. This article is a part of a continuing Education World series, Lessons from Our Nation's Schools.

Are Smaller Schools Better Schools?
Reforming public education may be as simple as creating smaller schools. The results of two recent studies indicate that small schools may be the remedy for lots of what is wrong with public education. Small schools can reduce the negative effects of poverty, reduce violence, and increase parent involvement and student accountability.

Scrambling for Staff: The Teacher Shortage in Rural Schools
At a time when school districts nationwide are experiencing teacher shortages, districts that historically have difficulty attracting and retaining quality teachers are really scrambling for staff. This week Education World explores the effects of the teacher shortage on remote and rural schools. Included: What are schools doing to solve the shortage?

The Social Context of Education -- 1997
A wide range of social conditions can affect the way kids learn. A report, The Social Context of Education, examines those conditions and how they've changed over the last few decades.

Living With the Permanence of Portables
Using portable classrooms to relieve school overcrowding is a solution heralded -- and hated. It's all a matter of attitude, some teachers say.