Why rural schools?

Lorna Jimerson's report "The Hobbit Effect: Why Small Works in Public Schools" helps us understand why rural schools' distinct advantage

January 8, 2018 |
Share

Lorna Jimerson's research-based “The Hobbit Effect” (2006) summarized the real benefits of small and rural schools. For example, Jimerson reports that when socio-economic factors are taken into account, children in smaller schools are academically more successful, have higher graduation rates, take more advanced courses, and participate in extra-curricular activities to a higher degree. Overall, Jimerson's extensive review of research found ten "research-based reasons” why small schools work:

  1. There is greater participation in extra-curricular activities, and that is linked to academic success.
  2. Small schools are safer.
  3. Kids feel they belong.
  4. Small class size allows more individualized instruction.
  5. Good teaching methods are easier to implement.
  6. Teachers feel better about their work.
  7. Mixed-ability classes avoid condemning some students to low expectations.
  8. Multiage classrooms promote personalized learning and encourage positive social interactions.
  9. Smaller districts mean less bureaucracy.
  10. More grades in one school alleviate many problems of transitions to new schools.

You can read the entirety of Lorna's report here.

Previous ALL STORIES Next

You're Invited to an Afternoon at the Farm!

May 2, 2022

Join us for a free afternoon at Monmouth College's educational farm and learn about their Rural Teacher Corps and place-based educational opportunities!

Place-Based Education