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NEA Issue Explainer

Rural Schools

Schools in rural areas need reliable funding to provide students with the support, classes, activities, and technology that will ensure a well-rounded education.
Published: December 2, 2021
This issue explainer originally appeared on

More than 7 million students are enrolled in rural school districts; an additional 2.5 million attend rural schools in districts that are not designated “rural” by the Census Bureau. 

While federal laws such as the Secure Rural Schools program and the Rural Education Achievement Program provide critical support for many of the more than 7,700 rural school districts, these programs must be improved. 

Policy makers should do more to ensure that all students in rural communities realize their basic right to a great public education. 

Speak Up For Students and Public Schools

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It's about our kids.

The South Dakota Education Association (SDEA) is a professional organization working hard for educators, so they can continue to work hard for our kids. SDEA members provide a wide range of professional education services in communities throughout the state.