The Crossroad of Challengeand Opportunity in FiscallyStressed Schools andCommunitiesJohn W. Sipple, PhDAssociate ProfessorNYS Center for Rural Schools (NYRuralSchools.org)Community and Regional Development InstituteCornell UniversityNorth Country Symposium, April 2013
My Goals• Stimulate a discussion of opportunity in an era ofchallenge• Share insight from recent research on theinterface between schools and the communitiesthey serve.• Offer a view of schools linked to communities• Offer tools & ideas: Immediate and long-range.
Central Questions• Schools Communities• Communities Schools• When did Schools and Communities becomeseparate?• What are key Policies/Programs?• What should WE do?
A bit of History• 1910 - Administrative Progressives• 1953 - US Dept. of Health, Education & Welfare• 1979US Dept. of EducationUS Dept. of Health and Human Services
The Real World?SchoolingJobsEarlyCareFamiliesCommunitiesHealthNutritionOpportunity Assets
Today in NYSHealthDept.Office ofChildrenandFamilyServicesEducationDept.LaborDept.JobsEarlyCareSchooling Families Communities
A new perspectiveShonkoff et al (2012). Pediatrics.
Key Tensions & ActionsShort-Term Long-TermSchool-basedBigCommunity-based Also Big
Key Policy Levers (e.g.)• Early care and UPK• District Consolidation/School Closure• Curriculum (Local vs. Common Core)• Teacher Hiring• Teacher Quality (APPR)• Revenues? Expenditures?• Each of these shapes schools and communities
Ability to Pay$0$50,000$100,000$150,000$200,000$250,000$300,000199319941995199619971998199920002001200220032004200520062007200820092010Median Income Wealth/PupilNYCBig 4Small CityHN RuralAve NeedLow Need
Ability to Levy Tax$0$200,000$400,000$600,000$800,000$1,000,000$1,200,000199319941995199619971998199920002001200220032004200520062007200820092010Median Property Wealth/PupilNYCBig 4Small CityHN RuralAve NeedLow Need$20/$1000 = $20,000/pupil
Lyson Hypothesis• A school is vital to the survival of ruralcommunities.• Viable villages generally contain schools: dyingand dead ones either lack them or do not havethem for long.• The capacity to maintain a school is a continuingindicator of a communitys wellbeing.• School district consolidation has deleteriouseffects on small rural communities.
Rural Villages in NYS020406080100120140160180200Small withschoolSmall withoutschoolLarge withschoolLarge withoutschoolNumberofvillage199020002010
Lyson Redux30,00035,00040,00045,00050,00055,00060,00065,0001990 2000 2010Median House value (1990 $)SM-SchoolSM-No SchoolLG-SchoolLG-No School
Lyson Redux20,00025,00030,00035,00040,00045,0001990 2000 2010Household Income (1990 $)SM-SchoolSM-No SchoolLG-SchoolLG-No School
Teacher Labor MarketsKilleen, Loeb & Williams (2013)
Next Steps – What to do?• Easy access to Data – Tools (NYRuralSchools.org)• Informed Local Decision making• Local and Regional Analysis and Planning• Demographics & Enrollment• Financial Planning/Scenarios• District Reorganization Analysis• Public Participation and Communication