“…Consolidation robs communities of important assets: their children and their schools. Consolidation may seem efficient based on pupil-to-teacher ratios, costs per pupil, and the promise of improved curriculum and higher test scores. But it is hardly efficient, given the costs of transportation and the time children spend away from the school and their families.
School and community leaders who promote consolidation may think they have the well-being of children in mind, but their emphasis on per-unit cost treats students as if they are assembly-line products and not children with differing needs, personalities, and dreams.
Rural schools have provided their communities with doctors, lawyers, ministers, merchants, farmers, and laborers for generations. The notion of schools at the center of rural communities is hardly new. Nor is the idea of child-centered education….”