Coronavirus: Why rural areas could struggle

A headteacher in a rural school in North Yorkshire has warned of a ‘gap in provision’ for rural pupils if they are forced to learn at home due to schools closing because of the coronavirus pandemic, according to Tes

This comes the same week as the Rural Commission in Yorkshire called for evidence on the challenges and opportunities surrounding schools and education in the county.

The Commission explains that village schools play a crucial role in the life of their communities, but as funding is tied to pupil numbers, falling rolls because of changing demography in rural areas, due partly to a lack of affordable housing for young families and suitable rural employment, means small schools face a very tough financial situation.

This is combined with the fact that in most rural communities, the population is older than the national average, putting a higher percentage of the community at risk for life-threatening cases of COVID-19.

Unlike in urban areas, a serious outbreak could quickly overwhelm the local health system, with treatment only available hours away in a crowded city.

Full article:

Tes - Coronavirus: Why rural schools could struggle

NYCC - Rural Commission calls for evidence affecting schools and education


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