This University Is Putting An Emphasis On Rural Education

A new program at West Texas A&M University is training the next generation of administrators for rural public schools.

By Laura Rice & Alexandra HartMarch 15, 2019 9:31 am

A couple of weeks ago, Texas Standard reported about the challenges facing rural school districts in Texas. The takeaway? It can be harder to recruit teachers to work in rural areas, and it’s also hard for schools to get the state funding they need to attract those teachers and to be successful.

Those challenges ultimately fall on the backs of rural superintendents. The job looks much different than it does in a city. That’s why West Texas A&M just started a doctoral program in education with an emphasis on teaching administrators how to run rural schools.

Dr. Walter Wendler, president of West Texas A&M, says he came up with the idea for the program after touring public schools in the Texas Panhandle.

“I was just flabbergasted by the kinds of challenges that exist there, but also the kinds of opportunities. It’s a sword with two edges on it. And that was kind of the genesis,” Wendler says.

What you’ll hear in this segment:

– Why this program is needed

– How it began

– How it’s working out so far

Written by Alexandra Hart.