News on NYS Rural Schools: 

This NCPR story is a preview of the North Country Symposium hosted by St. Lawrence University

Quick Facts

  • New York’s rural school districts educate about 360,000 students.
  • Of 697 school districts in NYS, 299 are in rural areas and another 65 are in towns located in distant or remote locations.
  • 7.5% of New York’s rural school students are minorities.
  • 28.7% of rural students qualify for free or reduced price lunch.
  • Since the year 2000, New York has lost 200,000 citizens every year due to out-migration from NYS.
  • Rural schools face a unique set of issues and challenges, such as consolidation, improving academic and extracurricular programs while keeping tax levies in check, offering universal Pre-K, and enrollment and demographic changes. To see how our center is addressing these issues, visit our Resources & Research section.
  • On average, a high-need rural school district spends a minimum of $12,098 and a maximum of $28,470 per pupil


The map below depicts New York State’s locale classification for all school districts. Hover over a school district for classification information, and click for more details.