The Center for Midwestern Initiatives was launched earlier this year to help rural schools offer place-based education, build philanthropic foundations, and recruit talented teachers, and the center recently unveiled a website dedicated to its efforts.
The center falls under the Rural School and Community Trust, and it’s working with communities across the Midwest. But, as its leader Gary Funk put it, “they aren’t splitting hairs on geography.”
Center officials hope to attract online members, or rural schools that are willing to share their stories through photos, videos and comments.
“This will not be easy, but we think it is of vital importance because many rural schools and teachers are isolated or dealing with issues not often covered in the mainstream media,” Funk said.
The site is well-organized and easy to navigate. It has a section for anyone interested in learning about place-based education. and another for those interested in foundations for rural schools.
The site has a good start on content, too. For example, the Rural Teachers Corps page links to an interesting story and video about the Navajo Professional Teaching Development Program, which is a summer program run by Knox College, in Galesburg, Ill., which gives an opportunity for future educators to spend a few weeks teaching in Arizona.
There’s also some original content. The place-based education page has another good story about a student-run grocery store in Leeton, Mo., which “exemplifies all that is important about place-based learning.”
The site also has a place where readers can subscribe to its content. Check it out!
A version of this news article first appeared in the Rural Education blog.