Let's say you're a student at the North Schuylkill, living in Ringtown. To get to school, you head out of town, down Ringtown Boulevard through Pattersonville, onto 924 through Downtown Shenandoah, down the Gold Star into Frackville, turning onto the Two-Miler until you get to the school. A 22 Minute, 13.4 Mile trip -- through another school district. About midway between Ringtown and North Schuylkill, you pass within half a mile of the Shenandoah Valley Education Complex on Shenandoah's west side.
Now, let's switch gears somewhat. Now you're a student living in Brandonville. Since you live in Brandonville, you're not a student at North Schuylkill, you're a student at the eighth largest school district in the state of Pennsylvania, Hazleton Area. 23 Minutes, 13.9 Miles, and if what my contacts in Hazleton have told me is correct, bus transfers. If you went to Shenandoah Valley, it'd be only a four-and-a-half mile drive, not even ten minutes. It'd still be a shorter trip if you went to North Schuylkill, 20 minutes, 11.6 miles.
The question lies, why are our school districts mapped in such an odd way? Why are we even sending kids to Hazleton?? It seems odd, at least in my eyes, to send kids twice as far away as needed for an education, when there's a school nearby that will suffice. We live in an area that experiences harsh winters. It seems on some days, some districts will stay open no matter what. In that case, would you rather your kid be at the school right across the hill, not even two miles away as the crow flies, or have your kid two or three towns below that one?