Date of Award

January 2012

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Geography & Geographic Information Science

First Advisor

Devon A. Hansen


Western North Dakota school district consolidations continue to be a topic of great local concern. This is apparent in the Hebron, Glen Ullin, and Richardton-Taylor school districts. A qualitative case study of these communities addressed the importance of four school district consolidation issues to the area: 1) time zones differences; 2) time on a bus; 3) identifying key stakeholders; and 4) other factors as noted by respondents. Data was collected from a mail back questionnaire sent to administrators and school board members. Major findings were: 1) time zones differences were of minimal importance; 2) time spent on a bus was to be of short duration; 3) the key decision makers were to be the school board members plus patrons; and 4) open enrollment is not so important. Similar issues exist in other rural areas experiencing energy booms, which is why this research has applicability beyond western North Dakota.