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Many people agreed that a remote school is far away from services and they are isolated from other schools and communities. However, there were a range of suggested distances.
While several contributors felt that a remote school should be one that is located one or more hours by road from any other schools, others suggested that a remote school should be one that is separated by three or more hours by road, or one or more hours by boat, to the nearest town. Another suggestion was that a remote school should be more than 30 minutes away from a city, or that a remote school is one that is more than 100 km away from an urban centre.
Some general criteria identified were that a remote school is one that is isolated from other centres, has reduced access to services and communities, and that requires students to be bussed in or travel by boat or plane.
Some felt that factors such as little or no Internet connectivity, a lack of access to diverse facilities such as for the trades, being a one or two room school, and more extreme weather-dependent road access set apart remote schools from rural schools.