While rural development, both globally and locally, has many different aspects of reform, education should definitely be among some of its top priorities. Education births knowledge; it grants the area's students with fundamental knowledge necessary to survive within the growing economic world. These students can be promoted to become community leaders within these developed rural areas, and they can further the educational quest for their community as well.
Yes, education should be the top priority in rural development strategies, globally and locally, because education should be the top priority in development strategies everywhere. Education is the great equalizer. Without implementing great education, all development strategies will fail as there will be a dirth of educated, intelligent people to implement those strategies.