Searched: Wales, Alaska on Wikipedia. Alaskan Farmers on Google. Worn down New York City on Google; Worn down parts New York City on Google. Music high schools on Google; high school musical focus on Google. Small school lunches on Google; lunch at small schools on Google. Wales School website.
In my novel, my story takes place in a fictional town in Alaska named Lincoln. The population of said town is 400 residents, so it's pretty small. It's in Northern-ish Alaska, so there aren't very many people around. The town is based on Wales, Alaska, a real town with 200 people. (Yay for a graduating class of 3 in 2008).
My questions are 1) What are reasons which people would live far away from town? My main character's love interest lives thirty miles away from town. I was thinking of a farm, but what farmers are in Alaska? What do they farm? Would a ranch of any sort be practical? (Probably not with the cold.)
2) How would lunches work in a school with less than 52 students? Schools are required to provide lunch for students correct? So how would the school do that?
3) My character previously lived in New York City, in a pretty worn down and dangerous part. What's the worst you can get for that sort of thing? My character has an older sister and his mother (who works as a waitress because she can't get a better job). The crappier the better. It's preferably better if it's scary as I want it to be a factor of mental disorders later in his life.
4) Are music schools probable or would an art academy be a better choice? I want my character to go to a music/art school, but I don't know if there are purely musical focus high schools or if there are only art academies. Edit: This school is in New York.