East St. Louis Schools
10:42 am
Wed March 23, 2011

State poised to address East St. Louis schools

Illinois' education chief is giving East St. Louis' school district an ultimatum - fix the way it deals with some 1,500 special-education students or face "aggressive actions," including having the school system dissolved.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports that the Illinois State Board of Education in a recent letter to the district cited the school system's "extreme ongoing non-compliance" involving the failure to hire 23 additional staff for the disabilities program.

The letter signed by state education Superintendent Christopher Koch also says the district hasn't properly evaluated nearly 1,000 students in the program.

Theresa Saunders is superintendent for the 7,500-student school district. She hasn't returned a call seeking comment Wednesday.

School board member Carl Officer says dissolving the school district "may not be a bad thing."