Chris Nicastro

Missouri schools
11:26 am
Wed December 17, 2014

Vandeven Chosen As Missouri's Next Education Commissioner

Margie Vandeven
Credit Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

(Updated at 3:30 p.m. Dec. 17, with news conference)

Margie Vandeven may be Missouri’s new commissioner for elementary and secondary education, but she’ll enter the job at the first of the year concentrating on some old problems.

One of them, she told reporters in a conference call Wednesday after her unanimous selection by the state board of education, is working for changes in Missouri’s student transfer law, to help protect the budgets of districts whose students are eligible to leave.

Read more
Education
3:17 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

Lack Of Diversity Noted In School Commissioner Search

Mike Jones talks with Missouri education Commissioner Chris Nicastro earlier this year
Credit Dale Singer | St. Louis Public Radio

When Chris Nicastro was chosen as Missouri’s education commissioner in 2009, her experience with school districts in north St. Louis County was cited as a big factor.

Now, as the Missouri state board of education prepares to interview five finalists to succeed Nicastro, they have a list of four white men who have been superintendents in Joplin, Branson, Springfield and Wentzville, plus a white woman who has been actively involved in north county as deputy commissioner but has never served as a superintendent.

Read more
Successor to Nicastro
2:00 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Five Finalists Named In Search For New Missouri Schools Commissioner

Credit St. Louis Public Schools

(Updated with interviews from all candidates.)

The Missouri state board of education has narrowed to five the field of candidates seeking to become the state’s next commissioner of elementary and secondary education.

After reviewing 12 applications in closed session Friday, the board announced Monday that it would interview:

Read more
State School Board
4:45 pm
Thu December 4, 2014

14 Candidates Seek Missouri Education Commissioner Post

Peter Herschend
Credit DESE website

The Missouri state board of education has a field of 14 candidates from which to choose the state’s new commissioner of elementary and secondary education.

After the board’s open meeting in Branson Thursday, where it approved added responsibility for the appointed school board that is running the Normandy Schools Collaborative, board president Peter Herschend said in a telephone interview that the applications of the 14 people who want to succeed retiring Commissioner Chris Nicastro would be reviewed in a closed session on Friday.

Read more
State School Board
3:55 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Normandy Board Set To Gain New Power, Outsource Subs And Other Responsibilities

Credit Stephanie Zimmerman

As the appointed board that runs the new Normandy Schools Collaborative is about to take on new responsibilities for personnel decisions and improved academic achievement, it is working with outside agencies to find substitute teachers and help its littlest residents on the road to learning.

Following acceptance by the Joint Executive Governing Board of a proposal that it be in charge of evaluating, hiring and disciplining personnel, the state board of education is expected to approve the new plan at its meeting Thursday in Branson.

Read more
On The Trail
12:50 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Ferguson Commission: Who Didn't Make It?

Ferguson Commission co-chairs Starsky Wilson and Rich McClure look on as Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon signs an executive order involving the commission. Well over 300 people applied to be on the commission aimed at tackling systemic problems highlighted after Michael Brown's shooting death.
Credit Bill Greenblatt, UPI

It’s an open question whether the Ferguson Commission will produce ground-breaking changes or a report that gathers dust on a shelf. 

But it’s indisputable that a lot of people wanted to be on the 16-person commission. According to a spreadsheet released by Gov. Jay Nixon’s office, more than 300 people from all corners of the state applied. 

Read more
Replacing Nicastro
5:59 pm
Sun November 16, 2014

Commentary: Missouri Should Take Its Time In Finding New Education Commissioner

How does Missouri make its classrooms better?
Credit St. Louis Public Radio File Photo

Missouri’s Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education Chris Nicastro has tendered her resignation as of December 2014 and there will be an important search for a new commissioner to fill that position. The deadline for nominations and applications is Nov. 21, a date that is later than the board chair wanted.

Read more
School Reform
4:27 pm
Thu November 6, 2014

Local Normandy Board Could Gain More Authority

Credit Stephanie Zimmerman

After complaints from teachers and others about how the initial year of the Normandy Schools Collaborative has gone so far, the state board of education wants to give more authority to the local appointed board.

Read more
Missouri Board Of Education
3:43 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

Search For Missouri Schools Chief Is Lengthened

Peter Herschend
Credit DESE website

JEFFERSON CITY -- The Missouri state board of education voted Tuesday to put the search for a new commissioner on a slower track, then had a lengthy discussion about one of the big issues the next commissioner will face – turning around Normandy schools.

Rather than the accelerated process that board president Peter Herschend had favored, in which a successor to Chris Nicastro would have been chosen this week, the board bowed to objections from a variety of education groups that said such a fast track would have left them out of the process.

Read more
Education Commissioner
4:43 pm
Tue October 21, 2014

Broader Search Urged For New Missouri Schools Chief

Peter Herschend
Credit DESE website

Updated 1:25 p.m. Wednesday with letter from MNEA president:

Amid indications that the Missouri state board of education may choose a new commissioner next week, school officials throughout the state have urged it to open up the process and consider a wider range of candidates.

The state board already has discussed in closed session the process to replace Chris Nicastro, who has announced her retirement as of the end of December. And the board has several more hours of closed session talks set for its meeting Monday and Tuesday in Jefferson City.

Read more

Pages