While St. Louisans celebrated our past this week, the news held hints of our future. Most significant was a proposal from state education officials to revamp how they deal with troubled districts.
Long term, the proposal would allow state officials to intervene early and with a range of approaches. Short term, the state board took financial control of the Normandy schools – a move that caught district officials by surprise.
Updated at 10:26 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 20, with Nicastro letter.
News that state education officials have taken control of the finances of the Normandy School District was still sinking in Wednesday, but local board members who were willing to comment were clearly unhappy about losing the power of the purse.
Seated in his office on the second floor of Brookings Hall on the eastern edge of the Washington University campus, Provost Holden Thorp has a pretty good metaphor for what his job entails compared with that of university Chancellor Mark Wrighton.
“You can see the chancellor’s office is across the hall,” Thorp said in a recent interview. “His office faces the park and the Arch and downtown. My office is on this side and faces out to the old quad.
This past fall, a new educational program for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities began at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. The program, called SUCCEED, is a two-year residential program designed to help students build the skills needed to either find a job or enroll in a degree-seeking program.
The program is the brainchild of Deborah Baldini, the associate dean for the College of Arts and Sciences/Continuing Education at UMSL, and the president and CEO of St. Louis Arc, Kathy Meath.
JEFFERSON CITY – The Missouri State Board of Education surprised the Normandy School District Tuesday by voting to take over its finances in a bid to bolster chances that the district would get $5 million in emergency funds to help it finish the school year.
The state Board also directed the education commissioner to appoint a transition task force immediately to develop a plan for the operation of the Normandy Schools starting in July 2014, if the General Assembly fails to appropriate additional funds for the district, and if the district lapses.
Much like apple pie and motherhood, everybody wants better schools and higher student achievement. The only problem is that no one can quite agree what's the best way to get there.
Once a week, our team of education reporters would like to share stories that look at trends in education here and across the country. In particular, we want to focus on people, research and even gizmos that may help make kids learn better. This week, we've discovered some high-tech — and low-tech — solutions.
Updated at 3:23 p.m. Mon., Feb. 17, with announcement of new SIU president. Some of the jobs came open suddenly, one at the end of a long campus standoff and still others quietly at the end of long, productive tenures, but they all have resulted in room at the top of the ivory tower:
At least four local schools – Saint Louis University, Harris-Stowe State University, St. Louis Community College and the Southern Illinois University system – have vacancies in the office of their top administrator or did until Monday, when SIU named a new president.
Updated 4:43 p.m., Fri., Feb. 14 with Wolfe announcing task force on sexual assault policies and mental health issues.
The University of Missouri Board of Curators has hired the St. Louis law firm of Dowd Bennett to investigate the handling of allegations of sexual assault of a former student at the Columbia campus who later committed suicide.
Rep. Rick Stream, chairman of the Missouri House Budget Committee, filed two bills Thursday that could help the Normandy School District avert going bankrupt in April.
One bill, part of a supplemental appropriations request, would provide $5 million in emergency funds for Normandy to help the district finish out the year. The other would result in districts that have received tuition payments for students transferring from unaccredited Normandy paying back some of that money to the district.