Education

Education
11:43 pm
Sun March 23, 2014

Accounted For: In Riverview Gardens, More Eyes On Empty Desks

Riverview Gardens Superintendent Scott Spurgeon. “It was probably the first and foremost message I came out with,” he says. “For your child to do better, we have to have them here at school.”
Credit Tim Lloyd / St. Louis Public Radio

This story is the third part of Accounted For, an ongoing project of St. Louis Public Radio that explores the connection between chronic absenteeism — defined as missing three and a half weeks or more of school — and classroom success.

Riverview Gardens Superintendent Scott Spurgeon roamed the halls of Glasgow Elementary School.  On a recent morning the former minor league baseball player turned educator greets students like players entering a dugout.

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Harris-Stowe
5:13 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

Presidential Search, New Faculty Contract Put Spotlight On Harris-Stowe

Credit Dale Singer

Harris-Stowe State University is looking for a new president, and its professors are working under a new contract that was imposed on them by the school's governing board. The labor issues are just one indication that Harris-Stowe faces many long-simmering problems that raise questions about the institution's future.

To outsiders, the atmosphere on the venerable midtown campus was calm. But long-simmering disputes between the faculty and top officials were about to go public.

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Harris-Stowe history
5:07 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

Harris-Stowe’s Long, Winding Road

Harris-Stowe’s journey to the university it is today began in 1857, when the St. Louis Public Schools founded a teacher-training institution for white students only – the first such teacher education institution west of the Mississippi River.

It later became known as Harris Teachers College, which in 1920 grew into a four-year undergraduate institution, offering a bachelor’s degree.

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Failing schools
4:51 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

Plan To Help Struggling Missouri Schools Wins Approval

Missouri state Board of Education voted Friday to approve a plan to intervene in struggling school districts.
Bubbles | sxc.hu

JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri state Board of Education voted Friday to approve a plan to intervene in struggling school districts. It also sent the message that it will become more active in making sure districts adopt policies that will result in success.

The plan, revised from a draft version presented to the board last month, spells out various avenues of support that would be provided to or required of school districts depending on how well they score on their annual performance review.

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Education
9:31 am
Fri March 21, 2014

Saint Louis University Names Fred Pestello New President

Fred Pestello is introduced as new president of Saint Louis University
Tim Lloyd St. Louis Public Radio

Updated 1:41 p.m., Fri., March 21.

Saint Louis University has a new president, its first non-Jesuit president, to succeed the Rev. Lawrence Biondi, who stepped down amid controversy last year.

The university’s Board of Trustees unanimously elected Fred Pestello during a special meeting Thursday evening, according to a news release. He will begin his new position on July 1.

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Education
10:17 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Accounted For: Mapping Chronic Absenteeism In Missouri

Chronic absenteeism is an issue in many districts across the state. Scroll down for an interactive map.

More than 108,000 students missed at least three and a half weeks of school last year. That’s enough lost instruction time to be considered chronically absent, defined as missing 10 percent or more of school during the course of the year.

As St. Louis Public Radio reported on Wednesday, chronic absenteeism can set students up for a string of academic problems. 

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Commentary
10:04 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Editor's Weekly: Special Attention To Routine School Attendance

Credit Bubbles | sxc.hu

No matter how good schools are, you can’t learn if you’re not there. That simple truth — and its far-reaching implications — are the focus of Accounted For, a St. Louis Public Radio special project that began this week.

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Missouri school funding
3:51 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Formula For Missouri Schools Is Sharply Underfunded, New Study Says

A new report by the Missouri Budget Project estimates that Missouri's public schools are underfunded by $656 million, or $700 for each student in Missouri.
Courtesy Normandy School District

Missouri’s public schools are underfunded by $656 million — averaging about $700 for each student in the state — according to an analysis released on Wednesday, but school officials see some hope for relief in the budget debate now being held in Jefferson City.

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St. Louis on the Air
11:48 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Discussion: Why Do St. Louis Area Kids Miss School? And What Can Be Done About It?

comedy_nose Flickr

As part of the St. Louis Public Radio project "Accounted For," chronic student absenteeism was the focus of St. Louis on the Air today. When students miss more than 10 percent of a given year of school, they become chronically absent. Millions of kids across America fall into this category, and it is far too often a predictor of future failure on several levels.

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Special Project
11:26 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Accounted For: Chronic Absenteeism Jeopardizes Classroom Success

Credit ShuttrKingKT / Flickr

It's a problem that's both obvious and invisible. You can have all the school improvement plans you want, but students can't learn if they're not in class.

With that in mind, St. Louis Public Radio is starting a project that looks at the impact of chronic absenteeism — defined as missing 10 percent or more of a school year for any reason — on learning.  

While the length of school years varies by district,  Missouri law requires a minimum of 174 days. That means a chronically absent student is missing at least three and a half weeks of class time. 

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