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Education

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Under Missouri's school transfer law, students who live in unaccredited school districts may choose to attend a nearby, accredited district. The sending district must pay the students' tuition and must designate one district to which it will also pay transportation costs. 

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Eric Knost, superintendent of schools in Mehlville, remembers clearly the three words he heard Tuesday evening that could bring big changes to his south St. Louis County district.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: The Riverview Gardens school district has chosen Mehlville in south St. Louis County as the district to which it would pay transportation costs for students who want to transfer this fall.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: An online petition asking Missouri lawmakers to limit the law that allows students living in unaccredited school districts to transfer to accredited ones has attracted scores of signatures since it was created late last week.

The petition, on the website change.org, is addressed to Gov. Jay Nixon and members of the Missouri House and Senate, specifically state Sen. Tom Dempsey, president pro tem of the Senate, and House Speaker Tim Jones.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon As parents in Riverview Gardens and Normandy are looking around for the best accredited school district for their children to attend this fall, lawmakers are pondering what changes, if any, they might make to the school transfer law next year.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Dear Beaconites --

News that the Normandy school district will bus students to Francis Howell schools raised a storm of controversy this week. Unless cool heads prevail, it could evolve into a perfect storm -- an ugly convergence of our region's most emotional and intractable problems.

What problems?

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: David Glaser wasn’t in St. Louis three decades ago during the height of public opposition to the region’s first interdistrict school desegregation program. He’s learning about some of the old outcry as emotions rise in St. Charles County where the Francis Howell District is preparing to take students wishing to transfer there from Normandy.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon Will the Missouri Supreme Court’s ruling in Gina Breitenfeld v. School District of Clayton, et al. be the end of suburban peace and tranquility? That is what some are afraid might happen now that students from failing school districts may be permitted to enroll in higher-performing accredited schools.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Responding to angry comments from his constituents in the Francis Howell School District, a Republican state representative in St. Charles County has called on Gov. Jay Nixon to call a special legislative session to change the school transfer law.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: As the newly named chancellor for Western Governors University in Missouri, Allen Goben thinks his school’s approach can help businesses that need good workers solve what he says is a real dilemma.

“If you talk with business leaders,” he said in an interview, “they will say if a person is educated, we have to train them. If a person is trained, we have to educate them. Competency-based education emphasizes education and training.”

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Cooperating School Districts will act as a clearinghouse for students who live in Riverview Gardens and Normandy and want to transfer to accredited school districts under a law recently upheld by the Missouri Supreme Court.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: A White House proposal to increase spending on pre-school would mean 5,900 children in Missouri and 12,000 in Illinois could get a jump start on their education – a benefit that Education Secretary Arne Duncan calls a return on investment the nation cannot ignore.

Stephanie Krauss
Dale Singer | St. Louis Beacon | 2013

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Stephanie Krauss remembers clearly a moment when she saw that her vision for Shearwater, a charter school giving new chances to teens whose education had been interrupted by life, might not work.

“I had a student in my office who had been with us for a long time,” she said earlier this week in an interview at the Shearwater campus on the grounds of Ranken Technical College in north St. Louis.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Lynne Glickert, whose dismissal as principal of Grand Center Arts Academy prompted a storm of protest from angry parents, will be back at the school for up to one year as interim principal while a national search begins for a permanent one.

Helping teachers connect with students - in their homes

Jun 25, 2013
Karen Kalish
Provided by Ms. Kalish | St. Louis Beacon | 2013

“The house is a goldmine of information,” said Karen Kalish, founder of Home Works, a teacher home visiting program. “You learn so much about that family and that child. Once we get in and see what’s going on, we can more easily see what can we do to increase academic achievement of child.” And expectations set the stage for our abilities.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: “If you don’t define your terms, someone else will define them for you.” A wise teacher once taught me this. I am going to re-visit a term I used last week and unpack it with greater care: Big Data.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: The board that governs the Grand Center Arts Academy decided Friday morning not to act on a request from an advisory committee that Lynne Glickert be hired as interim principal for the coming school year.

Glickert, who has been principal of the charter school since it began three years ago, has won strong support from parents at the academy since she learned last month that her contract would not be renewed because of “philosophical differences,” not performance issues.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: In the wake of a Missouri Supreme Court ruling on transfers of students who live in unaccredited school districts, the state education department has advised districts to adopt policies for class sizes and for how they will determine which students to accept if they get more applicants than they can handle. These guidelines raise the question of whether districts will be able to limit how many students they accept.

From left, Samiksha Mailarpwar, Valerie Levine, Aida Bukvic and Haley Crosby work together at the event at Washington University on Jun. 6, 2013.
Dale Singer | St. Louis Beacon | 2013

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Take balsa wood, corrugated plastic, analytical young minds and a basic engineering problem and what do you get?

At Washington University, the result was ingenious solutions to the perennial problem of how to decrease the dependence on fossil fuels for energy and use renewables instead.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: A new nationwide survey that rates teacher-preparation programs gave many of them poor grades, saying that they are doing a dismal job in preparing a new generation of classroom leaders at a time when schools are developing more rigorous courses of study.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: A newly formed advisory committee at Grand Center Arts Academy voted Monday to ask that an interim principal be appointed – and it was clear that most members of the panel, and the dozens of people in the audience want the job filled by Lynne Glickert.

Glickert, who led the school from the start, learned last month that she would no longer be principal, though she says she has never been given reasons why the Confluence Academy board, which runs the academy, dismissed her.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: The Missouri Supreme Court has unanimously rejected a lower court ruling in the St. Louis school transfer case, saying that a St. Louis County circuit judge must once again take up the issue over whether students who live in an unaccredited school district should be able to transfer, with their home district paying the tuition.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Missouri’s Boys State and Girls State will mark a national first over the next few weeks, as they host an expected 37 high school and college students from China – 16 boys and 21 girls – who will join the hundreds of Missouri teens who participate in the student-government program.

xxDale Singer | St. Louis Beacon People tour the new St. Louis University Law School building Downtown, with the St. Louis skyline and Gateway Arch in the background.
Dale Singer | St. Louis Beacon | 2013

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: When students show up for the new school year at the Saint Louis University law school downtown, they won’t have to look too far to be reminded of what their education is all about.

They will make up the first classes in the new law school building at 100 N. Tucker Boulevard. What was an 11-story building, now with a 12th floor added, features dramatic views of downtown landmarks to the east and the civil and circuit courthouses to the south as well as the federal Eagleton courthouse.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: WASHINGTON – In a bit of political theater, the Senate deadlocked over rival bills Thursday on student loan interest rates -- setting the stage for backroom talks to prevent a doubling of the rate for new student loans on July 1.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Grand Center Arts Academy says that despite protests, it will not rehire Lynne Glickert as its principal, but Louise Losos will not be principal beginning next month either.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Even though the Rev. Lawrence Biondi has asked the Saint Louis University board of trustees to begin looking for his successor, he still inspires a mixed reaction – praise for what he has accomplished but also a wariness about the harm he could still do to those who have challenged his administration.

Students and counselors meet on the opening day of St. Louis Graduates'  High School to College Center.
Barlow Photography

This article originally appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Christian Coffman, 17, just graduated from Cardinal Ritter College Prep High School and is looking forward to studying accounting at the University of Missouri at Kansas City in the fall.

“I’m the first in my family to go to college,” said Coffman. “There’s a lot of questions I need answers to like how I’m going to pay for it, if I’m able to take a job while studying and just advice on being independent.”

This article originally appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: The first time Ken Parker stepped onto the Saint Louis University campus was in November 1990, when he attended an academic conference there.

“I have a distinct memory of stepping out of the Busch Student Center,” he recalls, “looking across Grand and thinking, ‘I can’t imagine what it would be like to walk on this campus every day.’ It wasn’t a very attractive place.”

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: WASHINGTON – If Congress doesn’t take action by July 1, many of the 57,000 college students in Missouri and 337,000 in Illinois who are getting new federal student loans will be saddled with more debt than they had bargained for.

That’s because the interest rates on those loans are scheduled to double – to 6.8 percent, from the current 3.4 percent – if there is no stopgap or permanent fix by then. A temporary fix last year kept the rates at the current level, but will expire at the end of June.

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