Updated 7:21 a.m. Tuesday to change number of people involved:
Monday marked not only the first day of classes at Washington University and Saint Louis University but also a collaborative effort to take note of the death of Michael Brown and the issues it has raised.
After a being delayed for more than a week, about 11,000 students in the Ferguson-Florissant School District started their school year today.
As kids filed into Ferguson Middle School – which is located about two miles from where protesters violently clashed with police – a stream of students, parents and teachers said they were happy to be back in the classroom.
Among them was math teacher Gerry Glenn, who distributed high fives and pats-on-the-back to students.
It’s difficult to avoid news of Michael Brown’s death and the community response. And with students returning to school, educators are likely to encounter the topics in the classroom and seek guidance on how to discuss them. As discussed on St. Louis on the Air, different approaches are required for different age groups.
What do you say to a third grader in north St. Louis County who worries about getting shot when she grows up?
As violence simmers down in Ferguson, those kinds of questions are likely to linger, so counseling agencies held two training sessions Thursday – at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and Harris-Stowe State University – to help teachers and other school personnel learn how to calm students' fears.
After a hearing in St. Louis County Circuit Court Wednesday, Judge Michael Burton cleared the way for 13 more students to transfer out of the Normandy school district.
Burton had ruled last week that the Missouri state school board had acted improperly when it made changes that exempted students who live in Normandy from the benefits of Missouri’s school transfer law. As a result, he said, Normandy’s status should remain as unaccredited, and students should have the right to transfer to nearby accredited schools.
A lawyer who won the right for five students who live in Normandy to transfer again to an accredited school went to court Tuesday to force the Francis Howell school district to accept all Normandy transfers who want to return.
It also asks that two students who attended Ferguson-Florissant last year be allowed to return.
(Updated at 9:19 p.m. Monday with latest cancellation in Ferguson-Florissant)
With adults cheering them on and the aftermath of violent protest just a few miles away, students began classes Monday in the new Normandy Schools Collaborative, hoping to put drama behind them and keep their sights on success.
“It’s nice to have a welcome back party for Normandy,” senior Breonia Gregory said as she walked through the parking lot toward the high school. “We’ve been through a lot. It’s nice to have something like this positive feedback from the community.”
A St. Louis County Circuit judge ruled Friday that students from three families living in the Normandy school district have the right to transfer to nearby accredited districts.
Those districts – Pattonville, Ritenour and Ferguson-Florissant – had denied the students access in the new school year, even though they had transferred to schools in those districts in the last school year. But the families argued successfully that the state had improperly given the new Normandy Schools Collaborative a status that freed it from the requirements of the Missouri transfer law.