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St. Louis schools re-accredited

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St. Louis schools are no longer unaccredited, following a unanimous vote today by the State Board of Education. The struggling district, which has been under state control for five years, will now have provisional, but not full, accreditation. St. Louis Public Radio’s Marshall Griffin reports:

Missouri’s Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner, Chris Nicastro, summed it up this way just before the vote:

“The district has not arrived, but clearly they’ve started the journey,” says Nicastro.

That journey, according to state education officials, includes improvements in both financial management and student performance. Mary Armstrong, head of the St. Louis chapter of the American Federation of Teachers, says the focus must now shift to regaining full accreditation:

“We don’t have a full sunshiny day, but this is a small step towards a larger step to come,” says Armstrong.

The vote does not have any effect on governance – the school district will remain under state control

Missouri Public Radio State House Reporter Marshall Griffin is a proud alumnus of the University of Mississippi (a.k.a., Ole Miss), and has been in radio for over 20 years, starting out as a deejay. His big break in news came when the first President Bush ordered the invasion of Panama in 1989. Marshall was working the graveyard shift at a rock station, and began ripping news bulletins off the old AP teletype and reading updates between songs. From there on, his radio career turned toward news reporting and anchoring. In 1999, he became the capital bureau chief for Florida's Radio Networks, and in 2003 he became News Director at WFSU-FM/Florida Public Radio. During his time in Tallahassee he covered seven legislative sessions, Governor Jeb Bush's administration, four hurricanes, the Terri Schiavo saga, and the 2000 presidential recount. Before coming to Missouri, he enjoyed a brief stint in the Blue Ridge Mountains, reporting and anchoring for WWNC-AM in Asheville, North Carolina. Marshall lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Julie, their dogs, Max and Mason, and their cat, Honey.
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