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Mo. Dept. Of Education Issues Guidelines For Transfers To Accredited Districts

(via Flickr/evmaiden)

Updated 5:34 p.m. to include comments from Chris Tennill of  the School District of Clayton

The Missouri Department Of Elementary & Secondary Education has issuedits own guidelinesfor the transfer process of students from unaccredited districts to those which are accredited.

Earlier this month, the Missouri Supreme Courtdeclaredthe state's school transfer law constitutional, a reversal of a May 2012 ruling.

DESE Deputy Commissioner Ron Lankford says students and parents have until August 1 to notify both their current and desired school districts of their desire to transfer.

“We feel like that this guidance, and that’s all it is, it’s non-binding, it’s not regulatory, but these are things that could be taken into consideration in dealing with those requests for students who might be seeking to come in,”Lankfordsaid.

A few ofthe guidelines, however, do contain regulations. For example, unaccredited school districts must provide transportation to at least one nearby accredited district, and transferring students will be eligible to compete in sports and participate in other school activities.

The guidelines also include developing an admissions process to insure that all applicants get a fair shot, in the event that a school doesn’t have enough space to accept everyone who wants to transfer.  Chris Tennill is spokesman for the Clayton school district.

"In the interim, we are taking names and contact information from any parents that are calling about enrollment," Tennill said.  "We (are working) to develop applications and process and that sort of thing, much like every school district in St. Louis County is doing right now."

Tennill says they expect within a week or two to be able to inform those interested in transferring to Clayton on what they’ll need to do.  

Currently, Missouri has three unaccredited school districts – Normandy and Riverview Gardens in St. Louis County, and the Kansas City school district.

As our Maria Altman has reported, the guidelines don't apply to St. Louis Public Schools becauseSLPS gained provisional accreditationback in Oct. 2012.

Follow Marshall Griffin and Kelsey Proud on Twitter:  @MarshallGReport @KelseyProud

Copyright 2021 St. Louis Public Radio. To see more, visit St. Louis Public Radio.

Kelsey Proud is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, where she earned a Convergence (Multimedia) Journalism degree. She has worked at PBS Interactive in Washington, D.C., MSN UK News in London and is a social media enthusiast. Kelsey feels journalism is truly a public service and hopes her work enhances community and reaches those who need information most. Though she's "from" Chicago, Kelsey has also lived in several different regions of the United States, including periods of time in North Carolina, Ohio, New Mexico and Illinois. Her extended family has roots in Boone and Audrain counties in Missouri, too. She is a wannabe chef and globe trekker, former competitive golfer and band-ie (trumpet), and honorary Missourian.
Marshall Griffin
St. Louis Public Radio State House Reporter Marshall Griffin is a native of Mississippi and proud alumnus of Ole Miss (welcome to the SEC, Mizzou!). He 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 an 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 Liberty Belle, and their cat, Honey.