Education commissioner's head down during school summit

ST. LOUIS COUNTY (KSDK) – Some north county residents say that an education official was on her phone while they were offering their comments about the state's new plan for unaccredited school districts.

Missouri Commissioner of Education Chris NiCastro was in town to hear the public's take on the state's plans for districts like Normandy and Riverview Gardens. DESE wants to bind struggling districts to economic targets.

But after nearly an hour of public comment, we noticed that NiCastro's head was down. She says she was using her phone to keep track of the meeting.

"I was following the Twitter feed to keep up with comments… I was also making notes, if you noticed," she said.

Student Kenny Branch, though, said he felt disrespected.

"I feel that we were very disrespected because every time we have a meeting like this, they are not listening to us," he said.

We checked, and during public comment, there were 11 tweets total mentioning DESE's Twitter handle and the Normandy School District.

Dr. NiCastro said she appreciates everyone's participation and is excited residents are engaged in the process.


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