Leaders work to change student transfers

ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - A show of solidarity Monday from area state senators, who came together to try to re-work Missouri's student transfer process.

The lawmakers from both sides have been working on this since the summer, now they've all agreed on a bill they can all support.

There's a lot to it, and it will probably change as the bill makes its way through the legislative process, but here are the highlights:

-Unaccredited districts could still have accredited schools, meaning students could transfer within their district and stay close to home.

-The bill also allows for more opportunities for charter schools for students in the poor-performing districts. Unaccredited districts would also have the power to lengthen school days and the school year in an effort to bring up grades.

-Transferring to accredited districts would still be an option, but the transportation process would change.

"I don't know that the transfering district school board is the entity that should be making the transportation designation," said State Sen. Scott Sifton. "We have the clearinghouse, which is part of the bill. We establish a regional clearinghouse for St. Louis to figure out transportation to make sure we do it in an efficient way."

As for the receiving districts, they would have more say. They can determine their class size and student-teacher ratios so they can't be compromised by students coming from other districts.

This same bill has been filed by six senators -- Democrats and Republicans -- for consideration in the legislative session which starts next month.


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