Missouri Districts Verge on Bankruptcy After Ruling
A Missouri law that permits students to transfer out of an unaccredited district—at the home district's expense—has caused thousands of students to switch schools this fall, raising the specter of bankruptcy for at least two school systems.
Enacted in 1993, the transfer law allows students to move to a new district when their home district loses its accreditation and requires the unaccredited district to shoulder the tuition payments for the transferees. The law had largely been in legal limbo until a state Supreme Court decision in June affirmed that it was both constitutional and feasible.
The ruling sent district and state officials scrambling to prepare school systems to receive students transferring out of the unaccredited Normandy and Riverview Gardens districts, in St. Louis County. Meanwhile, the 17,000-student Kansas City, Mo., district, which is also unaccredited, is petitioning the state school board to regain its accreditation while awaiting a judge's ruling in a court case involving...
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