Despite angry protests at a raucous meeting, Missouri’s state school board approved a plan last week to place the St. Louis school system in the hands of an appointed school board.
By voting 5-1 to remove the 32,000-student district’s accreditation for its failure to meet state academic expectations, the state board triggered the move to strip the locally elected school board of its power by June 15. (“St. Louis District Seen as Target of State Action,” Jan. 10, 2007.)
In its place, the plan calls for a three-member panel: one member to be named by the city’s mayor, another by its board of aldermen, and a third by the governor. The board recommended a St. Louis businessman, Rick Sullivan, to be the governor’s appointee. The arrangement is expected to last for at least six years.
The move follows eight months of debate over the district’s governance, which began when the local board ousted its superintendent after 15 months on the job. In all, the system has had six district chiefs in less than five years.
A version of this article appeared in the March 28, 2007 edition of Education Week