Missouri Takeover of St. Louis City Public Schools

Missouri State Board of Education Takeover of the St. Louis Public School District . . .That’s the Subject of the Big B Files.

     On Last Friday’s the Big B Zone on 97.1FM Talk, a part of their Dave Glover Show Survivor Series, the topic of discussion was the takeover of the St. Louis Public School District by the Missouri Board of Education.  I had mentioned that I had researched the St. Louis Public School District and found that the crisis goes as far back as  the Mid 1970s and in some cases . . .the 1960’s!
    Based upon the research I did, I am of the view that there is absolutely no choice for the Missouri State Board of Education to do a complete . . .top-to-bottom . . . takeover of the St. Louis Public School District .  There has been a culture that has been so entrenched in the St. Louis Public Schools that as I said on last Friday’s Big B Zone that the Missouri State Board of Education needs to go back to the drawing board, blow it up (figuratively speaking), and start completely from Scratch.
    Whether it is the School Board, the Administration, the faculty, the staff . . . culture in the St. Louis Public Schools has been a culture of dissarray, complacincy, status and power.   The culture in the St. Louis Public Schools has been so complaciant when any reformerstried to change the St. Louis Public Schools for the better, that the people who wanted to keep the status quo did whatever they could to destroy them or get them to quit alltogether.
    The crisis in the St. Louis Public Schools  has gotten so dire that it led the St. Louis Post Dispatch, a very left-leaning newspaper, to say the following in their editorial “Let’s Get Real” from February 2, 2007:

    Given the district’s dire straits and tumultuous history, decisive action needs to be taken. A transitional school district is the best of several options to address the multitude of problems facing St. Louis public schools. Outrage against the plan is misplaced.
    Opponents of the transitional school district have argued that it disenfranchises voters. It’s true that under the plan, the elected School Board would be stripped of its decision-making power. The board’s governing functions would be taken over by a three-member appointed committee. The important point is that the transitional school district is temporary. State intervention is what it is: a last-ditch course of treatment designed to resuscitate a critically ill patient. The School Board repeatedly has failed to carry out its responsibilities and now emergency measures are required to restore the district to good health. Accreditation, finances and student achievement need to be addressed immediately.

    One person out of all of the callers whocalled into my show last Friday voiced opposition to the state taking over the St. Louis Public Schools.  Even an 11 year old girl understood the crisis.  If and 11 year old can under why the state is in the process of taking over the St. Louis Public Schools . . . why can’t some adults.  
         Now, all of the people who called in to the Big B Zone understood perfectly why the Missouri State Board of Education  is taking over the St. Louis Public schools and I believe they represent the majority of people in the St. Louis Metro Area who support the Missouri State Board of Education taking over the St. Louis Public Schools.  One of those callers was a mother of 2 children who graduated From the St. Louis Public Schools.  She told basically that the teachers in her school, in a round about way, were giving them the questions and answers to the Missouri State Exam.  the woman said they did this by dropping clues when they were teaching their students in preparation of the Missouri State Exam and that she and the other students would figure it out once they saw the actual Missouri State Exam  itself. .  
         Now, If none of the above does not convince you why the Missouri Board of Education is taking over the St. Louis Public schools, I do not know what ever would.  If you want to know more about this, go to the Big B File “Big B Zone Radio Program Stack of Stuff (2/16/2007)” and look under the heading “ST. LOUIS PUBLIC SCHOOLS IN DISARRAY”.  

    That’s the Big B Files.  Click on the “Comments” link below and tell me what you think . . . I’m Bryan Hewing.

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