Mehlville middle and high school students will have a ride home from after-school activities, even if they've transferred in from the unaccredited Riverview Gardens School District.
The Mehlville School board approved a plan (5-2) Thursday to use district buses to haul students to north county after late activities. The $76,000 needed will come from tuition received from the unaccredited district.
Mehlville Superintendent Eric Knost says he expects at least 15 of the 215 transfer students will need the late ride each day.
Riverview Gardens is responsible for general transportation costs, but it doesn't have to cover after-school activity runs.
The Riverview Gardens School District will pay $3,675 each day to bus about 1,400 transfer students to Mehlville and Kirkwood. That was the winning bid among six companies vying for the contract.
The half-million dollar contract with First Student Transportation was approved Tuesday. The unaccredited district will also pay about $12,000 in annual tuition for each transfer student.
District officials say their finances are stable for this school year, but there could be trouble if the transfers continue next year.
The Mehlville school district won't hire more teacher or enlarge class sizes in order to accommodate students transferring in from the unaccredited Riverview Gardens School District.
The Mehlville school board supported their superintendent's position and set class size limits Thursday night. That will allow the district to accept only 150 of the roughly 450 students who've applied to transfer.
A lottery will be held August 2nd to determine which students can make the switch from Riverview Gardens to Mehlville.
More than 200 parents attended last night's school board meeting at Mehlville High School. Many expressed concerns about the cost of busing and the number of hours students will spend in transit. Others were concerned that the transfer students will put a drain on the Mehlville district.
Mehlville Superintendent Dr. Eric Knost has said that maintaining the district's small class sizes is key to maintaining educational excellence.
As the August 1 transfer deadline looms for students in the unaccredited Riverview Gardens School District, a snag has developed that could throw the whole process into chaos.
Riverview officials will have to pick a second district to bus students to. That's because the first district they selected, Mehlville, reports that they only have room for about 150 transfer students, about one-third of the more than 400 who've applied to transfer.
Under state guidelines the Riverview Gardens District must now choose a second district where it will provide free bus transportation.
Students were required to list their top three choices of schools on their transfer applications. And that information could help Riverview officials select the second destination district.
Riverview Gardens officials have not yet selected a second district for free bus transportation.
Many parents in the unaccredited Riverview Gardens school district are unhappy after district officials announced they'll bus students to the Mehlville School District in order to comply with a Missouri Supreme Court ruling. The South County district is about 30 miles from the failing one in North County.
Parents aren't the only one's expressing concerns. Mehlville's superintendent says his district lacks the space for transferring students. Eric Knost says his district welcomes the transferring students, but warns that Mehville's classrooms are already at capacity.
Riverview officials say they're working to re-earn accreditation quickly and hope that parents will keep their kids enrolled there.