ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – The head of Missouri’s Joint Education Committee says he wants to hear new solutions for how to fix failing schools and he doesn’t think giving them more money will help.

Rep. Mike Lair, R-Chillicothe, will hear from education officials from across the state in Jefferson City on Tuesday afternoon, including the heads of failing districts in St. Louis.

“I don’t think it’s the money. I really don’t think that’s the case. We’ve thrown money at bad school systems for a long time,” he said.

Lair will hear from representatives from school districts in Kansas City too, as well as the head of the Missouri Charter Public School Association.

State Education Commissioner Chris NiCastro will also make a presentation as the committee seeks new solutions to problems with student transfers and unaccredited districts. Lair said he’s not interested in hearing what people think about the situation currently, he just wants new ideas on how to fix it.

“We don’t want to rehash, we’re not trying to drudge up hard feelings and to create some of the meetings that we’ve already had,” he said.

“Many school systems in rural Missouri educate students for less than half of what St. Louis spends,” Lair added. “‘Fully funding the formula’ is a misnomer.”


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