School Districts, Parents Closely Following Clayton Court Case

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A court case that could have a potentially huge impact for many area school districts is scheduled to get underway this morning in Clayton. It focuses on whether students in unaccredited districts like St. Louis Public Schools, should be able to attend accredited nearby schools and who pays for it. The case is called Turner vs. the Clayton School District and is being heard by Judge David Vincent.

People from St. Louis and beyond will be watching the outcome of this case. It focuses on a 1993 law that says children who attend school in failing districts may transfer to schools in neighboring accredited districts. That statute says the home district not the parents is responsible for tuition and transportation costs.

The original case focused on St. Louis city students who transferred to Clayton schools.

This is the second time Judge Vincent has heard the case. In 2008 he ruled in favor of Clayton and St. Louis schools. But the Missouri Supreme Court reversed that decision and ruled in favor of St. Louis parents.

The case is expected to last three days. State lawmakers have addressed the issue but have not come up with a solution.

There is concern that if the plaintiffs win there could be serious financial implications for St. Louis city schools. Some are also worried that county schools will become overcrowded if kids from unaccredited schools are permitted to attend.

More Info: Read a history of the case from the Clayton School District

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