Todd Graves gets high-powered help lobbying for University of Missouri curator position

BY: - March 26, 2021

A deep-pocket political donor from the Kansas City area squired Todd Graves around the Capitol this week, as the former state GOP chairman works to quell concerns about his bid for a seat on the University of Missouri Board of Curators. Michael Ketchmark, who along with his firm has donated more than $1 million to […]

Missouri lawmakers seek answers from DSS on oversight gaps of unlicensed reform schools

BY: - March 24, 2021

State lawmakers grilled the head of the Department of Social Services Wednesday afternoon for answers on how allegations of abuse and neglect at unlicensed youth residential facilities have been overlooked for years. Last month, former students described to lawmakers horrific physical and sexual abuse they’ve endured at religious reform schools in Missouri — which are […]

CDC says it’s OK for students to sit 3 feet apart in classrooms

BY: - March 19, 2021

WASHINGTON — Federal health officials have revised their guidance to schools on how far apart students should be spaced in a classroom, now saying desks can be placed 3 feet apart instead of 6 feet to limit the spread of COVID-19.  The updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention comes as schools […]

Aaliyah Bailey and her two-year old daughter, A’miyah Lehde-Bailey.

Emails show months-long backlog of payments to Missouri child care providers

BY: - March 19, 2021

For Aaliyah Bailey, a single mom in St. Peters, Missouri’s child care subsidy program wasn’t there when she needed it most. The first time she applied for the subsidy, which offers a sliding scale payment system for eligible low-income families and foster children, was in December. But she contracted COVID and missed the 10-day window […]

The University of Missouri-Columbia's iconic columns, remains of the school's first building, stand in front of Jesse Hall, which houses administrative offices. (University of Missouri photo)

Parson taps GOP insider for seat on University of Missouri board of curators

BY: - March 18, 2021

Former Missouri Republican Party Chairman Todd Graves came out the winner Thursday in a tug-of-war over a seat on the University of Missouri Board of Curators that pitted partisan power against university politics. Gov. Mike Parson appointed Graves, former U.S. Attorney and brother of U.S. Rep. Sam Graves, to replace Democrat Phil Snowden in the […]

Exterior Missouri State Capitol building

Lawsuit alleges university leaked confidential records to undermine Title IX bill

BY: - March 17, 2021

A lawsuit filed last month in St. Louis alleges Washington University leaked confidential information about an expelled student in order to undermine a legislative push to change how Missouri colleges handle cases of sexual assault and harassment.  The lawsuit, which was first reported by the St. Louis Business Journal, lists as its plaintiff “John Doe.” […]

Records hint that former Missouri GOP chair is lead candidate for curator appointment

BY: - March 15, 2021

An attorney with close ties to the University of Missouri-Kansas City appears to have the most backers for a seat on the UM System Board of Curators. But a former chairman of the Missouri Republican Party is the one records indicate is closest to being appointed by Gov. Mike Parson. According to emails, letters and […]

Exterior Missouri State Capitol building

Transgender youth speak against Missouri proposal to restrict sports teams by gender

BY: - March 3, 2021

Brandon Boulware remembers the moment he realized he wasn’t allowing his transgender daughter to be who she is. Boulware said he wouldn’t let her play with toys or wear clothes intended for girls, and would make her get short haircuts. He wanted to keep her from getting teased, but also avoid the inevitable questions he […]

Biden urges states to speed up COVID-19 vaccinations for teachers

BY: - March 3, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden is urging states to prioritize teachers for COVID-19 vaccines, setting a goal of ensuring that every pre-kindergarten through 12th grade educator, school staff member and childcare worker is able to receive at least one shot this month. At least 34 states and the District of Columbia have some or all […]

U.S. Senate confirms Cardona as education secretary

BY: - March 2, 2021

The Senate on Monday confirmed Miguel Cardona to lead the U.S. Department of Education in a 64-33 vote. Cardona, a longtime educator from Connecticut, will be tasked with helping schools reopen during the pandemic and leading the $68 billion agency.  “There is no one better suited for this job in this moment than Miguel Cardona,” […]

Missouri schools to receive $123 million as Parson releases budget withholdings

BY: - March 1, 2021

Missouri public schools will receive $123 million withheld from the state education budget, as Gov. Mike Parson announced Monday he ended all restrictions on general revenue spending in the current budget. The release comes earlier than anticipated. When state Budget Director Dan Haug laid out Parson’s spending proposal for the coming year in January, he […]

House Speaker Rob Vescovo, R-Arnold, speaks during floor debate of HB 349.

‘Compromise to be had’: School choice bills face both success and gridlock in Missouri

BY: - March 1, 2021

It was a mixed week for education reform in the Missouri legislature, with historic success in one chamber and gridlock in the other. An education savings accounts program managed to clear a major hurdle, barely passing out of the House after heated debate and a rare speech from the House speaker. But on the other […]