Attorney: Francis Howell wasting money trying to block transfer -

Attorney: Francis Howell wasting money trying to block transfer students from returning

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( – A lawyer for the Normandy School District told News 4 the Francis Howell School District is making Normandy jump through absurd legal hoops in order to allow transfer students to return to Francis Howell.

A few hundred transfer students from Normandy may return to Francis Howell for the 2014-2015 school year, but Normandy’s attorney said Francis Howell is trying to block such a move, and is wasting taxpayer money in the process.

“Basically, what Francis Howell is doing, is fundamentally wasting a ton of legal fees, their taxpayer money, to make up jump through these absurd hoops,” Joshua Schindler said. “Every day we wait, a kid is losing a day of education at Francis Howell.”

Schindler said Francis Howell is requiring a court order for every Normandy transfer student that wants to return to Francis Howell. A court has ordered Francis Howell to accept 17 Normandy students. Another hearing has been called for Friday and a judge may order Francis Howell to accept even more students. Eventually up to 350 students may be allowed to return.

“These kids are ultimately coming back to Francis Howell and so what they will do is enter classes two, three, four weeks late, which is not good for the children coming in and which is not good for the children in the classroom,” Schindler said.  “Kirkwood has bent over backwards to make room for as many Normandy kids as their classrooms will accommodate.”

Francis Howell did not provide anyone to go on camera, but sent a statement:

The Francis Howell School District will continue to comply with the law in regards to transfer students from unaccredited school districts, but we stand by our decision and rationale for not accepting transfer students. Not only does the district have a policy, which was established in 2005, that states we do not accept non-resident tuition paying students, but we remain steadfast in our belief that transferring students from unaccredited school districts is not the solution to improving struggling schools. We believe that struggling school districts need all of the resources available to them to have the best chance of success for all students. Sending some students to outside school districts depletes the resources for the larger student population who remain in the unaccredited school districts. The Francis Howell School District is committed to all of our students, and we will work to make sure that each child who comes to us has a quality year of learning.

Francis Howell sent a letter to parents about the transfer situation. To view it, click here.

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