ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - Today is the deadline for students in the unaccredited Normandy and Riverview Gardens school districts to apply to transfer.
Normandy will pay both tuition and transportation for students who want to go to Francis Howell School District, while Riverview Gardens will cover costs for kids to go to the Mehlville and Kirkwood school districts.
The transfers are expected to take a serious financial toll on the unaccredited districts, but many parents say they have no choice.
"I've witnessed how far behind they actually are my son attended Normandy Middle last year he was in seventh grade and they were doing third grade work," said Normandy parent Stephanie Hall.
"Let's just use Clayton as an example. For every student I send to Clayton, that impacts resources for three students that decide to stay here," said Normandy Superintendent Dr. Ty McNichols.
Normandy schools will be accepting applications from 8:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. Riverview Gardens will accept applications from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.
As we've reported, there are more students who want to transfer then there is space available. So, administrators will use a lottery system to decide which students are granted their first choice.
If they don't get their top pick, they will be assigned to their second or third district of choice. If none of their choices are available, parents will be called so they can work through other options. Administrators in Normandy and Riverview are telling parents to keep their phones on today because the district will be calling parents regarding their choices.
They hope to have everyone assigned to a school by Friday.
State lawmakers say school transfers will be the dominant issue when the legislative session begins in January.
NewsChannel 5 spoke with one state senator from the Riverview Gardens area and one from the Mehlville Kirkwood area. Both agree that it's a mess and something has to be done.
"And we need to figure out a way to make these failing school districts become what they once were," said Sen. Gina Walsh (District 13).
"It is imperative that we give a quality education to every child in our region every child deserves one what this is about is figuring out the best way to go about doing that," said Sen. Scott Sifton (District 1).