The Hazelwood School District will pay tuition for an expelled middle school student to receive an education through a contract with an alternative learning center. That after a settlement was reached between the district and Legal Services of Eastern Missouri.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the 13 year old had been expelled last year for selling pills to another student. The paper reports the student couldn't afford private school, or even a computer. He also couldn't access alternative education programs through the juvenile courts, because he hadn't been charged with a crime. So he sued claiming his right to a free, public education was being infringed.
Legal Services executive director Dan Glazier tells the paper the case is one of the first of its kind filed in Missouri. Glazier says the problem is fairly rare, since so few students are actually expelled in the state, fewer than 60 all of last year.
The Hazelwood settlement stops short of obligating school district to always serve students who are expelled. But as part of the settlement, Hazelwood has agreed to consider similar arrangements on a case-by-case basis.