We are fortunate to live in one of the most highly regarded school districts in Missouri. We have a lot to be proud of: excellent teachers, parents who care, and visionary leadership on the school board, in the administration and in volunteer organizations. It's a simple concept: good schools make good neighborhoods!
As a lifelong resident of Kirkwood, Rick's entire family has benefitted from Kirkwood schools. His experience as a parent and a 30-year district volunteer, serving as Keysor PTO President, Chairman of various committees and 12 years on the School Board, has demonstrated to Rick that students who work hard in Kirkwood schools gain access to the best colleges and universities, earn athletic and academic scholarships and succeed in business and public service. As Chairman of the Prop i campaign in 2005, Rick raised funds to renovate all of our buildings and build the new KHS science building and varsity gym, ensuring that our facilities were maintained and improved for the next generation of students. We all can be proud of our schools.
As your State Representative, Rick serves on two education committees which manage budget and policy matters. Thanks in large part to Rick's advocacy for meaningful investment in education, funding for the "Foundation Formula" has not been cut despite the necessity of significant budget cuts during the recession. Kirkwood schools receive $2.2 million of this money.
Additionally, Rick supported House Bill 1543, which contains a number of provisions focused on school safety and improving the working environment for school staff. The legislation also provides school districts with additional budget flexibility during times when funding is limited. For the next three fiscal years, the bill suspends the requirement that school districts spend one percent of state funding on professional development. The legislation allows a school district to spend the money at its discretion. The change will free up approximately $30 million in education funding for schools across the state.
Rick continues to aggressively support public education. Specifically, he filed legislation to help struggling schools improve through high teacher standards, principal training, alternative schools and reading and math immersion programs. He also voted against a bill that would have allowed guns on college campuses. Because of Rick's common sense solutions and a consistent support of public schools, he is endorsed by the Missouri School Administrators, the Missouri State Teachers Association, and the Missouri National Education Association.