COLUMBIA — Russell Still, a local attorney and former president of the Columbia Board of Education, was sworn in Thursday morning as a member of the Missouri State Board of Education.
Gov. Jay Nixon appointed Still to the board last month, and the Missouri Senate confirmed him on May 3. His eight-year term will expire in July 2017.
Still graduated from the University of Michigan in 1968 with a bachelor's degree in history and received his law degree from the MU School of Law in 1976. He worked as a teacher in the Detroit public school district and served on the Columbia Board of Education from 1996 to 2005.
A news release reported that Still said, "I am deeply respectful of the efforts of classroom teachers throughout the state and appreciate the opportunity to serve on the State Board."
Still is married to Rep. Mary Still, a Columbia Democrat currently serving in the Missouri House of Representatives.
The State Board of Education is responsible for setting policy for the public school system. The bipartisan board, established under Article IX of the Missouri Constitution, oversees educational programs and services for the state.
The State Board of Education's primary duties include:
- Setting standards of accreditation for school districts.
- Establishing "academic performance standards" for public schools.
- Setting education and certification requirements for teachers and administrators.
- Approving educator-preparation programs for state colleges and universities, both public and private.
- Monitoring school districts compliance with state and federal laws and regulations.
- Administering the Missouri School for the Blind and the Missouri School for the Deaf, as well as the State Schools for the Severely Handicapped.