For Immediate Release:
Aug. 6, 2015
Contact: Paul Davis
(573) 751-4106

Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal Releases Letter to General Assembly Regarding Veto Override of HB 42

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing you this letter in the spirit of bipartisanship.  As Republicans who value the Sanctity of Life, I urge you to help the children in our state by voting to override the Governor’s ill-conceived veto of HB 42.  This bill would have brought statutory order to the chaotic student transfer process.  More importantly, HB 42 would have offered expanded opportunities for the predominantly Black and impoverished students trapped in failing schools to obtain a better education.

I am respectfully asking you to think about the children in my region who are trapped in some of our worst-performing buildings.  I ask you to consider what you would do if the children in your district were forced to attend these wholly inadequate schools.  As Republicans, your party long ago freed the slaves in support of the sanctity of life.  I am pleading with you to stop this well-organized effort to enslave children in substandard school buildings. This is a moral call. I am humbly asking you, as a Republican, to put first the welfare of the state before the special interests that keep my children subjugated.

The Governor has failed the children of St. Louis for far too long; his veto of our bipartisan effort is just one more item in his litany of failures.  Choosing adult special interests over children who need his help has been the Governor’s calling card for years. With Governor Nixon’s obvious lack of concern for my community, I plead with you as a member of the House Republican supermajority to override the veto of HB 42 and help give our children in failing schools an opportunity for a better education.  Let us not continue the pipeline to prison cycle.  You can't have a life without an education.  The Missouri Constitution clearly states that the education of our children is our first priority.  I ask that you honor our Constitution and values and accept my plea as a moral imperative.  

The school transfer process has needed improvements for over 20 years.  While Governor Nixon has chosen to pass the buck during his final two years in office, deserving children are being left behind, prohibited and physically restricted from movement despite the fact that Section 167.131 clearly offers students trapped in unaccredited school districts the right to transfer to an accredited school in another district.  This right to transfer was unanimously reaffirmed by the Missouri Supreme Court in the Breitenfeld vs. Clayton decision.  

The hope for better opportunities is fading and our children are suffering emotionally. Without anyone to save their immediate futures, educational violence will continue to occur at the hands of the most powerful elected official in Missouri -- Governor Jay Nixon.  Our Governor fails to understand that "separate and unequal" education has no place in today's society.   Educational violence occurs each day a child is turned away or told they cannot attend a better performing school.  The House Republican supermajority has the opportunity to correct one of the worst decisions any Governor has ever made.

When the legislature reconvenes on September 16th, please ensure HB 42’s final passage by overriding the governor's veto.