Springfield Public Schools

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The Springfield Board of Education has approved the calendar for the 2015-2016 school year.  The first day of school is set for August 13. The last day will be Thursday, May 25, but it could be as early as May 17 depending on snow days.

The calendar also includes:

Theresa Bettmann / KSMU

Tuesday was the petition deadline for those wishing to be considered as a Springfield Public Schools Board of Education candidate for the upcoming spring election. 

SPS Spokesperson Teresa Bledsoe says five candidates are vying for three, at-large positions on the SPS board.

“Our current Board member Bruce Renner was one of them.  The new potential candidates are Swayne Loftis, Patricia Ingold, Jill Patterson and Francine Pratt,” Bledsoe says.


The Springfield School District plans to purchase a building in southeast Springfield to house administration.

Dr. John Jungmann
Springfield Public Schools

An annual performance of the Springfield Public Schools superintendent has warranted an extension for Dr. John Jungmann.

Jungmann, who has been on the job since July 2014, was originally signed to a 3-year contract with a base salary of $230,000 for the current school year. Earlier this week, during the SPS Board of Education executive session, Jungmann received a positive evaluation and a contract extension through the 2017-2018 school year.

Scott Harvey / KSMU

It's 1 o'clock on a Tuesday. Dr. John Jungmann is treating himself to a large Diet Coke from the Kum & Go at National & Chestnut. It’s a frequent indulgence for the new superintendent of Springfield Public Schools, and one of the few consistent things he finds time to fit into his busy daily schedule.

We had just come from a luncheon of the Rotary Club of Springfield, which Jungmann tries to attend a couple of times a month.

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The five finalists for Missouri’s commissioner of education includes two area superintendents and former Springfield Public Schools head Dr. Norm Ridder.

Ridder, along with Branson superintendent Dr. Douglas D. Hayter and Joplin’s Dr. C.J. Huff join a two St. Louis area officials on the list.  

Current commissioner Chris Nicastro will retire at the end of the year.

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A 17-year-old student of Parkview High School in Springfield has been charged with unlawful use of a weapon for possessing an unloaded firearm on school premises.

Brandon Smith is said to have brought the unloaded gun onto campus Monday, a class A misdemeanor. Under Missouri law, possession of a loaded gun on school property is a felony offense.

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Growing concern over potential reaction to the grand jury decision in Ferguson has prompted Springfield officials to think twice about where to send its students. KSMU’s Theresa Bettmann explains.

Clayton High School had planned to host a debate tournament this weekend before it was canceled Thursday morning. Clayton is the site of where a grand jury has been meeting to decide whether to indict Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown.

Drury University

Springfield Public Schools Athletic Director Mark Fisher has been selected to the same position at Drury University.

The school made the announcement today. Fisher, who has been with SPS since 2003, will begin his duties at Drury on July 1, 2015.

In a statement, Drury President Dr. David Manuel credited Fisher’s leadership and management qualities and breadth of experience dealing with a wide array of sports and administrations.

Scott Harvey / KSMU

Springfield Public Schools Superintendent Dr. John Jungmann has outlined eight actions to move the district forward.

The recommendations were presented during Tuesday night’s school board study session, and are the result of 90 days of meetings that Jungmann had planned shortly after his hire this summer.

Those goals include ensuring equity of opportunity, which Jungmann stressed can be improved through better understanding of student backgrounds and cultures.

Dr. John Jungmann
Springfield Public Schools

Springfield Public Schools Superintendent Dr. John Jungmann will present his plan for moving the district forward tonight.

Jungmann, who began at SPS in July, is prepared to share what he learned following 90 days of listening sessions. He has been working to develop an understanding of the school district’s culture and the community’s expectations. His report is based on input from more than 1,500 stakeholders.

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Enrollment in Springfield Public Schools continues to grow.  According to an SPS news release, official enrollment has increased for the seventh year in a row in the state's largest school district.  A total of 25,107 students are enrolled for the 2014-2015 school year.  That's an increase of 202 students from the last school year.  Elementary enrollment increased by .5 percent, middle school by 1.2 percent and high school by 1.1 percent over last year.

The Springfield School District has 1000 more students than the second largest district--St. Louis Public Schools.

Springfield Public Schools - Sunshine Elementary

One of Springfield’s oldest schools celebrates a major milestone this week. KSMU’s Simone Cook has details.

Sunshine Elementary School was founded in 1864 as a country school on the corners of a then dirt Sunshine Lane and gravel Campbell Road.

David Martin, current principal of the school in Springfield, explains that the facility wasn’t even a part of the city in the mid-1860s.

Scott Harvey / KSMU

Springfield Public Schools formally dedicated its Health Sciences Academy at Mercy Hospital Wednesday night. The new initiative offers a platform for eighth grade students to dive into the healthcare field.

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Charges have been filed against an 18-year-male stemming from last Friday’s incident at Central High School in which a gun accidentally discharged in the facility’s Commons Area.  

Laverne Antoine Hale of Springfield has been charged with the two counts of unlawful use of a weapon, one count of delivery of a controlled substance and one count of resisting arrest. The office of Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson announced the charges Wednesday.