Board/Superintendent Operating Agreement
Unanimously Approved by FGSD Board of Directors Sept. 26, 2011
- Inspiring excellence while preparing all students for college, career and citizenship.
- The Board’s goal is to come together for the benefit of the students and staff of the Forest Grove School District.
- To effectively meet the district’s challenges, the school board and superintendent must function together as a leadership team.
- Individual board member requests will go to the superintendent and/or the Director of Business and Support Services.
- The superintendent will determine how to proceed with board requests. If a request requires a large amount of staff work the request will be added to a board agenda for the board to determine if it is a good use of staff time.
- Board members recognize that they have one employee, the superintendent.
- When board members have concerns, they will follow the chain of command and go through the superintendent. Board members will not make their own investigations.
- Board members recognize that they individually do not direct the staff. They direct the superintendent as a board.
Speaking with one Voice
- Board members will show respect for all, including fellow board members, staff and the community.
- Board members will voice their concerns about any agenda items, during a public meeting before the final vote is taken.
- In emergencies the board chair and superintendent will confer and determine the official response.
- The superintendent will communicate with the board in a timely manner about issues of concern to the district. Board members will give feedback to the superintendent if they feel adjustments are needed.
- The board chair and vice chair will meet with the superintendent monthly to plan board meeting agendas and strategize on how to address key issues.
- The board and superintendent will review, revise and recommit to these agreements yearly.
- Board members will remind one another in a respectful manner when a member is violating an agreement.
- The superintendent and board members will be open to feedback and respond respectfully.
- The Superintendent will provide the board with a monthly summary report.
- The board packet will normally be e-mailed to board members on the Monday prior to regularly scheduled board meetings. The board will be notified if there is a delay. If requested, a printed copy may be provided.
- Board members will contact the superintendent prior to meetings with any questions on agenda items.
- If a new question is asked during a board meeting and the information is not available, the Superintendent will bring the information back at the next board meeting
- Board members will come prepared for the meeting by having read all packet materials. If additional items are provided during the meeting, the board will take time to review them before voting.
- The board will not vote on agenda items listed as “future action” unless it is considered an emergency. In emergency situations, board policy will be followed.
- When an individual board member asks the superintendent a question about an agenda item, the response will be shared with all board members.
- The board and superintendent will strive to have no surprises at board meetings.
- The board and superintendent will seek to include multiple perspectives on agenda items of key concern for the community in order to provide a balanced conversation.
- The superintendent will act as parliamentarian at board meetings to help ensure each motion is clear and there is no missing or misunderstood information.
- Board members will submit their request for agenda items to the board chair, board secretary or may discuss it during Future Board Items at a board meeting. The board chair will acknowledge the request within one week and respond to the request following the next board leadership meeting. The request will be recorded on the future board items list.
Communication with Staff/Community
- Board members are encouraged to visit schools. Such visits will be planned in advance with the superintendent and school principal. Board members will wear the school district badge that indicates they are a “Board Member”. When board members visit schools as a parent or volunteer, they will sign in at the office and ask for a visitor badge. Advance notice is encouraged but may not be required in all cases.
- Board members may be called upon to write an article on behalf of the board. The communications director is available to assist with proofing. Board Leadership will review the article before it is submitted.
Board Meeting Agendas
- When relevant, the policy and/or goals will be listed with each agenda item.
- Public input will be limited to three minutes per person unless adjusted for a particular meeting or need. Groups will be encouraged to appoint a spokesperson so the same issue is not repeated. Individuals must sign in and identify themselves prior to speaking at board meetings.
- There will be time during Future Action Items for public input.
- Board members will strive to show respect at board meetings and refrain from surprising or embarrassing other board members, administrators, staff members or the audience.
- Whenever possible, the student representative to the board will be given an opportunity to express his/her position prior to the board taking a vote.