VII-29: School Community Councils
North Sanpete School District
Board Policy with Guidelines
|Policy Number: VII-29
Effective Date: 09/09/2008
Subject: School Community Councils
Each public school in consultation with its local school board shall establish a School Community Council. The purpose of School Community Councils shall be to build consistent and effective communication among parents, employees and administrators, to improve student achievement by developing a school improvement plan, allowing parents the opportunity to be actively involved in their children’s education, helping to establish and implement educational goals for their respective schools.
Composition of Councils
- Each school community council shall consist of school employees (including the school’s principal) and parents or guardians of students who are attending the school.
- It is recommended that high schools have six (6) parents or guardian members and five (5) school employees (including the principal).
- It is recommended that others schools have four (4) parent or guardian members and three (3) employee members (including the principal).
- While councils may be larger or smaller than the recommended number, the number of parent or guardian members must always exceed the number of school employee members, and the council must consist of at least three (3) parent or guardian members and two (2) school employee members.
- Each Council shall have a chair and a vice chair, elected by the council members from among the members of the council. No more than one council member may serve as the chair or vice chair at the same time.
Selection of School Employees
- The principal shall serve as an ex officio member with full voting privileges.
- Employee members shall be elected by a majority of the school employees. Written notice of this election shall be given at least two weeks prior to the date of the election. Results of the election shall be made available to the public upon request.
- If an employee position remains unfilled following an election, the other employee members shall appoint an employee to fill the position, and the chair shall notify the Board of Education of the appointment.
Selection of Parent and/or Guardian Members
- Parents or guardian members shall be elected by majority vote of those voting in an election held at the school. Only parents or guardians of students attending the school are eligible to vote in this election. Written notice of this election shall be given at least two weeks prior to the date of the election. Results shall be made available to the public upon request.
- Any parent or guardian who qualifies to be a candidate may file or declare him or herself as a candidate for election to the council.
- If a parent or guardian position on the council remains unfilled following an election, the other parents or guardian members shall appoint a parent or guardian who meets the qualifications to fill the position, and the council chair shall notify the board of Education of the appointment.
Term of Office
- Elected or appointed members of the council shall serve two (2) year terms beginning the first day of July. However, initial terms shall be staggered so that no more than 50% of the council members stand for election in any one year. Council members may serve up to three (3) successive terms.
Duties of Councils
Each school community council shall advise and make recommendations to the school, school district administration, and the local school board regarding the school and its programs, school district programs, and other issues related to the community environment for students. Each school community council shall also:
- Develop a School Improvement Plan in accordance with Utah Code 53A-1a-108.5:
- Identify the schools most critical academic need;
- Recommend a course of action to meet those needs;
- List any programs, practices. Materials, or equipment that the school will need to implement its action plan to have a direct impact on the instruction of students, and the result in measurably increase student performance; and
- Describe how the schools intends to enhance or improve academic achievement, including the financial resources available to the school (for example, state and federal grants or School LAND trust Programs monies) will be used for this purpose. The council may develop a multi-year school improvement plan, however, any plan must be presented to and approved by the Board of Education each year.
- Develop a School LAND Trust program for the school in accordance with Utah Code 53A-16-101.5:
- The program developed by the council is subject to approval of the board of education;
- The school shall also publicize to its patrons and the general public how the School LAND Trust funds were uses to implement a component of the improvement plan and the results of those efforts;
- the school and council shall prepare and present an annual report to the Board of Education each year which details the use of the Trust funds and the results obtained from the use of those funds. The council may develop a multi-year school improvement plan, but the plan must nevertheless be presented to and approved by the Board of Education each year.
- Develop a child access routing plan in accordance with Utah Code 53A-3-402.
- Assist in the development and implementation of a staff professional development plan in accordance with Utah Code 53A-3-701.
- In addition, each school community council for an elementary school shall develop a reading achievement plan in accordance with Utah Code 53A-1-606.5.
- The reading achievement shall be approved by the District and implemented by the school’s principal, teachers and other appropriate staff.
- The reading achievement plan shall be designed to reach the long-term goal of having all students in the school reading on or above grade level by the end of third grade and every grade thereafter.
- The reading achievement plan shall include the following components:
- An assessment component that focuses on ongoing formative assessment to measure the five domains of reading (phonological awareness, phonic, fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary), as appropriate, and to inform instructional decisions, and which includes a reading assessment selected from a list recommended by the State Board of Education.
- An intervention component that:
- Provides adequate and appropriate interventions focused on each student attaining proficiency in reading skills;
- Is based on the best practices identified through proven research-based methods;
- Provides intensive intervention, such as focused instruction in small groups, implemented at the earliest possible time for students having difficulty in reading;
- Provides opportunities for parents to receive materials and guidance so that they will be able to assist their children in attaining proficiency in reading skills; and
- As resources allow, involves a reading specialist.
- A reporting component that includes reporting to parents their child’s literacy profile, which documents ongoing formative assessment results, and, at the end of third grade, their child’s reading level. The listed responsibilities are not intended to be all-inclusive. School community councils may assist the principal in other areas.
Compliance with Open Meetings Law
- Each school community council shall comply with the Utah Open and Public Meetings Act, including adopting procedure to ensure that notice and minute requirements are met.
Subcommittees and Task Forces
- A school community council may create subcommittees or task forces to advise the council or make recommendations to the council, or to develop all or part of the plans the council’s duties require. However, any plan or portion thereof developed by a subcommittee or task force shall be subject to the approval of the council.
- A school community council may appoint individuals who are not members of the council to serve on a subcommittee or task force (including parents, school employees, or other community members).