Thursday, January 21, 2010

27J Board of Education sets vision, speaks with one voice

As citizen leaders who serve our children, school board members face complex and demanding challenges. Few people fully understand the scope and far-reaching implications of board members’ responsibilities.
The administration of School District 27J takes this opportunity to recognize the work board members do on behalf of the district’s 13,912 students.

The 27J Board of Education directors are President Lynn Ann Sheats, District 7; Vice President Joan Kniss, District 4; Brian Madison, District 1, Kristi Crisman, District 2, Russ Carr, District 3, Patrick Day, District 5, and Todd Cordrey, District 6.

Their job is to establish a vision for the education program, design a structure to achieve that vision, assure schools are accountable to the community and strongly advocate continuous improvement in student learning.
In School District 27J, under the Policy Governance system adopted a year ago, the board establishes broad policies, delegates authority clearly, and regularly examines whether policies are being fulfilled or need to be changed. Policy Governance is a tool to assure the superintendent is operating the district consistent with the board’s umbrella policies.

Examples of topics the Board has written policies for are academic ends; financial condition; treatment of students and public; treatment of faculty, staff and volunteers; asset protection; and financial planning and budgeting.

The board also has chosen to commit to spending Board of Education time on “community linkage,” listening to parents and taxpayers, and putting policy in place that will serve their needs and ambitions for the 27J school district.

The job entails an endless string of meetings and school functions to attend; reams of reports, agendas, proposals and other information to read and study; and a host of difficult decisions to make.

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