Policy BBAA: Member Authority and Duties

Authority

Because all powers of the School Committee derived from state laws are granted in terms of action as a group, members of each School Committee have authority only when acting as a Committee legally in session.

Each School Committee will not be bound in any way by any statement or action on the part of an individual member except when such statement or action is a result of specific instructions of the Committee.

No member of the Committee, by virtue of his/her office, will exercise any administrative responsibility with respect to the schools or command the services of any school employee.

Each School Committee will function as a body and all policy decisions and other matters as required by law will be settled by an official vote of the Committee sitting in formal session.

None of these provisions is intended to limit the right and responsibility of individual members to voice personal views on issues relating to the School Districts, to inform themselves as fully as possible on all issues coming before the School Committees, or to share information with the Superintendent and other members of the Committees.

Duties

The duties and obligations of the individual committee member may be enumerated as follows:

  1. To become familiar with the General Laws of the Commonwealth relating to education and school committee operations, regulations of the Massachusetts Board of Education, policies and procedures of the School Committee and school department of which they are a Committee member.
  2. To keep abreast of new laws and latest trends in education.
  3. To have a general knowledge of the goals, objectives, and programs of the public schools of the district where they are a Committee member.
  4. To work harmoniously with other Committee members without trying either to dominate the Committee or neglect his/her share of the work.
  5. To respect the privileged communication that exists in executive sessions by maintaining strict confidentiality on matters discussed in these sessions, except that which becomes part of the public record, once it has been approved for release.
  6. To vote and act in committee impartially for the good of the school district.
  7. To accept the will of the majority vote in all cases, and to remember that he/she is one of a team and must abide by, and carry out, all committee decisions once they are made.
  8. To represent the Committee and the schools to the public in a way that promotes interest and support.
  9. To refer questions and complaints to the proper school authorities.
  10. To comply with the accepted code of ethics for School Committee members.
Region Voted to Approve: 10/26/82; Reviewed with no Changes:  3/8/16
Amherst Voted to Approve: 12/14/82
Pelham Voted to Approve: 12/7/82
Effective Date: 
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