The Leadership Services team has over 150 years of combined experience in public education. Board development sessions are designed to be interactive, to get board members engaged with the topic and with one another. The topics listed below are common topics covered, but board development sessions can be fully customized to meet your board of education needs.
Roles and Relationships
Defining the role of the superintendent and the board related to governing the school district. The seven powers of the school board are the focus of the discussion -- such as policy, directing the superintendent and budget.
Related Video: 7 Powers of School Boards
Foundations of Board Governance
A package of the various relationships that commonly occur in the course of the superintendent and the board governing the school district. Items like surprises, decision-making, press relations, and superintendent evaluation are covered. Superintendent do/don't and board member do/don't issues are covered.
Related Video: Governance Model
Related Video: Key Work of the Board
The importance of communication between the superintendent, board and community are covered.
Related Video: Handling Patron Concerns
Related Video: Conducting Public Forum at School Board Meeting
"What Matters Most" Framework
The focus is on McREL's research report, which identifies areas of systems that must be addressed for productive change. The role of the board being engaged in the improvement of instruction under the leadership of the superintendent is highlighted.
Effective Board Meetings
Resources used include KASB "School Board President's Handbook" and the NSBA "Key Work for School Boards." Both publications provide information to both individual board members and the board as a whole on becoming more effective.
Related Video: 9 Questions About The Board's Focus
Related Video: Public Fourms
Every year the superintendent and the board should sit down, in some sort of a formal setting, and, together, decide the AGENDA FOR THE YEAR. A decision of what the superintendent is expected to do and what the board is expected to do is made. Outlining these expectations early in the year greatly reduces any confusion related to the board’s focus, and superintendent’s areas of focus. This exercise is especially important for a district that has a new superintendent.
The only person in the school district the board evaluates is the superintendent and this should be done through a transparent on-going process on an annual basis. The focus of the session is on what, how, when, and why as it relates to the evaluation of the superintendent.
From time to time the relationship between the board and superintendent requires "outside assistance" to resolve differences of opinion related to duties, behaviors or actions. Staff will come to the district and facilitate a work session that can be helpful in resolving these differences. If serious differences of opinion on the part of the superintendent and the board are allowed to fester, the school district and its mission to improve student achievement will suffer.
Resources: BOE Member Do's and Don't
New Board Member Resources
Information referenced in the Recommended Orientation Plan can be found in the following resources:
Join Dr. Brian Jordan, KASB Assistant Executive Director Leadership Services and Angie Stallbaumer KASB Lead Attorney for a 20 minutes conversation about Kansas School Boards, the Kansas Open Meetings Act and Executive Sessions.
Brian Jordan and Angie Stallbaumer discuss the requirements and process for setting agendas, scheduling special meetings and some best practices for a successful process working towards the success of all students.
Carol Pitts and Angie Stallbaumer offer tips and advice to effectively use social media as a board member without falling into some traps.
Craig Wilford, KASB Leadership Services Field Specialist, brings additional perspective to Cultural Proficiency. (Recorded May 17, 2019)
KASB and Gardner Edgerton USD 231 co-hosted an informative evening on May 16 designed to assist prospective board members gain insight into the work that school boards do as they govern the school district. In the presentation, Dr. Brian Jordan, discussed the foundational components of great boards and how that translates to successful school districts. The session allowed participants to ask questions about the work of school boards, and develop a better understanding of the responsibilities associated with serving on local boards of educations.
KASB Legal Department Team members Donna Whiteman and Sam Blasi review current law and process for upcoming School Board Elections in 2019. (Recorded April 2019)
This information is provided by KASB to our members as a resource on governance topics. The contents of KASB Board Development Online are intended to convey general information only and not to provide legal advice or opinions. Contact a KASB Attorney for advice on specific legal issues.