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School Council Orientation

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Title: School Council Orientation


1
School Council Orientation
  • The Fundamentals of School Councils

2
School Council Orientation
  • Part One
  • Why School Councils?

3
The Evidence Is Overwhelming
  • Parental participation in schools positively
    influences student achievement.
  • Dr. Joyce Epstein
  • Parent involvement in almost any form produces
    measurable gains in student achievement.
  • Henderson
  • Parental involvement is one of the most
    significant factors contributing to a childs
    success in school. When parents are involved in
    their education, the level of student achievement
    increases.
  • Education Improvement Commission

4
Meaningful Parental Involvement
  • The six areas of meaningful parental
  • involvement
  • Parenting skills
  • Communication
  • Volunteering (which can include fundraising)
  • Decision-making (developing an effective school
    council)
  • Learning at home
  • Coordinating with the community

5
The Evidence Is Overwhelming
  • Parental involvement in a childs education has
    been shown to have a significant effect on his or
    her achievement.
  • Education is a partnership involving parents,
    students, teachers, principals, school boards,
    government and the community.
  • Ministry of Education

6
Purpose of School Councils
  • To enhance student learning
  • through the co-operative efforts of parent,
    students, staff members and others in the
    community.

Ministry of Education
7
Why School Councils not Parent Councils?
School Councils the coming together of all
partners
community
family
school
8
Board Policy Procedure 262
  • Follows the musts outlined in Ministry
    Regulation 612 from 2000
  • Clarifies and tailors the regulation for the
    schools in York Region
  • Policy 262 mandates each school must have a
    vibrant school council and outlines the Boards
    vision for school councils in York Region
  • Procedure 262 covers the operational details of
    school councils

9
Board Policy Procedure 262
  • Policy 262 states
  • The Board believes that school councils play an
    important role in building school, family and
    community partnerships by providing input into
    relevant Board and school level decisions and by
    encouraging the involvement of all members of the
    school community in support of student learning.

10
School FundraisingBoard Policy Procedure 676
  • Clarifies
  • The fiscal year
  • Ownership of school council funds
  • Banking procedures
  • Financial reporting requirements
  • Independent reviews
  • Record retention

11
Board Policies Procedures
  • School councils should be familiar with
  • 262.0 School Councils
  • 280.0 Volunteers in Our Schools
  • 668.0 Safe Schools
  • 676.0 School Fundraising
  • Board policies and by-laws are available for
    viewing and downloading on the Boards website
  • www.yrdsb.edu.on.ca

12
School Council Orientation
  • The following sections will cover
  • Operational Guidelines for School Councils
  • Strategies for Making Your Council More Effective
  • Communication Tools and Protocol
  • About the York Region District School Board

13
School Council Orientation
  • Part Two
  • Operational Guidelines
  • for School Councils

14
Operational Guidelines School Council
  • This section will cover
  • Clarification of the Consultation Process
  • Areas of Consultation
  • Routing of Advice
  • Key Requirements
  • Principal Selection Process
  • Constitution

15
Clarification of the Consultation Process
  • There are clear expectations in Regulation 612,
    that all partners be consulted
  • The Board shall solicit the views of the school
    council
  • A school council shall consult with parents...
  • These expectations are reflected in Board
    Procedure 262.

16
Areas Of Consultation Board
  • The Board must consult school
  • councils on the following matters
  • All initiatives and policies that
  • Relate to the improvement of student achievement
  • Enhance the accountability of the system to
    parents
  • Board improvement plans
  • The process and criteria for the selection and
    transfer of principals and vice-principals

17
Areas of Consultation Board
  • Including
  • Codes of conduct
  • Appropriate dress of students
  • Allocation of funds to school councils
  • Conflict resolution process
  • Fundraising
  • Reimbursement of expenses

18
Areas of ConsultationPrincipal
  • The principal of the school must consult council
    on
  • School policies regarding
  • Code of conduct
  • Appropriate dress for students
  • School plan for continuous improvement
  • School profile

19
Consultation
  • Furthermore
  • School councils may make recommendations to their
    principal or school board on any matter
  • Boards and principals must report back on how the
    recommendations have been taken into account

20
Communications
  • Continuation of
  • Bridges
  • School Council Forums
  • Involvement of school councils in school plans
    for continuous improvement
  • Website information
  • Revised school council discussion board
  • Generic accounts for school council chairs
  • Communications Protocol

21
Communications
  • Generic accounts for school council chairs
  • Eliminates need to collect personal email
    addresses
  • Protects the privacy of personal email account
    information
  • Enhances collaboration amongst school council
  • Facilitates sharing of information
  • between Board and school
  • councils

22
Communications
  • Communications Protocol
  • Supports and guides effective communication
    between the Board and school councils
  • Defines standards and best practices for the use
    of electronic and non-electronic tools
  • Provides guidance on which communication tools
    are available and which are best suited to
    different needs
  • Outlines conflict resolutions steps

23
Routing of Advice
  • Board Procedure 262 clarifies the routing of
    formal advice to the Board.
  • 1. Recommendations may be made to the Board
    via the superintendent
  • 2. Recommendations will be considered and/or
    forwarded
  • 3. Superintendent will respond to council
  • 4. All recommendations must be reflected in the
    minutes of the school council

24
Key Requirements
  • Qualifications for membership
  • Elections fall elections, one year term
  • Public meetings
  • Definition of quorum
  • Compliance with Board policies
  • Written annual report
  • Administrator profile submitted annually
  • Compliant constitution
  • Membership requirement

25
Fundraising Requirements
  • Fundraising must be in accordance with Board
    policies and guidelines
  • Funds raised must be used for a purpose approved
    by the Board

26
Principal Selection Process
  • prepare/review and submit annually, no later
    than November of each school year or as requested
    by the superintendent, an administrator profile
    outlining the preferred characteristics of the
    schools principal and/or vice-principal to the
    superintendent of education (if an updated
    profile is not submitted the most recent version
    will be considered)
  • Board Procedure 262

27
Role of the Council in the Selection of
Principal
  • In accordance with Ministry Regulation 312,
    Procedure 262 mandates that councils must submit
    a principal profile on an annual basis
  • Ensures superintendents have up-to-date
    information when making decisions regarding
    administrator transfers
  • These profiles will form part of the criteria
    considered by the Board when making
    administrative changes

28
School Council Constitution
  • It is mandated that your school council MUST have
    a compliant constitution.
  • The constitution must be reviewed annually,
    preferably at the beginning of each new term.
  • Refer to Procedure 262 for details on bylaws that
    should be included.

29
School Council Orientation
  • Part Three
  • Strategies for Making Your
  • School Council More Effective

30
Strategies for Making Your School Council More
Effective
  • This section will cover
  • Constitution
  • Responsibilities
  • Characteristics of an Effective Council
  • Team building
  • Meaningful Parental Involvement
  • Plans for Continuous Improvement
  • School Council Planning
  • Orientation Package for New Members
  • Additional Support

31
School Council Constitution
  • A well thought out constitution
  • Lays the ground rules for effective council
    meetings
  • Becomes extremely important when conflict arises
  • It is important to have a solid
  • constitution BEFORE problems begin.

32
Responsibilities of the Principal
  • Attend, support and promote councils operations,
    meetings and other activities
  • Act as an important source of information and
    advise the council when they are not in
    compliance with Board policies and procedures
  • Solicit councils views consider and respond to
    their recommendations
  • Notify the community and post materials for
    parents

33
Responsibilities of Council Members
  • Regularly attend school council meetings
  • Maintain a school-wide perspective
  • Act as a link between the council and the
    community
  • Encourage participation of all parents
  • Participate in information and training programs,
    sub-committees
  • Assist with tasks of council

34
Responsibilities of Chairs/Co-chairs
  • The chair/ co-chairs have additional
    responsibilities, including
  • Preparing the agenda and chairing meetings
  • Communicating with the principal and senior Board
    staff
  • Ensuring that
  • Parents are consulted about matters under
    consideration by council
  • Fundraising is in accordance with Board policies
    and procedures
  • The constitution is reviewed annually
  • The minutes are recorded

35
Characteristics Of An Effective School Council
  • Focused on student learning and promotes
    meaningful parental involvement
  • Actively involved in setting school priorities to
    improve student achievement
  • Communicates with and seeks the views of the
    school community
  • They have members who
  • Have developed mutual trust respect for one
    another
  • Represent the diverse views of the school
    community
  • Have a clear understanding of their roles and
    responsibilities
  • Are kept well informed about school and Board
    policies
  • Maintain high ethical standards
  • Support a clear and consistent process for
    decision making

36
Team building
  • The principal and the council chair form an
    important leadership team
  • Together they set the agenda so as to ensure an
    effective meeting
  • They both include the wider community as much as
    possible
  • During meetings they help to keep everyone
    focused and advise the council as to Board policy
    and procedure
  • While a strong principal/council chair team can
    form a solid back bone for an effective council,
    it is essential to realize the importance of
    delegating responsibilities not only to members
    but also to the wider community.

37
Parental InvolvementCouncils should involve as
many parents as possible, not only for their long
term viability, but also because
  • Research has shown that
  • parental involvement
  • leads to increased
  • student achievement.

38
Meaningful Parental Involvement
  • Dr. Joyce Epstein
  • 15 years researching the most MEANINGFUL forms of
    parental involvement
  • Developed an easy to follow framework
  • Outlines the most effective ways for parents to
    be involved
  • Parental Involvement
  • A resource to support the school planning
    process
  • Provides practical suggestions for each of these
    areas

39
Board Plan for Continuous Improvement
  • Developed within the context of mission, vision
    and values
  • Establishes a framework for system activity and
    resource allocation
  • Provides the basis for measuring improvement
  • The Board plan has three areas of focus
  • Quality schools
  • Building family and community capacity
  • Quality workplaces
  • The Board has defined LITERACY as its overall
    priority.

40
School Planfor Continuous Improvement
  • School plans are developed within the context of
    Board-wide priorities.
  • Each school is required to develop a school plan
    that supports the Board plan and reflects the
    individual schools priorities and needs.
  • The school priority areas are
  • Curriculum
  • Parent, family and community engagement
  • Effective schools

41
School Planfor Continuous Improvement
  • School councils have a significant role
  • They work with the principal and staff to
  • set the schools priorities
  • develop and implement plans to achieve the goals
    that have been set.
  • It is the collective commitment of staff, parents
    and the community that breathes life into a
    school plan.

42
School Council Planning

Board Plan for Continuous Improvement
School Plan for Continuous Improvement
School Council Plan
43
School Council Planning
  • It is important that
  • Council set their own goals at the beginning of
    the year
  • These goals should support the school plan
  • All members agree upon these goals
  • Every effort is made to stick to them
  • Good planning
  • Focuses efforts and resources effectively
  • Provides a framework for decision making
  • Maximizes the use of time
  • Gives the council direction and purpose

44
School Council Planning
  • Good planning takes time but is essential to
    running an effective school council
  • Priorities should be reviewed regularly and
    adjusted so that expectations can be met.
  • Where to start
  • The school plan should be the basis for council
    planning
  • All members should have a clear understanding of
    the school plan
  • Information on council planning can be found in
  • The Ministry handbook School Councils A Guide
    for Members
  • Boards School Council Website

45
School Council Budget
  • Preparing a school council budget is part of good
    planning
  • The budget should align with the school council
    plan
  • This will help ease the decision-making process
    since spending decisions are linked with real
    goals

46
Orientation Package For New Members
  • May want to include
  • School council handbooks
  • Policy and Procedure 262
  • Regulation 612
  • School council constitution
  • School profile
  • List of council members and contact information

47
Orientation Package for New Members
  • Information from the previous year that
  • may be helpful to new members
  • Budget, year end financial statement
  • School council plan or goals
  • Minutes of previous meetings
  • Operative norms, code of ethics
  • School plan for continuous improvement
  • Annual Report

48
Additional Support Available
  • From the Ministry of Education
  • School Councils A Guide for Members 2001
  • EIC Road Ahead III Role of School Councils
  • EIC School Improvement Planning A handbook
  • Election Package for School Councils
  • Other documents
  • Available at www.edu.gov.on.ca

49
Additional Support Available
  • From the Board
  • Training through staff development department
  • School council forums
  • Resources
  • Parental Involvement resource
  • Handbook of Information for Volunteers
  • Website www.yrdsb.edu.on.ca
  • Policies and procedures
  • Through your principal
  • Expertise in many areas
  • Help with teambuilding
  • Accessing documents listed above

50
School Council Orientation
  • Part Four
  • About the Board

51
About the Board
  • York Region
  • covers the area from Steeles Ave to Lake Simcoe
    and the Holland Marsh
  • a total of 1756 square km
  • quadrupled in population in the last 30 years
  • expected to reach 1.28 million by 2026
  • Nine area municipalities
  • Aurora
  • East Gwillimbury
  • Georgina
  • King
  • Markham
  • Newmarket
  • Richmond Hill
  • Vaughan
  • Whitchurch/Stouffville

52
About the Board
  • The Board has
  • over 113,000 students
  • 194 elementary and secondary schools
  • And employs over 10,000 staff members

53
Board Mission Statement
  • We unite in our purpose to inspire and prepare
    learners for life in our changing world
    community.

54
Board Vision
  • We are the faces of public education.
  • We understand our gifts and challenges.
  • We are motivated by our dreams and act towards
    their fulfillment.
  • We respect and celebrate our differences.
  • We invite and value the spirit of community,
    creativity, and personal growth.
  • We support each other.
  • We have joy in who we are and who we are
    becoming.

55
Board Values
  • We recognize and celebrate excellence, and the
    heart-felt efforts and contributions of our
    community.
  • We strive for equity, inclusiveness, and
    diversity in all our programs, practices,
    facilities,and people.
  • We value dedication and commitment.
  • We value and will respond in an appropriate
    manner to the voices, ideas, and understanding of
    all our community members.
  • We believe it is the right and responsibility of
    everyone to ensure a safe nurturing community.
  • We embrace the spirit of innovation that acts to
    realize opportunities to transform our vision
    into reality.
  • We are all responsible for our words and actions.

56
Who Is The Board?
  • The Board of Trustees and
  • Staff
  • Senior Administration
  • Departments and CECs
  • School administration
  • Support staff

57
The Board of Trustees
  • Thirteen trustees
  • Publicly elected
  • Serve for a four-year term
  • Accountable to their constituents and the
    community as a whole
  • Responsible for approving policies and by-laws
    which govern the operation of the Board
  • Act as ombudspersons and ambassadors for the
    system

58
Staff - Senior Administration
  • Director
  • Associate Director of Business Services
  • Coordinating Superintendents of Education
  • Superintendents of Education

59
Staff - Departments
  • Business Services (e.g. Accounting, Purchasing,
    Payroll)
  • Curriculum and Instructional Services
  • Education and Community Services (e.g. Permits)
  • Human Resource Services
  • Information Technology Services
  • Planning Services
  • Plant Services
  • Public Affairs and Communications Services

60
Community Education Centres (CEC)
  • Each CEC
  • Is represented by superintendents (2-3 in each
    elementary CEC and 4 in secondary)
  • Represents one area of the Board (North, East,
    West, Central, Secondary)
  • Provides support for administrative functions for
    schools in their area

61
School Administrators
  • Principals and Vice-Principals
  • Representatives of the Board in their own school
  • Subject to the authority of the superintendent
  • Accountable to the students, parents, staff and
    senior administration

62
Support Staff
  • Serve an important service in schools and
    departments. Examples include
  • Assistants for the Developmentally Handicapped
  • Caretakers
  • Child and Youth Workers
  • Health Assistants
  • Library Assistants
  • Secretaries

63
School Council Orientation
  • Thank you once again
  • for serving on behalf
  • of the children in
  • your school community.
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