Policy 2

Role of the Board

Background

The Board is a corporate entity created by the provincial legislation and given authority by the School Act and the attendant regulations. It is comprised of trustees elected in accordance with the Local Authorities Election Act. The Board exercises its authority through a democratic process.

The Board is charged with the responsibility of providing, for its students and their parents, an education system organized and operated in their best interests. It exercises this responsibility through setting of local educational policy and the wise use of resources.

The Board has one main purpose, namely to provide educational services as required by the School Act.

Specific Areas of Responsibility

  1. Accountability to the Provincial Government
    The Board shall:
    1. Act in accordance with all statutory requirements of the Government of Alberta to implement educational standards and policies.
    2. Perform Board functions required by governing legislation and existing Board policy.
  2. Accountability to the Community
    The Board shall:
    1. Make data-driven decisions which reflect community values and represent the interests of the entire community served.
    2. Establish processes and provide opportunities for community input.
    3. Report division results at least annually.
    4. Develop procedures for and hear appeals as required by statute and/or Board policy.
    5. Model a culture of respect and integrity.
    6. Provide a visible board presence, a division context at community meetings and a vehicle for two way communication.
    7. Encourage trustees to meet with school councils to receive information and to inform and clarify for school councils the activities of the Board.  They will be available to answer questions that parents may have. 
    8. Meet with societies of alternative school programs twice a year as a group.
    9. Meet with societies once per year.
    10. Appoint Trustees to school councils in Calgary. 
  3. Accountability to Student Achievement
    The Board shall:
    1. Align the plans of the district and the schools.
    2. Be committed to student achievement.
    3. Align Professional development with district goals.
    4. Lead as a united team with the superintendent.
    5. Take part in team development and training with the superintendent that will enhance student achievement.
  4. Three-Year Education Plan
    The Board shall:
    1. Provide overall direction for the jurisdiction by establishing mission, vision, strategic priorities and key results.
    2. Annually approve the Three-Year Education Plan process and timelines.
    3. Identify Board priorities at the outset of the annual Three-Year Education Planning process.
    4. Annually approve the Three-Year Education Plan for submission to Alberta Education by due date.
    5. Monitor progress toward the achievement of student outcomes and other desired results.
    6. Annually evaluate the effectiveness of the jurisdiction in achieving established goals and desired results.
    7. Approve the Annual Education Results Report for distribution to public.
  5. Policy
    The Board shall:
    1. Determine the goals and objectives the jurisdiction wishes to pursue.
    2. Identify how the Board is to function.
    3. Set policy and monitor policy impact to determine if policy is producing the desired results.
    4. Solicit advice (from the CEO and ASBA), then set the mandates for negotiation.
    5. Delegate authority to the CEO and define commensurate responsibilities.
  6. Board/Superintendent Relations
    The Board shall:
    1. Select the Superintendent.
    2. Provide the Superintendent with clear corporate direction.
    3. Delegate, in writing, administrative authority and identify responsibility subject to the provisions and restrictions in the School Act.
    4. Respect the authority of the Superintendent to carry out executive action and support the Superintendent’s actions which are exercised within the delegated discretionary powers of the position.
    5. Annually evaluate the Superintendent in regard to the Superintendent's job description and additional Board direction (e.g., hold the Superintendent accountable for achievements of Three-Year Education Plan).
    6. Annually review compensation.
    7. Provide for Superintendent succession planning as required.
    8. Approve the Transition to Retirement program for the Superintendent. The details of the Superintendent's Transition to Retirement must follow guidelines set forth in the Administrative Procedure 403.5 - Transition to Retirement but approval rests solely with the Board of Trustees.
  7. Political Advocacy
    The Board shall:
    1. Develop a yearly plan for advocacy, including focus, key messages and mechanisms. 
  8. Board Development
    The Board shall:
    1. Develop a yearly plan for Board/trustee development.
    2. Annually evaluate the Board’s effectiveness.
  9. Fiscal Accountability
    The Board shall:
    1. Approve budget assumptions at the outset of the budget process.
    2. Approve the budget annually and ensure resources are allocated to achieve desired results.
    3. Approve annually the Three-Year Capital Plan for submission to Alberta Education by the date due.
    4. Appoint an external auditor and approve annually the terms of engagement for the external auditor.
    5. Receive the Audit Report and ensure quality indicators are met.
    6. Monitor the fiscal management of the division through receipt of variance analyses and year-end projections.
    7. At its discretion, ratify Memoranda of Agreements with bargaining units.

Selected Responsibilities

  1. Approve the selection of the auditor, bank and architect.
  2. If a School Council is pursuing goals contrary to the philosophy of the Board, the Board may request the Minister to dissolve the School Council pursuant to section 22 of the School Act.
  3. Establish division-level annual fees.
  4. Approve funding for national/international competitions on a case-by-case basis.
  5. Develop and implement recognition programs for students, staff and community members.

Appendix 2A

PALLISER REGIONAL SCHOOLS

Mission Statement:

Together we will ensure learning success for all students to develop their unique potential as caring citizens in a changing world. Ongoing meetings:

BOARD YEAR PLAN – 2015-16

  1. Municipal Partners
  2. Labour Relations/Negotiations
  3. External Committees:
    a)  Alberta School Boards’ Association
    b)  Public School Boards’ Association
    c)  County of Vulcan Adult Learning Council
    d)  County of Lethbridge Community Learning Council
    e)  Vulcan & District Recreation Board

  4. Internal Committees:
    a)  Labor Relations Committee
    b)  Board-Teacher Advisory Committee
    c)  Audit Committee
    d)  Wall of Fame Committee
    e)  Facilities Committee           

Ad Hoc Committees

Ad hoc committees may be established from time to time to assist the Board for a specific purpose or function. The terms of reference for each ad hoc committee will be established at the time of formation. The term of appointment shall end upon conclusion of the appointed purpose or function or at the pleasure of the Board.    

Appendix 2B

Performance Assessment Guide

 Role Expectation
Accountability to the Provincial Government

 The Board shall:

 1.1      Act in accordance with all statutory requirements of the Government of Alberta to implement educational standards and policies.

 1.2      Perform Board functions required by governing legislation and existing Board policy. 

 

 

Evaluation Evidence

  • Three-Year Education Plan
  • Annual Education Results Report
  • Budget Report Form
  • Audited Financial Statements
  • Parent and Student Satisfaction Survey data
  • Published academic results
  • Superintendent’s evaluation
  • Policy review
  • Division litigation status
  • Relevant correspondence
  • Board self-evaluation questionnaires
  • Board role

Quality Indicators

  • Statutory obligations are fully met in a timely manner
  • Legislated functions are performed in an exemplary fashion
  • All resident students are provided an education program consistent with the School Act and the statutory regulations
  • Non-resident students are provided an education program consistent with the School Act and the statutory regulations, at the sole discretion of the Board
  • Board governance policies clearly specify required Board functions

 

 Role Expectation
|Accountability to the Community

 The Board shall:

 2.1      Make data-driven decisions which reflect community values and represent the interests of the entire community served.

 2.2      Establish processes and provide opportunities for community input.

 2.3      Report division results at least annually.

 2.4      Develop procedures for and hear appeals as required by statute and/or Board policy.

 2.5      Model a culture of respect and integrity.

Evaluation Evidence

  • Briefing notes and reports
  • Public meetings/focus groups/surveys
  • Satisfaction Survey data
  • Annual Education Results Report
  • Audited Financial Statements
  • Division publications
  • Media reports
  • Superintendent’s evaluation
  • Relevant correspondence
  • Board self-evaluation questionnaire results
  • Board role
  • Community engagement

Quality Indicators

  • Decisions are data-driven and reflective of Division values and interests

  • Mechanisms for community input are readily available

  • Processes are established to communicate Board decisions to its constituents

  • Information is disseminated to appropriate publics

  • Appeal hearing processes are transparent and cognizant of due process

  • The Board and individual trustees model a culture of respect and integrity and operate in an open, transparent fashion 

 

Role Expectation
Three-Year Education Plan

 The Board shall:

 3.1        Provide overall direction for the jurisdiction by establishing mission, vision, strategic priorities and key results.

 3.2        Annually approve the Three-Year Education Plan process and timelines.

 3.3        Identify Board priorities at the outset of the annual Three-Year Education Planning process.

 3.4        Annually approve the Three-Year Education Plan for submission to Alberta Education by due date.

 3.5        Monitor progress toward the achievement of student outcomes and other desired results.

 3.6        Annually evaluate the effectiveness of the jurisdiction in achieving established goals and desired results.

 3.7        Approve the Annual Education Results Report for distribution to public. 

 Evaluation Evidence 

  • Foundational statements
  • Annual goals and priorities
  • Three-Year Education Plan
  • Budget Report Form
  • Three-Year Capital Plan
  • Facilities Master Plan
  • Annual Education Results Report
  • Three-Year Education Plan Reports
  • Superintendent’s evaluation
  • Relevant correspondence
  • Board self-evaluation questionnaire results
  • Board role

Quality Indicators   

  • Foundational statements for the Division are established which allow it to move forward to a future that continues to enhance student learning and to achieve the Division’s educational goals

  • Planning processes and timelines allow for development with appropriate Board and stakeholder input
  • The Three-Year Education Plan identifies annual priorities and key results which move the Division forward
  • The allocation of resources reflects an effort to ensure student achievement
  • Division performance and achievement is monitored, evaluated and reported

  

Role Expectation
Policy

 The Board shall:

 4.1      Determine the goals and objectives the jurisdiction wishes to pursue.

 4.2      Identify how the Board is to function.

 4.3      Set policy and monitor policy impact to determine if policy is producing the desired results.

 4.4      Solicit advice (from the CEO and ASBA), then set the mandates for negotiation.

 4.5      Delegate authority to the CEO and define commensurate responsibilities.

Evaluation Evidence 

  • Policy development and review
  • New policies
  • Revised policies
  • Board motions summary
  • Superintendent’s evaluation
  • Negotiation mandates
  • Board self-evaluation questionnaire results
  • Board role

Quality Indicators 

  •  Board governance policies clearly specify required Board functions and implementation standards
  • Established policies facilitate smooth, effective provision of quality educational services for the Division
  • Policy impact is regularly evaluated to determine if policy is producing the desired results
  • Negotiation processes and mandates are clearly established, with due consideration for fairness, equity and economic conditions
  • Board policies clearly specify Superintendent responsibilities and authority 

 

Role Expectation
Board/Superintendent Relations

 The Board shall:

 5.1        Select the Superintendent.

 5.2        Provide the Superintendent with clear corporate direction.

 5.3        Delegate, in writing, administrative authority and identify responsibility subject to the provisions and restrictions in the School Act.

 5.4        Respect the authority of the Superintendent to carry out executive action and support the Superintendent’s actions which are exercised within the delegated discretionary powers of the position.

 5.5        Annually evaluate the Superintendent in regard to the Superintendent's job description and additional Board direction (e.g., hold the Superintendent accountable for achievements of Three-Year Education Plan).

 5.6        Annually review compensation.

 5.7        Provide for Superintendent succession planning as required. 

Evaluation Evidence 

  • Hiring and re-appointment process
  • Policy review
  • Board motions summary
  • Superintendent’s evaluation
  • Board self-evaluation questionnaire results
  • Board role
  • Board/Superintendent relations


















     

 Quality Indicators

  •  The Board has absolute and final responsibility in Superintendent selection subject to the Minister’s statutory authority
  • Clear corporate direction is provided to the Superintendent
  • The Superintendent has been delegated responsibility for all executive functions together with commensurate authority
  • The Superintendent’s authority to carry out executive action is respected, and the Superintendent’s actions which are exercised within the delegated discretionary powers of the position are supported
  • The Superintendent is evaluated annually, fairly and thoroughly in relation to specific roles and responsibilities and Board direction
  • The Superintendent’s compensation package is reviewed annually with due consideration for fairness, equity and economic conditions
  • Provision is made for Superintendent succession planning as required

     

 

 Role Expectation
Political Advocacy

 The Board shall:

 6.1      Develop a yearly plan for advocacy, including focus, key messages and mechanisms.

 

 

 

Evaluation Evidence 

  • Board Work Plan
  • Meetings with MP, MLAs, Ministers, municipal partners, educational/ public service authorities
  • Relevant correspondence
  • Media releases
  • Active participation in regional, provincial and national organizations
  • Board self-evaluation questionnaire results
  • Board role

Quality Indicators 

  • A plan for political advocacy is developed
  • The Board conveys key messages regularly to MLAs, municipal partners and the media
  • The Board conveys key messages to MPs when appropriate
  • The Board participates in advocacy processes at the local, provincial and national levels 


     

 

Role Expectation 
Board Development

 The Board shall:

 7.1      Develop a yearly plan for Board/trustee development.

 7.2      Annually evaluate the Board’s effectiveness.

Evaluation Evidence

  • Board Work Plan
  • Board strategic planning sessions
  • Board workshops
  • Conference/Activity Reports
  • Board self-evaluation questionnaire results
  • Board role
  • Interpersonal Working Relationships

Quality Indicators

  • A yearly plan for Board/trustee development is developed
  • Individual trustees participate in conferences and other activities to further Board and trustee effectiveness
  • Planning sessions and workshops are scheduled to enhance Board effectiveness
  • Interactions amongst trustees demonstrate respect, understanding and integrity
  • An annual Board self-evaluation, which defines a positive path forward, is completed 

  

Role Expectation
Fiscal Accountability

 The Board shall:

 8.1        Approve budget assumptions at the outset of the budget process.

 8.2        Approve the budget annually and ensure resources are allocated to achieve desired results.

 8.3        Approve annually the Three-Year Capital Plan for submission to Alberta Education by the date due.

 8.4        Appoint an external auditor and approve annually the terms of engagement for the external auditor.

 8.5        Receive the Audit Report and ensure quality indicators are met.

 8.6        Monitor the fiscal management of the division through receipt of variance analyses and year-end projections.

 8.7        At its discretion, ratify Memoranda of Agreements with bargaining units.

Evaluation Evidence

  • Monthly Financial Reports
  • External Audit Report
  • Audited Financial Statements
  • Annual Education Results Report
  • Negotiations mandates
  • Collective agreements
  • Board Work Plan
  • Relevant correspondence
  • Superintendent’s evaluation
  • Board self-evaluation questionnaire results
  • Board role

 Quality Indicators 

  • Budget assumptions are clearly understood by the Board
  • Needs are determined and prioritized
  • The basis for resource allocations within the Division is established by the Board
  • The approved budget clearly reflects the Board’s goals and priorities
  • Capital and facility plans allow for suitable student and program accommodation
  • An auditor is appointed
  • Quality indicators for financial operations are established by the Board and confirmed by internal and/or external audits
  • Resources are used efficiently and effectively
  • Variance analyses and year-end projections are received on a regular basis
  • Successful completion and execution of collective agreements occurs

 

References

School Act, Sections 45, 56, 60, 61, 62, 63, 187, 188
Local Authorities Election Act