There are four candidates running for two open six-year terms on the boards. Smita Nagpal, Diane Friese, Karen Delhey and Paul Hynek will appear on the Nov. 6 ballot. The candidates have paired off to run as teams, with Nagpal and Friese running as one team and Delhey and Hynek running as the other. Voters, however, are free to choose any two they wish.
See the candidates side-to-side when the Saline High School student group Students Reinvesting In a Valuable Education (STRIVE) hosts a candidates forum at 6:30 p.m., Oct. 25 at Saline Middle School.
Here is today's question:
There has been some disagreement on the current board about how closely the board should manage the district. Explain your view of how the board and superintendent/administration should work together.
The role of the board is NOT to run the district as clearly stated in our district policies. This should not even be a discussion. The Board of Education is a policy making body. The Board hires a superintendent and she/he is entrusted to lead the district according to established board policies and administrative regulations. The superintendent and the board, like all stakeholders, need to have clear and open communication and transparency about running the district. Feedback should always be gathered from all stakeholders and shared. This shared information on educational trends, current legislation from federal and state levels and input from the community is the basis of board/superintendent discussion and creation/modification of board policy. (See Board Policies: 1001-Introduction and Information, 1032-Powers and Duties, 1185-Board/Superintendent Relations and 2100-School Superintendent).
According to the Saline Area Schools Board of Education By Laws, the Board is a policy making body that provides direction and helps the school district realize its shared vision for the purpose of public education. Board responsibilities include hiring, appraising and giving feedback to the superintendent. However, the day-to-day management of the school district is the superintendent’s responsibility. I believe a more appropriate role for Board members is to act as “stewards” of the school district, such as by participating in the shared vision, informing themselves fully of issues facing the school district, actively soliciting information and acting as a conduit for public opinion in the community, and bringing to the table policies that could help the school district/Board realize its common vision. In general, a collaborative, collegial relationship should exist between the Board members and the Superintendent, but in the event of disagreement between Board and Superintendent, or between Board members, a code of conduct involving respect and civility should be followed, with every attempt made to resolve the disagreement.
The board, based on its current bylaws, should be policy makers. The management of the District is the responsibility of the superintendent. The policies enacted by the board should be educationally sound and in the best interest of the students and community.
The board of education should be functioning as a policy making body with one employee reporting to them, the superintendent. It is the responsibility of the superintendent to manage the day to day within the district and report back to the board. It is my understanding that this is already a policy and should not be the cause of any disagreement at the board level.
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