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YUSD Governance Handbook

Unity of Purpose, Roles & Responsibilities, Norms & Protocols

This Governance Handbook reflects the governance team’s work on creation of a framework for effective governance. This involves ongoing discussions and agreements about unity of purpose, roles, norms and protocols that enable the governance team to continue to perform its responsibilities in a way that best benefits all students.

Board Approved: June 11, 2013

School district governance is the act of transforming the needs, wishes and desires of the community into policies that direct the community’s schools.

As the governance team fulfills responsibilities in the areas of setting direction, human resources, policies, student learning and achievement, finance, judicial appeals, collective bargaining, and community relations and advocacy, the way in which governance team members perform the governance role is critical. Whether in the boardroom, out in the community or at home, board members are always trustees for the district. The integrity of the school district’s educational program is dependent upon the responsible and professional manner in which each board member, and the board collectively, fulfills governance roles and responsibilities with the superintendent. The demeanor of governance team members sends an important message to the public. Utilizing effective governance techniques, private citizens, once elected to school boards, work with the superintendent to keep all district efforts focused on student learning. Effective governance tenets encompass the basic characteristics and behaviors that enable governance team members to effectively create a climate for excellence in a school district. The community elects school board members to set and monitor the direction of the school district, but the district superintendent will translate all efforts into action. It is therefore vital that the board and superintendent have a respectful and productive working relationship based on trust and open communications. Working as a group, board members and the superintendent leverage the efforts of the professional staff by setting a direction for the district reflective of the community’s wishes for its children, by creating a supportive framework for action in the district, by holding the system accountable through mutually agreed upon mechanisms, by providing support to students and staff through behaviors and actions, and by demonstrating community leadership on behalf of children, district schools and public education. When this is done effectively, the chances of a climate for excellence being created in which students are able to thrive increases dramatically.

YUSD Governance Handbook