This is the time of the year to start promoting the role of the governing board and encouraging new candidates to run for elected positions next September.
The existence of local school governance ensures that the students’ and the community's needs are understood and that decisions are taken in their best interest. It's a form of democracy that we as members of the school community need to uphold and put into practice. It provides parents, students and staff with a unique opportunity to work together to enhance the students' educational experience and to enable their success. This is accomplished by assuming a leadership role in determining the direction of the school - through the development and implementation of an educational project - and by adopting budgetary strategies, approving various proposals on educational services, community services and fundraising. The governing board also collaborates with the school board by providing input on various LBPSB policy issues and by expressing the school’s particular needs.
We suggest you consider publishing and circulating a promotional flyer or pamphlet to your peer group. Feel free to use the information and references included in this web page. The training team is available to provide support in this effort and can be reached through Community Services Director Pat Deans at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As a service to governing boards, we've extracted the following page from the current edition of the GB resource manual:
Governing board operating rules specified by the Education Act
The governing board shall choose its chair from among the parents' representatives on the governing board who are not members of the personnel of the school board.
The principal shall preside over the governing board until the chair is elected.
The term of office of the chair is one year.
The chair of the governing board shall preside at meetings of the governing board.
If the chair is absent or unable to act, the governing board shall designate a person from among the members who are eligible for the office of chair to exercise the functions and powers of the chair.
A majority of the members of the governing board who are in office, including at least half of the parents' representatives, is a quorum of the governing board.
Suspension of powers
If the governing board is unable to hold a meeting for lack of a quorum after three consecutive notices have been sent at intervals of at least seven days, the school board may order that the functions and powers of the governing board be suspended for the period determined by the school board and that they be exercised by the principal.
The decisions of the governing board are made by a majority vote of the members present and entitled to vote.
If votes are equally divided, the chair has a casting vote.
Every decision of the governing board must be made in the best interests of the students.
The governing board may hold its meetings on the school premises.
The governing board may also use the school's administrative support services and facilities free of charge, subject to the conditions determined by the principal.
The governing board shall adopt and oversee the administration of its annual operating budget and render an account thereof to the school board.
The budget must maintain a balance between expenditures, on the one hand, and the financial resources allocated to the governing board by the school board, on the other.
The governing board shall establish rules for its internal management. The rules shall provide for at least five meetings every school year.
The governing board shall fix the date, time and place of its meetings, and inform the parents and the members of the school staff.
The meetings of the governing board are open to the public; however the governing board may order that a meeting be closed to the public if a matter is to be examined which could cause injury to a person.
The minutes of the proceedings of the governing board shall be recorded in a register kept for that purpose by the principal or by a person specially designated by the principal. The register is open to the public.
The minutes, after being read and approved at the beginning of the following meeting, shall be signed by the person presiding over the meeting and countersigned by the principal or by the person designated by the principal under the first paragraph.
The reading of the minutes is not required provided that a copy of the minutes was delivered to each member present at least six hours before the beginning of the meeting at which the minutes are to be approved.
A copy of an extract from the register may be obtained on payment of a reasonable fee fixed by the governing board.
Conflict of interest
Every member of the governing board who has a direct or indirect interest in an enterprise that places the member's personal interest in conflict with the interest of the school must, on pain of forfeiture of office, disclose the interest in writing to the principal, abstain from voting on any matter concerning the enterprise and avoid influencing the decision relating to it. The member must, in addition, withdraw from a meeting while the matter is discussed or voted on.
A disclosure under the first paragraph must be made at the first meeting of the governing board
1) after a person having such an interest becomes a member of the governing board;
2) after a member of the board acquires such an interest;
3) during which the matter is dealt with.
Conduct of members
The members of the governing board must act within the scope of the functions and powers conferred on them, and exercise the care, prudence and diligence that a reasonable person would exercise in similar circumstances; they must also act with honesty and loyalty and in the interest of the school, the students, the parents, the school staff and the community.
The members of a governing board may not be prosecuted for an act perfomed in good faith in the exercise of governing board functions.
The school board shall assume the defence of any member of the governing board who is prosecuted by a third person for an act done in the exercise of governing board functions.
In the case of penal or criminal proceedings, the school board may require a member who has been prosecuted to repay the defence expenses, except if the member had reasonable grounds to believe that the act was in conformity with the law, if the proceedings were withdrawn or dismissed or if the member was discharged or acquitted.
As well, the school board may require repayment of the defence expenses by the member if the member was found liable for damage caused by an act done in bad faith in the exercise of governing board functions.
Welcome to the new governing board resource page!
The information and resources made available through this webpage are complementary to the training activities provided in January 2007.
Welcome to the LBPSB's governing board resource page! It's purpose is to provide support and resources to principals and all members of governing boards.
Below you will find two key documents which have been designed to assist in the formation and operation of local governing boards. The Governing Board Resource Manual contains detailed information on the set-up, roles, responsibilities and procedures for governing boards, as well as suggestions and templates for various GB documents. Several copies are distributed to all schools each year.
You'll also find a handy document containing extracts of the Education Act pertaining to governing boards. This document is an indexed collection of all of the sections of the Education Act and other regulations which are relevant to the establishment and operation of governing boards. This may be of particular interest to principals and chairpersons.
Within the adjacent training team tab, news and information form the LBPSB's GB training team can be found. As well, documents and visuals used during training sessions will be posted on this tab. The web resources tab contains links to various web documents and webpages which provide useful information and support materials for governing boards.
Governing Board Resource Manual
(Revision 3 - September 2007)
Extracts of the Education Act Pertaining to Governing Boards
On January 24, 2008, the Community Services Department hosted an evening for governing board chairs. This event, open to chairs and those who support the chair in our schools and centres, came as a result of interest generated from last year’s meeting held in April.
With over 50 people in attendance, the evening started off with Marcus Tabachnick presenting on the topic of “How to Deal with the Media.” The second portion of the evening provided an opportunity for the chairs to share their experiences and thoughts on five different aspects relating to governing boards: promoting the governing board; the role of the chair; working effectively with your principal; internal rules of procedure; and public question period.
A network of governing board chairs has now been established. If you would like to be included in this group, please send your contact information to Pat Deans, Director of Community Services.