Role of the Board (Powers and Responsibilities)

MJUSD
DIVISION 9000
BYLAWS OF THE BOARD

ROLE OF THE BOARD (POWERS AND RESPONSIBILITIES)

The Governing Board is elected by the community to provide leadership and citizen oversight of the District's schools. The Board shall work with the Superintendent to fulfill its major roles, which include:

  1. establishing a long-term vision for the District;

  2. establishing and maintaining a basic organizational structure for the District, including employment of the Superintendent and adoption of policies, curriculum, the budget, and collective bargaining agreements;

  3. ensuring accountability to the local community, including personnel, programmatic and fiscal accountability, and service as a judicial and appeals body as needed;

  4. providing community leadership and advocacy at the local, state and national levels on behalf of children, district programs, and public education.

The Board is authorized to establish and finance any program or activity that is not in conflict with, inconsistent with, or preempted by, law. (Education Code 35160)

The Board may delegate any of its duties to the Superintendent or designee but shall be ultimately responsible for the performance of any duties it delegates. (Education Code 35161)

Vision
The Board shall set the direction for the District by adopting a vision statement that defines the District's goals and priorities. The Board shall carry out its vision-setting role by identifying the strengths and needs of the District, developing and adopting a process for framing the vision, soliciting staff and community input as appropriate, ensuring that the adopted vision statement is implemented and conducting a periodic review of the vision.

Superintendent Employment and Evaluation
The Board shall be solely responsible for employing the Superintendent and ensuring that he/she is the best match for the District based on needed abilities, traits and level of knowledge. When selecting a new superintendent, the Board shall ensure a smooth transition period; evaluate the District's current and long-term needs; plan and conduct a process for recruitment, screening and selection; and approve the Superintendent's employment contract. The Board shall regularly evaluate the Superintendent based on an evaluation system and performance objectives established by the Board and Superintendent.

General Hiring and Personnel Accountability
The Board shall adopt wage and salary schedules, and elect or reject employees at the recommendation of the Superintendent or designee. In order to have the best qualified people working at their maximum effectiveness, the Board shall hold the Superintendent responsible for overseeing the District's personnel system, developing effective hiring practices, creating a climate supportive of personnel and providing an effective framework for staff accountability.

Policy Adoption and Monitoring
The Board shall govern the schools by adopting policies that reflect the District's vision and the mandates of law. The Board shall establish a clear policy development process through which it may deliberate on issues, identify priorities, assign responsibilities, identify goals and courses of action, and review policy decisions.

The Board shall also adopt bylaws that promote cooperation, trust, and teamwork among its members, give parameters to the Board's operation as a governing body, and ensure that its meetings proceed efficiently and in compliance with law.

Curriculum Adoption and Program Accountability
While the design and implementation of curriculum is primarily a staff responsibility, the Board's role is to adopt overall educational goals and standards, define the curriculum development process, specify graduation requirements, adopt the developed curriculum, and ensure compliance with state and federal laws.

To ensure accountability to the community, the Board shall establish measurable benchmarks to assess the effectiveness of the District's educational programs in producing desired student achievement results. Based on these assessments, the Board shall direct the Superintendent or designee to take corrective actions as needed.

Budget, Facilities and Fiscal Accountability
The Board shall adopt a sound, responsible budget that supports District goals and priorities. To guide the Superintendent or designee in development of the budget, the Board shall establish a budget calendar, budget process and spending priorities.

Recognizing that school facilities are a long-term obligation that impacts District budgets, the Board shall also ensure that a plan is in place to address the District's facility needs, including the funding, construction and maintenance of school facilities. The Board shall approve facility sites, funding sources and architectural and construction contracts.

The Board recognizes that it is accountable to the community for its budget and facilities decisions and for the District's fiscal integrity. The Board shall use accountability systems and processes in order to monitor the District's fiscal heath.

Collective Bargaining
The Board is the legal representative of the District in negotiations with employee representatives. In carrying out the collective bargaining process, the Board shall set goals and guidelines for collective bargaining, select the bargaining team, maintain communications throughout the process and approve the negotiated contract.

Judicial and Appeals Body
In addition to establishing complaint procedures that ensure due process and facilitate the satisfactory resolution of issues, the Board may convene to serve as a judicial and appeals body in accordance with law, Board policies, and negotiated agreements. The Board may delegate fact-finding or hearing responsibilities in appropriate cases but remains the final decision-maker in these proceedings.

Community Leadership
The Board shall build and maintain community awareness and support by actively involving parents/guardians, business and other community members in the schools and informing them about District programs, policies, and issues.

Recognizing that the level of local, state and national support for education impacts the Board's ability to fulfill its responsibilities, the Board shall engage in advocacy on behalf of District schools. The Board shall ensure that the District has the capability to respond to emerging issues and a proactive communications plan for issues that are District priorities.

Legal Reference:
Education Code
5304 Duties of governing board (re school district elections)
12400-12405 Authority to participate in federal programs
17565-17592 Board duties re property maintenance and control
33319.5 Implementation of authority of local agencies
35000 District name
35010 Control of district; prescription and enforcement of rules
35020-35046 Officers and agents
35100-35351 Governing boards, especially:
35160-35185 Powers and duties
35291 Rules

First Reading: 3/10/01

Governing Board Adoption: 4/11/01

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