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New Board Member Resources

New Board Member Orientation


Procedure 162

Adopted: August 12, 2015


New school board members who just recently took office may find it helpful to do some study on their own to better prepare for their new responsibilities. Below, in five areas of study, is a list of resources, which will be available to new board members.


School-Community Relationships and General Responsibilities (Superintendent)


  1. Tour of facility

  2. Introduction to all staff

  3. Board composition and contact information

  4. Access to view Board Policies online

  5. Minutes from past board meetings

  6. An explanation of school board organizations (officers, standing and special committees, and so forth)

  7. A description of the geographic limits and attendance areas of the school district

  8. An explanation of how school buildings are used after school hours by the community

  9. An explanation of the legal status, activities, and interests of education oriented community groups

  10. Information regarding building access


School Business and Management (Superintendent/Business Manager)


  1. A copy of the district’s budget.

  2. An explanation of how, when, and by whom the District budget is prepared; how educational needs are translated into a dollars and cents plan and where the money goes

  3. The per pupil cost of school operations at both the elementary and secondary levels

  4. An explanation of the recent history of local taxes

  5. A listing of the existing indebtedness of the district and when various building debts will expire

  6. An explanation of collective bargaining, the how’s and why’s of negotiations.

  7. An explanation of fund accounting and management by objectives

  8. An explanation of applicable federal and state aid to education programs

  9. An explanation of the District’s insurance program including coverages afforded under the errors and omissions, general liability, property/casualty, and other policies

  10. An explanation of how federal impact aid affects educational projects and purchasing  

  11. A statement of curricular assets in the district


School Curriculum and Instruction (Superintendent/Curriculum Director/Principals)


  1. An explanation of the district’s overall curriculum program; business, technical, and academic courses available to students

  2. An explanation of the educational organization of the school district, including student groups, departmentalization, team teaching, non-graded classes

  3. An explanation of how elementary and secondary curricula are coordinated

  4. An explanation of standardized testing and the utilization of test results

  5. An explanation of local student achievement and how it compares with that of other districts and with state and national scores

  6. Copies of what professional consultants or accrediting agencies have said about the district’s education program

  7. Current enrollment and pupil population trends

  8. Teacher-pupil ratio and median class size

  9. An explanation of the district’s program for exceptional children; those with higher or lower than normal mentality, impaired sight or hearing, emotional, neurological, or other problems

  10. A description of libraries and instructional material centers

  11. A statement of the board’s philosophy regarding athletics in the district; the level of student participation in varsity and intramural sports programs, and a listing and explanation of extra-curricular activities available to students


Administration and Teaching Staff (Superintendent)


  1. A chart of the school district’s organization of administrative staff.

  2. A description of staff recruitment procedures.

  3. A copy of the employee handbook and guidebook including salary schedules and fringe benefit programs.

  4. A list showing the number and location of buildings and property owned or operated by the district.

  5. An explanation of any construction projects completed.

  6. A description of the district’s building maintenance program.

  7. An explanation of the student transportation system.

  8. An explanation of the school district food service program.

  9. Long-term facilities planning and structure of Buildings and Grounds department


Board President


  1. Mentor is provided for 1 year (appointed by the Board president)

  2. Share effective governance, responsibilities and resources

  3. Calendar of meetings and how meetings are scheduled

  4. Suggestions for addressing community or staff concerns and input

  5. Terminology and acronym tip sheet