Board Vision, Mission, and Working Agreement

Mapleton School Board Mission

To provide a supportive and safe learning environment where students are encouraged and empowered to reach their educational and personal potential.

Mapleton School Board Vision

  •  We strive to base all of our decisions on what is best for students.
  • We believe that all students can learn and must strive to attain high academic achievement and personal growth.
  • We believe we must develop and nurture intellectual curiosity and a desire for discovery and achievement.
  • We believe our curriculum must challenge, prepare and inspire our students be successful at the next level of their lives; to meet standards for college acceptance, to work and live as contributing members in an increasingly diverse society.
  • We believe that strong partnerships with parents and the broader community are essential to achieving the goals of education. We provide opportunities for participation, communication and understanding.
  • We believe in supporting our school community by treating everyone with dignity and respect.
  • We believe it is essential to attract and retain the best employees to serve the needs of our school community. We will provide assistance for improvement, as needed.
  • We believe that adequate financial resources are essential for excellent outcomes.

Mapleton School District 32

BOARD AND SUPERINTENDENT WORKING AGREEMENTS

2022-2023

Purpose

The Board of Directors is the educational policy making body for Mapleton School District 32.  To effectively meet the District’s challenges the School Board and Superintendent must function together as a leadership team.  To ensure unity among team members, effective group agreements must be in place.  The following are the group agreements for the Board and the Superintendent.

Governance Principles:

  1. The Board and the Superintendent will work in a cooperative and collaborative partnership aligned towards a common mission.
  2. Focus on policy making, planning and evaluation, rather than day-to-day operations.
  3. Make decisions as a quorum only at properly called meetings.  Board members recognize that individual members have no authority to take individual action in policy or district and school administrative matters.
  4. Support decisions of the majority after honoring the right of individual members to express opposing viewpoints and vote their convictions.
  5. Recognize and respect the Superintendent’s responsibility to manage the school district and to direct employees in district on school matters.
  6. Actively solicit input from the stakeholders, listen to all perspectives, seek expert advice as needed, and give careful consideration to all issues.  We will operate as representatives and make decisions in the best interest of the whole district.
  7. Value the role we play in the community and represent the district, when possible, by attending school and community functions.

Meeting Operational Agreements:

  1. Acknowledge that the Board Chair or Vice Chair and Superintendent will agree before an item is placed on a meeting agenda.
  2. Uphold the legal requirement for confidentiality on all matters arising from the Board meeting Executive Session.
  3. Start meetings on time.
  4. Attend regularly scheduled Board meetings unless a situation occurs that makes attendance impossible and notify the district office in advance if you are unable to attend.
  5. Cooperate in scheduling special meetings and/or work sessions for planning and training purposes.
  6. Cast a vote on all matters except when a conflict of interest arises.

Communication Agreements:

  1. Communicate directly with the Superintendent and/or members of the building leadership when a question arises, or a concern is voiced by a staff member, student, parent, or community member.
  2. Whenever possible, communicate directly with the Superintendent, member of the building leadership, or Board Chair prior to meetings of the Board to identify questions and/or concerns about agenda items so that the Board Chair and staff can be prepared for the meeting discussion.
  3. Communicate directly with the Superintendent or Board Chair prior to raising new issues or concerns at Board meetings or in other arenas.
  4. Communicate one-on-one, when an individual concern arises, with the Superintendent, member of the building leadership, or other Board member, as appropriate.  Communicate with Board Leadership about concerns with Board process.
  5. When a Board member receives an informal complaint, listen carefully and empathetically.  Direct the person to solve the problem at the lowest level:
    • Please talk with the teacher.
    • Please talk with the principal
    • Please talk with the Superintendent.
  6. Formal complaints must be put in writing and signed by the complainant.  These are heard by the Superintendent or designee.  Complainants may appeal the Superintendent’s decision to the School Board. As
  7. If a complainant is unwilling to speak to the Superintendent, a Board member may share the issue and the source of the complaint, concern or criticism of the District with the Superintendent.  The Superintendent will keep the Board informant “source” confidential at the request of a Board member but every effort should be made to encourage trust and open communication.  This is the best hope for full understanding and resolution.
  8. A Board member with a routine question should first consider going to Board Chair or the Superintendent.  A Board member who desires staff assistance beyond routine inquiry should first raise the issue at a Board meeting.  The entire board should then decide whether to proceed before staff time is allocated.
  9. No individual Board member, other than the Board Chair or designee, has the authority to speak for the entire Board.  Individual Board members may always share their individual viewpoint but must clarify that they are speaking for themselves, rather than the entire Board.  The Board recognizes that changing technology and the growing use of social media will affect the way individual Board members communicate to and interact with constituents and receive and process information. 
  10. The Board may be required to make findings of fact that are appealable to another agency.  In these situations, no Board member will have personal contact related to the issue with the parties who have a personal interest in the findings and in the Board’s decision prior to the time the decision is made.

Annual Planning and Evaluation:

  1. Set priorities as a Board for Board professional development annually. (August)
  2. Annually affirm the Board of Director’s Guiding Beliefs and Value Statement. (September)
  3. Participate in establishing annual expectations and goals for the Superintendent. (October)
  4. Objectively evaluate the Superintendent’s performance and provide appropriate feedback. (February)
  5. Participate in annual self-assessment of the Board’s performance. (June)

Role of Board Leadership:

  1. Recognize the role of the Chair to speak for, and about, the Board and to describe the Board’s process and positions. 
  2. Recognize the role of the Chair to convene meetings and execute documents, as appropriate.
  3. Recognize the role of the Chair and Vice Chair to meet regularly with the Superintendent to develop the agenda and determine whether an item should be scheduled for action or future action, to provide input on information needed by the Board for decision-making, to plan meeting processes, and to distribute assignments.
  4. Ensure that information exchanged with the Superintendent is shared with all Board members via meeting notes and/or Board meeting agenda materials.  The purpose of this agreement is to help ensure that no Board member will receive any information regarding a pending matter that is not available to all Board members prior to the time the decision is made (examples of such decisions include personnel matters, official land use decisions, and charter school applications).

Board Expectations of the Superintendent:

  1. Function together as a team with Board members and the building leadership.
  2. Respect and acknowledge the Board’s role in setting policy and overseeing the performance of the Superintendent.
  3. Work with the Board to establish a clear vision for the school district.
  4. Prepare preliminary goals annually for the Board’s consideration.
  5. Provide data to the Board members so that data driven decisions can be made.
  6. Possess a working knowledge of all legal and local policies.
  7. Inform the Board of all critical information including relevant trends, anticipated adverse media coverage, or critical external or internal change.
  8. Work with the Chair and Vice Chair to effectively bring issues and information to the Board.
  9. Distribute appropriate information to all Board members, including a summary of meetings held with the Chair and Vice Chair.
  10. Communicate with Board members by the next working day and effectively.
  11. Distribute the Board agenda in a timely manner.
  12. Respect the confidentiality requirement of Board meeting Executive Sessions.
  13. Treat all Board members professionally.
  14. Communicate to Board Leadership if a problem or issue is observed developing with an individual Board member.
  15. Conduct a self-assessment prior to the Board’s evaluation of the Superintendent’s job performance.
  16. Represent the school district by being visible in the community.
  17. Provide follow-up information to Board members on concerns and issues they have referred to the Superintendent – close the loop.
  18. Assure the timely orientation of new Board members.

Superintendent Expectations of the Board:

  1. Recognize the Superintendent as the educational leader of the school.
  2. Treat the Superintendent professionally.
  3. Share the success and failures of the school system with the Superintendent.
  4. Assist in gaining acceptance and support in the community.
  5. Abide by its own rules, policies and code of ethical conduct.
  6. Provide the Superintendent with adequate staff and clerical assistance within budget constraints
  7. Acknowledge and follow the chain of command of the school district.
  8. Respect the confidentiality requirement of Board meeting executive session.
  9. Participate, as appropriate, in professional development activities at the local, state and national level.
  10. Foster unity, harmony and open communications within the Board.
  11. Understand the roles of the Superintendent and Board in policy making.
  12. Consider each recommendation made by the Superintendent.
  13. Insist on the availability of all facts and data before making a decision.
  14. Study and evaluate educational issues affecting the school district.
  15. Avoid surprise items at Board meetings.
  16. Embody integrity of the highest order.