Operational Guidelines for Effective Board Members:
v Do not publicly surprise the superintendent with comments, ideas and suggestions.
v Recognize their function is that of a policy-forming board member and not administrative in
v Enact major policies only after all sides of the matter have been studied and all persons or groups
affected have been consulted. They attempt to reach decisions that all members can support.
v Familiarize themselves in a broad and nontechnical manner with the challenges and opportunities
of the system.
v Refer all complaints and requests to the appropriate administrator, working through appropriate
v Recognize that the appropriate administrator is entirely responsible for carrying out a particular
board policy in accordance with local, state and federal laws and regulations.
v Interpret to the superintendent the attitudes, wishes, and needs of the people of the district, and
articulate to the people the needs, problems and progress of the schools.
v Voice opinions frankly and courteously in board meetings and vote for what is best for the
children in the district.
v Require oral and written reports to keep the board well informed.
v Give all school officials authority in keeping with their responsibilities.
v Maintain harmonious relations with other board members and the superintendent.
v Know that it is possible to disagree without being disagreeable.
v Be exceedingly cautious with comments made to them about district personnel.
v Give friendly counsel, advice and support to the superintendent.
The primary consideration in any board decision should be the tangible impact it will have on students
in the district. If board teams understand the facts and relevant data, and keep the needs of all students
in mind when making decisions, they will undoubtedly make good decisions, despite pressures from
other constituent groups or individuals.