Morgan County Schools
Bylaws & Policies
 

2120.01 - LOCAL SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT COUNCIL

The Board of Education believes that parent, family, business, and community engagement in all levels of education is fundamental to a healthy system of public education. The intent of this policy is to facilitate and encourage the involvement of the school community in the operation of the local schools to improve educational quality. The Local School Improvement Council (LSIC) should serve as the vehicle to promote school community and local efforts to support school effectiveness. A LSIC shall help develop and promote the school and system vision for excellence. The LSIC shall utilize data such as student achievement, discipline, parent, student, staff, and community surveys, the school's strategic plan, and other pertinent data to set their agenda and fulfill the required activities that are prescribed in State law.

Membership

The LSIC represents the voice of the County's education stakeholders. A local school improvement council shall be established at every school consisting of the following:

 

A.

the principal, who serves as an ex officio member of the council and is entitled to vote

     
 

B.

three (3) teachers elected by the faculty senate of the school

     
 

C.

one (1) bus operator who transports students enrolled at the school and one (1) school service person, each elected by the school service personnel employed at the school

     
 

D.

three (3) parents, guardian(s), or custodian(s) of students enrolled at the school elected by the parent(s), guardian(s), or custodian(s) members of the school's parents teacher organization

     
   

If there is no parent teacher organization, the parent(s), guardian(s), or custodian(s) members shall be elected by the parent(s), guardian(s), or custodian(s) of students enrolled at school in such manner as may be determined by the principal.

     
 

E.

two (2) at-large members appointed by the principal, one (1) of whom resides in the school's attendance area and one (1) of whom represents business or industry, neither of whom is eligible for membership under any of the other elected classes of members

     
 

F.

in the case of a school with students in grade seven or higher, the student body president or other student in grade seven or higher elected by the student body in those grades

Under no circumstances may more than one (1) parent member of the council be then employed at that school in any capacity.

In accordance with statute and policies of the State Board of Education use of the term "parent" includes a parent of a student and includes a natural parent, a guardian, or an individual acting as a parent or a guardian. Additionally, the term "family" includes family members such as guardians, parents, aunts, brothers, grandparents, and significant others whose involvement may be important to the child. Finally, the term "community" refers to all of the individuals who reside in a common locality including: residents, businesses, social organizations and networks, faith-based organizations, and civic leaders.

Election of Members

The principal is encouraged to arrange for the election of new LSIC members in May or June so that the committee members can play an active role in summer activities, strategic plan development, and orientation and transition activities. However, the principal shall arrange for such elections to be held prior to September 15th of each school year to elect a council and shall give notice of the elections at least one (1) week prior to the elections being held. To the extent practicable, all elections to select council members shall be held within the same week.

Training

It is the responsibility of the principal to provide for appropriate training regarding the roles and responsibilities of LSIC members. Any training for members shall meet the guidelines established by the State Board.

Term of Office

Parent(s), guardian(s) or custodian(s), teachers and service personnel elected to the council shall serve a two (2) year term and elections shall be arranged in such a manner that no more than two (2) teachers, no more than two (2) parents, guardian(s) or custodian(s) and no more than one (1) service person are elected in a given year. All other non-ex officio members shall serve one (1) year terms.

Vacancies

Council members may only be replaced upon death, resignation, failure to appear at three (3) consecutive meetings of the council for which notice was given, or a change in personal circumstances so that the person is no longer a representative of the class of members from which appointed. In the case of a vacancy in an elected membership position, the chair of the council shall appoint another qualified person to serve the unexpired term of the person being replaced or, in the case of an appointed member of the council, the principal shall appoint a replacement as soon as practicable.

Organization Meeting

As soon as practicable after the election of council members, and no later than the first day of October of each school year, the principal shall convene an organizational meeting of the school improvement council. The principal shall notify each member in writing at least two (2) employment days in advance of the organizational meeting. At this meeting, the principal shall provide each member with the following:

 

A.

a copy of the current applicable sections of WV Code 18-5A-1 et seq.

     
 

B.

any State Board rule or regulation promulgated pursuant to the operation of these councils

     
 

C.

any information as may be developed by the Department of Education on the operation and powers of local school improvement councils and their important role in improving student and school performance and progress

Election of Chair; Term of Office; Vacancy

The council shall elect from its membership a chair and two (2) members to assist the chair in setting the agenda for each council meeting. The chair shall serve a term of one (1) year and a person may not serve as chair for more than two (2) consecutive terms. If the chair's position becomes vacant for any reason, the principal shall call a meeting of the council to elect another qualified person to serve the unexpired term. Once elected, the chair is responsible for notifying each member of the school improvement council in writing two (2) employment days in advance of any council meeting.

Meetings

School improvement councils shall meet at least once every nine (9) weeks or equivalent grading period at the call of the chair or by three fourths (3/4's) of its members. All meetings of the LSIC must be open to the public in compliance with the provisions of the Open Governmental Proceedings Act.

 

A.

The school improvement council shall schedule any meeting that involves the issue of student discipline pursuant to section B. below, outside the regularly scheduled working hours of any school employee member of the council.

     
 

B.

The school improvement council annually shall conduct a meeting to engage parents, students, school employees and other interested parties in a positive and interactive dialogue regarding effective discipline policies. The meeting shall afford ample time for the dialogue and comply with any applicable provision of State, Federal or County Board policy, rule or law, as appropriate, regarding student privacy rights.

The local school improvement council shall meet at least annually with the County Board, in accordance with (WV Code 18-5-14). At this annual meeting, the local school improvement council chair, or another member designated by the chair, shall be prepared to address any matters as may be requested by the County Board as specified in the meeting agenda provided to the council and may further provide any other information, comments or suggestions the local school improvement council wishes to bring to the County Board's attention. Anything presented by the LSIC shall be submitted to the County Board in writing.

Awards and Grants

School improvement councils shall be considered for the receipt of school of excellence awards under WV Code 18-5A-3 and competitive grant awards under WV Code 18-2-29 and may receive and expend such grants for the purposes provided in this policy. In any and all matters that may fall within the scope of both the school improvement councils and the school curriculum teams authorized in WV Code 18-5A-5, the school curriculum teams shall have jurisdiction.

Promotion of Innovations and Improvements

In order to promote innovations and improvements in the environment for teaching and learning at the school, a school improvement council shall receive cooperation from the school in implementing policies and programs it may adopt to:

 

A.

encourage the involvement of parent(s), guardian(s) or custodian(s) in their child's educational process and in the school;

     
 

B.

encourage businesses to provide time for their employees who are parent(s), guardian(s) or custodian(s) to meet with teachers concerning their child's education;

     
 

C.

encourage advice and suggestions from the business community;

     
 

D.

encourage school volunteer programs and mentorship programs; and

     
 

E.

foster utilization of the school facilities and grounds for public community activities.

Report to the County-wide Council on Productive and Safe Schools

Each local school improvement council annually shall develop and deliver a report to the county-wide council on productive and safe schools. The report shall include:

 

A.

Guidelines for the instruction and rehabilitation of students who have been excluded from the classroom, suspended from the school or expelled from the school, the description and recommendation of in-school suspension programs, a description of possible alternative settings, schedules for instruction and alternative education programs and an implementation schedule for such guidelines. The guidelines shall include the following:

     
 

1.

a system to provide for effective communication and coordination between school and local emergency services agencies

     
 

2.

a preventive discipline program which may include the responsible students program devised by the West Virginia Board of Education as adopted by the County Board pursuant to the provisions of WV Code 18A-5-1(e)

     
 

3.

a student involvement program, which may include the peer mediation program or programs devised by the West Virginia Board of Education as adopted by the County Board pursuant to the provisions of WV Code 18A-5-1(e)

     
 

B.

The local school improvement council's findings regarding its examination of the following, which also shall be reported to the Superintendent:

     
 

1.

disciplinary measures at the school

     
 

2.

the fairness and consistency of disciplinary actions at the school

     
   

If the council believes that student discipline at the school is not enforced fairly or consistently, it shall transmit that determination in writing, along with supporting information, to the County Superintendent. Within ten (10) days of receiving the report, the Superintendent, or designee, shall respond in writing to the council. The County Board shall retain and file all such correspondence and maintain it for public review.

     
 

3.

any report or communication made as required by this policy shall comply with any applicable provision of State, Federal, or County Board policy, rule or law, as appropriate, regarding student privacy rights

The council may include in its report to the County-wide council on productive and safe schools provisions of the West Virginia State Board of Education policy 4373, student code of conduct, or any expansion of such policy which increases the safety of students in schools in this State and is consistent with the policies and other laws of this State.

Adoption of Guidelines

Councils may adopt their own guidelines established under this policy. In addition, the councils may adopt all or any part of the guidelines proposed by other local school improvement councils, as developed under this policy, which are not inconsistent with the laws of this State, the policies of West Virginia Board of Education or the policies of the County Board of Education.

Communication

It is the responsibility of the LSIC to utilize various modes of communication and technological tools to interact with parents and the broader community. By developing effective forms of communication both from school-to-home and home-to-school the foundation for strengthening school programs, family practices, and student learning and development.

State Board of Education Assistance and Training

The State Board of Education shall provide assistance to a local school improvement council upon receipt of a reasonable request for that assistance. The State Board also may solicit proposals from other parties or entities to provide orientation training for local school improvement council members and may enter into contracts or agreements for that purpose.

Alternatives to Operation of Public Schools; Waivers

A local school improvement council may propose alternatives to the operation of the public school which alternatives will meet or exceed the high quality standards established by the State Board and will increase administrative efficiency, enhance the delivery of instructional programs, promote community involvement in the local school system or improve the educational performance of the school generally. The proposal of the council shall set forth the objective or objectives to be accomplished under the proposal, how the accomplishment of such objective or objectives will meet or exceed the standards established by the State Board, the indicators upon which the meeting of such standards should be judged and a projection of any funds to be saved by the proposal and how such funds will be reallocated within the school. The alternatives proposed by the council may include matters which require the waiver of policies or rules promulgated by the State or County Board and State Superintendent of interpretations. The request for a waiver must be submitted to the appropriate Board adopting said rule or policy and that Board may approve the waiver.

When a County Board does not act within two (2) months after receiving a request for waiver of a County Board policy or rule or disapproves such a request, the local school improvement council may seek an advisory opinion from the State Board regarding the waiver request. The County Board shall furnish the State Board with copies of all waiver requests together with their response. When a local school improvement council votes to waive a State Superintendent's interpretation; the State Superintendent need only be notified that the local council intends to waive the State Superintendent's interpretation. Nothwithstanding any other provisions of the law to the contrary, council is not prohibited from permitting off-site classrooms to be developed in conjunction with local businesses if those sites have met the requirements established by the local Board and if sites are located off campus. For an alternative to be proposed, at least two-thirds (2/3's) of the members must vote in favor of the alternative. If the alternative to be proposed relates to a waiver of policies or rules promulgated by the State or County Board and State Superintendent interpretations affecting employees, then prior to the proposal of the alternative, a majority of the local affected employee group involved must agree.

A council may also submit a written statement, with supporting reasons, to the legislative oversight commission on education accountability recommending a waiver of a statute or legislative rule, which the commission shall review and determine whether a recommendation should be made to the Legislature to waive such statute or rule.

When a council decides to propose an alternative, it shall forward a copy of the proposal to the State Board and the affected local Board. The State Board shall acknowledge receipt of the proposed alternative, promptly review the proposed alternative in consultation with the County Board or their agents and, in its discretion, approve implementation of the alternative or reply to the council within a reasonable time as to its reasons for not approving the proposed alternative. If the State Board approves a proposed alternative, the State Board shall provide appropriate notice to the local school improvement council and the County Board shall establish a process for evaluation of the operation of the alternative. Approval for the operation of the alternative may be continued or revoked at any time based on the results and findings of the evaluation.

Evaluation

The LSIC is responsible to monitor and evaluate the implementation and impact of the agenda that they have established.

WV Code 18-5A-1 though 3, 18-5-14

Revised 8/7/12
Revised 12/9/14

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