The basic responsibility for initiating, reviewing and recommending new policies or policy modification comes from the Oregon Legislature and the laws they pass. New policies or changes to existing policies are sent from the Oregon School Board Association (OSBA) approximately four times a year. Possible changes to policy can also be brought to the attention of the administration for the board to consider. The administration, in developing these policies, may be guided by the recommendation of staff and may seek parent and community input during the preparation and subsequent review of policy statements. Advice from legal counsel may be appropriate.
Policy changes are reviewed by the Policy Advisory Committee and presented for approval, at school board meetings, for a first reading and then at a follow-up board meeting for the second and final reading. Once it has been voted on and passed by a quorum of the board the policy is sent to OSBA to be uploaded to the district's website.
The final authority, in accordance with the law, and responsibility for board policy lies with the school board.
What is Policy?
Board policies are statements which set forth the purposes and prescribe in general terms the organization and program of a school system. They create a framework within which the superintendent and their staff can discharge their assigned duties with positive direction and clear guidance. They generally do not include detailed directions or include things such as job descriptions or internal forms and are broad enough to allow administrative discretion/specific enough to give clear guidance.
What is an Administrative Regulation?
Administrative regulations are detailed directions developed by the superintendent and their administrators to put policies into practice and enforce them. They tell how, by whom, where and when things are to be done.
How to Tell the Difference Between a Policy and an Administrative Regulation
Each policy (and any accompanying AR) in the manual is designated with a code located in the upper-right corner of the first page of the document and in the "code" column on each table of contents. An administrative regulation is coded with an "-AR" at the end of the policy code.
While it is advisable for board members to review all policies, they should have a good "working knowledge" of the following:
BBA-Board Powers and Duties
BBAA-Individual Board Member's Authority and Responsibilities
BBF-Board Member Standards of Conduct
BBFA-Board Member Ethics and Conflicts of Interest
BDDH-Public Comment at Board Meetings