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Roundtable Discussion with Board Members and FEC Proposals

January 20, 2012 by Phyllis Payne

[From the Web Editor: During the summer of 2010, FEC had the opportunity to discuss several proposals during informal discussions with School Board Members Dan Storck, Janie Strauss, Brad Center, and Ilryong Moon. The dialogues were extremely productive and as a result, the FEC developed the following proposals.]

Roundtable Discussions with School Board Members

Fairfax Education Coalition Proposals:

Communications, Transparency, Oversight

1.  Post additional agenda materials to the FCPS website to include: Staff assessment of alternatives to recommendations, leadership team memos, and studies and analyses used to develop recommendations.

Following is language from the Strategic Governance Operational Expectations (Relationship with the Board):

…[T]he Superintendent will: … offer professional advice to the Board with appropriate recommendations based on thorough study and analysis supported by ample information, including assessment of alternatives, to enable Board members to make informed decisions.

School Board members and the public occasionally are not provided relevant or significant staff analysis prior to a School Board decision on the issue. All documents today are electronic and it is easy to post them on the FCPS website. If documents cannot be made publicly available for privacy or other reasons, they should be identified and the reason given.

2.  Direct staff to respond more fully to public input. Examine questions or concerns raised at public hearings and post a written response with the corresponding school board's work session agenda.

3.  Allow a minimum of four weeks between the time new business is presented to the board and action is taken, except for time-sensitive matters. Many public groups meet monthly and this allows time for advocacy and community groups to evaluate the new business and provide input. This also allows the School Board time to reflect on the new business and get input and information it needs.

4.  Provide more complete minutes of the school board meetings and work sessions. Minutes should include hyperlinks to the supporting documents in the meeting agenda. These supporting documents should have descriptive titles.

5.  Provide the School Board with additional dedicated staff to facilitate oversight of FCPS.

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