What Does a School Board Do: 5 Key Responsibilities

A person where are in the school board tells somethings to the students

Have you ever wondered who’s in charge at your school? Well, there is a group of people called the school board, and they have a big job to do. Consider them as the people who work behind the scenes to make sure the show goes off without any problems.

A school board is like a ship’s captain. It advises a school on what to do. This EDU Blog will show you what the school board is like and talk about their five key responsibilities. From making the rules of the game to tracking the finances, these people are the ones who make the final decisions. 

So, if you’ve ever wondered how your school works outside the classroom, continue reading this blog.

What Is a School Board?

A school board is an important part of the education system. It is often called the school’s governing body or decision-making body for a school or a group of schools in the city. Think of it as the group that directs the ship of education.

They are in charge of making important decisions and policies and making sure that the school area as a whole is doing well. They are made up of people who were voted or picked to help decide how the school system works.

Who Makes up the School Board?​

The people on a school board can be different based on the laws and rules in the region. Mostly, its members are chosen by the community they serve or voted by the community. Most of the time, these people are:

  • Elected Officials: In many places, school board members are chosen by the people they serve. Most of the time, these elected officials are parents or other people of the community who care about the success of the local schools.

  • Appointed Officials: Sometimes, members of a board are chosen by local government officials. For example, the mayor or city council, to ensure that the board is made up of people with different backgrounds and skills.

  • Superintendent: In some school systems, the superintendent of schools may also be an ex-official board member. This means the superintendent can give advice and suggestions but can’t vote.

  • Student Representatives: Some innovative school districts may have student members on the board. These students, often chosen by their peers, have a unique point of view that helps them make decisions.

5 Key Responsibilities of School Boards?​

Now, let’s talk about the 5 most important things that school boards have to do: 

1. Making Policies 

School boards are like the people who make school rules. They make rules for schools and make sure they are followed. These rules cover many topics, from how students act and stay safe to how the curriculum is made and how educators are judged. They tell everyone in the school system what the rules are.

2. Making a Budget

A big part of a school board’s job is to handle money. The school board decides how much money is spent on teacher salaries, supplies, and repairs to the building. Keeping the budget in check and giving the best schooling possible is always challenging.

3. Hiring the Leader

Choosing and hiring the school’s leader, usually the director or superintendent, is one of the most important jobs of a school board. This person oversees day-to-day activities and ensures the board’s rules are followed. 

4. Choices for the Curriculum

School boards help decide what kids learn. They decide which textbooks to use, which programs to approve, and how the general curriculum is designed. This ensures that the education given fits the wants and standards of the community.

5. Listening to Stakeholders 

One of the most important things a school board does is listen to what parents, kids, teachers, and community members say. They want to make an education system that works for everyone and meets the needs and goals of the people they serve.

How Often Are School Board Members Elected?​

The laws and rules set at the city or state level can change how often elections for school board members are held. School board votes often happen in many places, usually every two to four years.

But, the exact schedule can differ from one school area to the next. Some districts hold elections for all board posts simultaneously.  While others spread out the terms so that not all board members are up for election simultaneously.

Who Is Above the School Board?​

The following are bodies and levels that are higher than the school board:

  • State Education Department: The State Education Department ensures compliance with all state education regulations and requirements.

  • Local Government: The local government sometimes influences the decisions about finance and land usage.

  • Courts: The judicial system handles providing legal oversight in the extremely uncommon occurrence of disputes or challenges to board decisions.

Final Verdict

School boards are the backbone of the education system. They work hard to ensure that students get a good education, are treated fairly, and have a safe place to learn and grow. Their jobs go way beyond the classroom and have a big impact on the future of education in their regions. 

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