Making policy is one of a school board’s major responsibilities. Policies provide guidance to district staff, students and parents and help set the tone of a district. Policies also serve to orient new board members and local citizens regarding how things are done in the district.
Unfortunately, many districts struggle to keep policy manuals current because they don’t have staff members dedicated to this task. Additionally, some district policy manuals contain unnecessary policies that merely restate state and federal laws. (That’s why there is a law book – to keep districts from having to rewrite all school-related laws into a policy manual.)
ASBA developed its Model Policy Service to help make the job of writing and maintaining district policies more manageable. The ASBA policy manual is designed to be user friendly. The policies are concise, easy to read and understand, and cover the areas required by state and federal laws and the Arkansas Department of Education. Additional policies are included that ASBA recommends and districts have found beneficial.
Subscription to the ASBA Model Policy Service does not change existing district policy. Only through the adoption process can a school board change or replace existing policies. The ASBA policies are meant to be adopted only after review and revision to suit each district.
With a subscription to ASBA’s Model Policy Service, you may seek assistance from ASBA staff to determine the degree of flexibility you have in tailoring policies to meet your district’s needs. During your subscription, which is $1,100 per year for 3 years (renewals are $950 per year for 3 years), ASBA monitors changes in state and federal laws and the Arkansas Department of Education’s Rules for necessary changes or new policy development.
Free up your superintendent’s time to focus on academic, fiscal, facilities and personnel matters. Let ASBA help you keep up with policy changes for your board to consider. ASBA’s goal is to help Arkansas school boards fulfill the important, often overlooked, responsibility of developing and maintaining of district policy.
For more information about the Model Policy Service, e-mail ASBA at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (501) 372-1415.