School Board Governance

Charlie Mas

When the new Board majority was elected in 2007 they started their terms of office talking a lot about Governance. It was all just talk; there wasn’t any action associated with it. Then, after the first few months that talk faded away. Back then it was code for staying out of management and restricting themselves to “policy issues”. After the audit was released six months ago, they started talking about Governance again. I’m not sure what it means this time around, but not only are they talking about it a lot, they are also claiming to take some action. I’m not sure those claims can be proven.
There was a discussion of Governance Priorities at the December 15, 2010 Strategic Plan Update work session.
One of the Governance Priorities is Budget development. They say that they will implement a comprehensive budget development process that reflects the strategic plan priorities and includes both internal and external engagement. Why isn’t this what they were doing all along? I’m not asking that as an accusation, but to focus the attention on the obstacles to this sort of work. If they say that they are going to start doing this then they will have to identify and overcome those obstacles, won’t they? I think that they have already found and addressed one of the historic obstacles, the budget timeline that put the central administration budget ahead of the schools’ budgets. I suspect there are others.