The purpose of School Governance Councils is to enable parents, school staff, students (where appropriate) and community leaders to work together to improve student achievement in the state's lowest performing schools. Councils serve in an advisory capacity to assist the school administration.
School Governance Councils will consist of seven parents or guardians (elected by parents or guardians at the school), five teachers (elected by the teachers at the school), two community representatives (elected by the Council), and the school principal or designee. Two student representatives may be elected by the student body for councils in high schools.
Councils may advise the school administration in these areas:
- Analyze school data achievement and school needs as they relate to the school's improvement plan;
- Review the fiscal objectives of the school's draft budget and advise the principal before the budget is submitted to the superintendent;
- Participate in the hiring process of the school principal or other administrators by conducting interviews of candidates and reporting their findings to the superintendent;
- Assist the principal in making programmatic and operational changes to improve the school's achievement;
- Develop and approve a written school parent involvement policy that outlines the roles of parents and guardians;
- Work with school administrators in developing and approving a school compact for parents, legal guardians, and students that outlines the school's goals and academic focus and identifies ways that parents and school staff can build a partnership to improve learning.
In addition, a Council MAY:
- Assist in developing and reviewing the school improvement plan;
- Work with the principal to develop, conduct, and report the results of an annual survey of parents, guardians, and teachers on issues related to school climate;
- Provide advice to the principal on other major policy matters affecting the school except on matters related to collective bargaining agreements.
School Governance Councils DO NOT:
- Manage the school;
- Supervise staff;
- Enter into contracts or purchase agreements;
- Determine student eligibility
- Discuss individual issues between teachers and students and / or parents; for school admission; or
- Determine class allocations or student assignments.
After being in place for three years, a School Governance Council may vote to recommend that a school be reconstituted using one of the approved models under No Child Left Behind or state statute. A Council may not vote for reconstitution if the school has already been reconstituted for another purpose. The Council must follow the process provided for within the statute, including a hearing by the local Board of Education, which must accept, modify or reject the proposal. In a case where the local Board of Education cannot agree on reconstitution, the Commissioner of Education must decide.
Reconstitution models include the turnaround model, the restart model, the transformation model, CommPACT schools, or innovation schools.
For more information on School Governance Councils, please visit the State Department of Education web site.
The following schools have School Governance Councils in Waterbury:
- Bucks Hill
- Bunker Hill
- Wendell Cross
- North End Middle School
- Wallace Middle School
- West Side Middle School
- Waterbury Arts Magnet School
- Crosby High School
- Kennedy High School
- Waterbury Career Academy
- Wilby High School