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Most webinars satisfy one hour of the 8-hour annual board chair/superintendent joint training requirements as stated in 16 V.S.A. § 561(b) provided both parties attend together.​ 

 

16 VSA Section 561 requires that

 

(b) At least annually, the chairs of each school board within a supervisory union, the chair of the supervisory union board, and the superintendent shall jointly participate in at least eight hours of professional training that, at a minimum, addresses:

  1. educational leadership;

  2. the relative roles and responsibilities of the supervisory union board, the school district boards, and the superintendent;

  3. the Vermont Open Meeting Law, 1 V.S.A. §§ 310-314;

  4. Vermont law regarding access to public records, 1 V.S.A. §§ 315-320;

  5. collective bargaining; and

  6. education funding and school finance laws. (Added 1969, No. 298 (Adj. Sess.), § 38; amended 2007, No. 66, § 4; 2013, No. 56, § 13, eff. May 30, 2013; 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 67, eff. Feb. 14, 2014.)

Everyone registering to attend any webinar will receive an email following the webinar with a link to the video, handouts and any follow-up materials.

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Becoming an Effective Board Member: A Guide to Roles & Responsibilities
Noon - 1:00

May 14, 2024

Effective and high-functioning boards can have a positive impact on student achievement. A key characteristic of an effective board is meeting its responsibilities by understanding its roles. In school board governance in VT we organize our work into six different pillars: 1) Establish a Vision & Engage the Community, 2) Establish Policy, 3) Board/Superintendent Partnership, 4) Effective & Ethical Operations, 5) Monitoring Progress & Performance, 6) Budget & Financial Oversight. What are the school board’s roles and responsibilities in each of these? Knowing our focus is on governance, what does that look like for each of these pillars and how can we ensure we maintain that focus without migrating into operations and management? What are some tools that can help?

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Implementation & Quality Review Process of DQS Governance Standards
Noon - 1:00

June 13, 2024

The VT AOE’s District Quality Standards, which include governance standards for school boards, have been adopted and go into effect on July 1, 2025. The standards are general principles of good governance and provide boards guidance on their essential work. There are fourteen standards organized into three core areas:Governance Priorities, Governance Protocols, and Governance Processes. The VSBA offers a self-evaluation for individual boards to determine where the gaps are between its current practices and the new standards. Come learn about this tool and how it can be used by your board as the first step to ensure compliance with the new governance standards.

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Establishing Policy to Support the Vision
Noon - 1:00

August 6, 2024

The very first responsibility delegated to Vermont school boards in statute is “Determine the educational policies of the school district.” (Statute citation). The development and maintenance of school district and supervisory union policies is therefore an essential role of school boards. Policy is a primary lever for applying district leadership and helps to guide district operations by staff. Sometimes we conflate policy with procedure. But they are different and do different things. 

 

Learn what is policy and how it differs from procedures. Understand the process to develop, adopt, disseminate, implement and review policies. 

 

Questions we will consider are: What is a policy committee and how to stand one up? How frequently should we review policies? How do the policies at the SU level relate to the district level ones–are they one and the same?

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VSBA Proposed Resolutions
Noon - 1:00

September 12, 2024

VSBA Resolutions provide guidance to staff and the VSBA board when they are working in the legislature or developing programs and services for members. Learn about each VSBA resolution proposed for consideration for FY 2026 and understand the board's positions to establish your SU/SD position for voting at the Annual Business Meeting in October. 

 

Resolutions are generated by member school district boards, the VSBA Board, and its Resolution Committee. The committee makes a recommendation to the full board of "pass", "do not pass", or "take no position" on each resolution. Then, one delegate from each VSBA-member SU/SD votes on all resolutions at the Annual Business Meeting.

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Key Components for Collective Bargaining
Noon - 1:00

October 8, 2024

When it’s time to form your board’s negotiation committee/team, do you sit quietly hoping no one will ask you to serve on it? If collective bargaining is an intimidating concept and you have no idea what it entails, this webinar is FOR YOU!

 

Staff compensation is a significant piece of the budget pie chart and as such, negotiating contracts with employee representatives is an important responsibility for board members who need to ensure the agreements are aligned with the district's vision for education, student needs, and community expectations.

 

The VSBA offers support and services to assist boards in fulfilling their collective bargaining role. Come hear what these are and learn from other board members about how they handle collective bargaining on their boards.

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Effective Evaluations = Successful Superintendents
Noon - 1:00

November 14, 2024

The evaluation of the superintendent is vital to an effective school organization. The school board is responsible for defining organizational outcomes that are clearly and explicitly stated in order to (1) ensure the superintendent understands what is expected; and (2) ensure the school board understands what to expect of the superintendent. These two points characterize a working relationship with mutual accountability. Vermont statute states that the supervisory district/union board has both the authority and responsibility to evaluate the superintendent, and the district governance standards will require that the board formally evaluates the performance of the superintendent at least annually (eff. 7/1/2025). As the one direct report to the board, the superintendent is entitled to a fair and transparent evaluation based in part on their progress toward meeting agreed-upon goals. This webinar will address the following considerations:

 

  1. What evaluation instrument will you use?

  2. Who will complete the instrument? 

  3. How will you come to agreement on the rating(s)? 

  4. How will you come to agreement on the narrative? 

  5. Who will compile the final evaluation?

  6. What is your process for review and response?

  7. How will the board evaluate its own work?

  8. When can it help to have a neutral outside evaluator?

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Get on Board! 
6:00 - 7:30pm

December 12, 2024

The VSBA’s “Get On Board!” campaign aims to recruit civic-minded individuals who are passionate about improving public education for all students in Vermont. If you or someone you know is interested in serving the community, school board service just might be the right opportunity for you.

 

More than a volunteer role, serving on your local school board is a chance to make a lasting impact on Vermont’s education system. It provides a platform to advocate for public education and actively contribute to the improvement of local schools.

 

We invite you to attend our annual online event, “Get on Board! Pre-Candidate Training”. During this event, we will give a general overview of the school board’s essential work and  guide you through the process of filing and running for a seat. We will explain the next steps and provide an opportunity for you to have your questions answered. Join us!

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