Wednesday, January 13, 2016

School Board Members Make a Difference

Boards of Education are a mature and tested institution in Ohio. School board members make policy; approve contracts with employees; choose curriculum; adopt budgets; and select a superintendent, treasurer and business manager to administer the district. They do all these tasks with the emphasis on what’s best for the children they serve.

Pictured above are Vermilion Board members (left to right) Michael Stark, Nancy Oates, Chris Habermehl (president), Sara Stepp and Shelly Innes (vice president). 

Being an effective school board member is no easy task, particularly in today’s climate of change and challenge. School board members need to be knowledgeable about many complex education and social issues, and carry out initiatives and directives from both federal and state governments. To face these demands of governing our public schools, they give countless hours of personal time.

A public board of education is a legislative body of citizens elected locally by their communities.  Our school board consists of five members who serve four-year terms of office.  As co-partners with the General Assembly, which created boards of education, school board members are designated to carry out the constitutional mandate to administer the school system of each district. 

Through dedicated, responsible endeavors, school board members serve the public interest in public education — and serve the needs of our kids. They ensure that decisions about public schools are made as close to the needs of our communities as possible. Their public service is an excellent example for young and old alike of the tradition of volunteerism that is a hallmark of American society. 

Each year in January the Ohio School Boards Association encourages communities to honor the contributions and dedication of local school board members — the locally elected citizens who make decisions that affect, influence and direct the education of our youth.  Our school board is just one of the more than 700 boards across Ohio.

Please join us in saying “thank you” to those who participate in what is perhaps the purest form of the grassroots democratic principles upon which our republic was founded.  Our school board members do make a difference in our community, for every child, every day.

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