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School Site Council

Who is best qualified to make decisions about a school? Policymakers in states across the country agree that those who are involved with schools and students on a day-to-day basis — teachers, parents, and other school employees — can make some of the best decisions. This belief led to the creation of the school site council.


What the school site council does...

The school site council is a group of teachers, parents, classified employees, and students that works with the principal to develop, review and evaluate school improvement programs and school budgets. The members of the site council are generally elected by their peers. For example, parents elect the parent representatives and teachers elect teachers.

The exact duties of school site councils vary from state to state and even between districts in the same state, but site councils generally either make decisions or advise the principal on the school budget and the academic program or school improvement plan. In addition to academic planning, many site councils are also responsible for making decisions about parent engagement and school safety.

Over the course of a year, a typical council might consider the goals of the school and then work with the principal to evaluate the school's progress toward those goals. In this evaluation, the council might consider school test scores, attendance and discipline records, parent surveys and input from students.

After looking at the big picture of the school's progress, the council advises the principal. Successful school site councils, regardless of their specific agendas, are more than a "rubber stamp" committee, and always ask thoughtful and challenging questions. School site council members don't just represent their own interests. They have an obligation to make decisions that will best serve the whole school community. The school site council plays an important role in decision-making at the school.


How to get involved..

If you are interested in school policy or budgets, you might enjoy serving on our school site council. To find out more about what your school site council does, attend a meeting or talk with Mr. Stewart. If you would like to participate on the council, call our office managers Mrs. Leier to find out how the selection process works at Vista Elementary School.