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OPA Board of Directors Roles and Responsibilities

Charter Schools and Charter Organizations are governed by boards, not by individual directors.

While understanding their separate roles, the board and Executive Director work together as a "governance team." This team assumes collective responsibility for building unity and creating a positive organizational culture in order to govern effectively.

To operate effectively. the board must have a unity of purpose and meet these standards:
  1. Keep the schools focused on learning and achievement for all students.
  2. Communicate a common vision.
  3. Operate openly with trust and integrity
  4. Govern in a dignified and professional manner, treating everyone with civility and respect.
  5. Govern within board-adopted policies and procedures.
  6. Take collective responsibility for the board's performance.

The primary responsibilities of the board are to set a direction for the organization and schools, provide a structure by establishing policies, provide support, ensure accountability and provide community leadership. To fulfill these responsibilities, there are a number of specific jobs that effective boards must carry out. These standards highlight some of the most important ones.

  1. Involve the community. parents, students and staff in developing a common vision for the schools focused on student learning and achievement and responsive to the needs of all students.
  2. Adopt, evaluate and update policies consistent with the law and the school's vision and goals.
  3. Maintain accountability for student learning by adopting the curriculum and monitoring student progress.
  4. Hire and support the Executive Director so that the vision. goals and policies of the district can be implemented.
  5. Conduct regular and timely evaluations of the Executive Director based on the vision, goals and performance of the schools, and ensure that the Executive Director holds all personnel accountable.
  6. Adopt a fiscally responsible budget based on the vision and goals, and regularly monitor the fiscal health of the schools and organization.
  7. Ensure that a safe and appropriate educational environment is provided to all students.
  8. Provide community leadership on educational issues and advocate on behalf of students and public education at the local, state and federal levels.
In California's charter system, a director is a person appointed to serve on a charter school board.

Individual directors bring unique skills, values and beliefs to their board.

In order to govern effectively, individual directors must work with each other and the Executive Director to ensure that a high quality education is provided to each student.To be effective, an individual directors meets these standards:

  1. Keeps learning and achievement for all students as the primary focus.
  2. Values, supports and advocates for public education.
  3. Recognizes and respects differences of perspective and style on the board and among staff. students, parents and the community.
  4. Acts with dignity, and understands the implications of demeanor and behavior.
  5. Keeps confidential matters confidential.
  6. Participates in professional development and commits the time and energy necessary to be an informed and effective leader.
  7. Understands the distinctions between board and staff roles, and refrains from performing management functions that are the responsibility of the executive Director and staff.
  8. Understands that authority rests with the board as a whole and not with individuals.