203.01 – Adoption of Policy

The Board shall give notice of proposed policy changes or adoption of new policies by placing the item on the agenda of two regular Board meetings.   The proposed policy changes shall be distributed and public comment will be allowed at both meetings prior to final Board action.  This notice procedure shall be required except for emergency situations.

If the Board adopts a policy in an emergency situation, a statement of the policy shall be included in the minutes. The Board shall have complete discretion to determine what constitutes an emergency situation.

The final action taken to adopt the proposed policy shall be approved by a simple majority vote of the Board at the next regular meeting after the meeting allowing public discussion. The policy will be effective on the later of the date of passage or the date stated in the motion.

In the case of an emergency, a new or changed policy may be adopted by a majority vote of a quorum of the Board.  The emergency policy shall expire at the close of the third regular meeting following the emergency action unless the policy adoption procedure stated above is followed and the policy is reaffirmed.

  1. Initiation:  Persons residing within or employed by the school district may suggest or recommend policies to the superintendent. The superintendent will obtain from the initiator a statement of the need for the proposed policy.  The superintendent will be the primary person for initiating policy development directed by state officials or law.
  2. Assembly of background material:  Within one month of policy initiation, the superintendent will gather the  following types of information to prepare for further discussions:
    1. The effect the proposed policy will have on administrators, students, teaching staff, the community, and others;
    2. The fiscal consequences of adopting the proposed policy;
    3. The specific need for the policy;
    4. Samples of similar policies of other Boards, if any;
    5. Provisions of state law, where applicable; and,
    6. Suggestions as to how the policy will be implemented, enforced, and evaluated.
  3. Work  Sessions:   The superintendent will prepare a  summary of the background material, which will be distributed to each Board member.   Within two weeks after this distribution, a work session will be held.  Notice of work sessions will be posted like any other meeting.  Work sessions will provide the Board with an opportunity to hear opinions and to weigh the merits of proposals from various groups.
  4. Board formal action:   When the draft policy has been prepared, the policy will be placed on the Board’s agenda for a first reading no sooner than two weeks after the policy statement has been distributed to the Board.   If no serious objections are raised at this reading,  the policy will be scheduled for a second, final reading and adoption at a subsequent regular Board meeting not less than one month after the first reading.  If serious objections are raised at the first or second readings, the Board may refer to the proposed policy for review.  [Each reading of the policy will constitute a public hearing before the board, and public discussion will be permitted at that portion of the regular agenda in which the proposed policy is introduced.]
  5. Promulgation:   Adopted policies will be given publicity.  The superintendent may arrange  For brief press releases concerning policy adoptions.   The superintendent will inform parents and the public of policy adoptions in district publications.  Policy manuals will be kept for public reference in each building administrator’s office.   Each Board member will be issued a policy manual and will be sent new policies as adopted.
  6.  Implementation: The superintendent will outline the actions to be taken to implement the policy and, where appropriate, issue administrative regulations concerning the policy.   Often these administrative regulations will be developed if required, as the policy is developed.
  7. Evaluation:   The policy committee will arrange for a review of major policies and request periodic reports from the superintendent to answer such questions as:   Are the policies working?  Are they in tune with the changing times?   Do they need revision? Which should be eliminated?  The entire Board policy manual will be reviewed every five years in compliance with the educational standards.

Legal References:  Iowa Code 279.8 (2009)  281 I.A.C. 12.3(2) 1970 Op. Att’y Gen. 287

Date of Adoption: September 3, 1991

Reviewed & Revised: December 4, 1995; May 21, 2001; March 7, 2006; March 7, 2011; March 21, 2016