School City Of Hammond Board Of School Trustees
The school board, in order to fulfill its commitment to the community it is elected to represent, is driven by the values and beliefs that follow:
- Every student is entitled to and shall be provided challenging educational experiences and opportunities to ensure full and meaningful participation in a global, diverse technology oriented society.
- Every school city employee has an active and vital role in contributing to the success of students. More specifically, every teacher and administrator shall be held accountable for student achievement in the Hammond Public Schools.
- Every parent/guardian is expected to assume an active and meaningful role in the lives of their children. The board recognizes parents/guardians as an essential support for student success.
- Every community resident and business leader has a vested interest in the success of students in school. To that end, each must become more knowledgeable, supportive and involved in the success of students attending Hammond Public Schools.
The Hammond Board of School Trustees promotes the highest educational attainment in support of lifelong learners.
The Hammond Board of School Trustees is committed to providing diverse learning experiences and environments that are necessary to develop high educational attainment for lifelong learners. As a result, students will develop into positive, productive citizens capable of succeeding and competing in a challenging and complex global society.
SCH recognizes the value and importance of public input from its community members. For that reason, and in compliance with federal regulation and state statute, SCH establishes a Public Comment Policy and its corresponding Procedures to inform the Board about substantial Issues impacting the school district or our student population. The Board permits fair and orderly public participation at its public meetings.
Public Comment is not designed or intended to address personal grievances or provide a remedy to individuals in dispute with the School City of Hammond. All comments made during any public participation meeting is subject to the following rules/procedures for which public participation is permitted. The SCH Chair or Presiding Officer shall administer this policy/procedure as follows.
- Any member of the public having a legitimate interest in the actions of the Board may participate during the public portion of any SCH public hearing/forum/meeting and must register on the public comment sign-up sheet available before the start of the hearing/forum/meeting. Individuals must provide their name and physical address to be able to participate.
- Participants must be recognized by the Chair or Presiding Officer before providing comments and must preface their comments by the announcement of their name and address.
- Comments made by the public participant at any SCH public hearing/forum/meeting shall be limited to three (3) minutes in duration and cannot be relinquished to another participant.
- All comments shall be directed to the Board as a whole; no individual shall address or question the Board or staff members individually.
- Public Comment is not intended, nor is the Board or its staff required, to provide any answer or response to any participant.
- Disruptive discussions between public comment participants and members of the audience at any SCH public hearing/forum/meeting will not be allowed.
- Participants providing public comment will be courteous and respectful in their language, presentation and behavior exhibiting high level of professionalism and integrity. Use of language intended to humiliate, disgrace, demean or mock SCH or its members or staff and will not be tolerated.
- Following the completion of an individual’s public comments any SCH public hearing/forum/meeting he/she will be seated with no further debate, dialogue, or comment.
- At any SCH public hearing/forum/meeting, the SCH Chair or Presiding Officer may:
Interrupt, warn or terminate a person’s comments, request an individual to leave, request the assistance of security or law enforcement officers, call for a recess or an adjournment when:
- His/her statement exceeds (3) three-minute public comment duration of time, is personally directed at an individual.
- Is abusive, obscene, or irrelevant or
- Disregards any part of this policy/procedure.
- Video recordings are permitted, however, the individual owning and/or operating the recorder must comply with the following condition:
- No obstructions are created between the Board and the audience.
- No interviews are conducted during the Board meeting.
- No commentary is made that would distract with the Board or members of the audience.
- Recording shall in no way be used or edited to change the context of the recording or alter its nature.
- Violation of any part of this policy and its rules/procedures at any SCH public hearing/forum/meeting may result in the enforcement of the following by the SCH Chair or Presiding Officer:
- 1 st violation – Verbal warning
- 2 nd violation - Written Warning
- 3 rd violation - One (1) month suspension of SCH public comment privilege
- 4 th violation – Six (6) month suspension of SCH public comment privilege
- 5th violation – Once (1) year suspension of SCH public comment privilege
- 6 th violation – Five (5) year suspension of SCH public comment privilege
- 7 th violation – Lifetime ban of SCH public comment privilege
All violations will be documented in writing for SCH records/files and a written copy of the warning will be provided to the individual following receipt of said warning. Any of the above document’s violations, shall be accrued and remain valid for a period of four (4) years from the date of the most recent violation.
- School Board meetings will be on the first and third Tuesdays of each month, although Board Meeting dates may be adjusted. Board Meetings are held at 6 p.m., unless otherwise noted. All School Board meetings will be held at the Administration Center, 41 Williams Street.
- Meetings are open to the public; however, the Board may conduct executive sessions for the purposes of discussing personnel issues, contract negotiations, and other concerns as outlined by law. Public notice is given of such sessions, and final action of matters discussed in executive session is always taken in a public meeting.
- Meetings are conducted according to an agenda prepared by the superintendent and posted at the entrance to the meeting room prior to the meeting. The agenda allows for an orderly consideration of many issues and concerns. This agenda, along with pertinent background information is sent to Board members not later than Thursday of the week prior to the meeting. This allows Board members time to prepare adequately to make their decisions.
- Effective 2012, elections will be held during November of even-numbered years. Members will take office January 1 following their election. Board Officers will be chosen at the first meeting in January.
- Consent Agenda: Many routine items that require Board approval may be placed on the consent agenda. The Board may approve or disapprove these items by considering them as a whole rather than by acting on each item individually. If a Board member feels that any item on the consent agenda needs further discussion, the member may request that the item be removed from the consent agenda and be considered separately.
- Public Participation: The Board welcomes comments from the community. As a result, the agenda for each regular meeting provides time for two periods of public expression. The first period of public expression is limited to discussion of items on the agenda. The second permits citizens to express concerns relative to the operation of the School City, school board actions, and other items of general educational interest
- The Board encourages stakeholders to address concerns with building principals and program directors in leiu of bringing issues to the Board as a first step.
- Persons who wish to address the Board are asked to sign in before the meeting begins. Participants are asked to limit their remarks to three minutes. Speakers should use the microphone and lectern to ensure that all persons present can hear clearly. Each participant must state his name and address before beginning his/her remarks. Out of consideration for others who may wish to speak, participants should keep their remarks brief and to the point.
- Please refer to the abovde Administrative Guidelines on Participation and Comment for more information.
- The Board of School Trustees of the School City of Hammond is composed of five members selected for four-year terms by means of an at-large, non-partisan election. Elections are held during November of even-numbered years. Terms of the Board members are staggered so that either two or three vacancies occur alternately. Members take office January 1 following their election. Board officers are chosen at the first meeting in January.
- The School Board is charged with the responsibility of determining educational policy, approving educational programs, and providing appropriate facilities and personnel for carrying out these policies.
- The task of implementing the policies and programs established by the School Board is the duty of the Superintendent of Schools. The Superintendent makes recommendations to the Board and provides them with information about the schools. The Superintendent and his administrative staff are responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the schools and for ensuring that the schools are accomplishing their most important task -- the education of children.
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