Bellingham Memorial School Council

Come Join Us!

What is School Council?

A school council is a representative, school building-based committee composed of the principal, parents, teachers, community members and, at the secondary level, students, required to be established by each school pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 71, Section 59C.

The law outlines four major areas of responsibility for councils. School councils are to assist principals in:

  • Adopting educational goals for the school that are consistent with local educational policies and statewide student performance standards
  • Identifying the educational needs of students attending the school
  • Reviewing the annual school building budget
  • Formulating a school improvement plan

In addition, the law states that "nothing contained in this section shall prevent the school committee from granting a school council additional authority in the area of educational policy; provided, however, that school council shall have no authority over matters which are subject to chapter one hundred and fifty E of the General Laws." (Question 34, below, addresses Chapter 150E.)

School Council Meetings

Tuesday, Nov. 5th, 5pm

Bellingham Memorial School

The Principal shall, by law, serve as co-chair of the School Council. He/she has the responsibility for defining the composition and overseeing the formation of the Council pursuant to a representative process approved by the Superintendent and School Committee. As co-chair of the Council, the Principal is also responsible for convening the first meeting of the Council. At this meeting, the other co-chair is to be selected.

The co-chair will be elected annually by the Council members at its first meeting of the school year subsequent to the election of new Council members. The co-chair will be responsible for the preparation of the agenda for the Council meetings.

The School Council shall meet at least four times during the school year. Meetings will be held outside of school hours. At its first meeting of the school year, the Council will set its calendar of regular meetings for the year. Where circumstances warrant, the Council may choose to call additional meetings.

Consensus shall be used by School Council as the primary method to resolve issues and to formulate recommendations. Votes by the majority may be taken at the discretion of the Principal, and Robert’s Rules of Order shall prevail if there are questions of procedure.

All meetings of the School Council shall conform to the Open Meeting Law, Sections 23 A, B, and C, which stipulates that all meetings be open to the public, that meetings be posted at least 48 hours in advance, and that minutes of the meeting shall be maintained as required. The scope of the School Council does not require, and therefore does not qualify for Executive Sessions.

The Superintendent shall receive agendas and minutes of all School Council meetings.

Advising the Principal on a variety of important issues is a dedicated School Council composed of teachers, parents, and students. For more information, contact the Interim Principal, Dave Cutler.

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