Code 204.9 -- Public Participation in Board Meetings
The Board encourages public attendance and participation in its public meetings. Individuals or delegations are welcome at regular and special meetings, as are those wishing to present petitions to the Board. In assuring the public is heard and board meetings are conducted efficiently and in an organized manner, the Board has established the specific agenda item, Audience Communications, for the purpose of providing speakers the opportunity to express their point of view on items related to school business. Regarding petitions or other submitted written materials, the Board will only receive the petitions or materials and not act on them or their contents at the public meeting. Speaker comments will be taken under consideration and a response, if appropriate, may be issued at another time.
Public comment is subject to the following regulations:
- Time Limit for Speakers: Individuals shall limit their presentation to three minutes unless the time limit is prescheduled or waived by the board president or a majority of board members present. When there are a large number of speakers to be heard, the Board may shorten the time.
- How to Address the Board: The speaker is asked to stand during audience communications, be recognized by the presiding officer, state and record his/her name and address, identify whom they represent, and state the topic and comment in a respectful manner. Only those individuals recognized by the presiding officer will be allowed to speak. The speaker’s comments should not contain names or other identifying information about students, teachers, administrators, or other personnel because of the potentially confidential nature of certain situations. In such cases, the speaker should, instead, contact the appropriate administrator with concerns.
- Acknowledgement of Speaker Comments: The speaker’s comments will be received and filed (for written copies) by the Board. If appropriate and for clarification purposes, the board president or superintendent may seek additional information from the speaker. The board president will thank the speaker for his/her comments. The Board, at its discretion, may choose to place the topic on a future agenda or delegate any action to administration.
- Conduct and Remarks Out-of-Order: Undue interruption or other interference with the orderly conduct of board business cannot be allowed. Defamatory or abusive remarks are always out-of-order. The presiding officer may terminate the speaker’s comments if, after being called to order, he/she persists in improper conduct or remarks. If disruptive, the individual making the comments or any individual causing disruption will be asked to leave the board meeting.
- Special Procedures: The Board reserves the right to establish special procedures to deal with extraordinary issues or circumstances. If the decision is made not to have audience communications at a particular meeting, it will be so noted on the board agenda; which is posted at least 24 hours before the scheduled board meeting.
Individuals, including students, who have a complaint about employees may bring their complaint to the Board only after they have followed board Policy 1003.3 Complaints About School Personnel, in addressing their concern.
Note: Members of the public do not have a legal right to participate in board meetings. The Board needs to make the determination how best, if at all, to involve the public in board meetings.