Sacred Heart School/École Sacré Coeur
Catholic School Community Council Constitution
November 20th, 2019
- Representative Membership:
The Catholic School Community Council will have the following Representative Members:
- (5 – 9) parent and community members who are representative of the demographics of the student population, elected at the Annual General Meeting. Parents must be a Majority.
The Catholic School Community Council will also include the following Permanently appointed Members:
- The School Principal
- A Teacher Representative
- The Board of Education may appoint a 3rd permanent member in consultation with the Catholic School Community Council.
The Following Catholic School Community Council Officers will be elected annually from among the Representative Members of the School Community Council:
School Community Council Meetings
- Annual General Meeting:
The annual General meeting will be held in May of each year. During this meeting Catholic School Community Council members will be selected and officers will be chosen.
The School Community Council will meet once per month throughout the academic school year, plus one annual general meeting.
- Model of Governance
The Representative Model – In this model, the Catholic School Community Council represents the wider school community. Meetings are open to the public but only members of the Catholic School Community Council may decide upon matters brought before the CSCC.
On matters requiring a formal vote, only Representative and Permanent Members of the School Community Council may vote.
A quorum of the School Community Council shall be a majority of the Representative and Permanent Members.
- Special Meeting
A special meeting of a Catholic School Community Council shall be called by the chair of the CSCC if required to do so by the Board of Education or a request in writing signed by no fewer than 25 persons who have a child attending Sacred Heart School/École Sacré Coeur or who are electors living in the school’s attendance area. Only business pertaining to the roles and responsibilities of Catholic School Community Councils can be considered at a special meeting.
Public Consultation and Communication
The Catholic School Community Council will consult with the school community through the following strategies:
- Annual general meeting
- An annual Learning Improvement Plan
- Open invitations to the school community
- School Newsletters and the School Website/Facebook postings
- Through the office of the school Principal
- Minutes of each CSCC meeting
- Annual School Community Council/Board of Education Forum
School Community Council Code of Conduct
The Catholic School Community Council will adopt the Code of Conduct of the Saskatchewan Association of School Councils. – (Appendix A)
Conflict of Interest
A Catholic School Community Council member may occasionally find him/herself in a conflict of interest position in terms of some issue under consideration by the CSCC. When this happens, the Member should declare that s/he is in a conflict of interest situation and leave the room for the portion of the meeting, thus refraining from participating in the discussion. The Member should not vote on any decision made on the issue.
Decision Making Processes
Majority Vote Model:
- The issue is discussed and a vote is taken. The majority vote decides the issue.
Handling Complains or Concerns
Complaints or Concern about an Individual Student or Staff Member:
Any matter concerning an individual student or staff member must be directed to the staff member or Principal. It is not the responsibility of the School Community Council to deal with concerns or complaints about individuals other than to direct the concern to the appropriate individual.
Complaints or Concerns about School Community Council Initiatives or Activities:
Informal Complaints or Concerns - Provided School Community Council Members are comfortable in their knowledge and feel at ease expressing themselves, concerns or questions about SCC. initiatives or activities expressed informally to members of the School Community Council may be addressed immediately by the Member. If a Member is unsure of the appropriate response, s/he will check and get back to the individual. If such a commitment is made the Member must follow through. After responding to the complaint or concern, the Member should always ask if their response has been satisfactory. If the individual is not satisfied with the response, the Member should explain how the concern or complaint could be brought to the attention of the School Community Council in a more formal manner.
Formal Complaints or Concerns - Concerns or complaints can be brought to the attention of the School Community Council by addressing the concern in writing to the Chairperson or by requesting that the Chairperson provide the individual with an opportunity to meet with the School Community Council. The CSCC will provide a written response regarding how they have or will address the concern or complaint.
The Catholic School Community Council will act in coordination role for committees operating in support of the CSCC and the school program.
Operations and Budget
The CSCC Executive information must be updated at the beginning of every school year, or after an election. This information must be send to the Director, or his/her designate.
Minutes of each Catholic School Community Council will be kept and forwarded to the Division Office and made available to members of the Board of Education. Minutes will be posted to the Sacred Heart School/École Sacré Coeur website and submitted to the Director of the Board within 1 week of the meeting.
Representative parent and community members are elected at an Annual Meeting of the school council.
The annual meeting will be advertised in the school newsletter, website and local papers four weeks in advance of the meeting. The purpose of this meeting will be to elect all representative members. In subsequent years, an annual report of the school community council will be given and new elections for ½ of the members will take place.
The board in consultation with the school principal will name a school employee to be the returning officer for the school (i.e. teacher).
The returning officer will facilitate the selection of a chair for the annual meeting and the chair will call for nominations from the floor as well as indicate those who have had prior nomination forms filled out.
If an election is necessary, the chair will call upon the returning officer to facilitate the election
Nominations will be accepted before the meeting as well as from the floor of the annual meeting. Nomination forms will be available at each school and can be returned to the returning officer any time prior to the annual meeting. Nomination forms should indicate whether the candidate is a parent or community representative
At the annual meeting, all nominations including those from the floor will be listed on chart paper and then voters will write in their selections on a secret ballot. Names should indicate whether they are running as a community member or parent. Individuals can be nominated from the floor by someone else, or can volunteer themselves to stand for election. (See sample form)
Duties of the returning officer:
- Gather nominations prior to the meeting
- Advertise the time, place, date and purpose of the annual general meeting of the School Community Council
- Announce at the meeting who is eligible to vote
- Display names of those standing for election
- Distribute and collect ballots
- Count ballots with the chair of the annual meeting
- Ensure that the majority of elected members are parents. For example, if there are 9 positions to fill, the first 5 parents with the greatest number of votes will be declared elected and the remaining 4 members will be filled by individuals with the next highest vote count.
- Ties will be broken by selecting names from a hat.
- Announce the outcome of the election at the meeting
- Upon election, acclamation, or appointment the CSCC will establish ½ of its Representative Members as 2 year members and ½ of its members as 1 year members. If a decision cannot be reached by consensus names will be drawn from a hat to establish a list of 1 year representatives and a list of 2 year representatives. A record of 1 year and 2 year representatives should be maintained by the returning officer subsequent to each election.
- Ballots will be kept by the returning office in a secure location for a period of 48 hours. If there is a dispute about the election results the matter will be brought to the attention of the school division. Ballots will be destroyed subsequent to the 48 hour holding period.
Amending the Constitution
- The Catholic School Community Council may amend its constitution by sending suggestions for change in writing to the Director of the Board of Education for approval. Any proposed substantive changes to the constitution shall be communicated at a Public Meeting of the School Community Council prior to receiving approval from the Director.
School Community Council Code of Conduct
The School Community Council is not a forum for the discussion of individual school personnel, students, parents, or other individual members of the school community.
A member of a School Community Council who is approached by a parent with a concern relating to an individual is in a privileged position and must treat such discussion with discretion, protecting the confidentiality of the people involved.
A parent who accepts a position as a member of our Catholic School Community Council:
- Upholds the constitution and bylaws, policies and procedures of the Catholic School Community Council.
- Performs his/her duties with honesty and integrity.
- Works to ensure that the well-being of students is the primary focus of all decisions.
- Respects the rights of all individuals.
- Takes direction from the members, ensuring that the representation processes are in place.
- Encourages and supports parents and students with individual concerns to act on their own behalf and provides information on the process for taking forward concerns.
- Works to ensure that issues are resolved though due process.
- Strives to be informed and only passes on in formation that is reliable and correct.
- Respects all confidential information.
- Supports Catholic Education.
Roles and Responsibilities of School Community Council Officers
The Chairperson will:
- Conduct meetings of the Catholic School Community Council;
- Ensure that all members have input to discussion and decisions;
- Prepare meeting agendas in consultation with the Principal and other School Community Council Members
- Oversee operations of the School Community Council
- Establish networks that support the School Community Council; and,
- Act as a spokesperson for the School Community Council
The Vice-Chairperson will:
- Support the Chairperson in his/her duties, taking over when the Chairperson is unable to attend; and,
- Perform responsibilities assigned by the Chairperson
The Secretary will:
- Take minutes at School Community Council meetings;
- Receive and send correspondence on behalf of the School Community Council
- Take charge of any official records of the School Community Council; and,
- Ensure that appropriate notice is given for all meetings of the School Community Council.
The Treasurer will:
- Ensure the accountability for all monies received;
- Ensure that deposits and payments are made in a timely fashion;
- Maintain an up-to-date ledger;
- Reconcile monthly statements with the ledger;
- Provide a Treasurer’s Report at each regular meeting outlining all monies received, spent, and outstanding, and year to date budget status;
Members at Large will have voting rights at meetings.
The Principal will:
- Ensure the Board Policy and Procedures are communicated and followed.
- Provide guidance and access to appropriate resources
- Facilitate communication within Council and between Council and School Staff and Council and the Board.
Staff Member will report staff needs and be a voting member of the council.
Parish Representatives will report school and parish business and have voting rights.
Other Appointed Members will have voting rights.