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Policy 2010 - Student Representation

The purpose of this policy is to articulate the roles and processes of the Board that are critical to its effective and efficient operation.

Policy Document

I. Policy Statement

The Board of Education values the student perspective and supports opportunities for students to share their views and the views of their peers in meetings of the Board. The Board encourages active student participation in the work of the Board through the position of Student Member of the Board of Education, and the positions of Student Representatives from each high school and middle school in the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS).

II. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to establish nomination and election procedures and establish the roles and responsibilities of the Student Member of the Board of Education and Student Representatives.

III. Definitions

Within the context of this policy, the following definitions apply:

  1. Howard County Association of Student Councils (HCASC) – A student group consisting of representatives from each Student Government Association and each Student Council in the HCPSS.

  2. Parent – Any one of the following, recognized as the adult(s) legally responsible for the child or vulnerable adult:

    1. Biological Parent – A natural parent whose parental rights have not been terminated.

    2. Adoptive Parent – A person who has legally adopted the student and whose parental rights have not been terminated.

    3. Custodian – A person or an agency appointed by the court as the legal custodian of the student and granted parental rights and responsibilities.

    4. Guardian – A person who has been placed by the court in charge of the affairs of the student and granted parental rights and responsibilities.

    5. Caregiver – An adult resident of Howard County who exercises care, custody or control over the student but who is neither the biological parent nor legal guardian as long as the person satisfies the requirements of the Education Article, §7-101 (c) (Informal Kinship Care).

    6. Foster Parent – An adult approved to care for a child who has been placed in their home by a state agency or a licensed child placement agency provided by the Family Law Article § 5-507.

  3. Student Council – A student led representative body at each middle school, created with the purpose of providing a voice for students, which is organized under guidelines established by HCASC and is recognized by the school’s administration.

  4. Student Government Association (SGA) – A student led representative body at each high school, created with the purpose of providing a voice for students, which is organized under guidelines established by HCASC and is recognized by the school’s administration.

  5. Student Member of the Board of Education – A bona fide resident of Howard County who is a regularly enrolled HCPSS high school junior or senior elected by student voters to serve on the Board, in accordance with Maryland statute.

  6. Student Representatives – A student from a secondary school selected in their respective schools to participate in regular Board meetings.

  7. Student Voters – Students enrolled in the HCPSS in grades 6 through 11.

IV. Standards

  1. There will be two types of official student representation to the Board: Student Member of the Board of Education and Student Representative.

  2. Student Member of the Board of Education

    1. There will be one Student Member of the Board of Education who will serve a one-year term from July 1 through June 30.

    2. The Student Member of the Board of Education will serve as a member of the Board in accordance with the Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article § 3-701.

    3. Each applicant for the position will submit an application to be considered for nomination for the position of Student Member of the Board of Education. A systemwide Student Convention will be held to select two nominees, as well as an alternate for each of the nominees, from the applicants.

    4. The Student Member of the Board of Education will be elected by a majority of votes cast by student voters systemwide. Results will be appropriately shared when all votes are tallied.

    5. The Student Member of the Board of Education will have the same rights and privileges as an elected member, with the exception of restrictions against voting on specific matters, participation in appeals or confidential personnel matters, and attendance at closed sessions relating to restricted matters as cited in The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article § 3-701, and listed below in IV.B.5.a.

      1. The Student Member of the Board of Education will vote on all matters except those relating to:

        1. Geographical attendance areas under § 4-109 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        2. Acquisition and disposition of real property and matters pertaining to school construction under § 4-115 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        3. Employment of architects under § 4-117 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        4. Donations under § 4-118 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article, specifically: school land, school site, or suitably located house adapted to school purposes.

        5. Condemnation under § 4-119 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        6. Consolidation of schools and transportation of students under § 4-120 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        7. Appointment and salary of the county Superintendent under § 4-201 and § 4-202 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        8. Employee discipline and other appeals under § 4-205 (c) of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        9. Budgetary matters under Title 5 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        10. Appointment and promotion of staff under § 6-201 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        11. Discipline of certificated staff under § 6-202 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        12. Collective bargaining for certificated employees under Title 6, Subtitle 4 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        13. Collective bargaining for noncertificated employees under Title 6, Subtitle 5 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

        14. Student suspension and expulsion under § 7-305 of The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article.

      2. Unless invited to attend by the affirmative vote of a majority of the Board, the Student Member of the Board of Education may not attend a closed session addressing a matter on which a Student Member of the Board of Education is prohibited from voting, specifically those matters listed above in IV.B.5.a., as cited in The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article, Section § 3-701.

    6. The Student Member of the Board of Education will receive all Board information, except confidential personnel and closed session items, and will maintain the confidentiality of all information until it is appropriate to do otherwise.

    7. The Student Member of the Board of Education represents students, staff, parents and others in the community by presenting a student perspective on matters that come before the Board.

    8. On matters that come before the Board, the Student Member of the Board of Education may express his or her own views, the views of HCPSS students and others in the community, and should identify whose views are being expressed.

    9. As a student in the HCPSS, all Board policies and school rules applicable to students apply equally to the Student Member of the Board of Education.

    10. As a member of the Board, the Student Member of the Board of Education will conduct himself or herself in ways appropriate for public leadership and will be subject to removal from office for immorality, misconduct in office, incompetence, or willful neglect of duty, following procedures in The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article § 3-701.

    11. The Student Member of the Board of Education will be reimbursed for eligible out-of-pocket expenses related to Board service as provided for in the Board budget and in accordance with established HCPSS practice. This includes mileage to and from Board meetings and related events, as well as approved travel and conference expenses (e.g., conference registration, lodging expense, meal expense, travel expense).

    12. Board service may create scheduling conflicts with the responsibilities of the Student Member of the Board of Education as a student in the HCPSS. Recognizing that the Student Member of the Board of Education is a minor, the student’s parent(s) are responsible for balancing these obligations and determining which Board activities the Student Member of the Board of Education should attend.

    13. The role and obligation of the Board regarding attendance of the Student Member of the Board of Education at Board meetings or events does not include providing transportation or supervision of the Student Member of the Board of Education at the event. Parent(s) of the Student Member of the Board of Education assume these responsibilities.

    14. If the candidate elected is unable for any reason to complete the term, the candidate receiving the second highest number of votes in the direct election will fill the position of the Student Member of the Board of Education.

    15. If the Student Member of the Board of Education is unable to complete the term and the candidate receiving the second highest number of votes is unable to fill the position, the position will be filled in accordance with the process in place in the implementation procedures.

  3. Student Representatives

    1. Each spring, every high school SGA, following their own election procedures, will elect a Student Representative to serve the following year.

    2. On matters that come before the Board at meetings they are attending, Student Representatives may express their own views, the views of the students in their schools, and/or the views of HCASC. They should identify whose views are being expressed.

V. Responsibilities

  1. The Superintendent/Designee will ensure that the Student Member of the Board of Education is elected in accordance with this policy.

  2. The Superintendent/Designee will provide assistance, support, and guidance to the Student Member of the Board of Education to enable the Student Member of the Board of Education to carry out duties and responsibilities in accordance with this policy.

  3. Secondary principals will take appropriate measures to ensure that their school will follow standardized procedures for elections to both the nominating convention and the Student Member of the Board of Education.

VI. Delegation of Authority

The Superintendent is authorized to develop procedures for the implementation of this policy.

VII. References

The Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article

  • § 3-701 (Howard County Board of Education)

  • § 3-703 (Compensation and Expenses: Exclusions)

  • § 4-109 (c) (Attendance Areas)

  • § 4-115, 117, 118, 119, and 120 (Site Acquisition, Consolidation, Architect Selection, etc.)

  • § 4-201 and § 4-202 (County Superintendent of Schools)

  • § 4-205 (c) (Employee Discipline and Other Appeals)

  • § 5-101 et. seq. (Budget and Reporting)

  • § 6-201 (Appointment and Promotion of Staff)

  • § 6-202 (Teacher Discipline)

  • § 6-401 et. seq. (Collective Bargaining – Certificated Employees)

  • § 6-501 et. seq. (Collective Bargaining – Non-certificated Employees)

  • § 7-305 (Student Suspensions and Expulsions)

The Annotated Code of Maryland, Family Law Article

  • § 5-507 (Placement of a child)

  • COMAR 13A.02.01 Local Boards of Education

C. Relevant Data Sources

VIII. History

ADOPTED: March 12, 1992

REVIEWED:

MODIFIED:

REVISED: November 8, 2001, May 25, 2006, December 10, 2009, January 12, 2017

EFFECTIVE: July 1, 2017