Horseheads Central School District
Thinking about running for the Board of Education?
What is a Board of Education?
The Board of Education is the governing body of a school district. The board has the responsibility of developing policies under which the district is managed. The powers and duties of the board are as stated in the Education Law and other applicable New York State law. Complete and final authority on all district educational matters, except as restricted by law, is vested in the board.
The Horseheads Board of Education is made up of nine district residents elected by the community. Members serve three-year terms and receive no salary for their service. The board also includes a student representative who is appointed by the High School to serve a one-year term.
The role of a board member
A board member is a member of the district’s education team. The board’s decision-making authority is as a corporate body only, not as an individual. The Superintendent of Schools, who reports to the Board of Education, is also a member of the team.
Board of Education members are expected to represent, to the best of their ability, the members of the community at large. The Horseheads Central School District Board of Education strives to maintain fair and equitable representation from the communities served by the district. In so doing, board members must be motivated by a sincere desire to serve the community rather than by personal goals or agendas.
A board member should be able to defend his or her philosophy and goals and to withstand the criticism that will inevitably come from people with opposing views. One must guard against confusing what may be a few voices in the community with consensus.
Similarly, one board member cannot know everything about the district and will not be able to answer all questions. Referring people to the correct source for information will be a key role.
Board members have several responsibilities, including the following:
- Try to achieve 100% attendance at meetings.
- Attend the New York State School Boards Association (NYSSBA) Conference for new board members and/or BOCES-sponsored programs for new members.
- Attend special board meetings or work-shops (called when necessary for specific purposes).
- Keep up-to-date on education by reading relevant articles on education websites, in NYSSBA publications, and in other articles or journals.
- Complete state-required workshops and attend board development seminars sponsored by NYSSBA, BOCES, or other organizations.
- Serve on committees that interest you or are required.
- Attend school functions as a representative of the board and community and to gain first-hand perspective of the many events and initiatives in our schools.
The major role of the board is to make policy. This is more effectively done when board members are knowledgeable, not just about the district and its activities, but also public education in general.
Board membership requires a significant commitment of time. It is not uncommon for members to spend three to five hours weekly, depending upon the time of year and issues at hand, on board-related matters.
Members are encouraged to be actively involved in order to assist the district in meeting its goals.
Board of Education Election
Each year, three board seats are up for election. Board member elections are held on the day of the budget vote, which is the third Tuesday in May, as set by the state.
To run for the Board of Education, a person must be a qualified voter of at least 18 years of age, be able to read and write, and have been a resident of the district for at least one year prior to the vote. To become a candidate, eligible residents must submit a completed petition of signatures to the District Office 30 days prior to the vote. The number of required signatures changes each year based on the prior year's voter turnout. Petitions will be available for pickup at the District Office in March of each year.
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 607-739-5601, x4260.
Learn more about the district...
- Visit www.horseheadsdistrict.com.
- Like us on Facebook. The district and each of our seven schools have pages.
- Follow us on Twitter (@HhdsSchools) and Instagram (hhdsschools).