PV Schools

As we aim to maintain a high degree of trust between the Board, the administrative staff, the teaching staff, and the community, these protocols can support our efforts to keep the child first and foremost.


  1. The Board sees itself primarily as a policy-setting body and delegates the administration of schools to the Superintendent.  In addition, the Board provides oversight and represents the desires/expectations of the stakeholders.
  2. The Board annually adopts district goals for the district.  The District goals will become the basis of the goals for the Superintendent and his/her administrative team.
  3. The Board of Education is granted the legal and regulatory authority to establish policy for the school district and to provide oversight for the education of our children.  
  4. Board members have authority only when acting as members of the Board at a duly convened open meeting.  In most cases, a majority vote of the Board is required for action.  A Board member does not have the power to individually authorize action.
  5. The Board strives to reach decisions through the consensus process rather than simply by majority vote, whenever possible.
  6. Board members may speak as individuals and share their personal beliefs during the “comment” portion of a public resolution.  Once a resolution has been voted on, all board members will respect that decision and shall not undermine the will of the Board.  Board decisions are binding and final.
  7. The Board is responsible for the evaluation of the performance of the Superintendent at least annually.
  8. The Board annually evaluates itself, reviews its protocols, and holds itself to standards of best practice.


  1. The Superintendent serves as the chief executive officer, is charged with implementing the policies of the Board, and is responsible for the administration of the School District.
  2. The Superintendent shall suggest policies deemed necessary for the effective functioning of the School District and implement regulations, rules, and procedures to support established policies.
  3. The Superintendent shall have the authority to organize, reorganize, and arrange the administrative and supervisory staff, including, without limitation, instruction and business affairs, which, in his/her judgment, best serve the School District, subject to the approval of the Board of Education.
  4. The responsibility for the placement and transfer of personnel shall be vested in the Superintendent of Schools; hiring, termination, and tenure shall be subject to the approval of the Board of Education.
  5. It is the Superintendent’s primary responsibility to provide visionary and aspirational leadership that enables the District to continually improve the educational experiences of students and achieve the goals which have been established.
  6. The Superintendent is a visible presence in the schools to underscore that the most important interactions that occur are in the classrooms.
  7. The Superintendent provides the Board with the information analysis and sound professional advice it needs to formulate policy and monitor operations of the District.
  8. The Superintendent creates and sustains a climate of collegiality among members of the staff and parent body.


The Board President:

  1. Has no greater authority than any other Board member.
  2. Shall serve a one year appointment.
  3. Serves as a liaison between the Board and the Superintendent.
  4. Is responsible for sharing information pertaining to Board work with all Board members on a timely basis and is the primary conduit of information flow from the Board to the Superintendent.
  5. Works with the Superintendent and Board Vice-President to set meeting agendas.
  6. Runs meetings in an orderly fashion, using parliamentary procedure.  She or he encourages open discussion and deliberation, and guides the Board to reach decisions.
  7. Is the primary spokesperson for the Board with the media.


The Vice-President:

  1. Is available to stand in for the president whenever s/he is not available.
  2. Shall serve a one-year term. 
  3. Acts as a mentor to incoming board members.
  4. Is available as a sounding board for the president.
  5. Is responsible for scrutinizing Board documents prior to the Board acting upon them.


  1. Responsibility for setting the agenda is shared by the Superintendent, the Board President and the Vice-President.  Board members, through the President or Vice President, can recommend items for the agenda/discussion.
  2. Requests to the Superintendent or Board President/Vice President to suggest items prior to the drafting of the agenda will be reflected in the draft agenda.
  3. When able, Board members will let the Superintendent and Board President know in advance about items not in the draft which they intend to raise at the Board meeting, and the Superintendent will do the same, thus ensuring that all participants will be prepared for the applicable discussions.
  4. Rules for confidentiality are those consistent with Section 805-a of the General Municipal Law, Commissioner’s Decisions and the Open Meetings Law.
  5. E-mail should not be used to conduct the business of the Board or facilitate Board related discussions.  for confidential matters or to conduct Board business.
  6. Items for executive session must be consistent with the Open Meetings Law and the public must be informed of the reason for the executive session.
  7. Discussions in Executive Session must remain completely confidential.


  1. In both public meetings and executive sessions, each Board member has a right to be heard once on an issue prior to others having a second chance.  Members agree to listen to one another and not interrupt.
  2. Motions should be used to focus discussion on action items, and any member may “call the question” to test whether the Board is ready to vote.
  3. The Board President is authorized to focus discussion toward closure.
  4. Board members should address the Board as a whole with their comments, rather than addressing the public.
  5. The New York State Open Meetings Law governs the conduct of the meeting and Roberts Rules of Order, as applicable, guides the meeting, unless in violation of law.


  1. The Board urges members of the public to address concerns at the level of origin and then use the normal chain of authority to answer questions or resolve concerns.
  2. There will be an opportunity for public participation at work sessions, business and special meetings.
  3. Public comments on an agenda item are permitted prior to the opening of new business after the first round of Board discussion of the issue.
  4. Public opportunity to raise an issue or to raise a question about an issue not on the agenda will usually occur at the end of the meeting.
  5. Each speaker should state his/her name and address at the podium.  Comments should be as brief as possible. Speakers who exceed three minutes or if the comments are deemed to no longer be appropriate by the members of the Board of Education may be asked to refrain from further comment. All comments should be directed to the whole Board and not individual Board members.
  6. Interruption of Board discussion is not permitted.
  7. Civility and mutual respect are expected.  Speakers who indulge in rude and disrespectful behavior, such as cursing, making deprecating or disparaging remarks, libelous statements, or threats of violence, will have their time at the microphone immediately terminated.
  8. The Board may justifiably restrict public commentary on matters involving privacy issues otherwise protected by law; for example, when a member of the public wants to engage in a discussion that potentially may disclose information about a particular student or staff member.
  9. Board members and the Superintendent have the privilege of asking questions of any person who addresses the Board, but commenters should not expect to engage in discussion with the Board.  However, the Board may correct comments that are not accurate, and may refer to an existing policy when it answers a question. If a member of the public has a specific question, they may also submit the question to the District Clerk for the Board or the Superintendent.


  1. Information necessary for the Board’s work will be shared consistently across the Board and with the Superintendent, in part to maintain a practice of “no surprises,” particularly in public meetings and to assist the Board to reach consensus when appropriate.
  2. The Superintendent’s periodic memos and information packet will be the primary source material.
  3. Email/Phone will be used by the Superintendent for regular communication with the Board.
  4. Keep email brief and to the point, with sensitivity to overall volume, recognizing that on the day of a Board meeting, it usually is too difficult to respond to questions.  
  5. Use email to gain clarification but not for expressing opinions as this may violate the Open Meetings Law when a majority of the Board is included.
  6. Information requests to the Superintendent should come to the Board President or Vice President in order to maintain a reasonable balance of volume, content and tone. If the Superintendent deems the information requests overly burdensome in the time requested, the Superintendent will discuss with the Board President and the member making the request, possible alternatives to address the member’s information request.  The following options may be used to meet the request:
  • An optional information meeting will be scheduled prior to the commencement of the Board meeting at which time the Superintendent will provide the information verbally.
  • The Superintendent will discuss with the Board President and the member possible alternatives to address the member’s information request.
  • The item will be placed on a future Board of Education agenda for discussion.
  1. Intra-Board communication – by telephone, e-mail, or in person – is essential, but should be consistent with the Open Meetings Law in terms of public and executive session deliberation and decision-making.


  1. Board members should direct parents and staff who call with complaints to work up through the hierarchy – talking to the teacher, the principal, and the Superintendent, before further involving Board members.
  2. Board members shall refer more substantive criticisms, complaints, or suggestions to the Board President and to the Superintendent.  The Board President will ensure circulation to the full Board.  The Superintendent or designee shall conduct the investigation, as necessary,  and/or problem solve the concern, with staff assistance as necessary.  Board members should not attempt to investigate or problem-solve. 
  3. The Board will strive to discourage anonymous complaints.


  1. All official statements of Board positions, as well as responses to media inquiries, come from the Board President and/or the Superintendent (or their designees).


  1. In general, contact with faculty, including visits to the schools, occurs through the Superintendent when Board members are acting within their Board role.  When contacting staff as a parent, it is reassuring to say, “I am calling as a parent.”
  2. An individual Board member has no authority to direct personnel. 


  1. Board members are committed to staying current on educational issues, including legislative issues affecting the public schools, via various New York State School Boards Association (NYSSBA) services and information provided by the Superintendent and his/her staff, and by our legal counsel.
  2. Board members are encouraged to participate in Westchester Putnam School Boards Association (WPSBA) meetings and sessions offered by NYSSBA, including the annual convention.


  1. District Goals: There will be a goal-setting meeting with the Superintendent as early as practical after July 1 to discuss District goals for that school year. The final goals will be presented to the community and approved by the Board at a public meeting in the early fall of each year. 2. Board Goals: The Board shall develop its own goals, separate from District goals, annually. Matters related to the internal workings of the Board and how to improve governance would be discussed at its annual retreat.
  2. Orientation of New Board Members: The Superintendent, Board President, and Vice-President will offer new Board members with an overview orientation as close to July 1st as practical. The key elements may include:

(a) Individual meetings with each Board member, each assistant Superintendent, each building principal, and the director of special education. The purpose of these meetings is to familiarize the new Board member(s) with key district staff, their roles and responsibilities, and any current initiatives that may be underway. The Superintendent will inform the staff that the new Board member(s) will contact them directly to set up orientation meetings. The District Clerk will work with the new Board member(s) to schedule the meetings. Board members will be accompanied by the Superintendent at these meetings, the new Board member(s) should be provided with relevant materials for their areas of responsibility including: curriculum and instruction, special education, human resources, finance, and technology. 

(b) Training sessions held by the WPSBA and by NYSSBA, including legally required financial and Board governance training.

(c) Reading Material. New Board members will have access to the Board’s Operating Protocols, the Code of Ethics, and a Policy Manual.)   List of relevant website resources.

There is no school for students on Monday, April 22, 2024