It shall be the duty of the Board:
- To employ a Director of Schools;
- To approve positions of employment and salary ranges for such positions;
- To elect, upon recommendation of the Director of Schools, teachers who are eligible for tenure, fix salaries, and make written contracts with such tenured teachers;
- To manage and control all public schools under its jurisdiction;
- To purchase all supplies, furniture, fixtures, and material of every kind through the executive committee;
- To visit the schools whenever, in the judgment of the Board, such visits are necessary;
- To dismiss tenured teachers, upon sufficient proof of improper conduct, inefficient service, or neglect of duty, insubordination, and incompetence;
- To suspend or dismiss students when the progress or efficiency of the school makes it necessary;
- To provide proper record books and suitable office and sufficient equipment for the Director of Schools;
- To require the Director of Schools and the Chairman of the Board to prepare a budget and when such budget has been approved by the Board, to submit it to the local funding body;
- To have prepared a copy of the minutes of each meeting of the Board and to mail a copy to each Board member and the president of the local education association;
- To adopt and enforce minimum standards and policies governing student attendance; and
- To develop and implement an evaluation plan for all certificated employees and to submit the plan to the Commissioner of Education for approval.
The Board shall have the power:
- To consolidate schools whenever, in its judgment, efficiency would be improved;
- To require school children and employees to submit to a physical examination when there is reason to believe a need exists;
- To permit school buildings and school property to be used for public, community, or recreational purposes;
- To employ legal counsel to advise the Board;
- To make rules providing for the organization of school safety patrols;
- To formulate general policies for the operation of the schools of the district;
- To approve an organization of the school program and courses of study recommended by the Director of Schools;
- To evaluate the work and effectiveness of the educational program;
- To provide for the planning, expansion, improvement, construction, maintenance, use and disposition of the physical facilities of the school system; and
- To help interpret the education program to the community by providing for the dissemination of school information necessary for creating a well-informed public.
The school board member is a state officer, an agent of the state operating on the local level, and a local officer in terms of function and scope of duty. Members of the Cleveland City Board shall have the authority only when acting as a Board legally in session. the Board shall not be bound in any way by any statement or action on the part of an individual member except when such statement or action is in pursuance of specific instruction of the Board.
It shall be the policy of the Board to make its members, the district staff, and the public aware that only the Board has the authority to take official action.
Members of the Cleveland City Board of Education are specifically prohibited from contracting personally with the Board or participating in incurring debts beyond the legitimate school income for any particular school year. Board members are expressly charged with the duty to comply with the school laws of Tennessee and to require the Director of Schools and all teachers to do likewise.
Board Operation Goals and Objectives
The Board’s primary objective is to establish purposes, programs, and procedures which will produce the educational achievement needed by students of the school system. The Board shall fulfill these responsibilities by functioning primarily as a legislative body to formulate and adopt policy and by evaluating the results.
In accordance with these principles, the Board shall seek to achieve the following goals:
- To provide leadership so that the goals and objectives of the school system can be effectively carried out;
- To conduct board business openly, soliciting and encouraging broad-based involvement in the schools’ decision making processes by the public, students and staff;
- To concentrate the Board’s collective effort on its policy-making and planning responsibilities;
- To formulate board policies which best serve the educational interests of each student and which conform to state and federal laws;
- To provide the Director of Schools with sufficient and adequate guidelines for implementing board policies; and
- To maintain effective communication with the public, staff, and students in order to be aware of attitudes, opinions, desires, and ideas.
Duties of Board Members
The duties of an individual board member shall be as follows:
- To become familiar with State school laws, regulations of the State Department of Education, and school board policies, rules and regulations;
- To have a general knowledge of the educational aims and objectives of the system;
- To work harmoniously with other board members without trying either to dominate the Board or neglect his/her share of the work;
- To vote and act impartially for the good of the school system;
- To accept the will of the majority vote in all cases and give support to the resulting action;
- To represent the Board and the school system to the public in such a way as to promote both interest and support; and
- To refer complaints to the Director of Schools and to abstain from individual counsel and action in regard to staff members.