4.1. Governing Style

  • First Reading: May 18, 2021

    Adopted: June 1, 2021

    Policy Title: 4.1. Governing Style
    The board will govern lawfully, observing the principles of the Policy Governance model, with an emphasis on (a) outward vision rather than an internal preoccupation, (b) encouragement of diversity in viewpoints, (c) strategic leadership more than administrative detail, (d) clear distinction of board and superintendent roles, (e) collective rather than individual decisions, (f) future rather than past or present, and (g) proactivity rather than reactivity. Accordingly:

    1. The board will cultivate a sense of group responsibility. The board, not the staff, will be responsible for excellence in governing. The board will be the initiator of policy, not merely a reactor to staff initiatives. The board will not use the expertise of individual members to substitute for the judgment of the board, although the expertise of individual members may be used to enhance the understanding of the board as a body.
    2. The board will direct, control, and inspire the organization through the careful establishment of broad written policies reflecting the board's values and perspectives. The board's major policy focus will be on the intended long-term impacts outside the staff organization(Ends), not on the administrative or programmatic means of attaining those effects.
      1. Board values will be drawn from the diverse values of the community informed by expert sources both internal and external to the organization.
    3. The board will enforce upon itself whatever discipline is needed to govern with excellence. Discipline will apply to matters such as attendance, preparation for meetings, policymaking principles, respect of roles, and ensuring the continuance of governance capability. Although the board can change its Governance Process policies at any time, it will scrupulously observe those currently in force.
    4. Continual board development will include orientation of new board members in the board's Governance Process and periodic board discussion of process improvement.
    5. The board will allow no officer, individual, or committee of the board to hinder or serve as an excuse for not fulfilling group obligations.
    6. The board will monitor and discuss the board's process and performance on a regular basis. Self-monitoring will include comparison of board activity and discipline to policies in the Governance Process and Board-Management Delegation categories.


    See also: EWSD Board Member Appointment Procedure