The Lyme School •  Lyme, New Hampshire
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Policy Manual

Policy: BEDH
Public Participation At School Board Meetings

The School Board recognizes that community participation in the operation of the schools is essential for school and community collaboration toward improving the quality of education for students. Accordingly, the Board encourages the public to attend its sessions, to become better acquainted with the schools, and to provide the Board an opportunity to hear their ideas.

The Board supports the following guidelines for persons wishing to speak before the Board:

1) At each regular meeting of the Board, an open forum for community input will be listed on the agenda. Within time limitations, members of the public may speak on matters appropriate for public session.

2) Prior to the Board's final deliberation of topics listed for discussion, the public may speak to the issue at hand.

3) At the discretion of the Chair, comments may be entertained at other times.

The School Board recognizes that the Board must have uninterrupted time to deliberate and vote on school business. Accordingly, the following guidelines will also apply:

1) Individual viewpoints will be subject to reasonable control over the length of presentation and particular time when comment is heard.

2) If there are multiple speakers on one topic, speakers may be given time limitations or may be limited to points of view not yet expressed.

3) While requests for information will be heard, challenges to or polling of individual Board members will not be considered appropriate business for the Board as a whole.

4) Speakers may offer comments on school operations and programs as concern them. In public session, however, the Board will not hear personal complaints of or about school personnel nor complaints against any person connected with the school system. Other channels are available for Board consideration and disposition of legitimate complaints involving individuals, which should be referred to the Superintendent for appropriate action.

In order to ensure the business of the Board is conducted in an expeditious manner, the Chair will have the authority to regulate public participation within the provisions of this policy.

ADOPTED: 14 September 1972

REVISED: 9 December 1993
12 November 1998