Lansing School District
Bylaws & Policies





The Board of Education shall consist of nine (9) members.


M.C.L. 380.11a






Electoral Process


The number of members of the Board shall remain the same as before July 1, 1996 unless changed by the School electors at a regular or special School election. A ballot question for changing the number of Board members may be placed on the ballot by action of the Board or by petition submitted by School electors as provided under Michigan election law (M.C.L. 168.301 to 168.315).


Members of the Board shall be elected in the November even year general election (the first Tuesday after the first Monday) in a manner that is consistent with State law.


A special election may be called by the Board as provided under Michigan election law (M.C.L. 168.301 to 168.315).


M.C.L. 168.301 et seq.





An individual is eligible for election as a School Board member if the individual is a citizen of the United States and is a qualified and registered elector of the School District by the filing deadline.


M.C.L. 168.302





Members of the Board shall be elected by the School electors for terms of six (6) years.


At each regular School election, members of the Board shall be elected to fill the positions of those whose terms will expire. A term of office begins as provided by law (M.C.L. 168.302) and continues until a successor is elected and qualified.


At least one (1) School Board member for a School District shall be elected at each of the School Districtís regular elections. A School Board memberís term of office begins January 1st, immediately following the November election.


M.C.L. 168.301 et seq.





Each newly-elected Board member must file an acceptance of office as well as an affidavit of eligibility within ten (10) days after receiving a certificate of election and shall take an oath of office as prescribed by the Constitution of Michigan.


A ceremonial oath of office may be administered at the Organizational Meeting and may be administered by a judge or any other elected official such as the President of the Board or a notary public.


M.C.L. 168.309, 168.310





The office of a Board member shall become vacant immediately upon the occurrence of any one (1) of the following events:



the death of the incumbent, or the incumbent's being adjudicated insane or being found to be mentally incompetent by the proper court



the incumbent's resignation



the incumbent's conviction of a felony



the incumbent's election or appointment being declared void by a competent tribunal



the incumbent's neglect or failure to file the acceptance of office, to take the oath of office, or to give or renew an official bond required by law



the failure of the District to elect a successor at the annual school meeting or election



the incumbent's ceasing to possess the legal qualifications for holding office



the incumbent's residence being removed from the School District


If less than a majority of the offices of the District becomes vacant, the remaining members of the Board shall fill the vacancy immediately.


If the vacancy is not filled within thirty (30) days after it occurs, the Board of the Intermediate School District shall fill the vacancy by appointment.


A person elected or appointed to fill a vacancy on the Board shall file an acceptance of office and shall hold office until the next regular school election.


M.C.L. 168.310, 168.311


Filling a Board Vacancy


If the majority of the Board is still seated, the vacancy may be filled by the Board using the following procedure:



The Board shall seek qualified and interested candidates from the community through the news media, word of mouth, and contacts with appropriate organizations.



All applicants are to submit a notice of their interest, in writing, to the Board of Education Office.



The Board shall interview all interested candidates to ascertain their qualifications.



Appointment by the Board to fill a vacancy shall be by majority vote of the full Board.





Any member of the Board may be recalled pursuant to M.C.L. 168.951 et seq. but not within the first six (6) months after their election or within six (6) months before the end of their term.





The Board believes that the preparation of each Board member for the performance of Board duties is essential to the effective functioning of the Board. The Board shall encourage each new Board member to understand the functions of the Board, acquire knowledge of matters related to the operation of the District, and learn Board procedures. Accordingly, the Board shall give to each new Board member no later than his/her first regular meeting as a Board member for his/her use and possession during the term on the Board the following items:



a copy of the Board policy manual



a copy of Robert's Rules of Order



a copy of each current negotiated agreement



the current budget statement, audit report, and related fiscal materials


The Board will provide and maintain a library of publications and reference materials for the use of Board members.


Each new Board member shall be invited to meet with the Board President, the Superintendent, and Operations Officer to discuss Board functions, policies, and procedures.


The Board shall encourage the attendance of each new Board member at orientation and training meetings.





Individual members of the Board do not possess the powers that reside in the Board of Education. The Board speaks through its minutes and not through its individual members. An act of the Board shall not be valid unless approved at an official meeting by at least a majority vote of the members elected to and serving on the Board. M.C.L. 380.1201


Access to District personnel records shall be subject to the following rules:



Examination of school employee personnel records by the Board of Education shall be conducted in accordance with the Open Meetings Act.



Personnel records shall, in their entirety, be returned to the custody of the Superintendent at the conclusion of the Board meeting.



Information obtained from employee personnel records by members of the Board shall be used only for the purpose of aiding the members in fulfilling their legal responsibilities in making decisions in such matters as appointments, assignments, promotions, demotions, remuneration, discipline, and dismissal or to aid the development and implementation of personnel policies, or for such other uses as are necessary to enable the Board to carry out its legal responsibilities.



Public Expression of Board Members


The Board President functions as the official spokesperson for the Board.


From time-to-time, however, individual Board members make public statements on school matters:



to local media;



to local officials and/or State officials.


Sometimes the statements imply, or the readers (listeners) infer, that the opinions expressed or statements made are the official positions of the Board. The misunderstandings that can result from these incidents can embarrass both the member and the Board. Therefore, Board members should, when writing or speaking on school matters to the media, legislators, and other officials, make it clear that their views do not necessarily reflect the views of the Board or of their colleagues on the Board.


This bylaw shall apply to all statements and/or writings by individual Board members not explicitly sanctioned by a majority of its members, except as follows:



correspondence, such as legislative proposals, when the Board member has received official guidance from the Board on the matters discussed in the letter



routine, not for publication, correspondence of the Superintendent and other Board employees



routine "thank you" letters of the Board



statements by Board members on nonschool matters (providing the statements do not identify the author as a member of the Board)



personal statements not intended for publication








Board members shall receive not more than $30 per meeting up to a total of not more than fifty-two (52) meetings (including committee meetings) as compensation for their services. Expenses of a Board member shall be reimbursed when incurred in the performance of his/her duties or in the performance of functions authorized by the Board and duly vouchered.


M.C.L. 380.11a, 380.1254


The following guidelines have been established by the Board of Education to ensure appropriate and proper reimbursement of expenses for Board members.



Expenses will be reimbursed only for activities authorized by the Board.



Reimbursement for mileage will not exceed the current rate established by the Internal Revenue Service.



When attending a Board-approved conference, all reasonable fees, parking, mileage, meals, and housing will be reimbursed.



Purchase of any printed or other materials relating to Boardmanship will be reimbursed if prepurchase approval is given by the Board. If such approval is not possible or feasible, a voucher must be submitted to the Board for approval. No postpurchase voucher will be approved if it is reasonable.



No entertainment expenses or purchases of alcoholic beverages are reimbursable.


A voucher detailing the amount and nature of each expense must be submitted to the Board for approval at a Board meeting after the expenses have been incurred and prior to reimbursement.



Board Member Ethics


As members of the Board of Education, Board members will strive to improve public education and to that end they will:



remember always that their first and greatest concern must be for the educational welfare of the students attending the public schools;



attend all regularly scheduled Board meetings insofar as possible, and become informed concerning the issues to be considered at those meetings;



recognize that they should endeavor to make policy decisions only after full discussion at publicly held Board meetings;



render all decisions based on the available facts and independent judgment, and refuse to surrender that judgment to individuals or special interest groups;



encourage the free expression of opinion by all Board members, and seek systematic communications between the Board and students, staff, and all elements of the community;



work with the other Board members to establish effective Board policies and to delegate authority for the administration of the District to the Superintendent;



communicate to other Board members and the Superintendent expressions of public reaction to Board policies and school programs;



inform themselves about current educational issues by individual study and through participation in programs providing needed information, such as those sponsored by the State and National School Boards Associations;



support the employment of those persons best qualified to serve as school staff, and insist on a regular and impartial evaluation of all staff;



avoid being placed in a position of conflict of interest, and refrain from using their Board positions for personal partisan gain;



take no private action that will compromise the Board or administration, and respect the confidentiality of information that is privileged under applicable law;


Source: Board of Directors, National School Boards Association.



Conflict of Interest


Board members shall perform their official duties in a manner free from conflict of interest. To this end:



No Board member shall use his/her position as a Board member to benefit either himself/herself or any other individual or agency apart from the total interest of the School District.



When a member of the Board determines that the possibility of a personal interest conflict exists, s/he should, prior to the matter being considered, disclose his/her interest (such disclosure shall become a matter of record in the minutes of the Board), and thereafter shall abstain from participation in both the discussion of the matter and the vote thereon.



A member of the Board is presumed to have a conflict of interest if the member or his/her family member has a financial interest, or a competing financial interest, in the contract or other financial transaction or is an employee of the School District.


Having a child in the District does not alone constitute a conflict of interest or financial interest in a contract or other financial transaction of the School District.


"Family member" means a personís spouse or spouseís sibling or child; a personís sibling or siblingís spouse or child; a personís child or childís spouse; or a personís parent or parentís spouse, and includes these relationships as created by adoption or marriage.



A Board member is not considered to have a financial interest in any of the following instances:



A contract or other financial transaction between the School District and any of the following:



A corporation in which the individual is a stockholder owning 1% or less of the total stock outstanding in any class if the stock is not listed on a stock exchange or owning stock that has a present market value of $25,000.00 or less if the stock is listed on a stock exchange.



A corporation in which a trust, if the individual is a beneficiary under the trust, owns 1% or less of the total stock outstanding in any class if the stock is not listed on a stock exchange or owns stock that has a present market value of $25,000.00 or less if the stock is listed on a stock exchange.



A professional limited liability company organized pursuant to the Michigan limited liability company act, if the individual is an employee but not a member of the company.



A contract or other financial transaction between the School District and any of the following:



A corporation in which the individual is not a director, officer, or employee.



A firm, partnership, or other unincorporated association, in which the individual is not a partner, member, or employee.



A corporation or firm that has an indebtedness owed to the individual.



A contract between the School District and the intermediate school district.



A contract awarded to the lowest qualified bidder, upon receipt of sealed bids pursuant to a published notice for bids if the notice does not bar, except as authorized by law, any qualified person, firm, corporation, or trust from bidding. This does not apply to any amendments or renegotiations of a contract or to additional payments under the contract that were not authorized by the contract at the time of award.



If the financial interest pertains to a proposed contract with the District, the following requirements must be met:



The Board member shall disclose the financial interest in the contract to the Board with such disclosure made a part of the official Board minutes. If his/her direct financial interest amounts to $250 or more or five percent (5%) or more of the contract cost to the District, the Board member shall make the disclosure in one of two (2) ways:



In writing, to the Board president (or if the member is the Board president, to the Board secretary) at least seven (7) days prior to the meeting at which the vote on the contract will be taken. The disclosure shall be made public in the same manner as the Board's notices of its public meetings. (See Bylaw 0165.)



By announcement at a meeting at least seven (7) days prior to the meeting at which a vote on the contract is to be taken. The Board member must use this method of disclosure if his/her financial interest amounts to $5000 or more.



Any contract in which there is a conflict of interest as defined by this bylaw and the related statute (M.C.L. 380.1203) must be approved by a majority vote of the full Board without the vote of any Board member with a financial interest.


However, if a majority of the members of the Board are required to abstain from voting on a contract or other financial transaction due to a financial interest, then for the purposes of that contract or other financial transaction, the members who are not required to abstain constitute a quorum of the board and only a majority of those members eligible to vote is required for approval of the contract or financial transaction.



The official minutes of the Board disclose the name of each party involved in the contract, the nature of the financial interest, and the terms of the contract including the duration, financial consideration between the parties, facilities or services of the District included in the contract, and the nature and degree of assignment of District staff needed to fulfill the contract.



A Board member with a conflict of interest in a contract may not participate in the discussion of nor vote on the contract.



Board members shall not solicit or accept gratuities, favors, or anything of monetary value from contractors or parties to subcontracts involved with Federal grant funds, except that a board member may accept an unsolicited gift of nominal value. For purposes of this section, "nominal value" means that the gift has a monetary value of $100 or less.


Board members must disclose any potential conflict of interest which may lead to a violation of this policy to the full Board.



A Board member may be appointed to serve as a volunteer coach or supervisor of a student extra-curricular activity if all of the following conditions are present:



the Board member receives no compensation for service as a volunteer coach or supervisor;



the Board member abstains from voting on issues before the Board concerning the program during the period of time s/he serves as a volunteer coach or supervisor;



there is no other qualified applicant available to fill a vacant position; and



the appointing authority has received the results of a criminal history check and criminal records check from the Michigan State Police or the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the Board member.


M.C.L. 15.183, 15.323, 380.1203


See also, Policy 6420, Conflict of Interest - Legal Counsel, Advisors, or Consultants.


Revised 10/15/15





The Board may hold harmless, indemnify, pay, settle, or compromise a judgment against a Board member to the extent allowed under the law.


M.C.L. 691.1408



Discriminatory Harassment


The Board of Educationís intent is to provide an environment that fosters the respect and dignity of each person. To this end, the Board is committed to maintaining an environment free of harassment and intimidation.


Sexual harassment includes all unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and verbal or physical contacts of a sexual nature whenever submission to such conduct is made a condition of employment or a basis for an employment decision. Other prohibited conduct includes that which has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile, discriminatory, or offensive environment on the basis of gender, religion, race, color, national origin or ancestry, age, disability, height, weight, marital status, and/or any other legally protected characteristic.


The harassment of a student, staff member, or third party (e.g. visiting speaker, athletic team member, volunteer, parent, etc.) is strictly forbidden. Any person who is found to have violated this policy will be subject to discipline in accordance with law.


M.C.L. 380.1300a

Adopted 10/8/15

© Neola 2016