Bylaws of Palmerston Public School
Bylaws of Palmerston Public School To be voted on by Palmerston Parent Council October 22, 2008
Ontario Regulation 612/00 sets out the mandate and roles and responsibilities for schoolcouncils. In effect, this regulation serves as the constitution for school councils in Ontario.School councils are, however, required to develop bylaws to provide them with direction for theoperation of council business and to help the council work effectively. The attached bylawsfollow the suggested guidelines contained in the document titled “School Councils – A Guide forMembers” (2001, revised 2002) prepared by the Ontario Ministry of Education.These bylaws, to be voted on October 22, 2008, for the Palmerston School Council contain thefollowing nine sections:Section 1 – Palmerston School Council Code of EthicsSection 2 – Membership of Palmerston School CouncilSection 3 – OfficersSection 4 – CommitteesSection 5 – MeetingsSection 6 – Palmerston School Council FinancesSection 7 – Conflict of InterestSection 8 – Conflict Resolution ProceduresSection 9 – Amendment of Bylaws
Palmerston School Council Bylaws
Section 1 – Palmerston School Council Code of Ethics
• A member shall consider the best interests of all students.• A member shall be guided by the school’s and the school board’s mission statements.• A member shall act within the limits of the roles and responsibilities of a school council, asidentified by the school’s operating guidelines, the school board, and the Ontario Ministry of Education.• A member shall become familiar with the school’s policies and operating practices and act inaccordance with them.• A member shall maintain the highest standards of integrity.• A member shall recognize and respect the personal integrity of each member of the schoolcommunity.• A member shall treat all other members with respect and allow for diverse opinions to beshared without interruption.• A member shall encourage a positive environment in which individual contributions areencouraged and valued.• A member shall acknowledge democratic principles and accept the consensus of the council.• A member shall respect the confidential nature of some school business and respect limitationsthis may place on the operation of the school council.• A member shall not disclose confidential information.
• A member shall use established communication channels when questions or concerns arise.• A member shall promote high standards of ethical practice within the school community.• A member shall declare any conflict of interest.• A member shall not accept any payment or benefit financially through school councilinvolvement.
Section 2 – Membership of Palmerston School Council
In accordance with Section 3 of Ontario Regulation 612/00, the Palmerston School Council (PSC)includes but is not limited to the following members:• Parents (parents defined to include guardians)• The Principal of Palmerston Public School• One teacher who is employed at Palmerston Public School, other than the Principal or Vice-Principal• One person who is employed at Palmerston Public School, other than the Principal, Vice-Principal, or any other teacherOther categories of school council members cited in the Ontario regulations include student andcommunity representatives. It is not mandatory that these categories be represented on aregular basis on the PSC. When specific needs arise, the Executive Committee and/or Principalcan recommend to the PSC the addition of such members for a specific school year.In accordance with the Ontario regulations, parent members must constitute the majority of themembers of the PSC.The parents, principal, teacher, and other employed staff in attendance at any particular schoolcouncil meeting shall constitute the membership of the PSC for the purpose of transactingbusiness at that particular meeting.
Section 3 – Officers
The officers of the PSC shall consist of Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer. Each position can beheld by a single person or two people jointly sharing the responsibilities. The ExecutiveCommittee is comprised of the individuals in the roles of Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer. ThePrincipal shall serve as a non-voting member of the Executive Committee.The election of officers shall be held during the first 30 days of each school year. Any parentmember is eligible to nominate themselves or be nominated by other members of the PSC forany officer position. All parents, Principal, teachers, and other employed staff in attendance atthe first PSC meeting of the school year shall constitute the membership of the PSC for thepurpose of electing the officers. When possible, the prior year chair(s) will lead the first meetinguntil the election of the new chair(s). If the prior year chair is unavailable, a member of the prioryear’s Executive Committee will lead the first meeting until the election of the new chair(s).Officers assume their new role at the time of election.The Chair (or Co-Chairs) shall preside at all meetings of the PSC and the Executive Committeeand shall perform all other duties pertaining to the office. If there are Co-Chairs, they willdetermine between themselves the schedule for leading meetings and the assignment of responsibilities.The Secretary (or Co-Secretaries) shall keep an accurate record of all meetings and of allmotions and resolution and maintain such record in the form of a minute book, a copy of whichwill be available in the main office of Palmerston Public School.The Treasurer (or Co-Treasurers) shall receive and hold all monies collected by or on behalf of the PSC, keep accurate records of all receipts and expenditures, make all disbursements asauthorized by the PSC, prepare the annual financial report, and submit a draft budget at the October PSC meeting, present a financial report at each PSC meeting, and prepare the finalfinancial report for the board in June of each year.Officers shall hold their office until the election of their successors. An officer may resign at anytime and unless otherwise specified, the resignation is effectively immediately. An officer whohas persistently failed to fulfill his or her obligations as an officer may be removed from office atany time by a two-thirds vote of the PSC. Any vacancy in an officer position shall be filled assoon as possible. All parents, Principal, teachers, and other employed staff in attendance at thefirst PSC meeting following a vacancy shall constitute the membership of the PSC for thepurpose of electing a new officer to fill the position of the vacancy.
Section 4 – Committees
The Executive Committee is empowered to establish committees as they determine necessary ordesirable. Duties of committees may involve specific programs and/or policy planning. Chairs of committees are generally, but not necessarily, members of the PSC. Most, but not necessarilyall, chairs are approved by all PSC members present at the first meeting of the school year (i.e.,the same meeting as the election of officers).The members of any committee may be members of the PSC, but this is not a requirement.Members of any committee shall be appointed by the PSC Chair(s) and/or any Chair of thecommittee and shall hold their position at the will of the Chair of the committee. Removal of anycommittee member is at the discretion of the Chair of the PSC. Committee members shallreceive no remuneration for serving as such, but are entitled to reasonable expenses incurred inthe exercise of their duty as may be determined by the PSC.
Section 5 – Meetings
In accordance with Ontario regulations, the PSC shall meet not less than four (4) times duringthe school year. Ten (10) days prior notice of a meeting shall be sent in writing and/or email toparents, Principal, Vice-Principal, teachers, and other staff of Palmerston Public School. Thenotice of the meeting shall also include the agenda. Attendance by at least 15 parent membersshall constitute a quorum for a meeting of the PSC. Unless otherwise noted in these bylaws, allaction taken at PSC meetings shall require the approval of a majority of those present.A special meeting can be called at the written request of at least twenty parents of PalmerstonPublic School. Such request shall be sent to the Secretary or one of the Co-Secretaries. Uponthe receipt of such written request, there shall be at least ten days notice of such meeting to beheld within three weeks. Such written request shall state the purpose(s) of the meeting, andsuch purpose(s) shall be stated in the notice of the meeting; no business other that that statedin the notice shall be dealt with at the meeting.The Executive Committee shall meet at such times as the Chair(s) or Principal determines isappropriate and in any event a minimum of two (2) times per year. A majority of the membersof the Executive Committee in attendance at a meeting shall constitute a quorum.
Section 6 – Palmerston School Council Finances
No expenditure will be made from the PSC unless:• It has been included in the annual budget which has been approved at a PSC meeting, or• It has been approved at a PSC meeting by the PSC members present at such meeting, or• It is an amount under $100 and has been approved by two officersThe Treasurer can sign any cheque for an amount less than $100; all cheques greater than $100shall be signed by any two officers.
Section 7 – Conflict of Interest
A conflict of interest may be actual, perceived, or potential. Members of the PSC shall declare aconflict of interest in matters that they, members of their families, or business entities in whichthey may have an interest, stand to benefit either directly or indirectly by decisions of the PSC.A member shall exclude him- or herself from discussions in which:• A conflict of interest is likely to result• The member’s ability to carry out his or her duties and responsibilities as a member of the PSCmay be jeopardized• The PSC member, his or her relatives, or a business entity in which the member may have aninterest, may gain or benefit either directly or indirectly as a result of action that may be takenby the Principal or board in response to advice that the PSC provides to the Principal or to theboard.A member shall not accept favours or economic benefits from any individuals, organizations, orentities known to be seeking business contracts with Palmerston Public School.
Section 8 – Conflict Resolution Procedures
• Every school council member will be given an opportunity to express his or her concern oropinion about the issue at dispute and how the dispute has affected him or her.• Speakers to an issue will maintain a calm and respectful tone at all times.• Speakers will be allowed to speak without interruption.• The Chair’s responsibility is to clarify the statements made by all speakers, to identify commonground among the points of view raised, and to set out the joint interests of all members.• If no common ground can be identified, the Chair will seek to clarify preferences among allmembers before proceeding further.• If all attempts at resolving the conflict have been exhausted without success, the Chair shallrequest the intervention of a superintendent or other senior administrator to facilitate aresolution to the conflict.
Section 9 – Amendment of Bylaws
These bylaws may be amended by a vote in favour of such amendment of two-thirds of themembers present at a meeting and in no case shall the bylaws be amended unless suchamendment has been approved by at least 20 members present and voting at any generalmeeting. In addition, notice of any proposed amendment must be set forth in the notice of such a meeting.