Functions of the Board of Trustees
The Cypress-Fairbanks ISD Board of Trustees meets twice monthly at 6 p.m. in the Board Room of the Cypress-Fairbanks Instructional Support Center located at 10300 Jones Road. A work session is held on the first Thursday of the month where issues on the agenda are discussed in-depth. On the following Monday, the Board holds a second meeting to continue discussion of an item and to vote on individual issues listed on the agenda. Both sessions are open to the public.
No person or group of people may act in the name of the Board of Trustees, and the authority of an individual trustee only exists during a legally-recognized meeting.
It takes four members to constitute a quorum, and an item of business comes before trustees in the form of a motion for it to pass -- regardless of the number of board members present at the time.
The board has control over local school matters, subject only to limitations imposed by state law, regulations of the State Commissioner of Education, and the will of local residents as expressed in District elections. There are several key roles and responsibilities vested in the board. Some of those key roles include:
Exercise educational leadership and draft policies for the operation of local schools.
Hire and evaluate the superintendent and delegate all administrative responsibilities.
Authorize the appointment of teachers and other staff members.
Determine educational standards and goals and evaluate the outcomes.
Secure money for school operational needs and building programs and authorize specific expenditures.
Approve the District's budget.
Express and represent the views of the community in matters affecting education.
Interpret the educational programs and needs of the community in order to discharge these responsibilities.
Call on the consultative resources available in the community and the professional staff of the District.
Communicate with the community.
Board members receive no salary for their services to the community.
The Superintendent as Executive Officer
The Superintendent of Schools is appointed by the Board and acts as its executive officer in administering its policies in the operation of schools. He also acts as an advisor in keeping the Board informed of the needs and progress of the schools. The Superintendent is available to the Board as a professional resource, and his recommendations normally precede board action on questions relating to recruitment and supervision of professional staff, selection of textbooks and instructional material, and development of curriculum.
Citizens may sign up to address the Board at the CFISD Instructional Support Center between 5:45 - 6:15 p.m. on the day of the regular meeting. A time limit will be placed on citizens' presentations. Written comments will be accepted in lieu of, or in addition to, an oral presentation.
School boards must hold open meetings in order to comply with the Open Meetings Act. Meetings of the Cypress-Fairbanks ISD Board of Trustees are open for the public to hear discussions. Generally, the public may not participate in the discussions.
There are, by law, provisions for the Board of Trustees to meet in closed session after a meeting is properly called and posted. Closed sessions, which are closed to the public, are limited to the following purposes:
excluding a witness (or witnesses) from a hearing during the examination of another witness;
consulting with the Board's attorney;
discussing the purchase, exchange, lease, of real property and negotiated contracts, prospective gifts, or donations;
considering the appointment, employment, evaluation, reassignment, duties, discipline, or dismissal of a public officer or employee;
considering discipline of a public school child;
considering the deployment or specific occasions for implementation of security personnel or devices;
considering the standards, guidelines, terms or conditions the Board will follow or will instruct its representatives to follow in consultation with representatives of employee groups in connection with consultation agreements provided for by Section 13.901 of the Texas Education Code;
Should any final action, decision, or vote be required regarding matters considered during closed session, the Board will either return to open session immediately following the closed session or designate a subsequent open meeting to take action.
When and how are school board members elected?
School board elections are held annually on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Trustees serve staggered, three-year terms so that the entire board is never up for election at the same time. In order to be elected, the candidate must receive a plurality of the votes cast. All registered voters who reside within the District's boundaries are eligible to vote in any trustee election. There are no run-off elections.
Who is eligible to serve as a school board member?
A local school board candidate must be: 1) a registered voter in the school district; 2) a resident of CFISD for six months before the filing deadline; and 3) a resident of the state for 12 months before the filing deadline.
What type of training do trustees complete?
Trustees are required by law to participate in training activities accredited by the Texas Education Agency. These courses build on the skills an knowledge necessary for the trustees to ensure a quality education for the children in the district he or she serves.
Are citizens allowed to participate in school board meetings?
Yes. There are several provisions in Board Policy whereby citizens may address the Board. Board Policy BED permits citizens to register to address the Board on matters of general interest or concern. Patrons will observe time limits when making their presentations. Board Policy GF relates to public complaints whereby citizens may appeal decisions to the Board that have been made at campus or administrative levels.