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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Who sets policy? Pasco School Board wants to know



In rewriting its district policy manual, the Pasco School Board this afternoon stumbled over a sentence that members could not accept as correct.

The line, in the rules governing board-superintendent relations, states: "Policy shall not be originated or changed without the recommendation of the superintendent."

Advisers from Neola told the board that case law from Miami-Dade affirms that set-up -- the superintendent recommends and the board approves. The board, they said, cannot initiate policy on its own.

"I totally disagree with that," board member Kathryn Starkey responded.

Vice chairman Allen Altman agreed, saying that he learned in recent training that it's the board's statutory role to develop and implement policy. (He referred to Florida statute on general school board powers.) The proposed district rule runs counter to everything he's been told, Altman said, with board member Joanne Hurley and chairman Frank Parker chiming in their concurrence with his viewpoint.

What's the point of having a board if it has no authority to create and implement policy without the superintendent's explicit recommendation, they asked.

Unable to resolve the issue at the table, the board asked its lawyer to research the matter for a future meeting. Anyone out there know who's right?

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 10:29am]


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