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Serving as a Governing Board Member

May 6, 2016

Submitted by Nancy Jakeman, District 2 Board Member

What is the role of Governing Board Member

I see my role as being advocate for the communities I serve, by engaging them through transparent communication.

I feel a part of my role is to ensure accountability to the public and the Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development. As well as having a duty to maintain fiscal responsibility.

What Value do Governing Board Members provide?

As board members we make difficult yet significant and strategic decisions.

What a board member does:

  • Attends weekly meetings, serves on committees
  • Stays informed and up to date on policies, procedures, legislation, etc.
  • Responds to questions, concerns, or issues from parents, public and the media
  • Develops an annual business plan and budget
  • Establishes and updates policies and procedures
  • Offers recommendations on capital lists regarding repairs, and infrastructure needed

What a board member does not do:

  • Deals with daily operations
  • Micro-manages
  • Hires of staff and personnel
  • Decides on what community will receive a new school

What I’ve learned…

I've learned that we don’t always agree with each other’s views or opinions but we have respect and professionalism for one another in order to move forward and make decisions.

I feel the work we’ve accomplished so far has been meaningful, but there’s still so much to do, specifically with our African Nova Scotian and Mi'kmaq/Indigenous children.

It has taught me about the type of leader I want to be, someone who is open to learning and change, and encourages the growth and development of others.

I've also learned that external politics can have a profound effect on school boards.