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Bylaws_0140 Membership

0141 Number

  The School Board shall consist of seven (7) members.


0142 Election/Appointment


0142.1 Electoral Process

 Members of the Board shall be elected annually at the spring election on the first Tuesday in April in a manner that is consistent with State law.


  120.06 (1), 10.68 (5)(2b), Wis. Stats.


  Declaration of Candidacy

 School Board candidates must file a declaration of candidacy and nomination papers no later than 5:00 P.M. on the first Tuesday in January (or on the next day if Tuesday is a holiday). Candidates must be registered voters of the City of Wauwatosa. If there are more than twice as many candidates as there are members to be elected, a primary election will be held.


  Declaration of Non-Candidacy

  If an incumbent files a Declaration of Non-Candidacy no later than 5:00 P.M. on the 2nd Friday preceding the Tuesday deadline, there is no extension of the Tuesday deadline.


  When the first Tuesday in January is a holiday the deadline becomes 5:00 P.M. the next day.


  120.06 (6)(b), Wis. Stats.


0142.2 Qualifications

  A school elector in the School District is eligible to be a Board member.


  120.06(2), Wis. Stats.


0142.3 Term


  The term of each Board member shall be three (3) years commencing on the 4th Monday in April and shall continue until a successor is elected and qualified or until a vacancy occurs.


  120.06(4,) Wis. Stats.


0142.4 Oath

  Each newly-elected Board member shall file the oath of office with the Clerk and shall take an oral oath of office administered by the Clerk.


  120.06 (10), Wis. Stats.


0142.5 Vacancies

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


  A. the death of the incumbent, or the incumbent being found mentally incompetent by the proper court


  B. the incumbent's resignation


  C. the incumbent's removal from office


  D. the incumbent's conviction of a felony or imprisonment for one or more years


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


  F. the incumbent's neglect or failure to file the oath of office or to give or renew an official bond, if required


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


  H. the incumbent moving his/her residence out of the District


  A vacancy shall be filled by the remaining members of the Board in accordance with 17.26.


  17.03 et seq., Wis. Stats.


  Filling a Board Vacancy


 In the event of a resignation or death resulting in a mid-term vacancy, State law provides that the remaining School Board members appoint a successor. When a vacancy occurs in the last year of a Board member's term or after the spring election but on or before the last Tuesday in November, the successor and other candidates must stand for election at the next spring election. If the vacancy occurs after the last Tuesday in November and on or before the date of the spring election in the office of a Board member with more than one (1) year of the three (3) year term remaining, the successor and other candidates must stand for election at the second following spring election. If a majority of the Board is still seated, the vacancy shall be filled by the Board using the following procedure:


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


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


  C. The Board may interview all interested candidates to ascertain their   



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


0142.6 Recall

  Any member of the Board may be recalled pursuant to Chapter 9.10, Wis. Stats.


0142.7 Orientation

  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. a copy of the Board policy manual


  B. a copy of each current negotiated agreement


  C. the current budget statement and related fiscal materials


Each new Board member will participate in an orientation with the Board President, the Superintendent, and the Directors to discuss Board functions, policies, and procedures.


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


0143 Authority

  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.


0143.1 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:


  A. to local media;


  B. 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.


  1.    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:


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


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


  3. routine "thank you" letters of the Board


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


  5. personal statements not intended for publication


  B. Copies of this bylaw shall be sent annually to local media by the Board



0144 Operations


0144.1 Compensation

 Expenses of a Board member shall be reimbursed when incurred in the performance of his/her duties and when authorized by the Board and duly vouchered.

  120.10(3), Wis. Stats.

  120-43(3), Wis. Stats.


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


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

     Participation in the event/activity and anticipated expenses must be approved  

                             prior to attending using the Approval for Meeting Attendance form.


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


  C. Attendance at Board-approved conferences should be at the location closest to                

                             the District.


  D. When attending a Board-approved conference, all fees, parking, mileage,

     meals, and housing will be reimbursed.


  E. No entertainment expenses or purchases of alcoholic beverages are



  F. A voucher detailing the amount and nature of each expense must be submitted

                             to the Board for approval within ten (10) days after the expenses have been



0144.2 Board Member Ethics


  LAWS AND REGULATIONS – To honor and comply with all National, State and local laws and regulations.


  A. Understand and follow open meeting laws as set forth in Chapter 19.81 to  

                             19.98, Wisconsin Statutes;


  B. Adhere to meeting agendas – open and closed sessions;


  C. Compliance with Code of Ethics for local government officials as set forth in Chapter 19.41 to 19.59, Wisconsin Statutes.


MUTUAL RESPECT – To encourage the open-minded exchange of ideas and opinions in a conscientious, courteous manner between fellow Board members, District personnel and community members.


  A. Value all opinions;


  B. Provide adequate time for expression of all opinions;


  C. Respect the right of others to disagree;


  D. Follow parliamentary procedure.


  TRUST – To build relationships through open, direct communication as part of the educational team and as leaders responsible to the community.


  A. Be factual in sharing information;


  B. Be consistent in communicating with all groups;


  C. Be specific in sharing community feedback;


  D. Honor Board confidentiality.


  Source: Board of Directors, National School Boards Association.


  CHARACTER – To model integrity in the performance of Board duties and responsibilities.


  A. Maintain positive role model behaviors;


  B. Support prevailing action of the Board regardless of individual vote;


  C. Vote on all issues unless a conflict exists;


  D. Address and promote genuine issues rather than personal agendas;


  E. Declare conflict of interest;


  F. Refrain from using School Board position for personal advantage;


  G. Understand the difference between the discussion of issues and conducting business outside of posted meetings.


  RESPONSIBILITY – To be accountable for guiding and supporting the policy decision-making process that impacts students, staff and the community.


  A. Avoid micromanaging School District operations;


  B. Arrive on time and prepared for meetings;


  C. Be responsible for personal decision-making;


  D. Question for clarification and ask for additional information if needed;


  E. Ensure that all Board members have the benefit of each others opinions through public discussion of issues prior to voting;


  F. Make decisions based on factual information;


  G. Adhere to professional Board decorum;


  H. Understand and work within the District’s    organizational structure.


  IMPROVEMENT – To strive for continuous improvement through training, annual evaluation of the Board’s performance and personal growth.


  A. Provide adequate opportunities for new Board member orientation;


  B. Participate in Board development activities;


  1. Work towards fulfillment of School Board objectives.


0144.3 Conflict of Interest

  Board members shall perform their official duties in a manner free from conflict of interest pursuant to 19.59, Wis. Stats. To this end:


  A. no Board member shall use his/her position as a Board member to obtain financial gain for himself/herself, immediate family, or any organization with which s/he is associated;


 B. no Board member shall engage in or have a financial interest, directly or indirectly, in any activity that conflicts or raises a reasonable question of conflict with his/her duties and responsibilities in the school system and as a public officer;


  C. 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.


0144.4 Indemnification

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


0145 Sexual and Other Forms of Harassment

The School Board believes that sexual or other forms of offensive speech and conduct are wholly inappropriate to the harmonious relationships necessary to the operation of the District and intolerable in an environment in which students and staff members of this District function.


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, or when such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment. Other forms of harassment include verbal or non-verbal expression related to race, gender, age, religion, disability, pregnancy, or sexual orientation.


Substantial interference with a person/employee's work performance or creation of an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment is established when the conduct is such that a reasonable person under the same circumstances as the person/employee would consider the conduct sufficiently severe or pervasive so as to interfere substantially with the person's work performance or create an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment. 113.36(1) Wis. Stats.


  The harassment of a District staff member or student by a member of the Board is strictly forbidden. Any member who is found to have harassed a member of the staff or a student, will be subject to discipline by the Board and may be reported to law enforcement authorities.


118.13, 120.13(1) 111.32(13) Wis. Stats.

 P.I. 9, Wis. Adm. Code

 Title IX Education Amendments of 1972, Chapter 227

Approved/Adopted:  July 13, 2009

Revised: November 22, 2010

Revised:  February 8, 2016

Nathan Marinan,
Feb 9, 2016, 12:15 PM