What is School Community Council?
A school community council is a committee made up of parents and school professionals who help determine the needs of our school and the best methods and programs to support those needs through the School Land Trust Program. Members of the school community council will meet together approximately 5-6 times during the school year to discuss the schools needs, the School Land Trust plan, and it’s implementation.
What is the School Land Trust Program?
Starting in 1785, the Founding Fathers created a plan whereby territories were granted land before statehood to support schools. In 1894, shortly before Utah became a state, Congress created a land trust including one-ninth of the land of the state to support our public schools. Today, schools still have 3.3 million acres scattered around the state. If these scattered parcels were combined, it would make a parcel of land about the size of the state of Connecticut. These lands are held by the state as trustee for our public schools, which are the beneficiaries (or those that benefit from the proceeds from the trust). The lands are managed by the School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration (SITLA). All net revenue is saved in the permanent State School Fund, which is now over $1 billion. Since 1995, when SITLA was created by the legislature, net revenue has increased from $15 million to about $80 million annually through prudent and profitable management of the lands.
What does this all really mean for our school?
School improvement is the responsibility of everyone, from students and parents to professionals and public officials. Every parent/guardian has the opportunity to be involved in School Community Council meetings. An elected School Community Council board works together (parents, administrators, and teachers) to review testing data and to establish academic goals for our students. The School Community Council then helps to create a plan using Land Trust funds to support the academic goals. The School Community Council determines what programs, supplies, and implementations will give the best support to students and teachers in achieving each steps of the goal.
How you can get involved?
A School Community Council board is elected from nominated parents and teachers each year. To get involved let your school principal know of your interest in serving on the School Community Council board or complete a nomination information form during the nomination period. Parents who are elected serve for a two-year term and can serve for multiple subsequent terms. Once the nomination period is closed an election will take place at your school. All parents who are nominated will appear on the ballot. During the voting period parents with students in the school may come in and cast a secret ballot. Those nominees receiving the top number of votes will fill the vacant positions on the School Community Council board. In the event that there are not enough nominees for open positions parents will work with the principal to appoint parents to fill those remaining spots.