All Board of Education meetings must be open to the public. A “meeting” is defined as an official convening of a public body for the purposes of conducting public business, and “public body” is an entity which requires a quorum to conduct business, including committees, subcommittees, or similar divisions of a public body.
Whenever such a meeting is to take place, there must be advance notice of the meeting, and recording of the minutes.
If a question is raised, the chair will rule upon it without debate.
A quorum is equal to half the membership of the full Board plus one.
The chairperson shall be the president, the vice-president in the president’s absence, or any member elected by the majority present in the absence of the president and vice-president.
Official minutes will be kept for all meetings by the Clerk of the Board. They are a legal record of the activities of the Board as a public body. These minutes will be action minutes unless a Board member requests his/her statement recorded verbatim. Copies of official minutes will be sent to members of the Board prior to the next regular meeting. Copies of the minutes will be available to the public within two weeks after the date of the meeting; draft copies so marked are acceptable.
In order to pass, a resolution needs the affirmative vote of the majority of the Board regardless of the number of Board members present, unless specifically changed by law. The following are some motions requiring a vote of the Board other than by majority:
1. replace textbooks that were adopted less than five years earlier, 3/4 vote (at least six votes);
2. the hiring of a relative (by blood or marriage) of a Board member as a teacher or in a non-certified position, 2/3 vote (at least five votes) ; and
3. standardization of an item or piece of equipment for purchase contracts over $10,000, 3/5 vote (at least five votes).
All committees of the district must abide by the provisions of the Open Meetings Law regarding open meetings. This includes committees of the Board of Education, School Facilities Committees, and the like.
Such committees must meet publicly, go into executive session only on a motion and only for one of the permitted topics, give advance notice of meetings and make public minutes, and otherwise comply with all requirements of the law.
The Board, as a group of citizens from the community, needs to run its meetings in a way that does not seriously disrupt the normal working habits of its members. Therefore, it shall be the policy of the Board to conduct its meetings so that the meetings do not run beyond 11:00 p.m.
Open Meetings Law, Public Officers Law §§100 et seq.
General Municipal Law §103(5)