Research shows a strong relationship between effective school board practice and improved student achievement. High-performing school boards lead by example and regularly examine their own performance.
With the support of national researchers, KSBA has developed a set of effectiveness standards and a self-evaluation instrument that provides an organized framework for this review. The process is voluntary and aims to help board members identify areas of strength, address challenges and make plans for continual improvement. By reflecting on their work, board members come to better understand their roles and responsibilities ensuring they are effectively performing the job they were elected to do.
This process also can help the community better understand the role of the school board and increase public confidence in the board’s ability to govern.
The self-evaluation process has no right or wrong answers or punitive measures. It is simply an objective tool a board can use to build the best possible leadership for the school district and the community it serves.
The Self-Evaluation Instrument
The self-evaluation instrument divides the work of a school board into 10 areas called Standards, which are broad categories of knowledge and skills that describe the core actions of effective school boards.
Each standard lists several Indicators that describe behaviors and activities of high performing boards. The indicators provide clarity and describe examples of behaviors and actions of effective boards. They demonstrate what effective board work looks like for that standard.
The Performance Ratings describe the level of the board’s behaviors or outcomes of each standard and indicator. The ratings should reflect behaviors/performance and not judgment statements or feelings. They help boards identify areas of strength and accomplishments as well as areas that need improvement.
- Exemplary – exceeds the performance expected in the standard or indicator.
- Accomplished – meets the performance expected in the standard or indicator.
- Developing – demonstrates growth toward meeting the standard or indicator, shows continual improvement.
- Growth Required – performance does not meet the standard and should be addressed through professional development. Any standard or indicator with this rating should contain a written explanation to help the board improve.
Self-evaluation and discussion of the standards provide opportunities for the board to set a baseline and monitor their performance over time.
- Contact KSBA to schedule the initial meeting to discuss the board’s objectives, timeline instrument and process. This meeting can be held in the district or via videoconferencing.
- After the initial meeting, each member of the board will receive the self-evaluation instrument.
- Each board member will individually and anonymously complete the instrument based on his/her perception of the board’s performance as a whole by doing the following:
Each board member individually returns his/her form to KSBA in a self-addressed, stamped envelope.A member of the KSBA board development team compiles the results and develops a summary report that will be used to facilitate the final meeting.The board comes together in a two-hour work session with KSBA for facilitated conversations and guided discussions on the similarities and differences in the responses.The board works together to develop a plan for next steps and strategies to improve board effectiveness and governance.
- Review standard I as a reminder of how effective boards use vision-directed planning.
- Read each Indicator in standard I and decide if the board performs each one and how effectively it does so. You will do this by recalling evidence (examples) of how the board typically performs that activity or behavior.
- Check the performance rating box at the end of each Indicator (exemplary, accomplished, developing, growth required) to indicate your perception.
- Review all the ratings for the idicators in standard I and determine your overall rating for that standard.
- Check the shaded performance rating box to indicate your perception of the board’s overall performance for that standard.
- Repeat the process for each standard.