Board of Directors » Board Elections

Board Elections

Elections Timeline
   i. January/February – establish Election Committee; Committee determines how many seats will be vacated and researches procedures to ensure continuity and adherence to policy.

    ii. March – Committee publicly advertises open seats to the Bridges community via email blast and school website.
  iii. March and ongoing as needed – Committee actively recruits potential candidates based on the number of vacancies and the needs of the Board for balance and cohesiveness.

  iv. by May 1st -- candidates will electronically submit to the Office Manager and Election Committee Chairperson:
    a.     A completed questionnaire;
    b.     Agreement to abide by the Code of Fair Campaign Practices;
    c.     A written statement of no more than 200 words, to be printed on ballots
    d.     Candidates also prepare a speech of no more than 5 minutes in length to introduce themselves to the community at Open                House and explain why they want to serve on the Board of Directors.

  v. May 16 – voting begins at Open House and will continue until May 24.

  vi. Last week of May – Candidates will be personally notified by the Board of the results before an announcement is sent out via email or phone to the entire Bridges community about the results of the election.

  vii. June 1-7 -- New Board Members welcomed and introduced to the school community
  viii. June 17 -- Final Board Meeting of the school year—new Board Members requested to attend
  ix. July 1 -- New Board Members take office.
            New Board members shall immediately:
            Fill out Form 700 conflict of interest form online, and
            Obtain a Board meeting calendar and RSVP to the Board Retreat held in August
Board of Director's Qualifications
    i.    Professional skills – The Board of Directors encourages parents and community members to apply who have skills and experience in the areas of education, governance, law, business, finance, facilities, public relations, and other areas that would benefit the community.

    ii.    Whole Child standards – Both parent and community members should have a positive viewpoint and strong knowledge about Whole Child Education.

    iii.    Balance and diversity – We strive to include both men and women, parents representing a wide range of grade levels, and people from a diverse background of ethnicities and religious viewpoints whenever possible.

    iv.    Personal skills – Above all, Board members have to work together on issues that can be sensitive, complex, and emotionally charged. It is of the utmost importance that we recruit directors who will be diligent in their research, courageous and participatory in discussions, and respectful at all times in our verbal and non-verbal communications. We must be direct with each other, protect the confidences of all issues and parties discussed in closed session, and strive to always set a good example of integrity, responsibility, and kindness.

    v.    Good fit – When recruiting, we will look for all of the above qualities, while recognizing that we may not find them all in a single person. If you have a deep love for our school and the Whole Child philosophy, we want to talk to you!

Job Description
    i.    Time Commitment – The Board meets at least once per month for an average of 3 hours on a Monday evening. It is important to attend each meeting, check your school email account daily, and stay on top of all communications and committee responsibilities. The Board sometimes has a second monthly meeting if there are time-sensitive issues that need to be addressed. In addition, each Board member will be on a committee that arranges its own meetings. Please be prepared to donate 5-10 hours of your time each month at a minimum.

    ii.    Stay Informed – Board members need to be well-versed in the Brown Act, for which we receive training each year. This allows us to be sure we are never depriving the community we serve of the transparency to which they are entitled. Board members should take an active interest in our larger community, current events in education, and be willing to research topics that come up for discussion so that we may have rich and productive discussions leading to the wisest, most well-informed decisions possible.

    iii.    Good Stewardship – Board members should not discuss sensitive issues with parents or teachers. When a Board member is on campus as a parent, he or she should speak and be spoken to only as a parent. This is to avoid troublesome issues such as favoritism, intimidation, gossip, and inefficiency. If a parent or teacher wants to talk to you about a concern about school, you should always refer him or her to the Director, with very few exceptions. Board members are strongly encouraged to attend school events and be involved in the Bridges community, not only to keep them well-informed of school culture but also to facilitate an environment of trust and confidence by the population we serve. It is our experience that the Bridges community is heartened to see governance taken on by individuals who demonstrate earnest dedication to our school.

Nomination and Elections Procedures
    i.    Plan to meet with two members of the Board Election Committee for an informal conversation so that we can meet you and be sure any questions you may have are addressed before the end of April.

    ii. Request an application from Kathee Hans and return it to both Kathee Hans at [email protected] and Marcy Crawford at [email protected] and Kathee Hans by May 1.

    iii. Write a 200 word (or less) statement to be printed on the ballots and return it and your agreement to abide by fair campaign practices to Kathee Hans and Marcy Crawford via email by May 1. May 1-May 16 is the official campaign period leading up to elections. If we only have enough candidates to fill our vacancies, campaigning may be a moot point. If there are more candidates than seats, or any candidate simply wants to campaign to let the community know more about him or her, please remember to keep a positive tone and to not make tangible promises of results. Remember there are seven Board members and we make decisions by consensus.

    iv.  At Open House on May 16, candidates will speak to the community at school for no more than 5 minutes. This is your opportunity to let the parents and teachers get to know you, and for you to share with them what you hope to bring to the Board in service to the school.

   v. Each family may cast one ballot for the Board of Directors. The ballot will be identified by the Office Manager so that no duplicates will be submitted. If you cannot attend Open House or you need a replacement ballot, you may obtain one in the office through May 24. At the close of the school day on May 25, voting will be closed.  Ballots are kept in a locked box in the school office.

    vi. During the following week, a representative from the Ventura County Office of Education will oversee the counting of votes. The results will be reported to the Board President by May 31, at which point the President will notify the rest of the Board members and the Director.

    vii. The Board President will personally notify each candidate of the results before the larger community is notified. Once the Board and Director have been informed, it is the Director’s prerogative whether she will, in turn, notify her staff of the results.  The President will email the school community on Monday of the last week of school with the results of the election.

    viii.  New Board members will be installed effective July 1 so that they can begin training before the following school year.