What Does a School Board Actually Do
Grau, Cortellino, and Modrak Explain
For immediate release
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Montville, NJ – One of the big questions we hear is, “What does the Board of Education actually do?” If you ask people, you get answers like, hire teachers, administrators, and crossing guards; make building improvements; create, write, and manage curriculum; and create and enforce policies on everything from what is taught to how discipline is handed out. A few of these are correct, but many are not part of the BOE responsibilities.
In short, we oversee the superintendent and school district, and we set policy and goals for the district. The biggest thing we don’t do is to get involved in the day-to-day operations of the schools.
We approve hirings, but don’t pick the candidates. We budget for school repairs, but we don’t go to the construction sites. We approve curriculum, but we don’t write it. We write policies, but we don’t enforce them. Our biggest job is to oversee the superintendent and make sure that he/she is doing his/her job.
There was a period 15-20 years ago when board members thought they ran the district. Their interference drove out superintendents and principals, and our schools and students suffered. Then, the board changed and adopted a professional approach. We started listening to experts. As a result, Montville schools are now more respected than any time in the last 15 years.
That is what happens when you have steady, stable leadership.
Unfortunately, our opponents do not understand this. In their Facebook posts (we haven’t seen a website yet), they boast how they are going to push their own desires onto the district (just like the board described above). They deride the professionalism of this current board and insist that they know what’s best. These actions will drag our education standards down.
The choice voters have this November is clear: Well-run schools that deliver high-quality education for all students, OR poorly-run, mediocre schools that cater to the whims and desires of a very small, but vocal minority.
Grau, Cortellino, and Modrak have proven abilities to deliver the kind of education that this town demands. Let’s keep our schools at the top.