Series 801.7AR - Community Listening Sessions
Adopted: August 2021
1. Purpose, Structure and Schedule. Community listening sessions are opportunities for members of the School Board to connect with members of the community to gather input on concerns and/or suggestions.
1.1 Community listening sessions are hosted at district schools on a rotating basis. Sessions are held on a monthly basis during the school year and are scheduled outside of the school day to increase opportunity for members of the public to attend. Each community listening session shall be up to one hour in duration.
1.2 The superintendent will determine the time, date and location of each community listening session and publicize the sessions to the school district community. Community listening sessions are open to the public, subject to capacity limits.
1.3 Up to three board members will attend each community listening session. A quorum of the School Board, or a recognized committee of the School Board may not attend a community listening session unless the session is posted as required by the Open Meeting Law. Each board member will have an opportunity to attend one or more community listening sessions each school year.
1.4 The superintendent may attend community listening sessions and may invite selected administrators or other staff members to attend.
2. Community Listening Session Speakers.
2.1 Up to 10 school district stakeholders may sign up in advance to speak for up to five minutes at the next scheduled community listening session. To sign up to speak, speakers must complete 801.7P, Request to Speak at Community Listening Session, and submit the completed form to the Executive Assistant to the Superintendent and School Board no later than five working days in advance of the next community listening session. Only speaker requests for the next scheduled community listening session are considered; requests for subsequent sessions are not accepted.
2.2 If more than 10 speakers submit a timely request, the Executive Assistant to the Superintendent and School Board, or designee, will conduct a lottery after the submission deadline to determine the 10 speakers. Individuals who submit a timely request are notified of the results of the lottery.
2.3 If speaking spots remain at the time the community listening session is scheduled to begin, stakeholders may sign up for the remaining spots on a first come, first served basis at the beginning of the community listening session and must complete 801.7P, Request to Speak at Community Listening Session. The community listening session will adjourn if no district stakeholder has signed up to speak within 15 minutes after the scheduled start time of the community listening session.
2.4 School district stakeholders eligible to speak at a community listening session are limited to district residents, district property or business owners, district employees, current students and their parents/guardians, district contractors, bidders on district contracts that are open for bidding or awarded but not completed, and authorized representatives of the above-identified stakeholders.
2.5 Each speaker will be called by name for their turn to speak. Speakers will have up to five minutes to speak and any remaining time may be used by board members or administrators to ask clarifying questions.
2.6 The listening session is concluded after the last speaker. Speaker questions are typically deferred, pending appropriate administrative and board member consideration.
3. Expectations and Limitations.
3.1 Board members present at a community listening session can impose reasonable limitations and restrictions, as necessary, to provide an orderly, efficient and fair opportunity for speakers to be heard.
3.2 Speakers may not use community listening sessions to air complaints about specific employees or other individuals. Such complaints should be addressed privately.
3.3 Speakers are expected to conduct themselves in a respectful manner, adhere to the time limit, follow the directions of the board members and requirements of district regulations or risk being disqualified from speaking at future community listening sessions.
3.4 Comments offered at community listening sessions do not necessarily represent the views of the administration or School Board.