For those governing teams out to provide "their best for the kids," no/low cost practices abound:
- Model excellence.
- Mentor new members.
- Emphasize policy leadership.
- Ensure your stewardship of district resources helps improve ALL leaders, from classroom to boardroom.
- Invite others to annual work sessions and other strategic leadership gatherings. Invitees might include leaders in the education community, accountability committee members, former board presidents, community leaders and members of other school boards. Appreciative inquiries might include: "What values are driving your excellence?" "How have you sustained your excellence?" "What have you learned about doing your best?" “What are our greatest challenges?”
- Plan monthly crucial-learning sessions (e.g., presentations, videos, articles, blogs, links, books…) aimed at improving the board's work. Among many recommendations: CASB's Leadership WORKbook and CASB’s online learning center.
- Conduct effectiveness debriefs quarterly or at the conclusion of regular/strategic meetings.
- Build a unique, strategic framework for your board’s work that emphasizes a motivating vision, a powerful purpose, wildly important goals, operating norms and core values.
- Schedule work-session conversations 60 minutes before the commencement of regular or strategic board meetings.
- Invite your CASB staff to participate by phone or in person. Schedule 15-minute phone-in sessions at regular or strategic board meetings throughout the year. Consider including external assets who align to the board’s desires concerning skill sets, principles, content and emerging challenges.
- Host a gathering of area governing teams or presidents to share experiences in critical areas such as advocacy, effectiveness, new-member basics, presidents’ wisdom, candidates, etc.
- Request a CASB staff audit of your board policy manual.
- Own the governing role, system perspective, future focus and your “local CASB” perspective.
- Conduct periodic self-assessments. If the team already uses a focusing framework for effective governing, you already have a built-in self-assessment tool. If you have not created such a framework, CASB offers both paper and online tools.
- Connect with CASB staff regularly for support, ideas and practical advice.
A great clarity: With so many no/low cost actions available, effectiveness is simply a choice to make it happen.
For a conversation, contact Randy Black, 800-530-8430, 303-832-1000.