POLICY AND LAW FAQ FOR BOARD MEMBERS

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QUESTIONANSWERRESOURCES
Where can I find State Board of Education staff contact information?The State Board Directory provides a list under the resources link on the right.NC State Board of Education 
Where can I find the charter school laws?Laws for Charter Schools are located on the North Carolina General Assembly (NCGA) web page.Charter School Statute Article 14A
Where can I find State Board Policies?All State Board Policies can be found on the NC State Board of Education webpage.NC State Board of Education Policies
Are Charter School Board of Directors' meetings subject to the Open Meetings Law?Yes. According to the signed Charter Agreement and charter school law, Charter School Board of Directors must follow all provisions of the NC Open Meetings Law. This includes posting the date, time, and location of all board meetings on the school's website seven (7) days prior to the scheduled time of the meeting in accordance with the statute G.S. 143-18.10. Open meetings may be attended and recorded by any member of the public, including all school stakeholders: students, parents, teachers, administration, and the media. Official meetings held by telephone conference call or other audio electronic means are also open meeting and must include a way for the public to listen while the meeting is being held. All meetings must be recorded by the taking of minutes. Board meeting minutes represent the legal actions of the governing board. The Office of Charter Schools encourages the board to post its approved meeting minutes on the school's website. Meeting Minutes should be maintained in an accessible and consistent place as they are public records and fall under the Public Records Law. Meeting minutes must be provided to anyone who requests them in a timely manner. The Office of Charter Schools recommends that an ethics statement or a conflict of interest statement be read at every official board meeting. The purpose of the statement is to remind board members to help each other be ethical under the law. If there are questions that arise regarding conflicts of interest, they should be discussed with the board attorney. The board may only meet in closed session when a motion is made in the open meeting. The reason and rationale for going into closed session must be stated and recorded in the meeting's minutes. There are nine (9) legal reasons in which a board can go into closed session. If the closed session is taking place because the board is discussing confidential information, the motion to go into closed session must reference which law makes the information confidential. If the closed session is taking place because of a lawsuit, the motion to move to closed session must reference the names of the parties in that lawsuit.NC General Assembly G.S. 115C-218.25 Open meetings and public records.
Guide to Open Government and Public Records
9 permitted purposes for closed session
Are Board documents subject to the Public Records Law?Yes. Public record or public records shall mean all documents, papers, letters, maps, books, photographs, films, sound recordings, magnetic or other tapes, electronic data-processing records, artifacts, or other documentary material, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received pursuant to law or ordinance in connection with the transaction of public business by an agency of North Carolina government or its subdivisions shall mean and include every public office, public officer or official (State or local, elected or appointed), institution, board, commission, bureau, council, department, authority, or other unit of government of the State or of any county, unit, special district or other political subdivision of government. The public records and public information compiled by the agencies of NC government or its subdivision are the property of the people. Therefore, it is the policy of this State that the people may obtain copies of their public records and public information free or at minimal cost unless otherwise specifically provided by law. As used herein, minimal cost shall mean the actual cost of reproducing the public record to public information. The charter school and board of directors of the private nonprofit corporation that operates the charter school are subject to the Public Records Act Chapter 132 of the General Statutes, and the Open Meetings Law, Article 33C of Chapter 143 of the General Statutes. Notwithstanding the requirements of Chapter 132 of the General Statutes, inspection of charter school personnel records for those employees directly employed by the board of directors of the charter school shall be subject to the requirements of Article 21A of this Chapter. The charter school and board of directors of the private nonprofit corporation that operates the charter school shall use the same schedule established by the Department of Cultural Resources for retention and disposition of records of local school administrative units.Public Records Law
Article 14A. G.S. 115C-218
Are faculty salaries subject to the Public Records Law?Yes. The opening line of the public records law defines public records as -all documents ... made or received. It is significantly broad. If it is made or received by the charter school (i.e., salary run of x dollars to y person), then it is public. Again, this law is extremely broad and ties to the use of public dollars for the conducting of public record business (i.e., operating a public school). Any record made or received by the charter school is a public record unless specifically shielded by the Public Records Law.Public Records Law
Where can I find State Board Policies?The resource link to the right will take you to the policies page.NC State Board of Education Policy
What is the process for making changes to the original application, including changes to the mission of the school, the location of the school, the location of the school across Local Education Agency (LEA) boundaries, and name of the school?According to the charter agreement, any substantial change must be approved by the State Board of Education. The State Board's Policy Regarding Charter Amendments for Existing Public Charter Schools (TCS-U-014) provides guidance for this question. Some modifications may be approved by the State Board of Education. The formal process to submit an amendment includes the school providing three documents to the Office of Charter Schools, regardless of the scope of the change:
•  A strikethrough/amended version of the applicable section.
•  A clean/adopted version of the applicable section.
The board meeting minutes evidencing the discussion and formal vote to adopt the changes.
NC State Board of Education Policy
How long do schools retain records or documents?Charter schools are encouraged to use the Records Retention and Disposition Schedule as a guide for addressing records and retention.Records Retention And Disposition Schedule
NC General Assembly G.S. 115C-402
Where can the latest information on laws and policies be found?Guidance documents are provided for leaders wanting to know more about the new and existing laws.Guidance Documents
On what grounds may a charter be terminated or non-renewed?According to the law, the following are grounds for termination or non-renewal:
•  Failure to meet the requirements for student performance contained in the charter;
•  Failure to meet generally accepted standards of fiscal management;
•  Violations of law;
•  Material violation of any of the conditions, standards, or procedures set forth in the charter;
•  Two-thirds of the faculty and instructional support personnel at the school request that the charter be terminated or not renewed; or
•  Other good cause identified.
NC General Assembly G.S. 115C-218.95
What are the six legislative purposes of a charter school?•  Improve student learning
•  Increase learning opportunities for all students, with special emphasis on expanded learning experiences for students who are identified as at risk of academic failure or academically gifted
•  Encourage the use of different and innovative teaching methods
•  Create new professional opportunities for teachers, including the opportunities to be responsible for the learning program at the school site
•  Provide parents and students with expanded choices in the types of educational opportunities that are available within the public school system and
•  Be accountable for meeting measurable student achievement results.
NC General Assembly Article 14A G.S. 115C-218

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