Issue Brief: Local School Board Governance and Flexibility

Wednesday, August 13, 2014
Federal Advocacy Resources

The responsibility for education resides with the states which, in turn, have delegated substantial authority to local educational agencies, which are governed by local school boards. The role of the local school board is to develop policies, set priorities, and provide accountability to direct the operation of its schools. The authority of local educational agencies includes establishing the school district’s mission and goals, organization and structure, budget and budget priorities, education program, curriculum, extracurricular activities, services relating to student health and safety, transportation and school boundaries, procurement procedures, human resources management, construction, facilities management and other functions essential to the day-to-day operations of schools within the jurisdiction of the local school district, consistent with state law and policies. Local educational agencies are also authorized by a majority of states to invest resources, and acquire land and assume bonded indebtedness.

As the school district’s governing body, an overwhelming majority of school board members (96 percent) are directly elected by the local voters to serve and represent their local community in determining how their children are educated.

Go to top