Each GVA school operates under like Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, and Conflict of Interest policy and as such are nonprofit, public schools eligible for tax exemption and eligible to receive tax exempt donations. GVA-Aurora, GVA-Northglenn, and GVCC are also 501(c)(3) tax exempt organizations classified as a public charity under the Code section 170 (b) (1) (A) (11). The new schools in Ft. Collins and Colorado Springs will also be applying for this additional IRS status, even though they are already acknowledged by IRS policy and Colorado statute as public, nonprofit, tax exempt organizations.
Each academy and the Global Village Charter Collaborative, which is the sole corporate member of each academy's organization, are public organizations and must operate in compliance with the Colorado Open Meetings Law (C.R.S. 24-6-401) and Public Records Act (C.R.S. 24-72-201) as well as the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (20 U.S.C. Sect. 1232).
The GVA governance model delegates authority and responsibility for day-to-day operations to the Principal, who is employed and supervised by the CEO of the central GVCC. The Board will, in conjunction with the Principal and GVCC, set clear operating and educational goals, including those mandated by state and federal law (e.g., No Child Left Behind) by which the performance of the Principal and the school will be measured. The Board is autonomous and no personnel from local school districts or charter authorizers or the GVA staff will be on the Board. The Board is committed to effectively pursuing the mission of the school to insure academic success by our students. The Board, however, will be inclusive and will seek input from and membership on the Board of parents, educators, and community members.
Board members are selected based upon their passion for the school’s mission, their background and skills, and their willingness to do the work necessary to provide effective governance.
Board Structure, Roles, Composition
GVA Boards generally consist of five members, including three officers: President, Secretary, and Treasurer, and two at-large members. The local board president and two additional board directors also serve on the central GVCC Board.
The following outlines the roles of the GVA Board of Directors:
- Determine GVA's vision and mission and insure that the school effectively fulfills its mission and achieves its vision. All programs, activities, and expenditures are evaluated based upon the vision and mission.
- Determine the responsibilities of the Principal in conjunction with the CEO of GVCC and undertake a search when the position is vacant to recruit the most qualified individual for the position. The single point of organizational delegation by the Board is to the Principal, who is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the school. (An appeal process to review certain categories of decisions by thePrincipal and/or his/her designees to the Board of Directors is available to staff and parents. Decisions by the Board of Directors of appeals are final.
- Provide proper and prudent financial oversight of GVA. The board is responsible for ensuring that proper financial controls are in place, developing the annual budget with the Principal and GVCC Board, and monitoring the financial operation of the school. The Board has the primary fiduciary responsibility for GVA. The Board is also responsible for approving all contracts and personnel decisions regarding hiring, dismissal, and compensation.
- Make sure that adequate resources, financial and otherwise, exist to ensure that GVA fulfills its mission. These resources involve staffing (including highly qualified teachers) facility and furnishings, curriculum materials and instructional resources, technology, and professional development for staff. Fund development undertaken by the Board includes grant writing, cultivating corporate partnerships, solicitation of donations, and fundraising events.
- Ensure legal and ethical integrity and maintain accountability to the stakeholders of GVA: students, parents, staff, GVCC, Parent Teacher Organization, School Accountability Committee, Public School District, Colorado Department of Education (CDE), US Department of Education (e.g., No Child Left Behind), Federal and State Grant Programs, Foundations and Corporate Partners, the Colorado League of Charter Schools, and the community at large. The board is ultimately responsible for ensuring adherence to legal standards, ethical norms, GVA Bylaws, Charter Contract with each authorizer, GVA and District policies and procedures, Colorado Revised Statues regarding K-12 education (both public schools and charter schools) and non-profit organizations, Colorado Open Meetings and Open Records Law, Conflict of Interest Policy, curriculum alignment with Colorado Model Content Standards, CDE Financial Policies and Procedures Handbook, etc.
- Board oversight includes the budgeting process, financial reporting, reporting of gifts and donations, attendance, alignment of curriculum with state standards, refining the educational program, establishment of achievement goals and academic performance, maintaining student data and records, reconciling costs of services purchased from authorizer, maintaining certificates of occupancy and complying with ADA requirements, maintaining adequate insurance coverage, and review of progress.
- Ensure effective organizational and strategic planning processes, including implementing plans and monitoring progress toward goals, including deadlines. One key set of goals is specified by CDE for school accreditation. These 16 accreditation indicators invclude academic performance goals in 14 areas as well as goals related to attendance and discipline. These must be addressed annually in a Unified Improvement Plan (e.g., progress in achieving educational goals and objectives, content standards, policy development, student performance standards, student attendance and discipline, personnel matters, etc.), and other key accreditation indicators (e.g., compliance with Safe Schools Act, Colorado Basic Literacy Act, contextual learning, budgeting, accounting, and reporting requirements, etc.), which is to be submitted by September 1st of each year.
- The School Accountability Committee (SAC) plays a major role in conducting analysis of performance against goals, and making specific recommendations to the Board of Directors for the School Improvement Plan.
- The Board is responsible for finalizing and adopting the plan.
- The Board is also responsible for developing and implementing a 3-to-5 year strategic plan, GVA Board Handbook which deals, in part, with securing resources referred to section 4 above, as well as strengthening the school overall in order to enable GVA to fulfill its mission.
- Recruit competent and committed Board members to ensure that the Board of Directors has the necessary skill and capacity to assure the academic and operationalsuccess of GVA.
- Orient new Board members and conduct ongoing training and development to enhance Board performance based upon a periodic needs assessment.
- Finally, the Board conducts an annual evaluation of its own performance. (Note: Poor performance in or failure of a charter school is typically due to the Board of Directors and not the Administration.)
- Enhance GVA’s visibility and reputation in the community. This involves clearly articulating GVA’s mission, goals, and accomplishments to the public and garnering support from the community.
- Continuously monitor and strengthen the effectiveness of GVA’s educational program, activities, and related services.
- Support the Principal and assess his/her performance in coordination with the CEO of GVCC. The Board of Directors is committed to providing the Principal/CAO the moral and professional support necessary to achieve GVA’s educational and operational goals.
Parents, students, or staff have access to the Board of Directors to bring a grievance in relationship to an action by the administration or the Board.
- The request to meet with the Board must follow a reasonable attempt to resolve the issue with the administration.
- The request to be added to the Board agenda is to be made in writing. The President of the Board will determine in advance if the grievance can be addressed in open or closed session. If the Board meets in Executive session, any action it takes relative to the grievance must be taken in open session. The Board, to the extent possible, will protect confidentiality. Decisions related to the grievance by the Board are final.