Why Should You Become a Board Member
Do you have a passion for wanting to help the children and families in your community? You may be surprised how easy it is to make a positive impact on their lives, and in turn enrich your own. We’re always looking for talented and committed volunteer board members to help lead and strengthen our charter school academies. If you can contribute your thoughtfulness and expertise for approximately five hours each month and are interested in this opportunity, we encourage you to seriously consider applying to become a member of one of our charter school academy Boards.
Our Board members come from all walks of life, and include many different members of the community – local business owners, educators, parents, retirees – in fact just about any background or career you can think of is represented on one our Boards. This is because charter school boards and their respective authorizers value diversity, knowing that bringing together a group of volunteers with various backgrounds helps to bring balance to both the decisions and the policies of a Board and, in turn, helps to make great charter schools.
Every child deserves to attend a great school. A school leader, authorizer and management company’s goals can only be achieved when they have great planning, policies and well-thought out financial budgets in place. The success that is found on a daily basis in our charter school academies is a direct reflection of the commitment and the passion of our Boards in advocating for the children of their community.
The privilege of becoming a charter school Board member is open to all who are interested, and who are able to commit a small amount of time each month to fulfill their appointed Board duties. The steps involved to join a charter school Board are designed for busy people just like you and, unlike local school Board elections there is no expensive, long-term campaigning that you are required to participate in. Your appointment is only based on whether or not you meet the authorizer’s requirements for service, and if there is an open position available on the desired academy Board.
If you decide you would like to join a Board, you will need to fill out an application with the school’s authorizer. Once this is reviewed, it will be sent back to the appropriate Board, and you may be called to meet with them for a short interview and discussion. If it is determined that both you and the Board are a good “fit,” a nomination request will be sent to the authorizer and, if the authorizer approves it based on its own criteria for appointment, a letter will be returned to the Board recommending you for service. You will only be sworn in if there is an open position available on the Board, otherwise your nomination may be held until there is a vacancy available.
Members of a charter school Board can expect to volunteer approximately five to seven hours a month in service. Duties include: preparing for and participating in monthly Board meetings, serving on Board committees as requested (most often you will be able to choose one that coincides with your personal interests or expertise), and attending strategic planning sessions, which may be held a few times a year at the discretion of the Board.
As you consider your application, please keep in mind that even though a Board consists of various members with different backgrounds and abilities, all must make an effort to work together and be unified in the commitment to the charter application and its mission, vision and goals. By becoming a sworn charter school Board member you pledge to put aside personal views and agendas, and choose instead to work as a team to honestly and wholeheartedly support the signed charter application as it was written and approved by your authorizer.
At Choice Schools, we believe that our strong boards lead to better schools for all of our students. If you are interested in applying for this important avenue of community service, please contact us here and tell us more about yourself, why you want to become a board member, and what Academy/area you are interested in serving. We will be in touch with you to help you get started in the process.
We look forward to working with you as you join with us in supporting the children and families that attend our schools across the state of Michigan!
Those who choose to serve on our Choice Schools Associates’ Boards do so because of their strong commitment to the children and families of their community. Below are a just few of our own Board members’ personal experiences. We encourage you to contact us about joining them in Board service, as we continue to work together in building strong schools for the students enrolled at our academies.
“My wife thought that it would be a good idea for me to join the board of West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science. I really can’t believe that I ever disagreed with her. Working together with the other members of the board is more rewarding than I ever anticipated. Our students are worth it. Our kids deserve a world class education, which is what we are striving to give them.”
– Pete Vandersluis, West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science School Board President