The role, responsibilities and powers of School Commissioners are spelled out in the Education Act of the Government of Quebec.
These generally fall into two categories: what a School Commissioner does as an individual, and what he/she** does as a member of the Council of Commissioners of the English Montreal School Board.
As an elected representative of his Ward, a School Commissioner:
® Represents the views of his electors: the parents, tax payers and retired citizens living in his ward.
® Regularly attends school events and meetings of the Governing Boards of the schools in his ward, in order to be aware of the activities and concerns of his schools. He is available to assist Governing Boards in school improvements and critical issues facing the school.
® Responds to inquiries from individual electors.
® Develops a means of regular communication and feedback with his electors to keep them aware of important issues affecting the students in his ward.
® Attends the meetings of the Council of Commissioners and participates in a number of committees of the School Board.
® Familiarizes himself with the School Boardís policies and procedures.
As a member of the Council of Commissioners, a School Commissioner should:
® Represent fully, and speak for, his schools and concerns of his electors and students.
® Be informed of the important dossiers, such as funding for building maintenance affecting the schools in his ward.
® Attend and participate in all school board meetings.
The Council of Commissioners of the English Montreal School Board consists of 10 School Commissioners and the Chair, plus four parent commissioners. The Commissioners meet once a month and occasionally hold special meetings. All meetings are open to the public.
The Council of Commissioners:
® Hires the Director General.
® Approves the appointment of School Principals and Vice-Principals of Elementary and High schools, as well as, the Directors and Assistant Directors of Adult and Vocational Centres.
® Approves the appointment of the Directors of the various administrative departments.
® Approves the annual budget of the School Board and the operating budget of all the Elementary and High schools and all the Adult and Vocational Centres.
® Approves the amount of staff assigned to itsí network of schools, including administrators, teachers, technicians, clerks, secretaries, caretakers, non-teaching professionals, cafeteria staff and child care workers.
® Decides the possible closings of any schools.
® Approves and votes on all other issues as mandated in the Education Act.
**Note: the word his represents his/her throughout this article
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