ISBA’s Call For Legislative Priorities
Our members play a critical role in helping determine ISBA’s legislative platform. Each summer, we issue a Call for Legislative Priorities to every school board member as an opportunity to provide input on public education issues for the next legislative session.
What: Review the expiring 2019 Resolutions and current 2020 Resolutions for 2021 legislative priorities. Please identify any priority issues that will be expiring. You will be able to propose/edit amendments and propose/edit resolutions.
When: Please reserve time during your board meetings to discuss the Call for Legislative Priorities. The resolutions are due to ISBA on July 31.
Why: The information gathered from school districts and charter schools helps guide ISBA’s legislative advocacy efforts. It is especially helpful when speaking to legislative influencers when we can show them the data on what issues are particularly important to school districts and charter schools in their area.
How: Review the expiring 2019 and current 2020 Resolutions and make note of any issues that are of interest to your district or charter school. If you don’t see a resolution that would be useful to the membership, then submit a proposed resolution to ISBA.
The Legislative Priorities Process
Step 1: Review the expiring 2019 Resolutions and the current 2020 Resolutions:
- View the ISBA Resolutions HERE.
- Discuss the platform at your June or July board meeting. Please identify your priority issues and make note of any resolutions your board wants to submit.
Step 2: Draft Your Proposed Resolution. Make sure to include these elements in your resolution:
- District / Charter name, ISBA Region number, mailing address, subject, and presenter;
- At least one reasoning statement that starts with “Whereas”;
- A complete statement of purpose; and
- Conclude with a summarizing statement beginning with “Now, therefore be it resolved…”
- If applicable, include a fiscal note associated with your resolution.
Sample Resolution: You can find a sample of a resolution HERE
Step 3: Submit Your Board’s Proposed Resolution By July 31, 2020 to:
- Quinn Perry by email at [email protected].
(Please provide the resolution in a Word document, if possible.)
Step 4: ISBA Reviews the Resolutions with the ISBA Legislative Committee
- The ISBA Resolutions Committee and staff review all resolutions in the month of August.
- The Committee or staff may contact the sponsors for clarification.
- The Committee will also present their recommendations to the ISBA Executive Board during its September Board Meeting. The Sponsor will need to attend the September Executive Board meeting (in-person or virtually) to present their resolution to the Executive Board. The Executive Board will then review the Resolution and vote on each Resolution with a “do pass”, “do not pass”, or “no recommendation”.
Step 5: Distribution of ISBA Resolutions
- All Resolutions are sent to ISBA membership via email and are posted on the ISBA website.
- Your Board should review each of the Resolutions, discussing the pros and cons or them, and choose to take a position at your September or October board meeting.
Step 6: Business Session
- You and your Board will gather at the Friday Business Session where member districts can debate and vote on each Resolution.
- The Resolutions that are passed by the membership will become part of the ISBA Legislative Platform.
2021 Resolution Timeline
July 31: Resolutions due from school districts, charter schools, and ISBA Regions.
August 1 – 24: ISBA staff compiles and clarifies submitted resolutions.
August 26 – September 5: Board packets containing proposed resolutions are sent to Executive Board members for review.
September 12: Resolution sponsors present their proposals to ISBA Executive Board members. The ISBA Executive Board makes recommendations on each resolution.
September – October: Resolutions are discussed and debated at fall region meetings.
October 12: This is the deadline to transmit resolution packets to school board members.
November 13: School board members vote on resolutions at the ISBA Annual Business Session.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who develops the resolutions?
Typically, resolutions are directly submitted by the school district or charter school’s board of trustees. Boards are encouraged to reach out to neighboring school boards to seek them as co-sponsors of resolutions.
What are the Resolutions and Government Affairs Committees, and what do they do?
This year, ISBA’s Executive Board appointed a Resolutions Committee to assist in reviewing the ISBA Resolutions, and encourage more dialogue around each resolution. Each member of this committee will also research the impact of each resolution, suggest amendments if needed, and report their information to the ISBA Executive Board as they make recommendations on each resolution.
The Government Affairs Committee creates the top legislative priorities for that year and directs staff how to advocate for or against legislation at the state house. It is made up of a balance between small and large districts from each region as well as charter schools.
When and how are resolutions voted on?
Resolutions are voted on at the ISBA Annual Convention Business Session. Each District is apportioned a number of votes based on their student enrollment and outlined in the ISBA Bylaws. Charter schools vote as one region and nominate their delegates during their region meeting at Convention. At least one Board Member from your district must be present at the ISBA Business Session for your district’s votes to be counted.
Resolutions pass on a simple majority vote by the electors.
What is the timeline for resolutions to be submitted?
ISBA will send out the “Call for Legislative Priorities by Resolution” in late May. School boards should set aside time during their summer board meetings to review and discuss the priorities they would like to submit. The deadline to submit legislative priorities is Friday, July 31, 2020 by 5:00 p.m. MT.
This year, we’re asking the sponsoring district or school to present their resolution to the ISBA Executive Board before the Executive Board makes their recommendation. This can take place in-person or by digital platform and will take place on Saturday, September 12, 2020.
How does my district or school submit a resolution?
Please submit them to Quinn Perry, Policy & Government Affairs Director, in a digital Word copy. You can email it to Quinn at [email protected].
I missed the deadline to submit priorities; can I still submit my board’s resolutions and priorities?
Unfortunately, we have to have a hard cut-off of July 31st for outside resolutions. You can, however, contact your region chair to ask them to consider submitting your resolution on behalf of the ISBA Executive Board.