This policy governs the conduct and order of business for all School Reform Commission (SRC) meetings. The SRC reaffirms the right of the public to be present at all regularly scheduled and special meetings of the SRC. The SRC also reaffirms the right of the public to comment on matters of concern, on formal actions of the SRC, or on deliberations regarding matters that are or may be before the SRC. The SRC encourages the public to attend SRC meetings and to participate in public comment opportunities, and believes that public involvement in education issues is critical to the academic success of the School District’s students.
- Briefing Session: A meeting of the SRC that may or may not be open to the public where individual Commissioners are engaged in information gathering and fact finding.
- Chair: Refers to the individual who presides over the work of the entire SRC.
- Commissioner: A member of the SRC appointed pursuant to 24 P.S. § 6-696.
- Emergency Meeting: A meeting of the SRC called to address an actual emergency involving a clear and present danger to life or property.
- Executive Session: A meeting of the SRC that is not open to the public because certain privileged or legally confidential information is being discussed.
- Planning Meeting: A public meeting of the SRC where no formal action is taken, but where individual Commissioners review and deliberate on resolutions submitted by the School District in anticipation of taking a formal action at a later date.
- Public Comment: The opportunity for individuals to address the SRC at regular and special meetings on matters of concern, on formal actions of the SRC, or on deliberations regarding matters that are or may be before the SRC
- Regular Meeting: The routine voting and planning meetings of the SRC that are scheduled annually, pursuant to a resolution that is adopted before the end of each school year.
- Resolution: A formal written expression of a decision, policy, intention, or opinion of the SRC.
- SRC: Refers to the School Reform Commission, the governing body of the School District created pursuant to 24 P.S. § 6-696.
- Special Meeting: A meeting scheduled by the District after the schedule of regular meetings has been adopted.
- Sunshine Act: Refers to 65 Pa.C.S. § 701, et seq., also known as Pennsylvania’s open meetings law.
- Quorum: The minimum number of Commissioners that must be present at a voting meeting in order for the SRC to take formal action on School District business.
- Voting Meeting: A meeting of the SRC where formal action is taken regarding School District business by Commissioners voting on resolutions.
3. Meeting Schedule and Notice:
- The SRC affirms the right of the public to be present at all regularly scheduled and special meetings of the SRC for the purpose of observing SRC deliberations and formal actions. The SRC shall give notice of all meetings pursuant to the Sunshine Act.
- The SRC shall adopt a schedule of regular meetings before the end of each school year. All regular meetings of the SRC shall be held in public. Notice of all regular meetings shall be given pursuant to the Sunshine Act. The regular meeting schedule shall generally consist of eleven planning meetings and eleven voting meetings between August and June. In general, the schedule shall consist of one planning meeting held during the second week of each month and one voting meeting held during the third week of each month. The Chair shall have the discretion to alter the meeting schedule with appropriate notice to the public.
- The Chair may call for special meetings at his/her discretion and as necessary to conduct School District business. The Chair shall call for a special meeting upon receiving written requests for a special meeting from three Commissioners. Special meetings may be called to address either general or specific issues. All special meetings shall be held in public. Notice of special meetings shall be given pursuant to the Sunshine Act.
- The Chair may call for an emergency meeting when there is an actual emergency involving a clear and present danger to life or property. Notice of emergency meetings is not required by the Sunshine Act, though reasonable efforts shall be made to inform the public in a timely fashion when an emergency meeting is called.
- The Chair shall preside over all meetings of the SRC. In the absence, disability or disqualification of the Chair, the remaining Commissioner with the longest continuous service on the SRC shall preside over the meeting.
- The order of business for all regular meetings shall be set out in an agenda that is made available to the public no later than 24 hours and no sooner than 72 hours before a regular meeting is convened. The agenda shall be developed by both the Chair and the Chief Executive Officer, or their designees, with final approval by the Chair. The agenda shall include:
- A call to order by the Chair;
- A roll call by the Parliamentarian;
- Recognitions and award presentations to exemplary students;
- A report to the SRC from the Chief Executive Officer/Superintendent of Schools;
- Review and deliberation by Commissioners of resolutions submitted by the School District;
- Public comment on submitted resolutions;
- At voting meetings, a roll call vote on submitted resolutions;
- Public comment on issues other than submitted resolutions;
- Other items deemed appropriate by the Chair; and
- The Chair, or any Commissioner, may make a motion for a vote on any combination of submitted resolutions at regularly scheduled or special voting meetings.
- The Chair shall determine the agenda for all special meetings. The agenda for a special meeting shall be made available to the public no later than 24 hours and no sooner than 72 hours before the special meeting is convened.
- Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall govern the SRC’s in its deliberations in all cases where it is not inconsistent with law or this policy.
- The SRC reaffirms the right of the public to deliver comments to the SRC on matters of general concern, on formal actions of the SRC, or on deliberations regarding matters that are or may be before the SRC.
- The public shall submit comments to the SRC in writing and deliver them to the SRC office located at 440 North Broad Street, Suite 101, Philadelphia, PA 19130.
- The public shall submit comments to the SRC by registering to address the SRC at a regularly scheduled or special meeting. The procedures for addressing the SRC are as follows:
- Individuals must register with the School District Office of Parent, Community & Family Engagement by calling 215-400-4180 no later than 4:30 PM on the business day immediately preceding the meeting at which they wish to address the SRC;
- Individuals must register in their own name and cannot register on behalf of someone else;
- Individuals representing an organization must identify that organization at the time they register, and no more than one representative of an organization can register to speak at a single meeting;
- Individuals must give their name, address, daytime telephone number, and the subject on which they intend to address the SRC;
- Individuals must bring seven written copies of their comments with them to the meeting
- Individuals may speak for no more than three minutes;
- No more than six individuals on the same side of an issue will be permitted to speak, though an unlimited number of individuals may leave written comments for the SRC to review;
- Individuals will be ruled out of order if they attempt to comment or complain about the conduct or performance of a particular School District employee and will be directed to address their comments to the appropriate School District administrator;
- Individuals will be ruled out of order if they attempt to make any remarks of a personal nature regarding any other individual, whether or not that person is present; and
- Individuals will be ruled out of order and asked to leave the meeting if they use any vulgar or profane language.
- The Chair, at his/her discretion, may suspend or alter any of the procedures related to addressing the SRC.
- In order to promote transparency and understanding of how the SRC governs the School District, and to educate the public regarding School District business, the SRC encourages members of the public to attend public meetings of the SRC.
- To ensure that all individuals attending public meetings of the SRC have the opportunity to observe the meeting and hear those individuals who have registered to address the SRC, all members of the public attending all meeting shall be expected to:
- turn off or silence all cell phone, pagers, and other electronic devices;
- limit the displaying of signs, posters, or placards inside the room where the meeting is being held to appropriate locations;
- know that it is unlawful to disrupt public meetings and that individuals who do so may be prosecuted; and
- understand that the Chair may instruct that an individual be removed if he/she determines that they are disrupting the meeting.
A quorum of the SRC shall be a majority of the Commissioners appointed and currently holding office. No formal action shall be taken without a quorum of the SRC present.
5. Order of Business
5. Order of Business
6. Public Comment
7. Audience Protocols
8. Executive Session
In order to promote transparency and understanding of how the SRC governs the School District, and to educate the public regarding School District business, the SRC encourages members of the public to attend public meetings of the SRC.
9. Briefing Sessions
The SRC may meet in Briefing Sessions with or without staff that are not open to the public as permitted by the Sunshine Act. Permissible purposes for Briefing Sessions include, but are not limited to, fact finding and information gathering sessions with staff, outside experts, or other professionals on issues pertaining to School District business. The SRC shall not deliberate or take formal action at any Briefing Session. However, the SRC may discuss, study, or investigate issues related to School District business.
10. Implementation of this Policy
The SRC directs the Chief Executive Officer to adopt any procedures necessary for full implementation of this policy.