Somehow the first couple of months of 2021 have breezed on by, and we’ve already hit March. It seems like a good time for a School Advisory Council (SAC) tune-up and a chance for you to fine-tune any parts of your SAC meetings that can be even stronger as we head into the final several months of this school year!
Tips to Remember:
Remember SAC goals. The three main goals of a SAC are to support academic achievement, improve school climate, and strengthen family engagement. We encourage you to center SAC conversations around these three goals using school data to inform areas of need at your school.
SACs should meet at least 4 times during the school year. SACs should try to meet at least every other month in order to meet a minimum of 4 times throughout the year. Be sure to promote your SAC meeting to the entire school community, so that all family members have an opportunity to join in.
Be mindful to include all voices. A SAC consists of family members, the school principal, school staff, community members, and students (in schools with grades 7-12). A SAC is an opportunity for all members to contribute to the conversation about school issues, needs, and strategies to improve issues that affect that school. This is a great chance for multiple perspectives and voices to take part in the conversation about school improvement, so be mindful to include all voices and give everyone a chance to share.
Meeting notes, while not required, can put everyone on the same page. Meeting notes can be sent out to everyone in the group so that those who were present can review and refresh what was talked about and those who were absent can catch up on the information that they missed.
Your SAC can collaborate with other family groups at your school. We encourage members of other family groups to be involved in your SAC and vice versa. Different family groups can also work together for any common areas of interest at the school. Working together can lead to even greater collaboration and resources!
Take advantage of SAC resources. On the SAC website (www.philasd.org/sac) are numerous resources for you to explore specific topics including reviewing school budgets, discussing health and nutrition, recruiting new members, running a SAC meeting, etc. You can find these SAC training materials here.
Let’s use these final months of school to have meaningful SAC meetings in which strategic conversations can happen for the betterment of our schools. If you have any additional questions or thoughts about your school’s SAC, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.