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Policy Governance

In 2003, the board adopted the Carver Policy Governance model to govern the school.

What is the Policy Governance® model?

Policy Governance is a framework of principles designed by Dr. John Carver that:

  1. provides exceptional clarity to the role and functions of the board vs. the administration and staff;
  2. organizes and aids development of board policies in a useful, clear, and consistent way;
  3. facilitates the board’s complete accountability for their organization, while simultaneously enabling maximum freedom for the staff to do its job.

This framework can be used effectively in its entirety by any type of board -- profit or non-profit, with paid staff or without, and with committees or without. It does not tell boards what its policies should be, or what results the organization should produce, but rather how to govern an organization effectively on behalf of an ownership.

What are the Policy Governance principles?

The principles at the core of the Policy Governance system are:

  • Governance is a function of ownership, not management;
  • Boards are the highest authority under owners;
  • Boards are the initial authority within the organization;
  • Board authority is group authority;
  • Boards are accountable to owners for everything within the organization;
  • Boards need to empower those to whom they delegate authority while remaining fully accountable for the use of their authority.
Basic Principles of Policy Governance
First page of the Basic_Principles_of_Policy_Governance PDF file
End Statements
First page of the End_Statements PDF file

One of the basic principles of Policy Governance is the creation of End Statements. The board defines which human needs are to be met, for whom, and at what cost. Written with a long-term perspective, these mission-related policies embody the board's vision, and the organizations's reason for being.