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Policy 4: Trustee Code of Conduct

The Board commits itself and each individual Trustee to conduct which meets the highest ethical standards. It is expected that all personal interactions and relationships will be characterized by mutual respect, which acknowledges the diversity, dignity and affirms the worth of each person. In carrying out the role of the Trustee, the Board expects members to adhere to the following Code of Conduct:

Trustees shall:

  1. Carry out their responsibilities as detailed in Policy 3 - Role of the Trustee.
  2. Devote the time, thought and study to the duties of the Board in order to be effective and provide credible service.
  3. Observe rules of order, the policies of the Division, and the laws, rules, and regulations governing Education in Alberta.
  4. Endeavor to work with fellow Board members in a spirit of harmony and cooperation in spite of differences of opinion.
  5. Consider information received from all sources and base personal decisions upon all available facts in every case; unswayed by biases, partisan or any other kind, and thereafter abide by and uphold the final majority decision of the Board.
  6. Represent the Board responsibly in all Board-related matters with proper decorum and respect for others.
  7. Reflect the Board’s policies and resolutions when communicating with the public.
  8. Respect issues of a sensitive or confidential nature and maintain confidentiality of privileged information.
  9. Represent the best interests of the entire Division, while elected from specific wards.
  10. Prioritize fiduciary responsibility and ensure it supersedes any conflicting loyalty such as that to advocacy or interest groups, interdependent relationships, independent memberships on other Boards or staffs, or acting as an individual consumer of the Division’s services.
  11. Interpret the needs of the community to the Division, and the School Division’s actions to those we serve.
  12. Not attempt to exercise individual authority over the School Division and not speak for the Board except to convey Board decisions. Relationships with school staff, community, media and other elected officials will be conducted on the basis of this fact and will ensure proper protocols are exercised.
  13. Resist every temptation and outside pressure to use the Trustee position to benefit either oneself or any other individual or agency apart from the total interest of the Division.
  14. Recognize that the primary function of the Board is to establish policies and that the administration of the education program must be left to the Superintendent and Division staff.
  15. Provide effective Trustee service in the spirit of teamwork and devotion to public education.
  16. Declare any conflict of interest between personal life and the position on the Board and abstain from voting when appropriate. Additionally, Trustees will sign the disclosure of information to be filed with the Board Secretary-Treasurer on an annual basis (as per Section 86 (1) of the Education Act).
  17. Disclose the nature of any pecuniary interest, and remove themselves from the meeting room until the discussion or voting on the matter in question is concluded (as per Section 88 of the Education Act).
  18. Not use their influence to obtain employment within the Division for family members or friends. Should a Trustee  wish to apply for employment within the Division, they must first resign from the Board.
  19. Attend and take part in all meetings of the Board and committee meetings as assigned on a regular and punctual basis. Repeated absences, partial attendance or late attendance without notification to the Chair by Trustees may be cause for disciplinary action, as determined by the Board.
  20. Understand that unauthorized absence from three consecutive regular meetings of the Board, within the meaning of the Education Act, shall disqualify that person from remaining as a Trustee.
  21. Ensure the use of personal electronic devices is for the purposes of the meeting to the greatest extent possible while at Board meetings. 
  22. The use of personal devices during the meeting is discouraged, unless required for the purposes of the meeting. Using personal devices or division-issued devices to share in-camera information is prohibited.
  23. Be held responsible and accountable for the ethical and legal use of Division resources including but not limited to Division issued technology and Division purchase cards.
  24. Not advance allegations of misconduct and / or a breach of the Code of Conduct that are vexatious against another Trustee.
  25. Review and sign acknowledgement of understanding of the Code of Conduct annually; upon election and at the annual organizational meeting.
  26. Understand that consequences for the failure of individual Trustees to adhere to the Trustee Code of Conduct are specified in Policy 4, Appendix A - Trustee Code of Conduct Sanctions.