SJF School Advisory Board Purpose and Structure:
The SAB has been established to act as a liaison between the school’s senior leadership team (our principal and pastor), our current school families, and the broader parish and local communities. We work to advance common goals:
• To lead community efforts to live out the missions of our parish and school
• To ensure SJF is following best practices for nurturing, educating, and empowering our students
• To coordinate and provide opportunities for parents and guardians, parishioners, and alumni to offer their professional experience and expertise in service of parish and school goals
• To help maintain robust student enrollment and active parish support for the long-term vitality of SJF
• To provide consistent public relations among our parish and neighborhood communities
• To develop intentional and effective fundraising efforts to supplement the school’s operating budget
• To thoughtfully support SJF leadership, faculty, and staff, so they are set up for success in their day-to-day responsibilities of providing for the academic success of our school children as well as their social and emotional well-being; and
• To encourage the school’s continuous improvement and strategic planning.
The SAB is, by definition, solely an ADVISORY organization set up to provide counsel to the administrative leadership of the parish and school, as directed or requested by the principal and pastor. As stipulated by the Archdiocese’s Office of Catholic Schools and own by-laws, we are specifically charged to focus our efforts, discussions, and actions on the following areas:
• Strategic planning
• New initiative formulation
• Financial planning and management
• Communications and marketing
• Mission effectiveness and enhancement
• Institutional advancement and development
Conversely, the SAB has no authority and is prohibited from independently deciding or acting on the following:
• Specific personnel issues, including the evaluation, termination, and/or renewal of school teachers or staff
• Specific curriculum or academic program selection
• Specific student-related matters, including admission, placement, or discipline issues
The SAB typically consists of nine members (this year, we have temporarily grown to eleven as we work to “re-set” our efforts without sacrificing the valuable experience of our longer tenured members). Each is selected by the pastor with input from the principal and an ad hoc Board member search committee, plus the principal and pastor in ex-officio roles. Members agree that we will use our talents, gifts, and insights for the common good of the community to promote the mission and goals of Catholic education. We defer our personal agendas in order to discern with other members the issues, concerns, and challenges we face in meeting the educational needs of our students.
Each of the Board members commits her or himself to a three-year term, which may be renewed for one additional three-year term at the discretion and request of the pastor. These terms are staggered in three cohorts, so the SAB’s stability and counsel is self-sustaining and benefits from a constant balance of experience and new ideas and energy.
In addition to providing general counsel to the principal and pastor, each board member also serves on at least one of the SAB’s standing committees. There are currently five standing committees, all aligned all aligned with the charges of the SAB as noted above and set out in our by-laws:
• Executive Committee
• Strategic Planning Committee
• Fiscal Management Committee
• Communications and Marketing Committee
• Mission Effectiveness Committee
Non-board members may also serve on these committees and will be recruited from time to time by the SAB representatives on each as needed. Should any non-board community members be interested in assisting the SAB’s efforts through involvement in one or more of these committees, please e-mail us at SJFSAB@gmail.com.