4000 Public Information Program

  • The district will strive to maintain effective two‑way communication channels with the public. Such channels will enable the board and staff to interpret the schools' needs to the community and provide a means for citizens to express their needs and expectations to the board and staff.

    The superintendent will establish and maintain a communication process within the school system and between it and the community. Such a public information program will provide for news releases at appropriate times, news media coverage of district programs and events, and regular direct communication between individual schools and the patrons they serve. The public information program will also assist staff in improving their skill and understanding in communicating with the public.

    Community opinion may be solicited through parent organizations, parent-teacher conferences, open houses and other such events or activities which may bring staff and citizens together. At times, board meetings may be scheduled at neighborhood schools. Survey instruments and/or questionnaires may be developed in order to gain a broad perspective of community opinion.

    The board is a nonpartisan public body and as such will not endorse political candidates. Neither staff nor students will be asked to disseminate candidate's campaign materials from the schools nor will any of the district's facilities or communications services be used to disseminate such material.

    The superintendent will identify staff who have significant public information responsibilities and establish guidelines for their work. The guidelines will address such matters as authority for making releases and the nature and content of bulletins to parents.

    Staff Communications with the Public

    Staff share the responsibility for communicating and interpreting the district mission, its policies, programs, goals and objectives to members of the community. Staff will perform their services and functions to the best of their ability and communicate with members of the community, parents, students and other staff in a sincere, courteous and considerate manner. Staff will strive to develop and maintain cooperative school-community relations and to achieve the understanding and mutual respect that are essential to the success of the district.

    Confidential information about students or other staff will be released only as permitted by statute and district policies and procedures. 

    Collection of Disciplinary Data

    The district will collect data on student disciplinary actions taken in each school, and the information will be available to the public on request.  This information may not be personally identifiable, and shall not include a student’s name, address or social security number.

    District Annual Report

    An annual report addressing the activities of the school district and the administration's recommendations for improvement of student learning and district operations will be prepared by the superintendent and presented to the board as soon as possible after the close of each school year. Upon board approval, the report will be made available to the public and used as one means for informing parents and citizens, the state education agency, and other districts in the area of the programs and conditions of the district's schools.

    The district is required to ensure awareness of and compliance with certain statutory requirements as specified in policy 2106. When the district is not in compliance, such deviations will be incorporated into the annual report.

    Cross References:
    Board Policy 2106         Program Compliance
    Board Policy 4020         Confidential Communications

    Legal References: 
    RCW 28A.150.230          Basic Education Act– District school directors’ responsibilities 

    ADOPTED: 03/27/1997
    REVISED: 08/28/97; 11/24/98; 12/14/00; 02/23/12

    Procedure No. 4000P Public Information Program

    Principals are encouraged to initiate media coverage of their school programs and activities. The Superintendent shall authorize the release of information when the topic being covered involves more than one building. The following guidelines relate to the public information program: 

    1. Media representatives shall be supplied factual information with the request that they not publish or broadcast any facts which are injurious to staff or students or which would serve no constructive purpose.
    2. Media representatives should be kept fully informed on all aspects of the program so that any reporting shall be done on the basis of a complete and accurate overview.
    3. A student should be informed that they have the right to deny an interview or photograph. A release form signed by a parent shall be secured before allowing an individual to photograph and conduct an interview that would "single out" any special education student or identify a student whose parents have signed a form to withhold directory information.
    4. During regular school hours, all media representatives must report to the building office for identification and authorization before going to any part of the building or contacting any individual.
    5. A staff member should secure authorization from the principal before contacting the media on behalf of the school. This shall not preclude a staff member from contacting the media as a private individual.

    Annual District Report

    The Annual District Report shall include but not be limited to: 

    • Criteria used for staff evaluations;
    • A summary of the student performance towards Washington State Essential Learning Requirements;
    • Results of district-wide achievement testing;
    • Budget information, including student enrollment, classroom staff, support staff, administrative staff, and special levy expenditures. 

    ADOPTED: 11/24/1998