AAPS Board Mulls Committee Structure

At its annual retreat on Oct. 14, 2011, the Ann Arbor Public Schools board of trustees discussed the pros and cons of eliminating the board’s two three-member committees in favor of one “committee of the whole.” The new committee, comprising all seven board members, would hold a monthly meeting in addition to the two regular board meetings.

The board currently maintains two standing committees – a planning committee and a performance committee – through which most new agenda items are vetted and recommendations are crafted for board approval. Agendas for regular board meetings are then set by an executive committee made up of the standing committee chairs and the board president.

By meeting as a “committee of the whole,” all seven trustees would receive new information and review proposals as a group. They would discuss together which items to include on the regular meeting agenda, with the ultimate decision resting with the president and the superintendent.

No decision on the new committee structure was made on Friday, but the board agreed to place the question of committee restructuring on the agenda of its next regular meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 26.

Also at the Oct. 14 retreat, the board reaffirmed its commitment to the district’s strategic plan. Board members also discussed several other items: moving to a paperless system for board documents; providing livestreaming or online video-on-demand coverage of their regular meetings; and creating a common calendar for administrative reports to the board.