ERIC Number: ED193760
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980
Reference Count: 0
School-Community Communication: School Board Members and Their Constituents. Research Report 1980-1.
National School Boards Association, Washington, DC.
Based on results of a survey conducted at the 1979 National School Boards Association Convention, this report focuses on the channels, frequency, and topics of communication between board members and their constituents. A total of 759 board members completed the survey instrument. The data presented show that, on the whole, moderate levels of communication are the norm in districts throughout the nation. Direct contacts between board members and district residents do not absorb a large proportion of the time board members devote to the schools. Moreover, in most districts the media, particularly television, do not routinely report on a full range of school system activities or school board decisions. The board meetings themselves are not ordinarily attended by large numbers of citizens. Specific incidents change customary patterns of school board-community interactions. School boards tend to be more open to public participation when conflict and competition for board seats are high. Further, research suggests that when citizens' desires for involvement in school governance grow, they want more decentralization of decision-making, and they prefer board members to adopt the position of delegate--transmitting the public will into votes. (Author/MLF)
Descriptors: Board of Education Role, Boards of Education, Citizen Participation, Communications, Elementary Secondary Education, Mass Media, Meetings, National Surveys, School Community Relationship
National School Boards Association, 1055 Thomas Jefferson St., N.W., Washington, DC 20007 ($7.50; quantity discounts)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National School Boards Association, Washington, DC.