Board of Education Candidate Petitions

The following documents must be filled in and returned to Sue Starr no later than Monday, April 22. However, every year, candidates vying for a seat on the Ravena-Coyemans-Selkirk Central School District Board of Education are profiled in the district’s budget newsletter. Profiles include a brief candidate biography as well as a photograph. Please fill out the following information for your profile and return it to the District Office, attention: Stephanie Hunter, or email your responses to the following questions to Stephanie.hunter@rcscsd.org as soon as possible. Forms must be turned in no later than Tuesday, April 16 for your candidate profile to be included in the budget newsletter.

In addition, all candidates must send a photo via email to Stephanie Hunter at Stephanie.hunter@rcscsd.org, or schedule an appointment to have their photo taken no later than April 17. To schedule an appointment, please email Stephanie.hunter@rcscsd.org or call 756-5200 ext. 6017.

Petitions for the Board of Education
Running for the School Board
Board of Education Candidate Profile
Declaration of Campaign Expenditures Form 1
Declaration of Campaign Expenditures Form 2

If you have any issues accessing any document on this page, please contact Sue Starr at 518-756-5200 ext. 6000.

Information from the New York State School Boards Association

Running for the School Board

What all prospective school board members should know:

Commitment to Public Education

A school board member takes on one of the most important citizen responsibilities: overseeing the education of the community’s youth. In these
challenging times for public education, school boards are seeking men and women who find excitement and satisfaction in confronting tough challenges and working collegially to rise above them and help students in their communities succeed.

The board of education is a uniquely American institution. It oversees and manages the community’s public school system. It ensures the public schools are flexible and responsive to the needs of the community.

School boards are comprised of volunteers within the community who dedicate their time to better public education. Except for those in Yonkers and New York City, board members are elected.

The size of a school board depends on the type of school district but generally ranges between three and nine members. With limited exceptions, school board
members serve three-, four- or five-year terms. Terms are staggered so all board positions are never open at the same time. Voters have the power to change the size of the board as set forth within the law.

Running for the School Board

Responsibilities of a board member

With schoolchildren always their ultimate focus, school board members act officially at the board table, working with other board members to serve students and accomplish the following:

  • Create a shared vision for the future of education
  • Set the direction of the school district to achieve the highest student performance
  • Provide rigorous accountability for student achievement results
  • Develop a budget and present it to the community, aligning district resources to improve achievement
  • Support a healthy school district culture for work and learning
  • Create strategic partnerships with the community stakeholders
  • Build the district’s progress through continuous improvement
  • Adopt and maintain current policies
  • Hire and evaluate the superintendent
  • Ratify collective bargaining agreements
  • Maintain strong ethical standards

Characteristics of a board member

Below are attributes that all effective board members should possess.

  • Effective Communicator: Can describe what he or she wants and describe what others want; a good listener
  • Consensus Builder: Capable of working toward decisions that all can support and willing to compromise to achieve goals
  • Community Participant: Enjoys meeting a variety of people, can identify the community’s key communicators and reaches out to the community
  • Decision Maker: Is comfortable making decisions and can support group decision-making
  • Information Processor: Can organize priorities and schedules to handle large amounts of verbal and written information
  • Leader: Willing to take risks, be supportive of board colleagues, district staff and community
  • Team Player: Helps promote the board’s vision and goals

Running for Your Local School Board

Once you have made the commitment to run for your local school board,
there are requirements, deadlines, and processes that must be adhered to.

Eligibility Requirements
Generally, school board candidates must be a U.S. citizen, at least 18 years old, qualified voters in the school district and able to read and write. They must
be residents of their districts continuously for one year (as little as 30 days or as long as three years in some city school districts) before the election. They cannot be employed by the board on which they will serve or live in the same household with a family member who is also a member of the same school board.

Nominating Petitions
The requirements for filing nominating petitions for a school board vary depending upon the type of school district. Generally, candidates must submit a nominating petition to the school district clerk. The petition must be signed by at least 25 qualified district voters or two percent of the number of those who voted in the previous annual election, whichever number is greater.

In small city school districts, nominating petitions must be signed by at least 100 qualified voters.

The petition must include the following:

  • Candidate’s name and residence
  • Vacancy in question
  • Incumbent’s name (if any)
  • Residences of the persons who signed the petition
  • Length of the term of office for which the candidate is being nominated

Blank petitions are often available from the district clerk.

If a school district runs for seats “at large” such that each nominee is eligible for each vacancy, the nominating petition does not need to identify the
specific incumbent’s seat the nominee is seeking. This petition must be filed with the district clerk at least 30 days (20 days in small city districts) before the election meeting, between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. In 2019 nominating petitions in small city school districts must be filed by May 1st, in other districts nominating petitions must be filed by April 22nd.

Campaigning
Once the petition is filed, the next step is to gather support. State law requires all candidates for election to a board of education to file a sworn statement with
the district clerk disclosing their campaign expenses. Statements must be filed at three different times during the election period. If expenditures made by the
candidate or by others on the candidate’s behalf exceed $500, a statement also should be filed with the commissioner of education. Expenditures of not
more than $25 may be made without the candidate’s permission if the donor or donors file a sworn statement with the clerk and the commissioner stating that the candidate did not approve the expenditure.

Details concerning these requirements may be obtained from your district clerk or from the Performance Improvement and Management Services (PIMS) and Chief Financial Office (CFO), New York State Education Department, Albany, NY 12234.

New York State School Boards Association
If you are elected, you don’t need to face this new challenge alone. The New York State School Boards Association is here to help you! The New York State School Boards Association (NYSSBA) was founded in 1896 in Utica, New York.
With over 100 years of commitment, NYSSBA serves as the statewide voice of more than 650 boards of education.

The Association provides current information and advice on matters affecting school boards and works with other educational and related organizations in promoting excellence in public education. Consistent with our dedication to children, learning and the community, the Association provides advocacy, information, leadership development and custom services to public school boards.

Training
Once elected, you will be required by New York State law to fulfill mandatory training within your first year of service. This includes fiscal oversight training and governance skills training. NYSSBA provides convenient online courses and regional academies to fulfill these requirements and to further your knowledge of public education and your responsibilities as a board member. NYSSBA is ready to assist you in your effort to serve your community. Good luck in your pursuit of school board service and thank you for your dedication to
providing quality education for New York State public school children.

By state law, school board and budget elections, in all districts except the Big 5
(Buffalo, New York City, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers), must be held on the third Tuesday in May. In 2019, the budget vote and election occurs on May 21st.
For more information on school board service training and support contact The New York State School Boards Association at (518) 783-0200 or via email at info@nyssba.org.