SCHOOL / COMMUNITY RELATIONS
Adequate public support is dependent upon the maintenance of positive public opinion. Opinions are established on the basis of available information, or the lack of it. Misinformation grows where information voids exist. It is the policy of the Gardner Public Schools to maintain a program of continuing information from compiling and distributing news of events, noteworthy facts, statistics, to plans and forecasts necessary for the creation of an interested and informed public.
Meeting the needs of the community and gaining the support to meet those needs depends upon two-way communication between the schools and the public. The School Committee encourages the community to make known its desires and the schools to make known their plans and actions.
Responsibilities of the School Committee
The School Committee is the instrument by which the City provides and maintains a system of public education. The responsibility of the School Committee is the transformation of the educational ideals, values, and goals of the community into an active education program. Effective two-way communication between the school committee and the public at large is essential if
- The public is to maintain an interest in school problems
- A degree of confidence is to be maintained in the school program and its administration.
The School Committee shares with the Superintendent of Schools a responsibility for establishing and maintaining effective relations with the community. An important role of the superintendent in this joint enterprise is to:
- Compile and present accurate information about the problems, plans, and conduct of the schools.
- Disseminate appropriate reports through various communications media.
The School Committee looks upon the entire educational enterprise within the community as a "cooperative," involving people of varying backgrounds and of differing views working at the complex task of operating an educational system.
Responsibilities of the Administration
The district administration is responsible for the implementation the school committee’s public information plans and for assuming a leadership role in the School—Community Relations Program.
The administration will be responsible for interpreting policies to the staff and public. They will conduct an active and comprehensive informational process for the promotion of widespread understanding of the educational program.
The administration will take every precaution to avoid exploitation of schools, school personnel, or school children in the interest of commercial, ideological, or other non-school organizations under the guise of creating good relationships.
Responsibilities of School Personnel
A good community relations and information program is only possible through the efforts of all district personnel. All employees are encouraged to use tact and tolerance in their relationships with students, parents, and the general citizenry. All employees should be involved in the total public information effort to include leaders of the social, political, and civic segments of the community in active support of the schools.
[Reviewed: September 2003]