The superintendent of schools is a constitutional officer in Virginia and, as such, is responsible to the State Board of Education. The superintendent is the executive officer and the administrator for the school board and is responsible to that board for the administration of its policies and, in addition, is the professional educational leader of the entire school staff and the community. Citing these relationships emphasized the importance of the work of the superintendent.
The position of superintendent of schools is similar to that of a chief executive of a corporation, and leadership ability will be reflected in the quality of performance and in the morale of employees, students and patrons.
Specifically, the superintendent of schools is the chief executive office of the Buena Vista City School Board. The superintendent’s responsibility is that of administration; whereas, the responsibility of the school board is that of policy making, appraisal and/or adjudication.
By its nature, the position of superintendent of schools is an exacting position. In addition to the minimum requirements specifically set forth by the state board of education, the superintendent shall be of good character and unquestionable morals and integrity; shall possess good judgment and common sense along with the ability to think clearly and independently, relying on facts instead of prejudices; shall demonstrate high business and educational ability and leadership; and shall be able and willing to accept responsibility. The superintendent shall have a strong personality and capacity for maintaining the respect of educational leaders in neighboring counties and in the State of Virginia.
Qualifications of the Superintendent
No one shall be eligible for appointment as superintendent in Buena Vista City unless the applicant meets the minimum qualifications set by the State Board of Education and is appointed from an eligibility list prepared by the State Board of Education and such additional qualifications as may be desired by the Buena Vista City School Board.
Duties of the Superintendent
The powers and duties of the superintendent in the City of Buena Vista are fixed by the State Board of Education and the General Assembly with additional specific duties prescribed by the Buena Vista City School Board and includes the following:
1. The superintendent shall be executive office of the Buena Vista City School Board and shall be responsible for seeing that all policies of the board is carried out in the schools of the city;
2. It shall be the duty of the superintendent to observe such directives and Regulations as the Superintendent of Public Instruction or the State Board of Education may prescribe;
3. The superintendent shall keep in the office a record for the purpose of keeping an accurate report of all receipts and disbursements of school funds and all statistical information which may be required by the State Board of Education;
4. It shall be the duty of the superintendent to inspect the accounts of the clerk of the board periodically and see that such accounts are neatly and correctly kept and that all schools funds are properly recorded;
5. The superintendent shall distribute promptly, as directed, all reports, forms, laws, and regulations which may be received from the Superintendent of Public Instruction;
6. The superintendent shall explain the school system and give information about it on all suitable occasions and shall take care that all school laws and regulations are strictly enforced and that the decisions of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, and of the State Board of Education, upon controversies relating to the regulations of the State Board of Education, are complied with by the persons concerned; in case such decisions are not complied with, the superintendent shall inform the Superintendent of Public Instruction thereof and shall state the circumstances therewith;
7. The superintendent shall periodically visit and inspect each school in Buena Vista in order that firsthand knowledge of the condition of the school may be gained; the superintendent shall inquire into all matters relating to the management of the schools, the courses of study, methods of instruction, and use of textbooks and shall give particular attention to the maintenance level of the various school buildings;
8. The superintendent shall have the authority to take lawful measures to abate nuisances and to condemn school houses which are not fit and sanitary and which for any reasons are likely to endanger the health and safety of pupils;
9. It shall be the responsibility of the superintendent to promote the improvement and efficiency of teachers by all suitable and proper methods;
10. If, during the time when schools are normally in session, unusual conditions exist (e.g., plants, building problems, weather) and in the opinion of the superintendent, the operation of schools under these conditions would endanger the students, the superintendent shall be empowered to suspend operations until the danger no longer threatens the welfare of the students;
11. It shall be the responsibility of the superintendent to direct, evaluate, supervise and coordinate the work of all of the schools, officers, and employees of the school board and all such employees shall be responsible to the superintendent in all matters;
12. The superintendent shall make periodic reports to the school board on the general condition of the schools and the effectiveness of the instructional program; such reports shall be accompanied by the superintendent’s recommendations for improvement;
13. The superintendent, with the assistance of the clerk of the board, shall submit monthly and annual financial reports to the school board showing receipts, disbursements, and balances;
14. The superintendent shall make recommendations for filling personnel vacancies and shall recommend dismissal of employees whose services are unsatisfactory;
15. The superintendent shall be present at all meetings of the school board, except that o affirmative vote of a majority of the members of the board, attendance may be dispensed with at a special meeting of the board unless matters pertaining to the superintendent personally are under discussion, at which time the superintendent shall remain subject to the call of the board;
16. The superintendent shall, subject to the approval of the school board, make and enforce such regulations as may be conducive to the effective instruction of students in the various schools;
17. The superintendent shall plan and direct such meetings of school personnel as may be deemed necessary for the purpose of giving instructions that may be helpful to personnel in discharging their duties, improving methods of teaching and building morale;
18. The superintendent shall be responsible for selecting and recommending to the school board, suitable instructional materials and equipment and for the organization of the various schools in terms of assigning instructors and allotting classroom space so that an effective instructional program may be maintained;
19. The superintendent shall insure that school records including principal/teacher/pupil attendance records are properly kept and that all necessary reports are accurately and properly made by school personnel;
20. The superintendent shall be held personally responsible for any of the specific duties that may be delegated to other persons or employees (All reports and recommendations to the board from any officer or employee under the direction and supervision of the superintendent shall be made through the superintendent, unless otherwise officially directed by the board. All board directions, requiring specific courses of action by personnel other than the superintendent, shall be channeled through the superintendent, the intent being that the board and its members shall deal only with the superintendent in respect to all matters for which he is responsible);
21. The superintendent shall prepare the regular school board meeting agenda so that delivery can be made to the school board members one week prior to the meeting unless a valid reason is given;
22. The enumeration of specific duties in this section or elsewhere shall not be construed to lessen the responsibility for those duties of a general nature imposed on the superintendent by the nature of the position;
23. The superintendent shall prepare a weekly activities report of events for each school board member. The report shall be privileged but not confidential.
Adopted: July 30, 2001