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Board Of Education

As part of our effort to improve communication with our school community, please email suggestions to [email protected]. The Highlands Board of Education appreciates suggestions received via this web link and will consider them as discussion topics at future meetings. Any comments submitted must include your name and address in order for them to be considered. Thank you!
Public control of public education is one of the cornerstones of a free society and people exercise that control through their local school Board of Education. Click below to learn more about the Highlands Board of Education.
The role of the School Board member is not to run the schools, but to see that the schools are well run. Boards operate through policy to be effective and efficient, and to avoid appearing to be arbitrary, capricious, or unreasonable. All district policies are public documents.
Members of the Board of Education are elected by qualified voters in the community. Members are elected to three-year terms and normally three seats are up for election each fall. The Board selects a president and vice-president at their annual reorganization meeting in January.
The Highlands Board of Education meets on the 3rd Monday of each month at the Highlands Elementary School at 6:00 p.m. Occasionally, a holiday or other circumstance will alter this schedule. In this case, or in the event of a special meeting, public notice is given in advance of the change of date in the Asbury Park Press and through a district posting.
The meeting of the Board of Education follows a definite plan called "The Agenda.” The agenda follows guidelines, which are established by the State Legislature and the New Jersey State Department of Education. The school administration and Board of Education members recommend items on the agenda. The president of the board, who is elected by other members of the school board, presides over all regular and special meetings. The vice president presides in the president’s absence.
Board members receive the agenda and supporting documents in advance of each meeting so they can study the materials and be prepared to make decisions. The Board of Education cannot be expected to make informed decisions on important questions without having all the available information and will not usually act on items not included on the agenda.
If you want to appear before the board, you can contact the superintendent's office prior to the Tuesday meeting. However, it is best to come the night of the meeting and address your question(s) or concern(s) directly to the board. Groups are also welcome but proceedings are facilitated if one person acts as the spokesperson. Copies of the agenda are provided to individuals attending board meetings and posted to the district website.
The school board benefits from comments and questions from concerned citizens who attend meetings. Therefore, an opportunity is provided for you to be heard during the public portion of the regular meeting.
During the open portion of the meeting, the board president will acknowledge you up to speak. Once called, you must rise, and state your name and address to the board, so that it may be recorded. Members of the board and the superintendent may ask questions or make remarks in response to your comments. If you have a detailed question or one that requires a great deal of explanation, you may want to send your question in advance to the board secretary.
The public meeting of the school board is not the place to initiate personal charges or complaints against individual employees. If you have any charges, complaints or challenges, you are encouraged to put them in writing to the superintendent or the board secretary. Please be sure to give us your name, address and phone number. All such charges or complaints, if presented to the board directly, will be referred to the superintendent. Occasionally, during a regular Board of Education meeting it becomes necessary for members of the public to wait while the Board of Education goes into "Executive Session." This occurs when the board needs to discuss a personnel matter or potentially sensitive issue. The results of the executive session are made public once the board has voted on them.
In addition to the members of the Board of Education, the superintendent of schools, the district's legal counsel, and the board secretary sit at the conference table. Other district administrators and staff may also be in attendance.
The Superintendent of Schools is appointed by the members of the Highlands, Atlantic Highlands, and Henry Hudson Regional School Boards of Education and serves as the executive officer in administering board policies in the operation of the three schools. She/He also acts as an advisor in keeping the boards informed of the needs and programs of the schools. The superintendent is available to the boards as a professional resource and her/his recommendations normally precede any boards’ actions relating to recruitment, election and supervision of professional staff, selection of textbooks and instructional material, development of curriculum, long-term planning and fiscal affairs. The superintendent is appointed by the boards for a specified term.
The mission of Highlands Borough School District is to provide a safe environment for the study of a challenging and balanced curriculum which, will enable students to become independent and critical thinkers. We expect that all students will achieve the New Jersey Student Learning Standards at all grade levels. Opportunities will be provided for students to develop self-esteem, social values, and the motivation needed to continue individual growth while also developing a respect for cultural differences. This mission requires an active and responsible partnership of students, staff, community, and school board.