Bridges Advisory Committee By-Laws
Approved Dec. 3, 2007
1. Organization Name and Membership
a. The Bridges Community School Advisory Committee, hereafter referred to as the Bridges Advisory Committee or Advisory Committee, shall be composed of parents or guardians of Bridges Community School students.
2. Advisory Committee Roles and Responsibilities
a. The Bridges Advisory Committee shall serve in an advisory capacity to the Bridges Site Based Decision Making Council, hereafter referred to as the Bridges Site Council or the Council, and shall be responsible for such duties as the Council shall determine. These duties will include selecting parent/guardian representatives to the Council, planning and conducting special events, and fundraising for special projects.
b. All Advisory Committee members shall be governed by these by-laws and appendices.
3. Officers and Subcommittee Structure
a. Officers shall consist of Chair and Vice-chair or Co-chairs and Vice-chair, Recorder and Treasurer, who shall serve one (1) year terms. No person shall serve in more than one office at the same time. Parent representatives to the Bridges Site Council shall be elected according to provisions established in the Council By-Laws. Bridges Advisory Committee officers shall be elected in a manner consistent with procedures established by the Bridges Site Council and as outlined in adopted Bridges Advisory Committee Election Procedures, attached as Appendix B.
i. The Chair or Co-chairs shall preside at all meetings of the Bridges Advisory Committee and conduct such fiscal responsibilities as are delineated in Bridges Advisory Committee Fiscal Procedures, attached as Appendix C.
ii. The Vice-chair shall preside at meetings in the absence of the Chair and conduct such fiscal responsibilities as are delineated in Bridges Advisory Committee Fiscal Procedures, attached as Appendix C.
iii. The Recorder shall prepare and distribute minutes of each meeting and maintain records of Advisory Committee activities and conduct such fiscal responsibilities as are delineated in Bridges Advisory Committee Fiscal Procedures, attached as Appendix C.
iv. The Treasurer shall be responsible for maintaining financial records, paying bills for the Advisory Committee, submitting financial reports to the Advisory Committee, and conduct such fiscal responsibilities as are delineated in Bridges Advisory Committee Fiscal Procedures, attached as Appendix C.
v. Parent representatives to the Site Council shall serve as liaisons between the Site Council and the Advisory Committee and conduct such fiscal responsibilities as are delineated in Bridges Advisory Committee Fiscal Procedures, attached as Appendix C.
v. In the event of a mid-term vacancy in any office, such office shall be filled as outlined in Bridges Advisory Committee Election Procedures, attached as Appendix B.
vi. The Bridges Advisory Committee, along with parent members of the Site Council, shall help recruit volunteers and coordinate fundraising activities and special events. The purpose of fundraisers is to provide monetary support for busing and to assist with entrance fees that directly relate to school activities. Entrance fees provided by parents will be $5 per student, per event. BAC will fund all costs beyond the $5 student maximum and support parent requested scholarships. School activities do not include the Washington D.C. trip. In the event BAC runs short of funding necessary for requested events, the student entrance fee may be increased. Furthermore, fundraisers provide funding for staff development, technology and/or curriculum support within the school, teacher requests, student council requests and planned BAC activities requiring monetary support.
vii. The Bridges Advisory Committee shall be responsible for preparing agendas and scheduling meetings of the Advisory Committee in consultation with the Lead Teacher. The Committee is also responsible for notifying parents and guardians about the meetings.
b. Standing Subcommittees of the Bridges Advisory Committee
Ad Hoc Subcommittees shall be created as needed by the members of the Bridges Advisory Committee for such tasks as Nominations, By-Laws Revisions, Communications, Special Events or Fundraising. Ad Hoc Subcommittees perform specific tasks and serve until the tasks are completed.
4. Bridges Advisory Committee Meetings
a. The Bridges Advisory Committee shall meet to conduct its official business at least four (4) times during each school year, but may meet more frequently as deemed necessary.
b. A quorum shall consist of ten (10) members. Once established, a quorum shall be deemed present until adjournment.
c. Whenever possible, decisions shall be made by consensus of those present. Appendix A: Ground Rules shall serve as guidelines for discussions and actions of the Advisory Committee. If voting is necessary, a majority of those present and voting is required for passage of a motion.
d. For items not covered above, Robert's Rules of Order shall prevail.
a. Proposed amendments to these By-Laws shall be submitted in written form and distributed to all Bridges families at least one (1) week prior to action on the proposed amendments.
b. Adoption of an amendment shall require a consensus or a two-thirds (2/3) vote of those voting.
APPENDIX A: Bridges Advisory Committee Ground Rules
Ground rules set the tone for the meeting and constitute an agreement about the way the group will work together.
1. The focus is students.
2. Perceptions are neither right nor wrong, they just are, and are real to the perceiver.
Understanding another person's point of view requires active listening as an ally.
3. Let's not be passionate about our own wisdom. Seek first to understand before being understood.
4. It is more important to do right than to be right
5. There are no experts. We need to learn from each other.
6. Reconcile the past; look to new possibilities.
7. Everyone participates; no one person dominates.
8. When consensus is reached, we all agree to support the decision. Members shall make known their degree of support to the group for the decision.
9. We are all colleagues, let's respect each other. It is okay to disagree, without
being disagreeable. Focus on issues and not personalities.
10. Be aware of group think. It is a human phenomenon whereby members of a group go along with a group's decision because of their desire to please one another or to be a player. It over rides the group's ability to critically choose alternative courses of action.
11. Honor time limits.
12. Think possibilities, not obstacles.
Hear and understand me.
Even if you disagree, please don't make me wrong.
Acknowledge the greatness within me.
Remember to look for my loving intentions.
Tell me the truth with compassion.
Appendix B: Bridges Advisory Committee Election Procedures
1. Annual Election of Officers
a. The Site Council parents and the Bridges Advisory Committee (the Executive Committee) shall be responsible for conducting annual and special elections for the Advisory Committee and Site council.
b. At least one month prior to the annual election of officers, the Executive Committee shall solicit candidates for Advisory Committee offices via a notice distributed to all Bridges families in the usual manner for communicating with families in the school.
c. Bridges Advisory Committee officers shall be elected for one-year terms by ballot at the same time as Bridges Site Council parent representatives are elected. Ballots must include provisions for write-in votes. The election shall be held in a manner consistent with provisions in Bridges Site Council By-Laws for election of parent representatives.
2. Special Elections
a. Officers who resign from office during their term must submit a letter of resignation to the Bridges Advisory Committee.
b. Within one month of receipt of a letter of resignation, the Advisory Committee shall notify Bridges families of the vacancy in the office and solicit candidates for that office in the usual manner for communicating with families in the school. If the resignation comes after Jan. 1, the Executive Committee will decide whether to solicit candidates within the month or wait until the annual election of officers.
c. Ballots shall be distributed to all Bridges families for a vote.
d. Officers elected in this manner shall assume the office immediately and serve the remainder of the annual term. They may be eligible for reelection at the next annual election.
e. Recognizing that personal commitments frequently change during the year, in the event an Advisory Committee or Site Council member is unable to fulfill the duties of their office, including, but not limited to, absences from more than three consecutive scheduled meetings or failure to perform duties of the office, the Executive Committee shall request in writing that the officer resume full participation or submit a letter of resignation. Failure to respond in writing within 2 weeks to such a written request shall be deemed a resignation, which the Executive Committee shall fill according to the aforementioned provisions.
Appendix C: Fiscal Controls for Bridges Advisory Committee (BAC)
• All checks should be signed by at least two BAC officers; all BAC officers should be listed at the bank as signators, with signature cards updated at the time of each election.
• The bank statement should be reviewed by the BAC chair or vice chair and treasurer; this should be done for all accounts (currently checking and money market).
• A complete list of all transactions should be approved each BAC meeting; this could be downloaded and printed from online bank records, but should in any event correspond with bank statements. Officers should have access to the online statements, and passwords should be changed with each election.
• A bank reconciliation should be reviewed and approved by the BAC.
• In addition to the aforementioned list of transactions and bank reconciliation, the Treasurer's Report should include a brief description of all receipts, disbursements and deposits, including identifying the event or purpose for the receipt, disbursement or deposit.
• To the extent possible, the following duties should not be performed by the same individual: receiving cash, making bank deposits, maintaining the accounting records and reconciling bank accounts.
• In all instances where approvals are given by the BAC Executive Committee, actions should be reported and ratified at the next BAC meeting.
• Records and any monetary receipts should be stored in a locked box at Bridges Community School, to which BAC officers and the school administrative assistant should have keys. An attached sign out sheet should indicate any missing records and the person who has them.
• All purchases should be properly authorized by BAC before goods are ordered or purchased. Authorizations should be included in the minutes for the relevant meetings. The BAC may approve a blanket authorization for ongoing annual expenses, i.e., school supplies, snacks, water, supplements for breakfast, etc., but such authorizations must be for a specific amount and be reauthorized if the limit is reached.
• All purchases should be supported by an invoice, receipt or other supporting documentation. A Request for Reimbursement form with receipts attached must be completed and signed prior to reimbursement.
• Checks should be written on a timely basis, preferably within 2 weeks of Request for Reimbursement submission.
• Invoices or documentation supporting disbursements should be marked paid to prevent duplicate payment.
• All checks received by the organization should be immediately endorsed with a restrictive endorsement, such as "For Deposit Only - Bridges Advisory Committee".
• At the time of collection, individuals collecting money should prepare collection logs on forms provided by the Treasurer or other Executive Committee member, prenumbered receipts, maintain ticket reconciliations, or other appropriate documentation supporting any cash received.
• A person who is independent of the receiving, depositing and recording functions should compare bank deposits with the prenumbered receipts, collection logs, ticket reconciliation or other support.
• Whenever cash is counted (i.e., from event proceeds) at least two people should verify the amounts in writing.
• Any cash left in the building overnight must be secured in the locked box reserved for that purpose.
• Teacher requests for BAC funds under $500 that need approval before the next scheduled BAC meeting can be approved by a two-thirds vote of the four or five BAC officers, five Site Council parent members and the Lead Teacher. Votes should be in writing, e-mail or fax. If the request does not get a two-thirds vote of approval, the BAC president will call a special BAC meeting to put the request before the full membership.
Fundraising events (i.e., candy bar sales, wreath sales)
• Obtain approval by the BAC for the fundraiser and at least 2 persons responsible for the fundraiser.
• Before the fundraiser begins, compute the total anticipated revenue and expenses.
• A list of the items given to individuals to sell, by individual, should be kept.
• When money is collected a receipt should be issued, or a list should be maintained showing the amount collected for each individual and the date collected.
• Deposits should be made on a regular basis.
• Review the list of items given to individuals to be sure everyone has either paid for or returned the items they were to sell.
• The actual revenues and expenses should be used to compute the net profit for the event. The revenues and expenses should agree to the amounts recorded on the accounting records.
• Interim reports and a final report should be given to the board for the event.
Ticket sales (i.e., Spaghetti supper)
• A ticket reconciliation form should be prepared for every event that has ticket sales.
• The ticket reconciliation form should list the beginning ticket numbers, total number of tickets sold by category, and the ending ticket numbers.
• The total amount of cash received should be reconciled to the actual amount on the ticket reconciliation form.
• A deposit that is reconciled to the ticket reconciliation form should be made within one month of the event.
• The ticket reconciliation form should be filed with the deposit record.