The mission of the Pennsylvania School Boards Association is to promote excellence in school board governance through leadership, service and advocacy for public education.

Evaluating the performance of the school board helps look at the board as a whole and gains a better understanding of what it means to be an effective school board.

Why should a school director engage in a self-assessment? Many school directors wonder if their board is performing at a high level, well in order to identify your strengths and opportunities you must first conduct an assessment. A board self-assessment can open up a discussion about board roles and responsibilities and how to strengthen communication and understanding among board members. A school board’s willingness to participate in a self-assessment indicates that board members take their responsibility seriously, and board discussions the stem from a self-assessment can lead to a stronger school board. A well-educated board can deliver results for a district and provide a well-rounded education for all students.

PSBA has assisted school boards in conducting board self-assessments for more than 10 years.  Recently these assessments have been available in a convenient, online format.

The PSBA board self-assessment is a two-part process:

Part 1: Accessing and completing the questionnaire

To provide access to the questionnaire, PSBA emails a link to the survey to all board members and also to the superintendent as the tenth “team of 10″ member.

The link launches the survey. The first question asks for the respondent’s name, and the rest of the multiple choice questions ask his/her opinion regarding the state of the board at the time of taking the assessment.

The first sets of questions asked are aligned with PSBA’s Principles for Governance and Leadership.

At the end of the survey are “essay questions” asking the classic SWOT analysis questions — the strengths and weaknesses of the board, and the opportunities and threats facing the board. Another set of essay questions asks is what the member believes the board should STOP, START or CONTINUE doing. The essay question responses assist your Member Services Manager to prepare for facilitating a meaningful discussion with the board.

The link to the assessment is open approximately 10 days. All data are kept by PSBA in strict confidence.

Part 2: Reporting and reviewing results

At the conclusion of the survey, your Member Services Manager will analyze the data, prepare the findings and schedule a date to facilitate a discussion regarding the outcomes and to develop a Board Action Plan. In this on-site facilitated session, your Member Services Manager will review the analysis of the qualitative data as the basis for board discussion contributing to the Board Action Plan, a final report that assists with identifying the top issues the board may wish to pursue.

For more information, contact your Member Services Manager.