State Senator wants mandatory training for school board members statewide

Sep 18, 2012

A state Senator from Omaha says he’ll introduce legislation in January requiring school board members to undergo yearly training.

Senator Burke Harr discussed his legislation during an Omaha Public Schools committee meeting Monday. The measure would require newly-elected or appointed school board members to have 12 hours of training in areas of budgets, ethics, law, and compliance.

After that, Harr says four hours of training would be required each year they’re on the board.  “It’s very important that a school board be well-educated, and know what is going on within the community. And while I think that is largely going on here, that’s not necessarily true across the state and/or could be done better. Anything we do can be done better.”

The final hour of training would have to be on district-specific issues such as graduation rates, staffing levels, and truancy. Harr says 21 other states already require such training for school board members.

The Nebraska Legislature returns to session January 9.