Governing Authority Requirements
On October 7, 2015, the Ohio legislature passed House Bill 2 (HB 2). The bill includes higher accountability structures for Ohio's charter schools without compromising autonomy at the school level.
Below are several items from the bill that relate specifically to compliance and governing authorities:
• Governing board members will be required to file a disclosure statement annually (this statement must identify the names of any immediate relatives or business associates who are employed by the sponsor, the operator, any Educational Service Center with a contract, and any vendor that has engaged in business with the school over the last several years);
• Governing board members will be required to complete annual training on public records and open meeting laws;
• Charter schools will be required to post the name of each governing board member on the school website (note: the only requirement are the names);
• Board compensation will be limited to $125 per meeting ($60 per day for board training),and the annual compensation of $5000 will remain the total allowable amount;
• A school's fiscal officer/treasurer will be required to be employed/engaged under contract direct with the school's governing board. The governing board may annually approve a resolution waving this requirement but sponsor approval is required in advance;
• Provisions in the bill that held governing authority members personally liable have been removed.
New Board Member Approval Process
1. In accordance with contract renewals for the 2016-2017 school year, there is a new pre-approval requirement of new board members from Richland Academy.
This requirement will go into effect on July 1st, 2016.
2. Richland Academy will not deny board member approval unless potential conflicts of interest are identified and/or the BCI/FBI background checks result in disallowable board membership. It is not our intention to determine who is/is not a viable board member in terms of experience, knowledge, etc., but simply hold your best interest and to avoid legal and compliance issues with acting board members.
The approval process for potential board members is as follows:
Prior to electing a new governing board member, the board/school must submit via email to Richland Academy directly:
• A BCI/FBI criminal background check of the potential member(s);
• The signed RAA Governing Authority Conflict of Interest Disclosure Form (found in Epicenter or on the RAA website).
Approval/Disapproval of Board Members will occur as follows:
• RAA will verify that there are no criminal violations or conflicts which exist that would preclude the member from serving on the board;
• RAA will confirm approval via email within one week of submission or email specific reasons for disapproval.