SCHOOL COMMITTEE LEGAL STATUS
The Smithfield School Committee consists of five members and is the governing board of the Smithfield Public Schools. Although it functions as a duly elected committee of town government, it owes its existence to the Rhode Island General Laws, which decree that each public school system will be governed by a School Committee.
The School Committee possesses all powers and duties conferred upon it by state law. Specifically, R.I.G.L. § 16-2-9 defines the general powers and duties of school committees to include identifying the educational needs in the community, develop policies, assuring the implementations of federal and state laws and the regulations of the Board of Regents, evaluating the performance of the school system, caring for the local schools, having policy responsibility for employment and evaluation of staff, overseeing a strategic plan, managing school facilities and equipment, adopting and managing a local budget, employing and supervising a superintendent and delegating authority to that individual, giving consent on the appointment of personnel, establishing codes of conduct and hearing appeals from disciplinary action, entering into contracts, and addressing wellness of students and employees.
Certain legislative powers are also granted to the committee by the Town Charter of the Town of Smithfield. The Committee alone may determine policies and practices and enlist a Superintendent to employ a staff to implement its direction for the proper education of the students who attend the Smithfield Public Schools.
LEGAL REFS.: R.I.G.L. § 16-2-9 General powers and duties of school committees. Town Charter of the Town of Smithfield § C-6.06
ADOPTED: May 20, 2019