Caesar Rodney’s school board voted Tuesday night to buy software that will cost $10,500 annually, but serve as a one-stop-shop for families seeking information.
All meetings, agendas, meeting minutes, documents, recordings, policies and other information about the school board will be easily available, the board was told.
BoardDocs is a paperless meeting management software for public school boards.
Eleven of Delaware’s 19 public school districts use the software for families to get information about their school boards.
Caesar Rodney’s move comes as school boards everywhere are seeing increased interest in what they are doing and why.
The COVID-19 lockdown, which sent kids home to learn via the internet for a year, spurred parent interest in school decision-making. So did issues such as whether masks were mandatory for students, how trans students were treated, and exactly what was being taught and how it was being taught.
Drew Wareham, governance sales advisor at BoardDocs, told Caesar Rodney’s board Tuesday night that the purchase is an investment.
“It’s very easy for your board members and the public to look at previous content,” he said,” and it’s very transparent and very easy for them to find any meeting material.”
Wareham said that he’s seen superintendent newsletters, budget reporting, contracts and committee material – even COVID-19 updates handled via BoardDocs.
“We can really get creative in here and it ultimately completes that one-stop-shop mentality,” he said. “Not only can the public see your agendas or minutes or attachments, but they can also see any of your policies in here as well.”
Another benefit is that the board can hyperlink links to live meetings in the agenda so families can easily tune in.
Several board members pointed out that they are not tech savvy, but thought the software was user-friendly.
The software typically takes seven to 10 days to fully implement once the agreement is signed by the district.
After that, it typically takes two and a half months to publish the district site.
“Once we get you guys started up with a site, you’ll get placed in a training queue and our trainers will coordinate training with you all,” said Wareham.
During the process, every item pertaining to the board that is on Caesar Rodney’s website will be posted to its BoardDocs site.
That will include current agendas, former agendas, meeting minutes and policies in the system, he said.
Raised in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, Jarek earned a B.A. in journalism and a B.A. in political science from Temple University in 2021. After running CNN’s Michael Smerconish’s YouTube channel, Jarek became a reporter for the Bucks County Herald before joining Delaware LIVE News.
Jarek can be reached by email at [email protected] or by phone at (215) 450-9982. Follow him on Twitter @jarekrutz
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