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216.1 Policy: Guidelines - Public Comment

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I. RESPONSIBILITY FOR PUBLIC COMMENT

The school district administration shall be responsible for the procedural implementation of the public comment portion of board meetings.  This implementation shall include preparation, sign up, the comment session, communication during and communication processes related to public comment.

II. PREPARATON FOR PUBLIC COMMENT

The public comment portion of the meeting shall occur on the second meeting of the month, typically held on the 3rd Monday of the month.  In months with only one meeting, that meeting shall include public comment.

Public comment will be available at the Board of Education Meeting, located at 7001 Harriet Avenue South, Richfield, MN, 55423.

Public comment will be the first agenda item.  The time period for public comment will be a maximum of 30 minutes.  

III. SIGN UP FOR PUBLIC COMMENT

Individuals can sign up in advance by emailing or calling the Board Secretary. Advance sign up may occur through 4:00 P.M. on a board meeting date.  Sign up can also occur prior to the board meeting, with sign up ending at one minute before the meeting begins. 

Individuals must indicate their name, address, phone number or email and the subject they are addressing.  Individuals should also note if their public comment will address something directly related to an agenda item or a non-agenda related item.

If individuals attending a board meeting without public comment on the agenda, they may write down comments and deliver them to the Board Secretary who will share them with all board members.

If an interpreter is needed for Public Comment or for a Board of Education meeting, please contact the Board Secretary at least 1 week in advance.

IV. PUBLIC COMMENT

Speakers will be called in order as follows:  students, speakers on a specific agenda item, then others in order of sign up, with preference given to those who have not spoken in the past six months.  Time allotted will be three minutes per speaker, with an additional three minutes allocated if interpretation is utilized.  The chair of the board of education will monitor time.  There will be a “30 second warning” given when 30 seconds remain and a “times up” warning given if three minutes have expired.  Speakers are expected to end comments at the “time’s up” warning. 

School district administration will be responsible for implementation of public comment including sign up, documentation, and sharing of guidelines.

V. COMMUNICATION DURING PUBLIC COMMENT

Speakers should not include names of Richfield Public Schools employees, titles or location names in your remarks for their own legal protection and the legal rights of staff.  Any information that would specifically identify a staff member is included in this warning.  Issues related to school district employees should be made in writing and may identify employees and should be addressed to the Human Resources Department.

VI. COMMUNICATION ABOUT PUBLIC COMMENT

School district administration will be responsible for broadly communicating the guidelines for public comment at the board of education meetings.  Methods should include website, school handbooks, direct communication to families and more.  

ADOPTED BY THE BOARD OF EDUCATION: November 20, 2017

REVIEWED BY THE BOARD OF EDUCATION:

Richfield Public Schools

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