Wauwatosa School Board
Four at-large seats on the Wauwatosa School Board are up for election on April 7, 2020.
The present incumbent board members are: Seat #4 Leigh Anne Fraley, Seat #5 Mike Phillips, Seat #6 Sharon Muehlfeld and Seat #7 Steve Doman.
Any Wauwatosa resident interested in running for the school board must declare their candidacy no later than 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, January 7, 2020. The first day candidates may circulate nomination papers is December 1, 2019.
Nomination papers must indicate the numbered seat that a candidate intends to run for. If more than two candidates for any numbered seat file nomination papers, a primary election will be held on February 18, 2020.
School Board election forms may be downloaded from the Wisconsin Elections Commission website at http://elections.wi.gov. They can also be obtained from the Wauwatosa School District’s administrative office located at 12121 W. North Ave.
Interested in running? The Wisconsin Association of School Boards (WASB) shares the following characteristics and qualities that are important to school board membership:
- A commitment to the belief that all children of the school district are entitled to have available to them a beneficial educational program.
- An open mind and readiness to learn.
- A willingness to attend seminars and workshops which can help them make intelligent decisions in school affairs. [The first WASB event for newly elected school board members are the New School Board Member Gatherings held in late April in 15 regions throughout the state to briefly review school board member responsibilities and introduce the new members to the services and information provided by the WASB.]
- A vision and an ability to understand changes in our society.
- The ability to act with other school board members to advance the best interests of the school district.
- The capability to articulate the philosophy and goals of the school and to listen carefully to the criticisms offered by people with differing views.
- A willingness to invest the hours that will be necessary to faithfully discharge their duties.
- Freedom from conflict with any other interest.
Learn more about the opportunity in WASB’s 2020 Guide for Candidates.
The Wauwatosa School Board consists of seven community members who are elected at-large by Wauwatosa voters.
Members are elected to a three-year term with elections held for three members one year, and four members the next year. There is no election in the third year unless there is a vacant seat to fill. Members serve on a voluntary basis with no financial compensation.
At the end of three-years, members may run for re-election. Elections are held in April and terms begin with the Board's next meeting. If a vacancy occurs during a term, the Board will appoint someone to the role until the next election for the district.
The Board holds an annual reorganization meeting on or within thirty (30) days after the fourth Monday in April. The meeting is called to order by the ranking officer of the preceding Board who shall serve as presiding officer until the election of the Board President. The Board also elects, from among its members, a President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and a Clerk. Such election shall occur on or within thirty (30) days after the fourth (4th) Monday in April.
The Board meets twice a month and at other times upon the call of the School Board President or upon the filing of a request with the Superintendent signed by a majority of the School Board members.
Special meetings may be called by the secretary at the request of the President or by any two (2) members of the Board. Notification. No business is to be transacted at a special meeting other than that specified in the notification thereof.
The Superintendent and those administrators directed by the Superintendent shall attend all meetings, when feasible. Administrative participation shall be by professional counsel, guidance, and recommendation - as distinct from deliberation, debate, and voting of Board members.
The Board has the dual responsibility for implementing statutory requirements pertaining to public education and for meeting the desires of residents. While the Board has an obligation to determine and assess citizen desires, it is understood that when the voters elect delegates to represent them in the conduct of specified educational programs, they, at the same time, are endowed with the authority to exercise their best judgment in determining policies, making decisions, and approving procedures for carrying out the responsibility. Below are some of the Board's responsibilities:
- Establish policy for the District administration to implement and oversee.
- Set the annual school levy
- Set and approve the annual District budget
- Selection and evaluation of the District's superintendent who is charged with day-to-day operations of the District.
- Jurisdiction over any controversy or dispute that arises in the district in which the Board has authority over.
- Advocate on behalf of students and promote the cause of public education.
- Communicate with and keep citizens informed about the progress or any problems of the District.
- Work with the superintendent and administration to determine and set the educational goals of the District.