100 - School District

The policies in category 100 pertain to the roles and functions of the School District.

101 - Legal Status of the School District





A primary principle of this nation is that the public welfare demands an educated and informed citizenry. The power to provide for public education is a state function vested in the state legislature and delegated to local school districts. The purpose of this policy is to clarify the legal status of the school district.


A. The school district is a public corporation subject to the control of the legislature, limited only by constitutional restrictions. The school district has been created for educational purposes.

B. The legislature has authority to prescribe the school district’s powers and privileges, its boundaries and territorial jurisdictions.

C. The school district has only the powers conferred on it by the legislature; however, the school board’s authority to govern, manage, and control the school district, to carry out its duties and responsibilities, and to conduct the business of the school district includes implied powers in addition to any specific powers granted by the legislature.


A. The school district is a separate legal entity.

B. The school district is ordinate with and not subordinate to the county(ies) in which it is situated.

C. The school district is not subservient to municipalities within its territory.


A. Funds

1. The school district, through its school board, has authority to raise funds for the operation and maintenance of its schools and authority to manage and expend such funds, subject to applicable law.

2. The school district has wide discretion over the expenditure of funds under its control for public purposes, subject to the limitations provided by law.

3. School district officials occupy a fiduciary position in the management and expenditure of funds entrusted to them.

B. Raising Funds

1. The school district shall, within the limitations specified by law, provide by levy of tax necessary funds for the conduct of schools, payment of indebtedness, and all proper expenses.

2. The school district may issue bonds in accordance with the provisions of Minn. Stat. Ch. 475, or other applicable law.

3. The school district has authority to accept gifts and donations for school purposes, subject to applicable law.

C. Property

1. The school district may acquire property for school purposes. It may sell, exchange, or otherwise dispose of property which is no longer needed for school purposes, subject to applicable law.

2. The school district shall manage its property in a manner consistent with the educational functions of the district.

3. The school district may permit the use of its facilities for community purposes which are not inconsistent with, nor disruptive of, its educational mission.

4. School district officials hold school property as trustees for the use and benefit of students, taxpayers, and the community.

D. Contracts

1. The school district is empowered to enter into contracts in the manner provided by law.

2. The school district has authority to enter into installment purchases and leases with an option to purchase, pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 465.71 or other applicable law.

3. The school district has authority to make contracts with other governmental agencies and units for the purchase, lease or other acquisition of equipment, supplies, materials, or other property, including real property.

4. The school district has authority to enter into employment contracts. As a public employer, the school district, through its designated representatives, shall meet and negotiate with public employees in an appropriate bargaining unit and enter into written collective bargaining agreements with such employees, subject to applicable law.

E. Textbooks, Educational Materials, and Studies

1. The school district, through its school board and administrators, has the authority to determine what textbooks, educational materials, and studies should be pursued.

2. The school district shall establish and apply the school curriculum.

F. Actions and Suits

The school district has authority to sue and to be sued.

Source: Cambridge-Isanti Schools

Legal References:

  •      Minn. Const. art. 13, § 1
  •      Minn. Stat. Ch. 123B (School Districts, Powers and Duties)
  •      Minn. Stat. Ch. 179A (Public Employment Labor Relations)
  •      Minn. Stat. § 465.035 (Conveyance or Lease of Land)
  •      Minn. Stat. §§ 465.71; 471.345; 471.6161; 471.6175; 471.64 (Rights, Powers, Duties of Political Subdivisions)
  •      Minnesota Association of Public Schools v. Hanson, 287 Minn. 415, 178 N.W.2d 846 (1970)
  •      Independent School District No. 581 v. Mattheis, 275 Minn. 383, 147 N.W.2d 374 (1966)
  •      Village of Blaine v. Independent School District No. 12, 272 Minn. 343, 138 N.W.2d 32 (1965)
  •      Huffman v. School Board, 230 Minn. 289, 41 N.W.2d 455 (1950)
  •      State v. Lakeside Land Co., 71 Minn. 283, 73 N.W.970 (1898)

Cross References:

  •      Policy 201 (Legal Status of School Board)
  •      Policy 603 (Curriculum Development)
  •      Policy 604 (Instructional Curriculum)
  •      Policy 606 (Textbooks and Instructional Materials)
  •      Policy 704 (Development and Maintenance of an Inventory of Fixed Assets and a Fixed Asset Accounting System)
  •      Policy 705 (Investments)
  •      Policy 706 (Acceptance of Gifts)
  •      Policy 801 (Equal Access to School Facilities)
  •      MSBA Service Manual, Chapter 3, Employee Negotiations
  •      MSBA Service Manual, Chapter 13, School Law Bulletin “F” (Contract and Bidding Procedures)

Reviewed: 11-15-01, 4-22-04, 2-24-05, 07-21-16

Approved: 12-20-01, 5-20-04, 2-24-05, 08-18-16

101.1 - Name of the School District

POLICY #101.1



The purpose of this policy is to clarify the name of the school district.


Pursuant to statute, the official name of the school district is Independent School District No. 911. However, the school district is often referred to by other informal names. In order to avoid confusion and to encourage consistency in school district letterheads, signage, publications and other materials, the school board intends to establish a uniform name for the school district.


A. The name of the school district shall be Cambridge-Isanti Schools.

B. The name specified above may be used to refer to the school district and may be shown on school district letterheads, signage, publications and other materials.

C. In official communications and on school district ballots, the school district shall be referred to as Independent School District No. 911, Cambridge-Isanti Schools, but inadvertent failure to use the correct name shall not invalidate any legal proceeding or matter or affect the validity of any document.

Source: Cambridge-Isanti Schools

Legal References:

  • Minn. Stat. § 123A.55 (Classes, Number)

Reviewed: 11-15-01, 07-21-16

Approved: 12-20-01, 08-18-16

101.2 - Naming of School District Sites and Facilities

POLICY #101.2



It shall be the general policy of the school district to name sites, facilities, or properties in whole or part according to their geographic location (e.g., Cambridge Middle School, Isanti Elementary School).  If for some good reason a name other than a geographic name will be used to make the final determination.

A.  The proposed name shall be appropriate.

B.  The name will stand the test of time.

C.  If the name involves a person, the individual involved will have made a significant contribution to the site, facility or school district.

D.  Naming a site or facility after a deceased person shall be done after taking the above criteria into consideration and after a waiting period of one year following the individual's death.

In naming sites or facilities, special consideration will be given to those names that will have some special meaning to the students and citizens and will enhance the educational program of the school district.

Periodically, site or facility names shall be reviewed as to their continued appropriateness.  If a particular name is no longer appropriate, the School Board reserves the right to change it.

Source:                       Independent School District No. 911, Cambridge, MN

Reviewed:                   11-15-01, 4-19-12, 11-20-14

Approved:                   2-23-81, 12-20-01, 12-18-14



101.2-Pro - Procedure Process For Dedication of Space




The purpose of this Administrative Procedure is to support Policy 101.2 Naming of School District Sites and Facilities.


Individual rooms, areas, athletic fields or facilities within or on district property may be named to honor a specific individual or organization, or may require a name change for other reasons.


  1. The requestor(s) must make a written request to the representative of the subject building or property (Principal, Superintendent, or other appropriate individual).
  2. The representative of the subject building or property receiving the request shall appoint an ad hoc advisory committee to consider the request. The ad hoc committee shall be made up of:a. Up to three (3) community members;

a.  Up to three (3) community members;

b.  One board member

c.  Up to two staff members

d.  One cabinet member (or the Buildings and Grounds Director)

e.  Principal or Superintendent designee, acting as committee chair.

3.  Before a request will be approved, it must be evaluated using the following criteria:

a.  The proposed name shall be appropriate.

b.  The name will stand the test of time.

c.  If the name involves a person, the individual involved will have made a significant contribution to the site.

d.  Living or deceased members of the community served by the educational facility may be eligible, if those individuals have distinguished themselves through ten (10) documented years of school-related service and have held membership in at least one school-related support organization (PTA, PTO, Booster Clubs, School Council, etc.) during the years of their children’s enrollment in District 911. 

e.  If the name involves a person, the individual involved may not be currently employed by the District.

f.  Former school district employees, living or deceased, may be considered if they have distinguished themselves through work at the educational facility for a minimum of five (5) consecutive years or ten (10) cumulative years in the school district.

4.  The representative reviewing the request shall present the proposal to the School Board with supporting rationale and evidence of support for the recommendation.

5.  The School Board shall review the proposal and take formal action on the request.


Source: Cambridge-Isanti Schools

Reviewed: 05.12.15

102 - Equal Educational Opportunity




The purpose of this policy is to ensure that equal educational opportunity is provided for all students of the school district.


A. It is the school district’s policy to provide equal educational opportunity for all students. The school district does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, parental status, status with regard to public assistance, disability, sexual orientation or age. The school district also makes reasonable accommodations for disabled students.

B. The school district prohibits the harassment of any individual for any of the categories listed above. For information about the types of conduct that constitute violation of the school district’s policy on harassment and violence and the school district’s procedures for addressing such complaints, refer to the school district’s policy on harassment and violence.

C. This policy applies to all areas of education including academics, coursework, co-curricular and extracurricular activities, or other rights or privileges of enrollment.

D. It is the responsibility of every school district employee to comply with this policy conscientiously.

E. Any student, parent or guardian having any questions regarding this policy should discuss it with the appropriate school district official as provided by policy. In the absence of a specific designee, an inquiry or a complaint should be referred to the superintendent.

Source: Cambridge-Isanti Schools

Legal References:

     Minn. Stat. § 121A.03, Subd. 2 (Sexual, Religious, and racial Harassment and Violence Policy)

     Minn. Stat. Ch. 363A (Minnesota Human Rights Act)

     20 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq. (Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972)

     42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq. (Americans with Disabilities Act)

Cross References:

     Policy 402 (Disability Nondiscrimination)

     Policy 413 (Harassment and Violence)

     Policy 521 (Student Disability Nondiscrimination)

     Policy 522 (Student Sex Nondiscrimination)

Reviewed: 06-21-01, 02-21-06, 01-21-16

Approved: 06-21-90, 06-21-01, 03-23-06, 02-18-16

103 - Complaints - Students, Employees, Parents, Other Persons





The school district takes seriously all concerns or complaints by students, employees, parents or other persons. If a specific complaint procedure is provided within any other policy of the school district, the specific procedure shall be followed in reference to such a complaint. If a specific complaint procedure is not provided, the purpose of this policy is to provide a procedure that may be used.


A. Students, parents, employees or other persons, may report concerns or complaints to the school district. While written reports are encouraged, a complaint may be made orally. Any employee receiving a complaint shall advise the principal or immediate supervisor of the receipt of the complaint. The supervisor shall make an initial determination as to the seriousness of the complaint and whether the matter should be referred to the superintendent. A person may file a complaint at any level of the school district; i.e., principal, superintendent or school board. However, persons are encouraged to file a complaint at the building level when appropriate.

If a member of the public chooses not to submit the complaint to the superintendent, such member of the public may submit the complaint either orally or in writing to a member of the board. In such case, the board member shall promptly inform the superintendent of the complaint and the superintendent will proceed to conduct an investigation in the same manner as if the superintendent had received the original complaint.

B. Depending upon the nature and seriousness of the complaint, the supervisor or other administrator receiving the complaint shall determine the nature and scope of the investigation or followup procedures. If the complaint involves serious allegations, the matter shall promptly be referred to the superintendent who shall determine whether an internal or external investigation should be conducted. In either case, the superintendent shall determine the nature and scope of the investigation and designate the person responsible for the investigation or followup relating to the complaint. The designated investigator shall ascertain details concerning the complaint and respond promptly to the appropriate administrator concerning the status or outcome of the matter.

C. The appropriate administrator shall respond in writing to the complaining party concerning the outcome of the investigation or followup, including any appropriate action or corrective measure that was taken. The superintendent shall be copied on the correspondence and consulted in advance of the written response when appropriate. The response to the complaining party shall be consistent with the

rights of others pursuant to the applicable provisions of Minn. Stat. Ch. 13 (Minnesota Government Data Practices Act) or other law.

Source: Cambridge-Isanti Schools

Legal References: Minn. Stat. Ch. 13 (Minnesota Government Data Practices Act)

Cross References:

  • Policy 206 (Public Participation in School Board Meetings/Complaints about Persons at School Board Meetings and Data Privacy Considerations)
  • Policy 403 (Discipline, Suspension, and Dismissal of School District Employees)
  • Policy 413 (Harassment and Violence)
  • Policy 514 (Bullying Prohibition)
  • MSBA Service Manual, Chapter 13, School Law Bulletin “I” (School Records – Privacy – Access to Data)

Reviewed: 1-24-02, 2-21-06, 09-22-16

Approved: 2-21-02, 3-23-06, 10-13-16

104 - School District Mission Statement




The purpose of this policy is to establish a clear statement of the purpose for which the school district exists.


The school board believes that a mission statement should be adopted. The mission statement should be based on the beliefs and values of the community, should direct any change effort and should be the basis on which decisions are made. The school board, on behalf of and with extensive participation by the community, should develop a consensus among its members regarding the nature of the enterprise the school board governs, the purposes it serves, the constituencies it should consider, including student representation, and the results it intends to produce.


The mission of Cambridge-Isanti Schools, as the leader in innovation education; offering unlimited options and opportunities, is to develop well-rounded individuals who excel in leadership, achieve at the highest levels, and are responsible citizens through highly effective staff addressing the unique needs of each individual in partnership with parents, students and a unified community.


  1. Every person needs to feel valued, safe and respected in order to maximize their potential.
  2. Strong individuals and communities depend on giving to, caring for, and serving each other.
  3. Every person has a purpose beyond themselves.
  4. Communication, critical thinking, collaboration and creativity are necessary to thrive in a changing world.
  5. Honesty and integrity are essential to all positive relationships.
  6. Every person has a responsibility to live to their own expectations.
  7. Every person learns uniquely.
  8. Success can come from the ability to learn from and work through adversity.
  9. Learning occurs best when social, physical and emotional needs are met.
  10. Every person has value with skills and talents that make them unique.
  11. Every person is responsible for their own choices.
  12. Education provides the greatest access to opportunities.
  13. As technology use increases there is continued value in the skills and benefits of face-to-face communication.
  14. Involvement in meaningful activities enriches your life.


The school board will review the school district’s mission every two years, especially when members of the board change. The school board will conduct a comprehensive review of the mission, including the beliefs and values of the community, every five to seven years.


Source:   Cambridge-Isanti Schools

Legal References:

     Minn. Stat. § 120B.11 (School District Process for Reviewing Curriculum, Instruction, and Student Achievement)

     Minn. Rule Parts 3501.0010-3501.0180

     Minn. Rule Parts 3501.0200-3501.0270

Reviewed:                  11-15-01, 2-24-05, 5-22-08, 04-23-15


Approved:                  2-18-82, 3-20-01, 12-20-01, 3-17-05, 5-22-08, 05-21-15

105 - Inclusive Decision Making




Inclusive decision making has been and is currently practiced in District #911. This practice has been encouraged and expanded as needs and times have changed. This policy allows for informal site-based decision making authority at individual schools, programs and departments. It also provides guidelines for a formal site-based decision making program at schools that apply for formal status.

Whether informal or formal, inclusive decision making is a philosophical and practical approach to collaborative planning, problem solving and decision making. It helps insure that those affected by a decision and those who are responsible for its implementation will be actively and legitimately involved in an established process of decision making. The purpose of site-based decision making is to improve the quality of education for all students at each school. It provides the foundation for gathering data, establishing a mission and goals, building a positive school climate, implementing strategies for program improvement and student learning, and evaluating student outcomes and other programmatic results.


It is the responsibility of the Board and district administration to establish district-wide goals, curricular, instructional and programmatic policies and guidelines, overall budget guidelines and adoption, and a long range plan for the Cambridge-Isanti Schools. The Board recognizes its responsibility to uphold state and federal laws and regulations and to further determine the broad program and instructional guidelines for site-based decision making and planning.

School sites and departments are responsible for submitting to the Board for approval a plan for school improvement that includes, but is not limited to, school mission and goals, strategies for implementation, recommended school budget and other resources, calendar, staff development activities, parental involvement plans and evaluation of student and program outcomes. The school and department improvement plans and correspondent assessments will be submitted annually. Improvement plans at the school sites and department level are to be developed, implemented and evaluated with the involvement and input of parents, licensed and non-licensed staff, community members and students, when appropriate.

Should individual sites or departments wish to move toward site-based decision making in a step by step process involving less than the total school program, the school improvement plan submitted to the Board for approval would so indicate.



Site-based councils will serve as the vehicle to achieve representation from throughout the school community. Participants in the school councils will include administrators, licensed and non-licensed staff, parents and community members, and students when appropriate.

Representatives on the council will be elected to their positions by a vote of their individual constituent group at each school. The school principal will serve on the site council. The size of the site councils will be determined by the school. On site councils, the number of parents will be equal to the number of non-administrative, licensed staff members. The number of non-licensed positions on the site council will be determined by the school with a fair ratio of all groups represented. Schools may establish their own process for selecting and involving community members and students. Other rules for participation and formal decision making will be specified in a set of site council by-laws which will be approved by the Board.

School site council meetings will be open to all members of the school staff and community. Site councils are responsible for regularly communicating their activities, decisions and plans to all members of the school community. The principal plays an active leadership role on the school site council. The principal and other members are responsible for assuring that all members of the site council are equally involved and that the decisions of the site council are in accordance with state and federal laws and regulations, Cambridge-Isanti School Board policies and procedures, and other district-wide program and budget guidelines. The principal continues to be responsible for working with other members of the school staff and parent community to help achieve school goals, program and individual student success.

Source:  Independent School District #911, Cambridge, MN

Reviewed:  2-20-03

Approved:  8-25-94, 3-17-03