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