What is a School Improvement Council?
School Improvement Councils (SICs) serve the school principal and faculty in an advisory role, bringing together parents, educators, students and community stakeholders to collaborate on the improvement of their local school. They are mandated by law to exist in every public school in South Carolina, now numbering more than 1100. Over 17,000 volunteers serve on SICs in South Carolina.
Local school boards have been required to establish School Improvement Councils since 1977. Three specific laws enacted by the SC General Assembly define the role and responsibilities of councils: the EIA in 1984, Act 135 in 1993, and the EAA in 1998.
What Do Councils Do?
- Assist in the development of the school's 5-year improvement plan (renewal plan).
- Assist the school in monitoring and evaluating the plan's implementation and help to update the plan each year.
- Write the annual report to the parents - due April 30.
- Advise on the spending of incentive funds awarded to the school (Gold and Silver Awards).
- Assist the principal in writing the narrative of the school report card.
- Advise on the revisions of the school plan if the school is rated unsatisfactory.
SICs do not have any of the powers and duties reserved by the local school board.
Why Should I Become Involved?
When parents are involved in their children's education, the quality of the school improves and children do better in school. Parents have knowledge and perception based on their own children and access to the insight of other parents which can provide a positive influence on the development of their child's school.
Community members who feel ownership in the school are often the best advocates for the children and the school. Citizens who do not have children in the school can make unique contributions to the SIC based on their varied experiences and knowledge. Senior citizens, business people, faith community members, social service agency staff and others also have knowledge, experience and resources to share.
Everyone has something to contribute. Become involved.