December 11, 2017

8550 Woodfield Crossing Blvd.
Indianapolis, IN 46240-2478
P: (317) 205-3332 | F: (317) 205-3385

Skyward Canvas Outlook
School Board Elections

The governance of the Metropolitan School District of Washington Township (MSDWT) lies with a Board of Education, five persons who are elected by those Washington Township citizens that reside within MSDWT’s boundaries. You are urged to consider becoming a candidate for the Board of Education. The responsibilities of serving as a member of the Board are great, yet the rewards gained through helping to shape the future of this outstanding educational system are many. You may also know of others who should become candidates.


 

NOTE: While the vast majority of Washington Township (WT) residents are served by – and may vote in – MSDWT elections NOT ALL do. Those WT residents living within the old, pre-UniGov boundaries of the City of Indianapolis are served by the Indianapolis Public Schools and vote in IPS school board elections. See the MSDWT Board residence district election map for MSDWT boundaries.

 

RESPONSIBILITIES & QUALITIES

The Board of Education’s foremost duty is to determine and set policy and direction for the school district and to hire and supervise the Superintendent to manage the day-to-day operations of the schools. Other matters of major importance include supervision of financial affairs, educational program needs, and key school personnel. Board of Education members must also keep abreast of state and local legislative affairs.

 

A person who seeks a School Board position should be dedicated to serving the community, sincerely interested in education, willing to hear other views, and committed to gaining information necessary for decisions on all matters that come before the Board, with minimal compensation. Candidates should consult the School Board Code of Ethics available under the Policy Section on the District Website: www.msdwt.k12.in.us

 

Effective with the November 2016 general election, the manner in which MSDWT Board members are elected will change slightly from past practice. This change was made to both accommodate new voting technology and simplify instructions for voters completing ballots but also preserves the essence and benefits of past practice. For more information about this change, please refer to the Indiana State Board of Education's Certification of Approval dated May 11, 2016 of the MSDWT Board of Education Resolution approved December 9, 2015

 

Governing Body Qualification Requirements and Manner of Election

Number and Residence Districts

The governance of MSDWT shall be vested in a non-partisan Board of Education composed of five (5) board members elected by all of the registered voters residing within MSDWT.

 

There shall be three (3) geographically defined residence districts. These residence districts are defined in Attachment A.

 

Three (3) of the five (5) Board Members must reside within and run for a board position from those three geographically defined residence districts with one member elected from each such residence district.

 

The other two (2) Board Member positions will be elected from the at-large district comprising the entire territory of MSDWT, provided, however, both of the at-large seat Board Members may not reside within the same residence district.

 

Eligibility for Membership on Board

To be eligible to serve on the Board a candidate must meet the following requirements:

  1. requirements or qualifications as provided by state law;
  2. candidates running for election to the Board of Education from one of the three (3) residence districts must have been a continuous resident of that district for a period of time in excess of one (1) year prior to the date of the general election on which the candidate’s name appears on the ballot for election;
  3. Candidates running for election to the Board of Education from the at-large district must have been a continuous resident of the MSDWT geographical area for a period of time in excess of one (1) year prior to the date of the general election on which the at-large candidate’s name appears on the ballot for election; and (2) may not reside within the same residence district as the other incumbent at-large Board Member at the time of the election.

 

Election Date

The Board Members shall be elected by popular vote by voters residing within the entire geographical territory of the School District, which election shall be at the general elections during which the county officials are on the ballot. Three (3) members shall be elected in presidential election years. Two (2) members shall be elected two (2) years later in Congressional mid-term election years.

 

Term of Office

The term of office shall be four (4) years commencing as of January 1 of the calendar year following the calendar year in which the Board Member’s election occurred. There shall be no limit on the number of terms to which a member may be elected or appointed. Membership of the Board of Education shall constitute the holding of a “lucrative office” as said term is used in Article 2, §9, of the Constitution of the State of Indiana.

 

Transition Plan for 2018 Elections to Implement New Election Organization of Three (3) Geographically Limited Residence Districts and Two (2) Board Seats from the At-Large District

Schedule of Current Board Terms
Seat # District Current Term Began Current Term Ends Next Election Date Under Current Law
Seat 1 One January 1, 2013 December 31, 2016 November 2016
Seat 2 One January 1, 2015 December 31, 2018 November 2018
Seat 3 Two January 1, 2013 December 31, 2016 November 2016
Seat 4 Two January 1, 2015 December 31, 2018 November 2018
Seat 5 Three January 1, 2013 December 31, 2016 November 2016

 

Schedule for Next Election of Geographically Limited Residence Districts and the two at-large District Board Members

2018 Election

Two (2) seats up for election at the 2018 general election:

  • One (1) seat for the at-large district
    • Commencing with the 2018 election the restriction that the candidate for the “at-large” district seat cannot be from the same geographical limited residence district as the other at-large Board Member is applicable
  • One (1) seat for District 2

WHY DO WE HAVE GEOGRAPHICALLY DEFINED RESIDENCE DISTRICTS?

The short answer is that the residence districts are simply a tool to ensure geographic balance on the Board.

 

The parents that founded MSDWT wanted to prevent geographic imbalance on the Board of Education (e.g. all members from the west side or the east side). Their solution was to create three geographically defined residence districts within the MSDWT boundaries and limit the number of sitting Board members from each residence district to no more than two.

 

All residents of MSDWT voted for all members of the Board regardless of residence district and all sitting members of the Board represented the ENTIRE school district regardless of their residence district.

 

The new method of electing MSDWT Board members preserves this system. However, by designating three seats as “District” seats (1, 2 and 3) and the two remaining seats as “at-large” our method of election now allows the Marion County Election Board to both simplify the instructions to voters on the ballot and to use modern electronic voting devices to tabulate the election results.

 

Two items are important to remember regarding the designation of Board seats as “District 1, 2, 3” or “At-Large” during a Board election:

  1. ALL residents of MSDWT vote for one candidate in ALL of the seats being decided in that election cycle. For example, all registered voters in MSDWT may vote for ONE candidate in EACH of the three seats up for election in November 2016 – District 1, District 3 and At-large. (In other words, a voter is NOT limited to voting for one candidate in only the voter’s residence district); and
  2. Once elected by the votes of all MSDWT residents, ALL sitting members of the Board continue to represent the ENTIRE school district regardless of the label (District 1,2,3 or At-Large) placed on their seat. The designation is there solely to simplify administration of the election and to ensure geographic diversity on the Board.

 





(click to enlarge map)

 

DISTRICT I BOUNDARY LINES: Beginning at 86th St. and Township Line Rd. East on 86th to Harcourt Rd., South on Harcourt to 79th St., East on 79th to Spring Mill Rd., South on Spring Mill to 75th St., East on 75th to College Ave., South on College to 71st, West on 71st to Central Ave., South on Central to Washington Blvd., Northwest on Washington Blvd. to 71st St., West on 71st to Pennsylvania, South on Pennsylvania to the North Shore of White River, Southwest along the shore to a line which is the projection North of Boulevard Place, South from there to the Water Company Canal, Southwest along the North Shore of the canal to 38th St., West to Township Line Rd., North along the Western Township line to 86th.

 

DISTRICT II BOUNDARY LINES:Beginning at 96th St., and Township Line Road, South to 86th St., West on 86th to Harcourt Rd. South on Harcourt to 79th St., East on 79th to Spring Mill Rd., South on Spring Milito 75th St., East on 75th to College Ave., South on College to 71 st St., Southeast along the old City of Indianapolis boundary line to Westfield Blvd., South on Westfield to the While River, along the North Shore of While River to 64th St., projected West, along that projected line to 64th St., continuing to Evanston, South on Evanston to Broad Ripple Ave., East on Broad Ripple to Burlington, North on Burlington to McKinley St., West to Keystone Ave., North on Keystone to 71 st Str., East on 71st to Dean Rd., North on bean Rd. to 82nd St., and continuing Northwest as 82nd becomes 86th St., to Manderly, North on Manderly to 91st St., West on 91st to Kerwood, North on Kerwood (extended) to 96th St., West on 96th to Township Line Rd.

 

DISTRICT III BOUNDARY LINES:Beginning at Kerwood (extended) and 96th St., South on Kerwood to 91st., East on 91st to Manderly, South on Manderly to 86th St., East on 86th and Southeast as it becomes 82nd to Dean Rd., South on Dean Rd., to 71st St., West on 71st to Keystone Ave., South on Keystone to McKinley St., (extended east), along that line to Tacoma Ave., South on Tacoma to 62nd St., East on 62nd to Rural St., South on Rural to Kessler Blvd., East on Kessler to the Norfolk and Western railroad tracks, Southwest along the tracks to Keystone Ave., South on Keystone to 46th St., East on 46th to Penwood Dr., North on Penwood to Willowbrook Pkwy., East on Willowbrook as it becomes 47th St., to Fali Creek Pkwy. N. Dr. Southwest on Fall Creek to 46th St., East on the old City of Indianapolis bOundary line and East on 46th to Sherman, South on Sherman to 42nd St., East on 42nd to Berkshire Dr., North on Berkshire to Devon Dr., East on Devon to Emerson Ave., North on Emerson to Emerson Way, North on Emerson Way to Fall Creek Pkwy. N. Dr., East on Fall Creek to the East Township line, along the Township line to 62nd St., East on 62nd (extended) to the East line of the Township, North on that line to 96th St., West on the North Line of the Township to the beginning.

AG for POLICY 3231, 4231, 7540 – ELECTIONS

Administrative Guidelines for POLICY 3231, 4231, 7540 – ELECTIONS

Guidelines for Candidates

  • Candidates who are also parents of children in Washington Township Schools are free to support their children at events and activities during the election process.
  • Candidates may distribute campaign literature at schools or district property outside of the school day – at events, open houses, etc. The candidate must give at least 24 hours notice to the Principal and the Principal will designate an area for the candidate(s). Candidates or their workers will not be permitted to disrupt the educational process or any educational function in the process. Principals and their designees are the arbiters of the concept of “disruption of the process.” (For example, handing out literature at an open house should be done in a manner that does not interfere with people walking in or out of school or visiting classrooms.)
  • Candidates may contact a PTO to request campaigning at a PTO meeting or event. The PTO however must invite all other candidates to the same function and allow them to campaign in the same way.
  • MSD Washington Township exists to serve the educational needs of school age children within its jurisdiction. While schools teach about democracy and the elective process, the corporation must remain neutral with respect to election campaigns for public office. Therefore, in the interest of fairness and school corporation impartiality, no material directly or indirectly supporting or opposing a candidate or group of candidates currently seeking election for public office will be:
    1. displayed on school property except at an approved polling place on election day;
    2. distributed through staff mailboxes; or sent home with students
    3. District Communication Resources (phones, e-mail, mail system, faxes, etc.) shall not be used in political campaigns or elections to do the following: solicit donations, advocate for any candidate(s) or political party, recruit participants or volunteers
    4. No candidate will be furnished with school or district mailing or e-mail lists
  • When questions or conflicts arise related to these guidelines, the Superintendent or Assistant Superintendent will be the final authority in determining the course of action.

Guidelines for School Staff

  • If a candidate contacts a principal, school employee, or a PTO as a candidate, the candidate should be directed to the Superintendent or Assistant Superintendent. Exception:  Candidate may contact the Principal to notify about attending an event to campaign per the guidelines.
  • The primary goal of building administrators and educators is to preserve the educational process and function in the schools at all times, including during the election season. Principals are directed not allow anything or anyone to disrupt that work.
  • No signs are permitted on school grounds – except on election day if a school or district building is a polling place
  • Candidates may distribute campaign literature at schools or district property outside of the school day – at events, open houses, etc. The candidate must give at least 24 hours notice to the Principal and the Principal will designate an area for the candidate(s). Candidates or their workers will not be permitted to disrupt the educational process or any educational function in the process. Principals and their designees are the arbiters of the concept of “disruption of the process.” (For example, handing out literature at an open house should be done in a manner that does not interfere with people walking in or out of school or visiting classrooms.)
  • MSD Washington Township exists to serve the educational needs of school age children within its jurisdiction. While schools teach about democracy and the elective process, the corporation must remain neutral with respect to election campaigns for public office. Therefore, in the interest of fairness and school corporation impartiality, no material directly or indirectly supporting or opposing a candidate or group of candidates currently seeking election for public office will be:
    1. displayed on school property except at an approved polling place on election day;
    2. distributed through staff mailboxes; or sent home with students.
    3. District Communication Resources (phones, e-mail, mail system, faxes, etc.) shall not be used in political campaigns or elections to do the following: solicit donations, advocate for any candidate(s) or political party, recruit participants or volunteers
    4. No candidate will be furnished with school or district mailing or e-mail lists
  • In MSDWT, as the exclusive bargaining agent for teachers, the WTEA has the right to have meetings with teachers in the schools. WTEA may invite political candidates to those meetings outside of the instructional day.
  • Staff may not use preparation time or any part of their contracted hours or school day to engage in political activities, unless they are using personal or Association leave.
  • When questions or conflicts arise related to these guidelines, the Superintendent or Assistant Superintendent will be the final authority in determining the course of action.

Guidelines for PTO

  • If a candidate contacts a PTO as a candidate, the candidate should be directed to the Superintendent or Assistant Superintendent. Exception: Candidate may contact PTO to request attending a meeting or PTO function.
  • If a building PTO invites candidates to address the group, all candidates must be invited.
  • When questions or conflicts arise related to these guidelines, the Superintendent or Assistant Superintendent will be the final authority in determining the course of action.

 
Published September 21, 2009

Updated August 14, 2012