Reference Desk and News

The Attorneys at K|B|S provide timely content on matters of interest to client districts through various forms of publications and genre. Once released, the communications are placed on our news blog, chronologically and in a simple to read Q&A searchable format.
Q:        At a recent meeting, a board member, who is an accountant, expressed the desire to teach an advanced accounting class at the high school. He would perform the work voluntarily, on a part-time basis and would not be paid by the district. The trustee even has teaching experience as an adjunct professor at a local college. Is this allowed? A:        No. A school board member may not be employed by the district, even on a volunteer part-time basis, because...
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Q:    We are struggling to fill one of our teaching vacancies and finally interviewed the perfect candidate. Problem is, she is the daughter of one of our board members! The trustee has decided to resign at the next board meeting. After the board member resigns, can we go ahead and hire the daughter? A:    No. Under Texas law and board policy, a trustee is considered to “holdover” the position after resignation until a replacement is appointed. Thus, you...
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Q:    An employee was voluntarily reassigned to a position with a lower daily rate. Payroll implemented the salary change one month late resulting in the employee being overpaid. Can payroll deduct the over-payment from the employee’s check next pay period?  A:    Yes, but payroll may only withhold the over-payment from the employee’s pay check with written authorization from the employee.  If your district utilizes standard TASB contracts, it states “you agree that the district may deduct any over-payments under this...
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Q:      My Board will be updating and replacing several local policies over the summer. As the custodian of records for the District, am I obligated to ensure retention of past versions of all of our board policies? How long should we maintain copies of the old policies? A:      Yes, you should retain copies of all past versions of your local policies only (not legal) for at least five years; however, it is recommended that you archive these policies permanently. Due...
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Q:      Recently, our district lost a promising teacher candidate to another district because we could not offer her a contract without board approval. During this competitive hiring season, is there a way to speed up the approval process so we don’t lose any other qualified prospective teachers? A:     Yes. Your board can delegate final hiring authority to the superintendent, pursuant to TEC §11.1513. Most school boards prefer to retain final hiring authority during the school year, but some boards chose...
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