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Training :: Core Courses

Academy Coursework

At the heart of AASB’s academy is the “Core Curriculum,” a series of programs reviewing the basics of education governance. Two academy conferences per year (in the spring and fall) focus exclusively on a core topic. Completing all eight core courses is a prerequisite for reaching the academy’s fourth and master levels. Each core course, except for the orientation courses, is taught on a three-year rotation. Also, the state requires school board members to be trained in certain topic areas, all of which are covered in AASB’s two-course orientation that is taught several times per year.


Core Courses


ORIENTATION - Roles & Responsibilities:

New school board members and superintendents get off to a sound start with this introduction to school board service. It covers the role of the board and the superintendent, the Open Meetings Act, ethics and more. (Note: The state requires public officials to take ethics at least once. AASB’s session on ethics meets this requirement.)

Offered twice a year (January and July) | 8 hours

Or take it anytime on School Board U!


ORIENTATION - Effective Boards & Relationships:

New school board members and superintendents learn in greater depth about effective board leadership, how the board should work with its superintendent and board attorney, and the art of advocacy. (Note: The state requires public officials to complete certain orientation courses at least once. By taking both parts of AASB’s orientation, members will meet this requirement.)

Offered twice a year (January and July) | 6 hours

Or take it anytime on School Board U!


Leadership for Financial Accountability:

Beyond the basics of finance are strategies for passing tax referenda, understanding school accounting and aligning the school system’s finances with its mission in ways that help raise student achievement.

Next taught in 2022 & 2025 | 6 hours

Or take it anytime on School Board U!


Leadership for Developing a Highly Effective Staff:

This course teaches school boards how to use student achievement data to make effective staffing decisions. It also covers employee recruitment, staff development, personnel law, sexual harassment, and effective evaluations.

Next taught in 2020 & 2023 | 6 hours

Or take it anytime on School Board U!


Leadership for Academic Achievement:

Embedded in this course is the National School Boards Association’s Key Work of School Boards and other pivotal research aimed at raising student achievement. It addresses curriculum alignment, testing, data-driven decision making, research on effective learning and such related topics as special education and federal programs.

Next taught in 2019 & 2022 | 6 hours

Or take it anytime on School Board U!


Leadership for Creating Positive Climate and Culture:

The learning environment is more than just bricks and mortar. That’s why board members need to learn strategies for managing facilities, keeping schools safe, improving parental involvement, expanding internal communication and fostering teamwork.

Next taught in 2021 & 2024 | 6 hours

Or take it anytime on School Board U!


Leadership for Policy & Planning:

This course helps boards develop policies that raise student achievement, fulfill their responsibilities and comply with the law. It emphasizes strategic planning, using technology and keeping the community informed.

Next taught in 2021 & 2024 | 6 hours

Or take it anytime on School Board U!


Leadership for Community Engagement:

School boards need more than just skills to survive a television interview. Community engagement brings together public relations, media relations and internal and external communication to enhance relationships between schools and those they serve.

Next taught in 2020 & 2023 | 6 hours

Or take it anytime on School Board U!


For training forms, go here.