Saint Paul Public Schools
The Saint Paul Public Schools (SPPS) is also known as the Independent School District (ISD) 625. There are 7 members of the School Board who are voted in an at-large manner. Until recently there hadn’t been a board member from the East Side. Jeanelle Foster is from the East Side, and technically Chue Vue was from the East Side but he was a stone’s throw from Maplewood.
We will update this area when the new members of the board are sworn in January 2018.
Saint Paul Public Schools – Board of Education
The Saint Paul Public School Board has 7 members which are voted at-large on a staggered election cycle, in the odd years. In 2017, 3 members of the School Board were elected to serve 4 years, while in 2015, 4 members of the School Board were elected. So the next time there is an election for School Board it will be in 2019 when the majority of the board will be up for election. Currently there are no Republicans on the School Board. Elections are non-partisan but the DFL endorsed candidates win every election. The St Paul Republican City Committee since 2014 has not endorsed one candidate, despite Republicans running.
The above photo is of the old board. Jeanelle Foster won in 2015 in a special election to replace Jean O’Connell who quit after former Superintendent Valeria Silva was fired. Ms Foster won a new full term to the board in 2016.
Sign up for Public Comment at Board Meetings
Board meetings are a bit odd. There is a 30 minute period before the School Board Meeting in which the Public can comment about the operation of ISD 625, specific complaints (though you can’t point to any specific board member or employee of the school district). You need to sign up prior to the meeting of board. Public Comment starts at 5:30 pm on the night of a board meeting.
We wish they would adopt the way Public Comment is handled at St Paul City Council meetings where the public can comment after a specific time during the meeting after a subject has been presented. While the City Council rarely changes it’s pre-meeting decisions it has an appearance of a conversation with the public. The school board like the City Council likes to have a meeting before the public meeting to determine how they will vote on motions or subject to discuss at the school board meeting. So essentially a “Meeting of the Board,” before the Public Board Meeting.
The link below has a form on which to sign up and a subject line for the topic you wish to discuss.
Contact Board Secretary at firstname.lastname@example.org / 651-767-8149
The Public only gets up to 3 minutes of talk time on their subject they signed up for, while paid consultants, and groups like Pacific Education Group (PEG the people who are training teachers and parents about Racial Equity) have unlimited amounts of time to talk.
Board Meetings Videos and Live Streaming
There are previous School Board Meeting Videos on the link below. When the School Board is meeting there is a live feed or streaming from the link below. You can watch it anywhere you can receive the internet. They used to have SPNN cable access live broadcasting of meetings, but the Board decided to not televise largely because of the people who would attend and embarass the board members, especially during an election season. So they stopped the cable access for a time. Now they use the link below as they have resumed live meetings through it.