What a board code of behaviour should include

A code of behaviour should set out how your board intends to behave as a team for the purpose of efficiently governing the school. It should also provide the basis for monitoring and evaluating your performance as a board.

A typical code of behaviour will feature statements about the ethical conduct of board members setting out that the board makes a commitment to:

  • ethical conduct in all areas of its responsibilities and authority
  • maintain and understand the values and goals of the school
  • protect the special character of the school
  • ensure the needs of all students and their achievement is paramount.
  • be loyal to the school and its mission
  • publicly represent the school in a positive manner
  • respect the integrity of the principal and staff
  • observe the confidentiality of non-public information acquired in their role as trustees and not disclose to any other persons such information that might be harmful to the school
  • be diligent and attend board meetings prepared for full and appropriate participation in decision making
  • ensure that individual trustees do not act independently of the board’s decisions
  • speak with one voice through its adopted policies and ensure that any disagreements with the board’s stance are resolved within the board
  • avoid any conflicts of interest with respect to their fiduciary responsibility
  • recognise the lack of authority in any individual trustee or committee/working party of the board in any interaction with the principal or staff
  • recognise that only the chair (working within the board’s agreed chair role description or delegation) or a delegate working under written delegation can speak for the board
  • continually self-monitor their individual performance as trustees against policies and any other current board evaluation tools
  • be available to undertake appropriate professional development.


 There should also be a signed, dated statement from each board member saying:

       I, xxxxxxxx, have read and understood this code of behaviour and agree to follow and abide by it to the best of my ability.

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