This is a brief guide to how to write and present a resolution at the Annual General Meeting of the PEI Home and School Federation.
Resolutions about what?
As a general guideline, consider important issues that pertain to education, safety and health as they relate to students in our education system.
The PEI Home and School Federation supports equal opportunity for all students in the education system on PEI and promotes this by passing pertinent resolutions at Annual General Meetings and then forwarding these to the Department of Education and other destinations where decision-makers in government can make changes for the benefit of all Island students.
Who may submit a resolution?
- Any current Member Home and School Association
- The PEIHSF Board of Directors
NOTE: The Provincial Federation is responsible for final approval of resolutions to be presented to the AGM, through its Resolutions Committee.
What topics make good resolutions?
Any issue that affects students and schools across the province. The focus must be provincial, not specific to a single school or area.
Topics would include:
- class size / composition
- technology funding
- looking for efficiencies in education
- funding for core materials
- school fees
- bus safety, walking student safety
- clear procedures at schools on handling of violent incidents / school lockdown
- involvement of parent groups in school development planning
- pesticide use around schools
- opportunities for all children to participate in physical activity and sport
What are the steps to prepare a resolution?
- Start by discussing the issue with home and school members at a Home and School meeting to ensure that the majority of them approve.
- Draft the resolution. State your background information in a series of statements headed by Whereas, and then state the change or outcome that you want to see in a statement headed by the words, Therefore be it resolved. The actual debate and vote is only on the “Therefore be it resolved” part and not on the “Whereas” part, so it is important to include adequate background information in the Whereas part, which people will read in advance of the meeting.
- Make it easy to understand, clear and as concise as possible.
- Please fax or e-mail the final copy by January 24th to allow for review by the Resolutions Committee and revision time if necessary.
RESOLUTION: REQUEST FOR AN INCREASE IN SCHOOL BUDGET PROGRAMS
WHEREAS the budgets for school programs do not reflect the increased cost of supplies and services in the last eight years, and
WHEREAS there is limited amount of money to purchase books for school libraries and book binding (laminating, etc.), and
WHEREAS we need to decrease our children's fund raising activities for Home & School Associations and/or local schools to complement present funds from the Department of Education, and
WHEREAS schools are expected to provide technology related expenditures, such as computers, printers, wiring and additional sums for electricity, etc.
BE IT RESOLVED that the PEIHSF request that the Minister of Education designate and allocate a minimum increase of twenty percent or to increase in proportion of the cost of living whichever is greater to the existing School Program Budgets to more realistically reflect the financial needs of schools, thereby promoting the total well-being of our children.
DESTINATION: Department of Education, School Boards
- The PEIHSF Resolutions Committee is responsible to review all draft resolutions and make a decision as to whether or not the issue is current. This committee will ensure that the resolution is clear, understandable, and not in conflict with PEIHSF By-Laws. You may be contacted for additional information, clarification, etc.
- Once approved and wording finalized, the resolutions are sent to Home and School Presidents, prior to the AGM, for discussion at the local level.
- YOUR appointed AGM delegates should vote on the resolutions as directed by your members.
- Well-researched and well-written resolutions have the best chance of being passed and affecting change with decision-makers. They also help speed up the process at the AGM, by reducing the need for amendments.
What procedure is followed at the Annual General Meeting (AGM)?
If you have never presented a resolution to the AGM, call the provincial office and we will be happy to “walk you through” the process of presenting. The steps are as follows:
- A delegate from your Home and School will present your Association's resolution.
- The resolution must be seconded by another registered delegate; seconder does not have to be a member of the presenting local.
- The presenter then has an opportunity to speak to the resolution.
- Questions/comments follow from the floor . Each speaker may only speak once.
- The presenter closes discussion.
- The motion is voted on and carried by a simple majority vote.
NOTE: There is an allotted timeframe of five to ten minutes per resolution. The parliamentarian acts as the timekeeper and assists the Chair with the counting of votes.
What about issues that come out after the deadline?
Issues that arise after the submission deadline, yet before the AGM, are called “emergency” issues. The process to bring those forward to the AGM is as follows:
- Emergency resolutions must be received three days prior to the meeting, and must be approved by the committee in order to be brought before the meeting.
- The Local Association presenting the emergency resolution must bring copies for all registered delegates.
- A two-thirds majority vote is needed to allow the emergency resolution to be brought to the floor at the AGM for discussion. It then proceeds as a regular resolution, requiring a simple majority (50% plus one) to be approved.
What happens to approved resolutions after the AGM?
- Approved resolutions become PEIHSF policy, which is used by the President and other board members when speaking on behalf of the Federation.
- Resolutions are mailed to the appropriate destinations (e.g. Minister of Education, Health, Transportation) and follow-up meetings arranged with officials, if applicable.
- Follow-up information is provided to the membership at subsequent Semi-Annual and Annual Meetings of the Federation.
NOTE: All policies five years and older are regularly reviewed by the PEIHSF Board and considered for deletion or reaffirmation to keep issues current.
For more information, contact the provincial office.