1606 Brady St.
Davenport, IA

Administrative Regulation 203.13A


Collaborative Decision-Making


Commitment to Process

The board believes collaborative Decision-Making (CDM) has the potential to develop open communication, trust and the ability to problem solve for the improvement of the schools in our district.  Collaborative decision-making meaningful employee and community involvement in educational decision-making.

The quality of decisions is strengthened when the process used includes diverse perspectives and involves stakeholder groups in a meaningful way.  When decisions are made as close to the point of implementation as practical, those who assume the responsibility for the decision also assume accountability for it.  Responsible decision-making at all levels of the organization is an effective process to quality improvement.

Collaborative decision-making can create an environment that listens better and responds more quickly to parents and students.  It can also improve the work environment of school building employees, thus improving the learning environment of the students.


It is not possible to set aside our legal responsibilities or certain dimensions of our organizational roles.  Therefore, it is understood that unless exceptions are made through the waiver process, the process cannot change:

  1. Federal and State Law
  2. Iowa State Department of Education rules and regulations
  3. Davenport Community School Board Policies and Administrative Regulations
  4. The Collective Bargaining Agreements between any of the organized labor groups and the Davenport Community School District
  5. District budget

Facilitation Committee Making

To oversee CDM, and to guarantee its integrity, a Facilitation Committee shall be formed.

  1. The Purpose
  • To improve communications to, among, and from our sites
  • To facilitate improvement for learning at the level closest to the student with district-wide support
  • To provide consistency and encouragement in the midst of change
  • Does not grant waivers
  1.  It will reflect the diversity of the district and will be made up of
  • 3 representatives appointed by the DEA
  • 3 administrators (one from support services) selected by the Superintendent
  • Superintendent of Schools or designee
  • 2 Board of Education members appointed by the Board President (at least one would be expected to attend each meeting.)
  • DEA President or designee
  • 2 community members
  1. Terms of Membership
  • The three-year terms will be staggered so that no one representative group has all new members at one time
  • New members will be recruited by May of the preceding year
  1. The Role & Responsibilities
  • To give direction and guidelines to the CDM process
  • To identify resources and other support for those involved
  • To provide high quality support to empower the change process
  • To help problem solve
  • To communicate staff development needs related to CDM process
  • To monitor and/or review the CDM process and guidelines annually
  1. Meeting Time and Frequency
  • Meetings will be scheduled through mutual agreement of the committee

Guiding Questions

When making your site decisions ask:

  • Did our decision-making group consult with all the constituents involved in this issue?
  • Have we researched several alternatives?
  • Does our plan include an evaluation component?
  • Do federal laws impact our plan?
  • Do state laws impact our plan?
  • Do state/district standards impact our plan?
  • Do board policies impact our plan?
  • Do the master contracts between the district and any of the bargaining units impact our plan?
  • Does our plan impact the budget?
  • Does our plan impact support operations?  (i.e. food service, para-educators, secretaries, custodians, maintenance, transportation, etc.)

If you do not know what to do after considering the above questions, please feel free to contact the facilitation committee for help.

What Central Administration Does

  1. Facilitates setting the student performance standards, including graduation requirements
  2. Decides on the measures of student performance that will be used to assess progress toward the standards
  3. Designs common measures of results, including customer satisfaction measures and school climate
  4. Decides on who the responsible individual or group will be at the school level and the way in which that individual or individuals will be selected and evaluated
  5. Monitors performance goals for schools, and provides aggressive programs of assistance for any school not meeting those goals
  6. Allocates resources to the schools in a timely way based on needs and objectives
  7. Negotiates contracts with all certified bargaining units
  8. Establishes standards and criteria for the employment, orientation and training of all personnel
  9. Makes available to the schools the laws, regulations, policies, procedures, and employee master contracts by which the schools must operate
  10. Monitors the compliance of the schools with those laws and regulations, including audits of the schools’ financial, personnel, and performance reporting systems
  11. Provides data on results at all levels of the system
  12. Provides support and assistance to buildings about effective programs
  13. Provides a system of assigning students to schools in a legal and non-discriminator manner
  14. Arranges for the provision of all support services to the schools

What the Schools Do

  1. Provide for a leadership team for the school that will collaborate and involve the entire school community in developing and implementing the school’s goals, and plan report proceedings and decisions of this team to all stakeholders
  2. Implement a code of behavior for the student body which maintains order and discipline in the school, based upon laws, regulations, policies and procedures
  3. Add their own standards and goals which are complementary to those of the District
  4. Decide on the measures, in addition to those required by the District and state, that they will use to assess progress toward their goals, and the methods they will use to track continuous progress
  5. Search for the best educational practices available and use the results of that research to decide instructional programs that are consistent with District curriculum
  6. Recommend the staffing structure to implement the instructional program
  7. Decide how best to organize the school and assign students to classes
  8. Decide on the best way to use the non-personnel resources available to the school to get their students to the District standards
  9. Decide what skills and knowledge the staff will need to execute the plan and what professional development program is best suited to provide those skills and that knowledge
  10. Decide how the school will involve parents, and possibly social service and public health agencies, employers, and others in the life of the school and build a plan to make that involvement successful
  11. Build and implement an operational plan and operating budget that will make the best use of available resources, and continually review and revise based upon student performance data
  12. Provide all information by central administration for monitoring and auditing functions

Moving Outside Established Parameters

All parties recognize that certain parameters have been established for the process of collaborative decision-making.  The limitations listed are as follows:

  1. Federal and State Law
  2. Iowa State Department of Education Rules and Regulations
  3. Davenport Community School Board Policies and Administrative Regulations
  4. The Collective Bargaining Agreements between any of the organized labor groups and the Davenport Community School District
  5. District Budget

If and/or when individuals, programs, or schools wish to move outside those parameters, the following waivers’ procedure shall be followed:

  1. Exceptions may be requested by individuals, schools, or program areas and must fulfill the following conditions
  1. The exception must be submitted to the site council for review and recommendation
  2. Copies of the request shall be forwarded from the site council to the designated administrator for collaborative decision-making
  1. The request shall be submitted through the site council and shall contain the following information in as much detail as possible.
  1. The names and signatures of members of the site council, and, in the event of a request for a contract exception, the designated bargaining unit representative(s)
  2. The policy, regulation, practice, or contract provision to be addressed
  3. The nature of the exception
  4. The reason(s) for the exception
  5. The effect(s) that the exception may have on employees, program area departments, and other stakeholders
  6. A description of the CDM process used to develop the exception request (e.g., Were all who might be affected by the decision involved in the making of the decision?)
  7. The evaluation process that will be used for the exception
  1. The designated administrator for collaborative decision-making must receive the exceptions in a timely manner dependent upon the parameter being proposed for exception
  1. The designated administrator for collaborative decision-making shall forward the request to each of the Anchor Groups [Board of Education, the Administration and the impacted employee group(s)].  This action may or may not occur simultaneously.  The designated administrator for CDM shall make a recommendation as to the disposition of the request.  The designated administrator for CDM will convene a meeting for resolution of any question or concerns by any anchor group regarding the waiver.
  2. Impacted Anchor Group(s) will each complete action in a timely manner on the exception request.
  3. The impacted Anchor Groups shall give consent for approval of the exception request
  1. Notification of the disposition of exception requests will be given to the applicant(s) by the designated administrator in a timely manner of the final decision(s) by the impacted Anchor Groups.  The request shall be reported only as approved or disapproved
  1. If the exception is approved by the impacted Anchor Groups, the application may be sent to the Iowa Department of Education, if applicable, or may begin as planned
  2.  If the Anchor Groups do not approve the exception, it will be returned to the applicant(s)
  1. The effects of the exception shall be assessed annually and submitted to the Facilitation Committee for review and sharing with the Anchor Groups who will disseminate the results to appropriate audiences.
  • Adopted: 8/00
  • Reviewed: 7/03