Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Policy Resource Guide?
What are the key components of the PRG?
In addition to sample policies, many policy topics addressed in the guide include a “Background Information” resource that provides school leaders with:
- Key policy considerations related to the topic, including questions school officials can ask themselves when making local policy decisions;
- General legal considerations related to the topic, including hyperlinks to the laws and regulations referenced; and
- Hyperlinks to selected additional resources related to the topic including WASB Legal Comments, Legal Notes, FOCUS issues and other relevant educational and other agency resources.
Some policy topics in the PRG also include sample rules (i.e., procedures) and exhibits.
What makes the PRG unique?
- It provides access to school policy development information and assistance 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, not just during regular business hours.
- Subscribers to the Policy Resource Guide not only get access to sample policies but also to the background information necessary to make appropriate local policy decisions – ones that are in line with community values, needs and interests and applicable legal requirements and are realistic to implement in the district.
- Sample policies, rules and exhibits are downloadable for local customization and local policy manual maintenance and storage.
- Subscribers to the Policy Resource Guide get access to new and updated information on a regular basis.The number of topics covered in the Policy Resource Guide grows substantially every year. In selecting new topics to add (and topics to update), the WASB prioritizes topics affected by recent changes in state and federal law and topics that are of particular interest to multiple subscribers.
How much does a subscription to the PRG cost?
The initial subscription to the PRG is for three years, with the district paying the same amount for each of the three years ($4,500 each year). There is an annual renewal fee after that. This subscription fee covers one subscription for the entire school district (see the question below regarding who has direct access). It includes access to all of the policy topic information addressed in the Policy Resource Guide at the time the initial subscription begins and any additions and changes made to it through the end of the subscription period. A district’s paid PRG subscription also entitles the district to the following “added value” benefits:
- A subscription to WASB’s subscription policy publication, The FOCUS (which is currently valued at $240) [If your district would choose to subscribe to the PRG, you would not have to pay for your FOCUS subscription next year.]
- Free access to recorded WASB Legal Webinars (such as the Title IX training modules, access to public records webinar, administrative contracts webinar, school referenda webinar, student expulsion webinar, etc.) [There is a special WASB Webinars link in the PRG, and links to related webinars (if any) are included in the “Additional Resources” section of the policy topic Background Information in the PRG]
- Free access to special “PRG Subscriber Only” Webinars (such as the Technical Excellence Scholarship Policy Webinar) [These webinars are recorded and links to the webinars are included in the “Additional Resources” section of the policy topic Background Information in the PRG]
How is the PRG useful to school boards?
How is the PRG useful to district administrators and other school administrators?
How is the PRG useful to school administrative assistants?
Who has access to the PRG in a subscribing school district?
Does a district's purchase of a subscription to the PRG include special policy writing/consulting services?
How can the WASB help subscribing districts use the PRG to efficiently update their policy manuals?
The WASB recognizes that policy development and updating work can be a time-consuming task, especially when the entire district policy manual is outdated and needs updating. To help PRG subscribers with that time-consuming task, the WASB offers the following specific assistance to districts in updating their policy manuals:
- The WASB has created the “Base Policy Package” for PRG subscribers to adapt and use as a means of updating (and maintaining into the future via updates to the Policy Package) a large number of very important policies – the policies expressly required by state and federal laws – in a relative efficient manner. For each policy mandate that WASB has identified to date, the Base Policy Package contains a sample policy (and in some cases a related rule/procedure) drawn from the samples found in the PRG. The sample policies in the package were generally selected in an attempt to: (1) reflect relatively common policy positions on the relevant policy issues, and (2) coordinate with one another.
- Districts that subscribe to the PRG and to BoardDocs™ may simply download sample PRG content directly into the BoardDocs™ policy management tool rather than downloading the PRG samples as Word documents. While BoardDocs™ provides the policy management tool, the district has total control over its online policies. If the school board passes a new policy, or updates an existing policy, district staff can make the change in BoardDocs™ that very night. For more information about BoardDocs™, including a discount for PRG subscribers, please visit our website at https://wasb.org/products-publication/boarddocs-egovernance-tools/. (Please note that a district does not have to subscribe to BoardDocs™ in order to access and use the PRG.)
- As with other general member inquiries, if a PRG subscriber has a general question regarding a particular policy topic they are working on, they can contact a WASB Policy Consultant or WASB Staff Attorney and ask their question without charge. A PRG subscriber can also contact a member of the WASB Policy or Legal Staff to ask any question they may have about PRG content or particular sample PRG policies without charge.
- The WASB can also provide a PRG subscriber with district-specific special policy writing/consulting services, upon request, on an hourly fee basis. These services include, but are not necessarily limited to: (a) reviewing an individual district policy(ies) and providing revision suggestions; (b) reviewing a section of the district’s policy manual or multiple sections of the manual and providing specific policy updating suggestions; (c) preparing policy/rule revision drafts for the district’s review based on policy and other information obtained from the district; and (d) conducting policy work sessions with board members and administrators on specific policy topics of interest to the district (this can be done onsite in the district or via technology).