Become a Member
NSPRA Bylaws and Policies guide the association, which is governed by the 12-member NSPRA Executive Board.
Articles of Incorporation
100. Legal Status
110. Goals and Values
115.2 Equity in Public Relations
120.1 NSPRA Code of Ethics
120.2 Code of Ethics Violations
130. Primary Activities
140. Recognition for Accomplishment
205. Officers – Powers and Duties
210. Executive Board
225. Committees and Advisors
230. Board/Executive Director Relationship
235. Annual Meeting
240. Association Policy Development
245. Association Memberships
250. Evaluation of Operational Procedures
255.1 Association Public Positions
255.2 Use of Association Name & Brand Assets
255.3 Executive Board Member Endorsements of Seminar Exhibitors, NSPRA Partners & Sponsors
260.1 Chapters – Purpose and Formation
260.2 Chapters – Reports
260.3 Chapters – Suspension/Revocation
260.4 Chapters – Leadership Development
260.5 Chapter – National Seminar Opportunities
265. State/Province Coordinators
270. Council of Presidents
300. Primary Functions
305. Executive Director
310. Policy Implementation
315. Absence of Executive Director
320. Administrative Reports
325. Association Annual Report
400. Goals and Objectives
410.0 Annual Seminar – Purpose and Fees
410.1 Revenue – Dues
410.2 Sale of Products & Services
410.3 Grants and Contracts
410.5 Gifts and Bequests
410.7 Reserve Fund
410.8 Sponsorships/Partnerships and Resource Development
415.1 Depository of Funds
415.2 Depository of Funds – Signatures
420. Bonded Employees
425.1 Fiscal Management – Financial Reports
430. Purchasing Procedures
435. Payment Procedures
440.1 Payroll Procedures – Pay Periods
440.2 Salary Deductions
440.3 Expense Reimbursement
450. Marketing, Production and Pricing
455. Office Closing
460. Record Retention
500. Goals and Objectives
505. Equal Opportunity Employment
510. Categories of Employment
520. Personnel Records
525. Staff Positions/Job Descriptions
530. Recruiting and Hiring
540. Orientation/Professional Growth
545. Assignment and Transfer
550. Reclassification & Promotion
555. Staff Dismissal
565. Staff Complaints & Grievances
570.1 Compensation Plan – Salary
570.2 Compensation Plan – Overtime
570.3 Compensation Plan – Compensatory Time
570.4 Compensation Plan – Holidays
570.5 Compensation Plan – Other Fringe Benefits
570.6 Compensation Plan – End-of-Year Financial Enhancements for Staff
575. Leaves of Absence
585.1 Time Schedules
585.10 Electronic Mail Use
585.2 Travel Compensation
585.3 Health and Safety
585.4 Participation in Political Activities
585.5 Solicitation/Acceptance of Gifts
585.51 Staff Endorsements of Seminar Exhibitors, NSPRA Partners & Sponsors
585.6 Release of Credit Information
585.8 Outside Employment
585.9 Staff Involvement in Decision-making
590. Anti-Fraud and Whistleblower
600. Goals and Objectives
605. Members’ Right to Information
610. Public Statements on Behalf of the Association
615. Association Endorsement
620. Use of Membership Lists
625. Complaints about the Association
630. Relations with Other Organizations/Agencies
(Amended November 1993)
We hereby associate to form a non-stock corporation under the provisions of Chapter 2 of Title 13.1 of the Code of Virginia and to that end set forth the following:
(a) The name of the corporation is NATIONAL SCHOOL PUBLIC RELATIONS ASSOCIATION.
(b) The purpose or purposes for which the corporation is organized are:
The corporation is organized exclusively for charitable, religious, educational or scientific purposes, and including for such purposes the making of distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Law).
The primary purposes of the organization shall be to serve the citizenry of the nation by promoting a better understanding of the objectives, accomplishments, and needs of public education. The Association seeks to accomplish its purposes: (1) by developing materials that will assist education leaders in building both an increased public understanding of the role of education and increased awareness, knowledge, and understanding of current management practices and educational development; (2) by placing before the public facts and viewpoints which will lead to a better understanding, appreciation, and support of public education; and (3) by encouraging the use of sound public relations procedures by all those at work in education.
In general, to carry on any other business connected with or incidental to the foregoing objects and purposes, and to have and exercise all the powers conferred by the laws of Virginia upon corporations formed under Chapter 2 of Title 13.1 of the Code of Virginia.
(c) The corporation may have classes of members as specified in its bylaws. At least two-thirds of the total number of members must have the right to cast one vote upon any proposed bylaw, upon any proposed merger or dissolution, and in any election of an officer, except that with regard to Vice President, the member shall have the right to cast one vote for the Vice President representing the member’s geographic area.
(d) The corporation shall have an Executive Board whose membership, terms of office, and methods of selection shall be specified in the Bylaws.
(e) The post office address of the initial registered office is 1801 North Moore Street, Arlington, Virginia 22209. The name of the county in which the initial registered office is located is the County of Arlington. The name of its initial registered agent is Roy K. Wilson, who is a resident of Virginia and a director of the corporation and whose business office is the same as the registered office of the corporation.
(f) The number of members constituting the initial Executive Board is ten (10) and the names and addresses of the persons who are to serve as the initial directors are:
Dade County Public Schools
1410 N.E. Second Avenue
Miami, Florida 33132
State Department of Education
714 Capitol Square
St. Paul, Minnesota 55101
Dallas Independent School District
3700 Ross Avenue
Dallas, Texas 75204
Jefferson County Public Schools
809 Quail Street
Lakewood, Colorado 80215
Ohio Education Association
225 E. Broad Street
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Montgomery County Public Schools
850 N. Washington Street
Rockville, Maryland 20850
New Jersey School Boards Association
407 W. State Street
Trenton, New Jersey 08605
Florida Department of Education
Tallahassee, Florida 32304
Intermediate School District 110
100 Crockett Street
Seattle, Washington 98109
National School Public Relations Association
1801 N. Moore Street
Arlington, Virginia 22209
(g) Provisions for the regulation of the internal affairs of the corporation, including provisions for distribution of assets on dissolution or final liquidation:
The corporation shall be strictly a non-profit, non-stock, and non-political organization whose mission and policies are contained in bylaws adopted, and from time to time amended, by a majority vote of members. The policy direction of the corporation is provided by an Executive Board which is elected by a majority vote of members. No part of the income or assets of the corporation shall inure to any member, officer, or member of the Executive Board, except as compensation for specific duties performed under the direction of others in authority.
Upon dissolution of the corporation, the Executive Board shall, after paying or making provision for the payment of all the liabilities of the corporation, dispose of all the assets of the corporation exclusively for the purposes of the corporation in such manner, or to such organization or organizations organized and operated exclusively for charitable, educational, religious, or scientific purposes as shall at the time qualify as an exempt organization or organizations under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Law), as the Executive Board shall determine.
Dated March 27, 1973
Commonwealth of Virginia
Back to Top
Section 1. NSPRA is the leader in developing professionals to communicate strategically, build trust and foster positive relationships in support of their school communities.
Section 1. Membership in the Association shall be defined as follows:
Professional Member – A person who has professional responsibilities in educational public relations in a non-profit or not-for-profit capacity (i.e., school district, education agency, government agency) is eligible for NSPRA professional membership. Professional members have the right to vote and to hold office, and to apply to become candidates for Universal Accreditation.
Associate Member – A person who is interested in and supportive of educational public relations may become a NSPRA associate member. Associate members may not vote, are not eligible to hold office, and are not eligible to become candidates for Universal Accreditation.
Professional Partner – A person who has professional responsibilities in educational public relations in a for-profit capacity may become a NSPRA professional partner. Professional partners may apply to become candidates for Universal Accreditation but may not vote and are not eligible to hold office.
Retired Membership - A person who has retired from responsibilities in educational public relations is eligible for a retired professional membership. Retired members receive membership materials, benefits and access to resources similar to professional level members and are eligible to maintain accreditation, but are not eligible to vote or run for office.
Student Membership - A person who is currently enrolled in a secondary school or higher education institution is eligible for student membership. Student members receive membership materials, benefits and access to resources similar to associate-level members, but are not eligible to vote, run for office or apply to become candidates for accreditation.
Revised: July 2023
Section 1. The Executive Board of the Association shall consist of the President, President-elect, and ten (10) Vice Presidents. All shall be Association members.
Section 2. The Executive Board of the Association shall be charged with the duty of doing whatever may be necessary for the furtherance of the purposes of the Association, the attainment of the purposes of the Articles of Incorporation, the study and teaching of its ideals, its ethics, and its unique features or organization.
Section 3. The Executive Board shall assist the President in preparing programs for the Annual and other meetings of the Association, shall authorize appointment of all committees, and shall formulate policies for the program and services of the Association.
Section 4. The Executive Board may direct the Executive Director in the depositing or investing of such moneys as the Association may receive, and may direct the Executive Director in all business arrangements made on behalf of the Association.
Section 5. The Executive Board of the Association shall meet at such times and places as may be determined by action of the Board, by call of the President, or by written request of a majority of the Board. A written notice of the time and place of all meetings of the Executive Board shall be sent to each Board member by the President not less than ten (10) days prior to said meeting. Regular meetings of the Executive Board shall be posted in advance on the Association website.
Section 6. The agenda for each Executive Board meeting shall include a time to review and consider input and issues from members and chapters. The Executive Board shall consider these communications and shall communicate its action on such matters to those presenting them and, through its minutes, to interested members.
Section 7. A majority of the members of the Executive Board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of all business, except in cases where a larger vote is required under these Bylaws.
Section 8. The Executive Board may remove any elected officer from office: a) if the officer fails to attend two consecutive Board meetings; b) if in the Board’s judgment the officer’s actions have caused serious damage to the Association or its reputation. Such removal shall require a two-thirds vote of the Board.
Section 1. Officers of the Association shall be a President; a President-elect (who shall become President after one year’s service as President-elect); a Vice President for Diversity Engagement; two Vice Presidents at Large; seven Vice Presidents distributed geographically in the Northeast, Mideast, Southeast, North Central, South Central, Northwest, and Southwest sections of the United States, the Territories and Canada; and an Executive Director.
Section 2. The seven regions shall consist of the Northeast, Mideast, Southeast, North Central, South Central, Northwest and Southwest sections of the United States, the Territories and Canada.
The Executive Board will conduct a formal review of the regional alignment every ten (10) years, the first review to be completed in 1995. The Executive Board may authorize a formal review at any time.
The Northeast area shall include: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Eastern Ontario, Prince Edward Island and Quebec.
The Mideast area shall include: District of Columbia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio, Virginia and West Virginia.
The Southeast area shall include: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands.
The North Central area shall include: Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario.
The Northwest area shall include: Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, Alberta, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Saskatchewan and Yukon.
The South Central area shall include: Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas.
The Southwest area shall include: Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming.
Section 3. The President shall hold office for the period of one year. It shall be the duty of the President to preside or to arrange for presiding officers at all meetings and, in conjunction with the Executive Board, to prepare programs for the Annual and other meetings of the Association, and to appoint all committees not otherwise provided for. The President shall be chairperson and a member of the Executive Board and shall call meetings of the Board on not less than ten (10) days notice whenever the president deems it necessary or whenever the president is requested to do so by a majority of the membership of the Board. The President shall be a nonvoting ex-officio member of all committees and shall perform all other duties commonly associated with this office.
Section 4. The President-elect shall hold office for the period of one year, beginning the first day of October following the individual’s election as President-elect and shall become President one year later, beginning on the first day of October. In the event of the President’s temporary disability or absence from meetings, the President-elect shall perform the President’s duties.
In case of vacancy in the office of President, the President-elect shall at once succeed to the office of President to fill out the unexpired term, and shall continue to serve as President for the full term to which the individual has been elected.
Section 5. Regional Vice Presidents and the Vice President for Diversity Engagement shall hold office for three years, beginning the first day of October following their election. Regional Vice Presidents are responsible for furthering two-way communication with chapters and members; furthering the mission and goals of the Association at the regional, chapter and local level; and communicating needs/desires of chapters and individuals to the Association.
Regional Vice Presidents from the Northwest and Southeast areas shall be elected in the same calendar year beginning with the term 1976-79; Regional Vice Presidents from the Southwest, Mideast, and Northeast areas shall be elected in the same calendar year beginning with the term 1977-80; and Regional Vice Presidents from the North Central and South Central areas shall be elected in the same calendar year beginning with the term 1978-81.
A Vice President for Diversity Engagement shall be a member of the Association’s historically underrepresented groups, elected by the membership to serve a three-year term.
Section 6. Vice Presidents at Large are appointed by a majority vote of the elected members of the Executive Board to two-year terms that begin the first day of October following their appointment. The first Vice President at Large will be appointed in Spring 1999; the second in Spring 2000. The purpose of this position is to provide the Executive Board with membership representation or expertise that is not provided through the election process.
Section 7. No elective officer shall serve in the same capacity for more than one consecutive full term. Any Regional Vice President who has been or will be elected or appointed to a one-year term as Regional Vice President shall be eligible to run again for this office, as provided in Section 8.
Section 8. A vacancy of one year in the office of Regional Vice President or Vice President for Diversity Engagement will be filled by the Executive Board until the next regular election, at which time a successor will be elected to fill the unexpired term. In the case of a vacancy that is two years in length, the Executive Board will appoint an individual to fill the two-year term to ensure continuity and stability in the position. Vacancy in the office of President-elect, caused by the succession of the President-elect to the Presidency shall remain unfilled. In all cases, a vacancy in the office of President-elect shall be filled by a special election conducted in the same manner that is provided for holding the annual election of officers. Vacancy in the office of Vice President at Large shall be filled by the Executive Board for the remainder of the term.
Section 1. The election of the President-elect, Vice President for Diversity Engagement and Regional Vice Presidents to succeed those whose terms are expiring shall be conducted by sending a ballot to eligible voting members of the Association.
Section 2. The Regional Vice Presidents shall be elected only by members within their respective geographical areas. Someone who affiliates with an Association chapter (i.e., a member of a state/regional chapter) which had one of its members serving as a Regional Vice President for the immediately preceding term of office shall be ineligible for election as a Regional Vice President except as provided in Article IV, Section 7.
Section 3. The Executive Board Search Committee shall seek out, encourage and secure at least one qualified candidate to run for each elected Executive Board position that will become vacant the following year. The Committee shall report the results of its search to the President and Executive Director by May 1. The official slate of candidates will be announced in the next issue of the Association’s primary member publication and posted to the Association website. The Committee shall introduce the slate of candidates to the membership at the Annual Meeting of the Association.
Section 4. The ballot shall be sent on or before August 15 and returned not later than midnight of the fifteenth working day from that date. On or before September 30, the Board of Tellers shall officially certify and announce the results of the election. The person who receives the plurality in the balloting for each office shall be declared elected by the Executive Board.
In the event of a tie vote, ballots shall be resent to the membership (as designated in Sections 1 and 2) within five business days. Completed ballots from members must be postmarked or received electronically not later than ten (10) business days from the date ballots were resent. The Board of Tellers shall reconvene as soon as possible to officially certify and announce the results of the second ballot. The person who receives the plurality in the balloting for the contested office shall be declared elected by the Executive Board.
The Executive Board has the authority to waive or modify an election deadline if necessary and appropriate to facilitate a swift resolution of the tie vote.
In the event that a candidate runs uncontested, the Executive Board may affirm the candidate by acclamation and no election will be held for that office.
Section 1. Meetings of the Association shall be held at such times and places as shall be determined by the Executive Board of the Association. One of these meetings shall be designated by the Executive Board as the Annual Meeting. At the Annual Meeting, the President shall report on the significant activities and actions of the Association and the Executive Board. Members shall have an opportunity to discuss Association activities and plans with the Executive Board and/or Executive Director and to present matters for the future consideration of the Executive Board. Notice of this meeting shall be posted on the Association website at least ten (10) days prior to the date of such meeting.
Section 2. The most recent edition of Robert’s Rules of Order shall govern in all business meetings of the Association in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with the Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, and policies of this Association.
Section 1. Standing Committees engage in activities that are continuing in the program of the Association. With the exception of those specifically listed in this Article, they may be created or dissolved as the need indicates by the President, with the approval of the Executive Board. Chairpersons and members of standing committees shall be appointed by the President except as set forth in this Article, Section 1(a), (e), and (f).
Section 2. Special committees may be appointed for the following purposes:
The dues of the Association shall be established by the Executive Board. Any changes in dues shall include an effective date.
NSPRA Chapters serve as a link between the Association and its members. Chapters shall be established to carry out programs and provide services which respond to members’ needs and reflect the mission and goals of the Association; to articulate the needs and concerns of members to the Executive Board; and to alert the Association to trending public relations topics and concerns.
Section 1. The Executive Board may establish Chapters of the Association on petition of ten (10) or more members in good standing in a given area. In each instance, the exact territory of chapter jurisdiction shall be determined by the Executive Board.
Section 2. Chapters may establish dues for their members in addition to the dues members pay to the national Association. Chapters shall elect their own officers. By September 1, 2002, the chapter President, President-elect (or other officer who succeeds as President), Treasurer and one other elected chapter officer shall be members of the national Association and all other chapter officers and members should be encouraged to be members of the national Association.
Section 3. Bylaws of each chapter shall be approved by the Executive Board of the Association before adoption by the Chapter. Amendments to the Bylaws of a chapter must be approved by the Executive Board of the national Association to become effective.
Section 4. Effective October 2005, members may belong to and vote in more than one local chapter, but may not hold elective office in more than one chapter at a time. Membership may be transferred from one chapter to another if approved by the latter chapter.
Section 5. Upon evidence of chapter inactivity for a period of two consecutive years, the Executive Board of the Association has the authority to revoke the chapter charter.
Section 1. These Bylaws may be amended by a majority vote of members, provided the proposed amendments shall have been approved by the Executive Board or presented by petition of at least ten (10) percent of the members to the Executive Board for submission to the membership no later than thirty (30) days following the next regular meeting of the Executive Board. All amendments must be submitted to the membership at least thirty (30) days prior to sending the ballot and must include the effective date of the amendment if different from that specified in Section 2 of this Article.
Section 2. Proposed amendments shall be published at least thirty (30) days before the ballots are sent to eligible voting members. Members shall have at least fifteen (15) working days from the date the ballot is sent in which to return their ballots. The Election Tellers Committee will meet to certify the results, which will be announced not later than thirty (30) days following the ballot deadline. The effective date of any amendment shall be thirty (30) days following the ballot deadline unless otherwise specified on the notice and the ballot containing the amendment.
Amended: December 2001; October 2004; September 2005; September 2006; September 2007; September 2008; September 2010; June 2021; October 2022
The National School Public Relations Association is a non-stock corporation under the provisions of Chapter 2, Title 13.1 of the Code of Virginia.
The corporation is organized exclusively for charitable, religious, education or scientific purposes and qualifies as an exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Law).
See: Articles of Incorporation
Adopted: March 1973
Amended: November 1993
NSPRA is the leader in developing professionals to communicate strategically, build trust and foster positive relationships in support of their school communities.
Adopted: July 1994
Revised: July 1996; July 1998; July 2002, June 2021
Goal 1. Be known as the leader in school communications
Goal 2. Grow and retain membership
Goal 3: Ensure efficient, effective and up-to-date systems
Goal 4: Deliver relevant, high-impact programs
Revised: July 2002; March 2006; March 2008; March 2016; July 2019, June 2021
Revised: July 1996; July 1998; July 2002; March 2006; March 2016; July 2019, June 2021
The National School Public Relations Association shall treat all persons equally without regard to race, color, religion (creed), national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender expression, gender nonconforming, age, marital status or disability unrelated to the function to be performed. This commitment relates to membership practices, employment practices, materials produced by the Association, and relations with other organizations and the public.
Specifically, the Association shall:
Adopted: July 1979
Revised: March 1994, November 2019
Public Relations professionals around the world are continually involved in counseling and advising organizations on the importance of equitable treatment of employees, customers and other publics. Increasingly, the diversity of our organizations, our workplaces and our societies present new challenges and opportunities.
The Association is dedicated to fostering excellence in the public relations and communications professions and to promoting an understanding of diversity,
equity, inclusion and belonging within our associations, professions and the organizations with which our members work.
Therefore, NSPRA adopts the following goals:
Adopted: November 1994 ,Revised: July 2023
The National School Public Relations Association shall have a Code of Ethics for members, as follows:
The education public relations professional shall:
A member shall, as soon as possible, sever relations with any organization or individual if such relationship requires conduct contrary to the articles of this Code.
Adopted: July 1981
The National School Public Relations Association declares that the practice of public relations is endowed with the public trust. High standards must be maintained. Adhering to the NSPRA Code of Ethics safeguards the profession and proves to the public that members of NSPRA conduct themselves in a manner deserving that public trust.
Reports of alleged violations of the Code of Ethics will activate the following steps:
Adopted: November 1994
Revised: November 2006, March 2022
Membership in the Association shall be defined as follows:
See: Bylaws, Article II
Revised: March 1994; November 2010; October 2022
The National School Public Relations Association shall conduct the following primary activities.
The Association shall provide professional learning opportunities for members, other education personnel and the public.
A National Seminar shall be conducted annually to provide a wide range of professional learning and information. The Executive Director shall be responsible for developing the agenda and selecting the geographic location and facilities for each Seminar. The Executive Director will use a site selection rubric to select a Seminar site.
Other professional learning offerings may be developed to fill a variety of needs.
Publications and Products
A primary activity of the Association shall be the development, production and marketing of publications and other materials. The purpose and content of all such products shall be consistent with the goals and objectives of the Association.
The Executive Director or their designee shall be responsible for determining subject matter, titles, pricing, and all other details of production and marketing.
Foundation for the Advancement of Education
The Association maintains the Foundation for the Advancement of Education as a separate 501(c)(3) to build support and understanding of education in a democratic society. The Foundation accepts and administers funds that provide for: research furthering the role of communication and school public relations; special professional learning projects; scholarships to the annual NSPRA Seminar; and other projects as designated by the Foundation Board. The Foundation also administers the NSPRA Leaders Memorial Scholarship funds.
The Foundation is administered by a Board comprised of current Executive Board members.
Funds for the Foundation are maintained in a separate interest-bearing account. Donations to the Foundation are accepted from members or other interested persons or organizations.
Revised: March 1994; March 2006; June 2009; July 2023
The Association shall provide the following opportunities for members and chapters to gain recognition for their achievements and for the education public relations profession.
The Association shall participate in or provide an accreditation program for the purpose of raising professional standards, improving the practice of education public relations and providing an incentive for members to broaden their knowledge and improve their skills and performance.
The Association shall conduct annual contests to recognize excellence in education publications and electronic media, communication services, public relations/communications/marketing programs and/or other informational materials.
The Association shall sponsor awards to honor Association members and others for outstanding contributions to the field of education public relations.
The Association shall sponsor an annual recognition program for chapters to recognize outstanding efforts to build support for education and the importance of effective communication, promote the school public relations profession and professionalism of members, and support the goals and objectives of the Association.
Revised: March 1994; November 2001; July 2006; November 2008; June 2009; July 2023
The Association considers accreditation as the hallmark of the school public relations professional and all professional members of the Association are strongly encouraged to earn their Accreditation of Public Relations (APR).
Beginning January 1, 1999, the Association shall participate in the Universal Accreditation Program. Members of the Association who have earned the ASPR designation from NSPRA are designated as APR.
The Association shall adhere to the Bylaws, Policies and Procedures adopted by the Universal Accreditation Board, and beginning January 1, 1999, it shall:
Revised: March 1994; November 1995; March 1997; March 1998; March 1999; July 1999; November 2001; November 2019
The NSPRA Presidents Award is the highest honor bestowed by the Association. It is given to recognize a (living) individual NSPRA member for outstanding professionalism and integrity throughout a career as an educational public relations practitioner. In addition, it recognizes the member’s active involvement in and substantive professional contributions to NSPRA as well as the profession of educational public relations.
Learning and Liberty Award
The NSPRA Learning and Liberty Award reflects the symbolism of the Education Flag of Learning and Liberty, and is given in recognition of outstanding efforts to build collaborative partnerships among schools, business and community, and the home, and to foster respect, understanding and civic cooperation between people of all backgrounds and beliefs.
The Learning and Liberty Award is a special purpose recognition that may be used by the Association to honor individuals deemed to embody the tenets and symbolism of the Award and who demonstrate a deep commitment to education and strong support for effective communication and the mission of NSPRA.
The award will only be given as deemed appropriate.
Bob Grossman Leadership in School Communications Award
The Bob Grossman Leadership in School Communications Award recognizes a practicing superintendent of schools or CEO of an education agency, service center or intermediate unit for outstanding leadership in school public relations.
Barry Gaskins Mentor Legacy Award
The Barry Gaskins Mentor Legacy Award recognizes a practicing school public relations professional for outstanding efforts in mentoring colleagues new to school PR, providing counsel and advice on job success; and assisting colleagues in their professional development by creating or providing programs and activities designed to improve PR skills and knowledge. The recipient will be allowed to designate a mentee of their choice to receive a scholarship to the following year’s NSPRA Seminar.
Criteria for Creating a New Award
Any request to create a new award to honor a member must meet the following criteria:
A proposal to create a new award to honor a member must be submitted in writing, provide a rationale for the award, meet the above-stated criteria, and be supported by at least three past presidents. The Executive Board will consider the proposal at its next meeting.
Criteria for Renaming Existing Awards
Any request to consider re-naming an existing award to honor a member must meet the following criteria:
A proposal to rename an existing award to honor another member must be submitted in writing, provide a rationale for changing the name of the award, meet the above-stated criteria, and be supported by at least three past presidents. The Executive Board will consider the proposal at its next meeting.
Revised: March 1994; November 2001; July 2003; November 2005; March 2006; July 2006; June 2009; July 2022
Revised: March 1994; November 2008
NSPRA Leaders Memorial Scholarship Fund
The NSPRA Leaders Memorial Scholarship Fund, maintained through the Foundation, is created to enable families and colleagues to honor deceased members.
Adopted: July 2006
Revised: November 2008
The President of the Association shall preside at all meetings of the Executive Board and of the Association, or arrange for a presiding officer. The President, in conjunction with the Board and the Executive Director, shall prepare programs for the Annual and other meetings of the Association, shall appoint all committees not otherwise provided for in the Bylaws, and shall be an ex-officio, non-voting member of all committees.
The President shall chair the Board and shall have the same right as other members to discuss questions and to vote on resolutions and motions.
The President shall call meetings of the Board and shall perform such other duties as are commonly associated with this office.
See: Bylaws, Article IV, Sections 1 and 3.
Adopted: October 1979, March 2022
The President-elect shall assist the President and shall assume the duties of the President in the President's absence.
In the event of a vacancy in the office of President, the President-elect shall at once succeed to the office of President to fill out the unexpired term, and shall continue to serve as President for the full term to which the individual was elected.
See: Bylaws, Article IV, Sections 1 and 4.
Adopted: October 1979
Revised: July 1997, March 2022
Vice Presidents shall be members of the Executive Board, and in that capacity, shall work for the good of the Association as a whole.
Regional Vice Presidents assist with communications contact and activity between the Board, the Executive Director and national office, and the chapters, state/province coordinators, and individual members in their respective regions. They help keep chapters and members informed of Association activities, policies, and other pertinent information, and will bring the region’s concerns to the Board.
The Vice President for Diversity Engagement shall help the Association engage with historically underrepresented members and be part of the Board’s efforts to look at its work through an equity mindsetlens.
The two Vice Presidents at Large are appointed by a majority vote of the elected members of the Executive Board to two-year terms. The purpose of this position is to provide the Executive Board with membership representation or expertise that is not provided through the election process.
VICE PRESIDENT JOB DESCRIPTION
As a member of the Board:
As a Representative:
As a regional Vice President:
As Vice President for Diversity Engagement:
As Vice President at Large (appointed):
Works with the specific member group (i.e., superintendents, urban educators, school board members) or subject matter expert group (i.e., engagement, advocacy, communication and technology, etc.) to identify and anticipate opportunities and threats to pre-K-12 education, and elevate the group’s perspectives and expertise to the NSPRA Board.
Provides leadership and works with colleagues and NSPRA staff in support of coalitions, working groups, commissions and task forces.
Contributes to organizational discussion and efforts on the broad range of issues facing education and school public relations.
Works with a task force on special projects related to the specific member group or subject matter expert group, as needed.
Supports building member competency in strategic and effective school public relations as it relates to the represented specific member group or subject matter expert group, as needed.
Informs specific member group or subject matter expert group about issues and activities of NSPRA.
Works with Regional Vice Presidents to achieve goals.
Identifies and recruits association members from the representative professional or subject matter expert group.
Assists in developing professional learning activities in public relations and communications for the specific member group or subject matter expert group.
See: Bylaws, Article IV, Sections 1, 5 and 6.
Revised: July 1991; March 1999; November 2005; July 2007; July 2012; July 2013; July 2022
The Immediate Past President shall serve as the chair of the Past Presidents’ Council and is encouraged to (1) keep the Past Presidents’ Council informed of the state of NSPRA; and (2) work with Past Presidents’ Council members on projects beneficial to NSPRA members, as needed.
See: Bylaws, Article IV, Sections 1 and 5
Adopted: November 1993
Revised: July 1997, March 1999
The President, President-elect, and all Vice Presidents shall begin their terms on the first day of October following their election or appointment.
The President shall hold office for one year.
The President-elect shall hold office for one year and shall become President one year later.
The Vice President for Diversity Engagement shall be elected beginning in 1999, and shall hold office for a period of three years.
Regional Vice Presidents shall hold office for a period of three years. Vice Presidents from the Northwest and Southeast regions shall be elected in the same calendar year beginning with the term 1976-79. Vice Presidents from the Southwest, Mideast and Northeast regions shall be elected in the same calendar year beginning with the term 1977-80. Vice Presidents from the North Central and South Central regions shall be elected in the same calendar year beginning with the term 1978-81.
One Vice President at Large shall be appointed by the Executive Board in Spring 1999. A second Vice President at Large shall be appointed by the Executive Board in Spring 2000. Each shall hold office for a term of two years.
See: Bylaws, Article IV, Sections 3, 4, 5 and 6.
Revised: April 1981; November 1993; March 1999; November 2001; November 2005
Ballots shall be sent to all eligible voting members (those holding a current professional-level membership) by August 15 and completed ballots from members must be received not later than the fifteenth working day from that date.
Professional members shall be eligible to vote for the President-elect, Vice President for Diversity Engagement and for the Vice President representing their region.
On or before September 30, the Election Tellers Committee shall officially count the ballots and certify the results of the election. The person receiving a plurality for each office on the ballot shall be elected.
In the event of a tie vote, ballots shall be re-sent to the membership (as designated in Sections 1 and 2 of Bylaws Article V – Elections) within five (5) business days. Completed ballots from members must be received not later than ten (10) business days from the date ballots were resent. The Election Tellers Committee shall reconvene as soon as possible to officially certify and announce the results of the second ballot. The person who receives the plurality in the balloting for the contested office shall be declared elected by the Executive Board.
See: Bylaws, Article V
Revised: October 1990; March 1999; November 2001; November 2005; March 2008; November 2010
At the fall Executive Board meeting, prior to the end of the term of a Vice President at Large, the Executive Board will discuss and decide upon the area of membership representation or expertise that is needed on the Executive Board.
The Association will make an announcement and will encourage candidates to submit their interest for this available position. The President-elect will bring all interested candidates to the Executive Committee and the Executive Director for review. The Executive Committee and Executive Director will recommend a candidate to the full Board for its approval. The Executive Director may recommend a one- or two-year extension of the term of a Vice President at Large if that person has not completed specific goals that benefit the Association. A majority vote of officers present at the Executive Board meeting is required for appointment of the Vice President at Large.
Upon approval by the Board, the President shall notify the appointee. If that person is unwilling or unable to serve, the Executive Committee and Executive Director will submit another candidate to the Board for its approval.
See: Bylaws, Article IV, Section 6 and 8
Adopted: October 1980
Revised: April 1981, November 1993, March 1999, July 2001, March 2006, March 2007, March 2022
Any officer who no longer meets the qualifications for the office, according to the Association Bylaws or policies or position description, shall resign.
If any officer other than the Executive Director fails to attend two consecutive Board meetings, or the person, in the Board’s judgment, causes serious damage to the Association or its reputation, an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the Board may remove that person from office.
See: Bylaws, Article III, Section 8.
Adopted: May 1980; November 1996
A vacancy in the office of President will be filled by the President-elect, who will serve the unexpired term and for the full term to which the individual was elected.
A vacancy in the office of President-elect caused by succession of the President-elect to the presidency shall remain unfilled until the next President-elect takes office. If the President-elect resigns, or is otherwise unable to continue in office, the vacancy will be filled by a special election conducted in the same manner as other elections of officers.
A vacancy of one year in the office of Regional Vice President or Vice President for Diversity Engagement will be filled by the Executive Board until the next regular election, at which time a successor will be elected. In the case of a vacancy that is two years in length, the Executive Board will appoint an individual to fill the two-year term to ensure continuity and stability in the position.
A vacancy in an office of Vice President at Large may be filled by the Executive Board for the remainder of the unexpired term.
See: Bylaws, Article IV, Section 8.
Revised: March 1999, November 2001, November 2005, September 2021, March 2022
Members of the Executive Board of the Association shall endeavor to:
Revised: March 2022
Each year, candidates for office will be invited to attend the Executive Board meeting prior to the Annual Meeting at their own expense to observe the Board in action.
Orientation will be provided for new Board members prior to their first Fall meeting.
Revised: November 2001
Executive Board members shall serve without compensation.
The Association’s annual budget will provide an amount for Executive Board members’ communication with chapters and members.
Executive Board members will be reimbursed for:
See: Policy 440.3
Revised: April 1992; November 2019
When traveling on official business for the Association, Executive Board members are covered by a travel accident policy that provides accidental death and medical expense benefits.
Travel commences when the Board member departs from home or office for the approved travel, and ends when the individual returns from the official function.
Resolutions of appreciation shall be given to Executive Board members at the end of their term on the Board.
Officers of the Association must be Association members who are eligible to vote and to hold office. They should meet the Association’s Standards for School Public Relations Professionals. They should have demonstrated interest in and commitment to the goals and objectives of the Association and the activities necessary to the achievement of those goals.
Officers are expected to attend regular and special Executive Board meetings as well as other necessary meetings and appearances on behalf of the Association. They should have the approval of their employer to run for office.
A. To be eligible to be a candidate for an NSPRA elective office, members must:
B. A member may not run for office if:
C. It is preferred that a candidate for NSPRA President-elect be Accredited in Public Relations.
Revised: March 2000, November 2001, July 2012, July 2021
The Executive Board Search Committee (EBSC) annually shall seek out and identify a slate of one or more qualified candidates for each elected office that will become vacant the following year. The slate should represent the diversity of NSPRA’s members.
The Association shall make an announcement and encourage candidates to submit their interest. Information should be sent to all chapter presidents in January to inform them about the nominating process and to ask them to encourage strong candidates to seek NSPRA offices.
Candidates’ nomination materials must be submitted to the EBSC on or before April 1 for NSPRA offices that will become vacant in October. By April 25, the EBSC will complete its work of securing candidates. By May 1, the EBSC chair shall report the results of its search to the NSPRA President and Executive Director. The official slate of candidates will be announced in the next issue of the Association’s primary member publication and posted to the Association website. The EBSC shall introduce the slate of candidates to the membership at the Annual Meeting of the Association.
See: Bylaws, Article V, Section 3; Policy 225.13
Revised: January and April 1984; November 1993; March and November 1994; November 1997; March 1999; March 2000; November 2001; November 2005; November 2010
A. General Campaign Practices
B. Campaign Practices at the NSPRA Seminar
C. Campaign Tables
At the request of a candidate, the Association will provide a designated space and table at the Annual Seminar from which to conduct his/her campaign. Candidates must pay for any electrical, AV support or other materials they wish to use.
Revised: March 2000, July 2002, November 2004, November 2005, July 2008, July 2010, November 2010, November 2019, March 2022
A. Filing a Complaint
If a voting member of the Association alleges a violation of NSPRA Policy 205.140, Campaigning for Office and files a formal complaint against a candidate, the following procedure shall be followed:
During years in which there is a contested election, the President will appoint a committee composed of two members of the Executive Board and the chair of the Executive Board Search Committee. This committee will be responsible for monitoring the campaign process, reviewing complaints and making recommendations on any sanctions.
C. Complaint Process
All complaints will be kept confidential unless the investigation or eventual remedy may reveal the source. If confidentiality cannot be maintained for these or other reasons, the President shall notify the complainant of the circumstances and offer the complainant the opportunity to withdraw, sustain or amend the complaint.
Failure to comply with or violations of NSPRA Policy 205.140, Campaigning for Office and/or the candidate’s Campaign Pledge may result in actions ranging from an oral or written reprimand to disqualification. A candidate found to be in violation will be notified immediately of the consequences.
Adopted: March 2000
It is Association policy always to maintain an ethical environment. To that end, NSPRA has developed this policy to assure that Executive Board members, committee members, employees, and others in positions of trust have a mechanism to disclose existing or potential conflicts of interest (or the appearance of conflict) and that the organization has a process to determine appropriate actions as necessary.
Among the purposes of this policy is to protect NSPRA’s interests when it is contemplating entering into a transaction or arrangement that might benefit the private interest of an Executive Board member, committee member, employee of NSPRA or another individual or entity.
This policy is intended to supplement, but not replace, any applicable federal or state laws governing conflicts of interest applicable to nonprofit and charitable corporations.
While serving on the Executive Board, NSPRA members shall not be paid any financial remuneration for services rendered to the Association.
A. Conflict of Interest
Any Executive Board member, committee member, employee, or others in positions of trust have duties to NSPRA of honesty, good faith, and fairness. If not disclosed, a conflict of interest or the appearance of a conflict of interest breaches these duties.
Defined broadly, a conflict of interest can refer to any situation in which a decision-maker is influenced in an organizational decision by personal, financial, business, or other concerns unrelated to NSPRA’s best interests. A conflict of interest may exist in any instance where the actions or activities of an individual on behalf of NSPRA also involve an improper gain or advantage for the individual, or an adverse effect on NSPRA’s interests.
Following are some explanations of the types of activities that may cause conflict and that should be fully reported to NSPRA. It is not an inclusive list
1. Outside Interests - Outside interests that need to be fully disclosed are:
(a) Directly or indirectly holding a position or a material financial interest in any outside concern from which the individual has reason to believe NSPRA secures goods or services (including the services of buying or selecting stocks, bonds, or other securities) or that provides services competitive with NSPRA.
(b) Directly or indirectly competing with NSPRA in the purchase or sale of property or property rights, interests, or services.
2. Outside Activities - Outside activities include rendering directive, managerial, or consultative services to any concern that does business with, or competes with, the services of NSPRA or rendering other services in competition with NSPRA.
3. Family Interests and Activities - A conflict of interest may be considered to exist relative to the interests or activities of a member of an individual’s family if the actions or activities involve an improper gain or advantage for the individual, or an adverse effect on NSPRA’s interests. For the purpose of this policy, “family” includes spouse, cohabitant partners, children, parents, siblings, stepparents or stepchildren, grandparents, dependents or persons residing in the same household as the individual’s decisions and/or actions on behalf of NSPRA.
4. Gifts, Gratuities, and Entertainment - If an Executive Board member, committee member, employee, and others in positions of trust accepts a gift, excessive entertainment, or other favors from any outside concern that does business with NSPRA, seeks to do business with NSPRA, or who is a competitor of NSPRA, it could be inferred that the action was intended to influence the NSPRA individual in the performance of the individual's duties. This does not include the acceptance of items of nominal or minor value that are clearly tokens of respect or friendship and not related to any particular NSPRA transaction or activity.
5. Information - Executive Board members, committee members, employees, and others in positions of trust have a duty not to disclose or use confidential or proprietary information relating to NSPRA’s business for personal profit or to the advantage of individuals or entities other than NSPRA, and have the duty to disclose any instance where such conduct has occurred or could be perceived as having occurred.
B. Conflict of Interest Procedure
A detailed procedure has been developed that outlines the annual conflict of interest disclosure process, duty of disclosure, and the process for review, and to addresses conflict issues arising in Board or committee meetings.
The procedure allows for both retrospective and prospective disclosure. Retrospective disclosure is satisfied through completion of the annual Conflict of Interest (COI) Questionnaire, as described in A. Annual Conflict of Interest Disclosure Process below. Prospective disclosure occurs when an Executive Board member, committee member, employee, or others in positions of trust recognizes the potential for an actual or perceived conflict of interest as defined in A. Conflict of Interest (above) and reports the issue to the individual's supervisor for review and approval as outlined in B. Duty of Disclosure below.
A. Annual Conflict of Interest Disclosure Process - NSPRA will annually require Executive Board members, committee members, employees, and others in positions of trust as determined by the Executive Board to provide a complete written disclosure of all transactions, interests, or associations of such person and the family of such person that are the subject of any doubt concerning the possible existence of a conflict of interest. To that end, these people will receive a copy of this policy and the NSPRA-approved COI Questionnaire to be completed and returned. Any new Executive Board member, committee member, others in positions of trust or selected staff members must participate in a similar procedure immediately upon assumption of responsibilities. If a potential conflict of interest is known, the individual must obtain prospective review before assuming the responsibilities of the position.
B. Duty of Disclosure - Any Executive Board member, committee member, others in positions of trust or selected staff members must disclose any situation or circumstances involving a conflict of interest or the appearance of a conflict of interest. Further, no such person may undertake any employment, investment, or other action that represents a potential conflict of interest without first fully disclosing the matter and obtaining approval.
The process for disclosure and review includes:
C. Violations of the Conflict of Interest Policy - Identified or alleged violations of the Conflict of Interest Policy must be referred to the direct supervisor of the individual involved, as well as to NSPRA Executive Committee for monitoring. If the Executive Committee is not satisfied with the report of the direct supervisor regarding the matter, the Committee may request additional information or explanation. If after review, the Committee determines that the individual has failed to disclose and/or otherwise satisfactorily address an actual or possible conflict of interest, it shall recommend to the Executive Board disciplinary and corrective action. The Executive Board will determine, by majority vote of disinterested members, the action to be taken, up to and including dismissal.
Revised: April 1981, March 2009, March 2022
Download NSPRA Conflict of Interest Questionnaire (PDF), provided in accordance with NSPRA’s Conflict of Interest Policy 205.15
Adopted: March 2009
The Bylaws outline the powers and duties of the Executive Board as follows:
In addition, the Executive Board shall:
Official decisions of the Board can be arrived at only at duly constituted meetings, or in an emergency, through a telephone conference call or approval by the Executive Committee with full ratification of the Board at its next scheduled meeting. Individual Board members or groups of members do not have authority to speak for the Board or make any commitments on behalf of the Board, except as provided in the Bylaws or by specific Board direction.
See: Bylaws, Article III, Sections 2, 3 and 4.
Revised: March 2006
The Executive Board of the Association shall meet at such times and places as may be determined by action of the Board, by call of the President, or by written request of a majority of the Board. One of these meetings shall be designated by the Executive Board as the Annual Meeting.
A written notice of the time and place of all meetings of the Executive Board shall be sent to each Board member by the President not less than ten (10) days prior to the meeting. Regular meetings of the Executive Board shall be held according to a calendar approved at the Board meeting immediately prior to the Annual Meeting of the Association. Regular meetings of the Executive Board shall be posted in advance on the Association website.
All meetings of the Executive Board shall be open, except that upon request of a Board member, the Board may agree to meet in closed session to discuss personnel matters, finance or litigation.
See: Bylaws, Article III, Section 5; Policy 235
Revised: November 2010
The agenda for Executive Board meetings shall be prepared by the Executive Director in consultation with the President. Items may be submitted by Board members to the Executive Director or to the President for placement on the agenda.
Agenda items that do not require discussion or action shall be indicated as Consent Items. If a member wishes the Board to discuss or act on a Consent Item, the member should offer a motion to do so as part of approving the agenda. Items for discussion or action may be added to the agenda during a Board meeting at the request of the Executive Director or any Board member upon unanimous approval of those members present.
Revised: April 1988; July 1997
A majority of the members of the Executive Board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of all business, except in cases where a larger vote is required by the Bylaws.
Individual members may request that their votes be changed if that request is made prior to consideration of the next item of business. The individual vote of any member on any motion will be recorded if the member so requests.
See: Bylaws, Article III, Section 7
The most recent edition of Robert’s Rules of Order shall govern in all business meetings of the Association in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with the Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, and policies of the Association.
See: Bylaws, Article VI, Section 2
The Executive Director shall keep, and distribute promptly, a record of the official acts of the Executive Board which shall be signed by the President and the Executive Director.
The minutes shall record all motions, the name of the maker and seconder, and the result of the vote.
The minutes of the preceding meeting, with any changes made by a motion properly made and carried, or as directed by the President without objection, shall be approved by the Board.
The official minutes shall be in the custody of the Executive Director. They shall be available to Association members for review during regular office hours.
Periodically, minutes will be placed in a Corporate Minutes Book as required by law for associations incorporated in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
The agenda for each Executive Board meeting shall include a time to review and consider input and issues from members and chapters. The Executive Board shall consider these communications and shall communicate its action on such matters to those presenting them and, through its minutes, to interested members.
The Executive Board welcomes attendance by members, staff, members of allied organizations, and invited guests at its meetings. It also encourages the expression of opinion on matters under consideration by the Board.
See: Bylaws, Article III, Section 6.
Standing Committees engage in activities that are continuing in the program of the Association. With the exception of those specifically listed below, they may be created or dissolved as the need indicates by the President, with the approval of the Executive Board. Chairpersons and members of standing committees shall be appointed by the President except as set forth below.
The Board shall annually consider the list of standing committees, except those required by the Bylaws, and upon recommendation of the President, determine which should be added, continued, or abolished.
See: Bylaws, Article VII, Sections 1 and 2.
Revised: March 1999
There shall be an Accreditation Committee consisting of accredited members of the Association. Members shall be appointed by the President for two-year terms of office. The President shall annually designate one member of the Committee as its chairperson. The committee shall encourage all Association members to invest in their professional development by becoming accredited, thereby strengthening NSPRA and the public relations profession.
The Executive Board will review and approve the charge of this committee each year when approving the committee members.
See: Bylaws, Article VII, Section 1(d).
Revised: April 1991; April 1992; March 1999; March 2001; November 2001; November 2004
The Finance Committee is composed of a minimum of three Executive Board members elected by the Board, and the President-elect who shall serve as chair. The three elected members shall include a first-year, a second-year, and a third-year Board member to ensure continuity of membership.
* Task required by NSPRA Bylaws, Article VII, Section 1(f)
See: Bylaws, Article VII, Sec. 1(f)
Adopted: November 1992
Revised: March 1998; November 2004
There shall be an Executive Board Search Committee (EBSC) comprised of seven Association members representing each of the seven Association regions, and at least one Association member who is from a historically underrepresented group. The Executive Board shall appoint the members of this committee and specify their terms of office. The term of office of each member of the EBSC expires in the same year as the Vice President from the member's region (or the Vice President for Diversity Engagement). When possible, EBSC members should reside in the same state as their current Regional Vice President. The President-elect shall appoint one member to serve as their chair.
The EBSC shall encourage members to consider running for the Executive Board and provide information about the nomination, campaign and election process.
The Executive Board Search Committee annually shall seek out and identify a slate of one or more qualified candidates for each office that will become vacant the following year. The slate should represent the diversity of NSPRA membership.
The appointment of new EBSC members will be approved by the NSPRA Executive Board at its November meeting.
See: Bylaws, Article V, Section 3 and Article VII, Section 1(a); Policy 205.13.
Revised: March 1994, March 1999, November 2004, November 2010, March 2022
There shall be a Policy Committee chaired by the President-Elect and composed of three Executive Board members, as appointed by the President. The appointment of new Policy Committee members will be approved by the NSPRA Executive Board at its September meeting.
The Policy Committee will:
Adopted: November 2022
Special committees may be appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Board which shall designate their powers and the term of the committee’s appointment.
The President shall appoint special committee members with the approval of the Board. Special committee members shall serve for one year unless otherwise authorized by the Board
The President and Executive Director or their respective designees shall be members ex-officio of all special committees. A special committee shall report recommendations to the Board for appropriate action.
The function of any special committee shall be advisory and, while they may make recommendations to the Board, they have no authority to act on behalf of the Board.
See: Bylaws, Article VII, Section 2
Adopted: May 1980
An attorney may be employed to serve as the legal advisor to the Executive Board and the Association.
The development and adoption of policies for the Association is a function of the Executive Board. The execution of those policies is the function of the Executive Director.
The Executive Director will keep the Board and its Executive Committee informed about Association operations. Board members, individually or collectively, will promptly refer to the Executive Director for investigation and recommendation, any criticisms, complaints or suggestions which come to their attention.
The Executive Director is the principal contact between the Board and the staff. The Executive Director shall speak for the staff insofar as Association operations are concerned.
When it may be necessary to make exceptions to an established policy, that matter shall be submitted to the Board for discussion and decision.
The Executive Director shall assist the Board in reaching sound decisions and in establishing policies. The Executive Director shall bring to the Board, as needed, information concerning the welfare and progress of the Association.
Revised: April 1988, March 2022
Meetings of the Association shall be held at such times and places as shall be determined by the Executive Board of the Association. One of these meetings shall be designated by the Executive Board as the Annual Meeting. At the Annual Meeting, the President shall report on the significant activities and actions of the Association and the Executive Board. Members shall have an opportunity to discuss Association activities and plans with the Executive Board and/or Executive Director and to present matters for the future consideration of the Executive Board. Notice of this meeting shall be posted on the Association website at least at least ten (10) days prior to the date of such meeting.
The agenda for the Annual Meeting shall include a report by the President on the activities and actions of the Association and the Board, a report by the Audit Committee, member discussion of Association activities and plans, and presentation of matters for future consideration by the Board.
See: Bylaws, Section VI, Section 1
Proposals for Association policies or changes to existing policies may be initiated by any Executive Board member, by the Executive Director, or by any member of the Association.
The formal adoption of policies shall be recorded in the minutes of the Board. Only those written statements so adopted and so recorded shall be regarded as official Board policy.
The Executive Director shall establish an orderly plan for preserving and making accessible copies of the policies adopted by the Board. The official copy of the Board Policy Manual shall be maintained in the office of the Executive Director and on the NSPRA website.
The Board shall strive to keep its policies up to date. To this end, the Executive Director shall call the Board’s attention to policies that are in need of revision. The Board shall evaluate periodically the results of its policies and consider whether any modifications are required.
As new members are elected to the Executive Board, they shall be sent a copy of the official Board Policy Manual.
Each section of the Board Policy Manual should be formally reviewed by the Board’s Policy Committee every year to ensure that policies remain current and relevant. A time for considering recommendations for these proposed policy changes should be set aside on the Executive Board meeting agenda.
The Executive Board may maintain an Association membership in any association or organization that it deems relevant and helpful to the conduct of the Association’s business.
Renewals of all memberships are subject to annual review.
The Executive Director will continually evaluate Association operations, using the Strategic Plan and other appropriate instruments. The results of these evaluations will be shared with the Executive Board.
Adopted: April 1982
The Executive Board may adopt resolutions stating Association positions on educational issues. Any positions will be developed through procedures adopted by the Board.
The Executive Director and Board members are authorized to articulate Association policy positions as set forth in the officially adopted goals and objectives and in educational issue resolutions.
The Executive Director will bring position statement recommendations to Executive Board meetings as appropriate.
Proposed position statements will be received for a first reading at an Executive Board meeting and subsequently printed in an Association membership publication. Members will be asked to comment on the position statement prior to the next Executive Board meeting, when Board action may be taken.
In urgent situations, the Executive Board may take action on a position statement and report that action to members at the earliest opportunity in an Association publication. The Board may take action to modify the initial position statement as its next meeting. A summary of current position statements will be included in each new member packet and summarized at least once each year for all members in Network.
Adopted: January 1981
Revised: April 1988
The Association recognizes that its brand assets, when used as prescribed, are an invaluable asset to the Association in:
The Association's brand guide outlines how its brand assets – including logos, name, tagline, colors and typography – are to be used to ensure visual and brand consistency across various print and digital applications. The guidance in the brand guide pertains to all Association-branded materials produced by the Association as well as to those produced by Association members, chapters, partners/sponsors, vendors or other outside groups.
Official chartered chapters of NSPRA may use the Association name and/or brand assets in alignment with the Association’s branding guide. All other parties, including vendors, must submit a written request to and the written approval of NSPRA.
Association chapters or regions that are granted approval to use the Association name and/or logo must clearly state the name of the region or chapter.
Revised: November 2019
The Association actively seeks out sponsors, partners and Seminar exhibitors to help support its mission, programs, product development and member resources through non-dues revenue, grants and in-kind contributions. (Ref. Policy 410.8 Sponsorships/Partnerships and Resource Development). Executive Board members are charged with representing the Association and furthering its purposes through building relationships with members and others who bring value and support to our mission. While Executive Board members are encouraged to express appreciation of the contributions of sponsors, partners and Seminar exhibitors, they shall not officially endorse any company in their official capacity as an Executive Board member.
In that light:
a. Testimonials (written or video);
c. Inclusion in list of supporters/endorsers (does not include lists of active clients);
d. Representing the company/product at an NSPRA Marketplace exhibit;
e. Representing the company/product at an NSPRA Chapter conference, meeting or exhibit booth;
f. Representing the company/product at a trade booth exhibit at another education conference while identified as a presenter or participant using an official Executive Board officer title
Adopted: March 2016
Chapters serve as a link between the Association and its members and as a networking opportunity for education public relations practitioners in a state or other locale. Chapters shall be established to carry out programs and provide services which respond to members’ needs and reflect the mission and goals of the Association. Chapters provide an opportunity to articulate the needs and concerns of members to the Executive Board and to alert the Association to emerging public relations problems.
The Executive Board may establish Chapters of the Association on petition of ten (10) or more members in good standing in a given area – generally a state. The geographic region of the chapter shall be determined by the NSPRA Executive Board.
Chapters may establish dues for their members in addition to the dues members pay to the national Association. Chapters shall elect their own officers.
Bylaws of each chapter shall be approved by the NSPRA Executive Board before final adoption by the Chapter. The Bylaws shall require the Chapter President, President-elect (or the elected officer who succeeds as President), Treasurer, and one other elected officer designated by the chapter (preferably one responsible for national membership recruitment) to be members of NSPRA. All other chapter officers and members are encouraged to be members of the national Association. If a chapter believes that these membership requirements are a hardship, it may write to the Executive Director to request a temporary waiver of the requirement.
Approval of a chapter’s Bylaws by the NSPRA Executive Board shall be followed by the issuance of an official charter to the chapter. Amendments to the Bylaws of a chapter must be approved by the Executive Board of the national Association before adoption by the Chapter to become effective.
By April 30 of the year following the granting of its charter, a chapter must complete its application as a Non-profit Organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, as specified in Policy 260.2.
A member may belong to and vote in more than one local chapter, but may not hold elective office in more than one chapter at a time. Membership may be transferred from one chapter to another if approved by the latter chapter.
If a chapter, by majority vote of its membership, wishes to be assigned to a different NSPRA region, it may make that request in writing to the NSPRA President. Any change should maintain the contiguous nature of all regions and should reduce any disparity in membership numbers among regions.
The President will bring the chapter’s request to the NSPRA Executive Board for discussion and action. If the Board approves a region reassignment, it shall propose a change in the NSPRA Bylaws for a vote of the membership at the next election. Changes in the structure of any region, made as a result of a Bylaws change, shall become effective on October 1.
See: Bylaws, Article IX, Sections 1-4.
Revised: March and July 1995; July 1996; November 2001; November 2004; March 2007; November 2019
To remain in good standing, each chapter must submit reports annually as required by this policy, or as requested by the NSPRA staff.
Every NSPRA chapter must obtain certification from the Internal Revenue Service that it is a Non-profit Organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Code. The chapter may obtain that certification on its own, or it may join with NSPRA in obtaining a Group Exemption. If a chapter chooses to become part of the NSPRA Group Exemption, it must:
Any chapter that is chartered after that date must comply with these steps by April 30 of the year in which its charter is granted, or by the following April 30 if the charter is granted after that date.
By October 31 of each year, each NSPRA chapter must:
If any chapter fails to meet these or other reasonable reporting requirements established by NSPRA policy, the NSPRA Executive Board may act to suspend its charter.
Adopted: March 1995
Revised: November 2001; November 2019
In the event that a chapter chartered by NSPRA fails to:
The NSPRA Executive Board may suspend the chapter’s charter for a period of up to one year. The chapter’s last known president or other available officer will be given at least thirty (30) days written notice of the Executive Board’s intent to suspend its charter.
If the condition which resulted in the charter suspension is not corrected during the year of suspension, the Executive Board will revoke the chapter charter. At least thirty (30) days written notice of the Executive Board’s intent to revoke the charter will be given to the chapter’s last known president or other available officer.
If a chapter which has had its charter revoked wishes to reestablish affiliation with NSPRA, and corrects the problems that led to the initial charter revocation, it shall be encouraged to do so, meeting all of the requirements of NSPRA policy 260.1.
See: Bylaws, Article IX, Section 5.
Adopted: July 1995
NSPRA will offer leadership development for chapter leaders who will serve their chapter in the school year following the seminar.
Leadership training opportunities may be offered at various times during the year and may include workshops, audio/video conferences, electronic discussions/interactive sessions, or other activities as the Association deems appropriate and executable depending on staff and budget resources.
Adopted: November 2001
Revised: July 2004; July 2006
NSPRA will offer chapters the opportunity to participate as “hosts” when the National Seminar is held in their home state. Recognizing the commitment it takes in terms of volunteer time and potential costs, serving as a “host chapter” is optional and not required for chapters to remain in good standing.
Social Events at the Seminar
Sponsors, exhibitors, partners and chapters that wish to offer social events, entertainment activities, meals or other opportunities for clients, prospects or Seminar participants in general, that are extracurricular to the Seminar program shall adhere to the guidelines outlined in Policy 410.8 Sponsorships/Partnerships and Resource Development, Section III. Guidelines for Hosting/Sponsoring Social Events for National Seminar Participants.
Any chapter that wishes to hold an event or activity at the National Seminar may do so with the understanding that there may be multiple and/or competing events/activities on any given day and time. Chapters will be responsible for all costs, coordination and liability for such events and the event must be branded with the chapter’s name and logo.
Adopted: September 2016
State/province coordinators may be appointed by the Association President upon recommendation of the Regional Vice Presidents. They shall serve for one year.
Appointment of state/province coordinators will generally be made only in states/provinces where there are no chapters, but may be made in any other state/province where the Regional Vice President and local chapter(s) agree it is appropriate.
State/province coordinators are responsible for:
Revised: January 1984
There shall be a Council of Presidents which shall serve as a continuing advisory group. All former presidents of the Association who are still dues-paying or honorary members of the Association are members of the Council.
Members are to be kept informed of Association business. The current President may seek the Council’s advice, when appropriate, to aid the Board and/or staff in decision-making or planning.
There shall be an opportunity for Council members who are present at the Association’s National Seminar to meet. The Council of Presidents shall be chaired by the Immediate Past President.
Revised: July 2023
The primary functions of the administrative staff of the Association are to manage the Association and carry out a quality program set forth in NSPRA’s Strategic Plan. The administrative staff shall:
The Executive Board is responsible for recruiting an Executive Director when a vacancy in this position occurs.
The Board, when selecting a new Executive Director or reappointing the incumbent, shall provide the freedom of leadership appropriate to the responsibilities of the position through an explicit contractual agreement.
Revised: March 1998
The Executive Director shall be the chief executive officer of the Association. The Executive Director shall be Accredited in Public Relations (APR) or will successfully complete the accreditation process within 18 months of being hired by the Association. The Executive Director may delegate responsibility for various Association operations, but is ultimately responsible and will be held accountable for the success or failure of all phases of the operation.
The Executive Director shall perform such duties as are described in the Executive Director's job description and others as delegated by the Board.
Revised: April 1988, March 2007, March 2022
The Executive Director is responsible for:
1. Serving as the secretary/treasurer of the corporation.
2. Conducting the business of the Association as provided by the Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, and NSPRA policies.
3. Implementing all Board policies, and offering recommendations to the Board and staff for new and/or revised policies.
4. Overall financial planning and administration of the Association; preparing and implementing the approved annual budget; submitting monthly financial reports to the Board.
5. Preparing proposed Association goals and objectives for Board review and approval; managing and directing all functions and activities necessary to implement the goals and objectives; reporting progress regularly to the Board and membership.
6. Preparing Board meeting agendas in consultation with the President, and submitting recommendations on all matters requiring Board action; keeping an accurate record of the proceedings of all meetings of the Board and of the Association.
7. Employing, directing, promoting, demoting, evaluating and terminating all employees.
8. Seeking recommendations from the Board for new Association product lines and services or changes in existing products and services.
9. Communicating regularly with the Board and key Association leaders; maintaining regular communication with Association members.
10. Acting as the Association spokesperson.
11. Developing and implementing administrative procedures to carry out Board policies.
12. Performing such other duties as may be specified by the Board.
Revised: April 1988; March 1998
The Executive Director shall be encouraged to maintain memberships in appropriate professional organizations and to attend meetings, conferences or workshops which contribute to the Executive Director's professional learning. The Executive Director shall encourage staff to also maintain memberships in appropriate professional organizations and participate in professional development.
The Executive Board shall annually consider the cost of such activities in determining the budget.
The Executive Director shall serve, when appropriate, as a speaker, consultant, or resource person at the national level. The Executive Director shall consider all such opportunities in relation to the benefit which may accrue to the Association, keeping in mind that the Executive Director's primary responsibility is to operate the Association.
Fees or honoraria shall be charged when appropriate and shall be payable to the Association for any engagements which come about because of the Executive Director’s position with the Association.
The Executive Director may accept an honorarium or stipend for an unrelated assignment if the Executive Director takes vacation time or otherwise accomplishes the assignment on personal time. The Executive Director should not accept any such assignment if it would conflict with the Executive Director's position or keep the Executive Director from fulfilling all responsibilities to the Association.
The Executive Board will evaluate the Executive Director annually.
The Executive Director will be evaluated on his/her effectiveness in:
The Executive Director’s evaluation period, with respect to Items 1 and 3 and any amendments to policies specified in Item 2, will begin on October 1.
Each July, the Executive Committee will agree upon an instrument or form by which to evaluate the Executive Director according to the criteria stated above, and send the appropriate instrument/form to each member of that Executive Board. The instrument/form will be returned to the President.
The President will summarize the evaluations and send the summary to each Executive Board member and to the Executive Director. Time shall be provided on the agenda of the Executive Board meeting for a closed session with the Executive Director to discuss his/her evaluation.
Revised: January 1983, January 1987, July 1994, November 1996, March 19, March 2001, September 2021
The staff of the Association is responsible for supporting and carrying out the policies adopted by the Executive Board. The Executive Director shall specify required actions and design the procedures necessary to carry out Board policies and operate the Association.
In the absence of Board policy guidelines, the Executive Director shall take whatever actions are necessary. The Executive Director shall report those actions to the Board and make recommendations for any needed policy action.
The Executive Director shall request staff recommendations and suggestions when administrative procedures are developed.
In the event of a planned absence of the Executive Director, the Executive Director shall designate a staff person to act on behalf.
In the event of an incapacity or unavailability, the Executive Committee of the Board shall designate a person to be Acting Executive Director.
Revised: April 1988; March 1994
Reports on Association operations shall be given by the Executive Director at all Board meetings.
At the Executive Board’s November meeting, the Executive Director shall report on the progress toward Association goals and objectives as outlined in the Association’s strategic plan.
Adopted: May 1980, March 2022
The executive director shall prepare, in cooperation with the president, an annual report on the progress and operation of the association. This report shall be prepared after the Executive Board approves the annual Audit Report at its November meeting. This report will be distributed to all members in January.
Revised: April 1988, November 2016, November 2021
Adequate financial support is necessary to operate the Association and fulfill the goals and objectives that are adopted annually by the Executive Board. To make that support effective, the Board will operate on a fiscally sound basis within a balanced budget, and require efficiency and effectiveness in the expenditure, accounting and reporting of funds.
The Association’s fiscal year shall be from September 1 through August 31.
The Executive Director shall prepare a recommended budget for the next fiscal year and send it to all members of the Executive Board at least two weeks prior to the Board’s summer meeting.
The recommended budget shall include an estimate of actual to budgeted revenues and expenses for the current year, and an explanation of budget changes proposed.
The Board shall adopt a budget for the next fiscal year at its summer meeting, and may make amendments to that budget at any subsequent regular or special meeting.
Revised: October 1988; July 1994
The Executive Director shall:
Revised: April 1988; July 1994
The Association’s major professional and leadership development activity shall be an annual Seminar, held at a time and location determined by the Executive Director. The Executive Director and staff will develop a Seminar program that encourages the professional development of all participants and a portion of the program will be devoted to developing Association and chapter leadership. NSPRA members will be encouraged to make presentations and share their expertise with their colleagues.
The Executive Director will determine a structure of registration fees which ensure that the annual Seminar is self-supporting.
Adopted: November 2000
Revised: November 2006; March 2007
The Executive Director shall bring a recommendation for an increase in membership dues to the Executive Board on the needs of the Association.
A membership dues increase will be announced to the membership at least one month before implementation.
Revised: November 1992, November 2016
Revenue from the sale of products and services shall become part of the general fund to support the Association.
The Association may pursue and accept revenue from grants and/or contracts as appropriate.
The Executive Director is authorized to invest revenue that is not required for current operations. Proposed purchases of land or buildings shall require Executive Board authorization after recommendation by the Executive Director.
The Association may, by action of the Executive Board, accept gifts, donations or bequests. Only those gifts that the Board deems consistent with the policies, programs and best interests of the Association will be accepted.
All gifts shall be accepted on behalf of the Association and become its property. Where installation is required, the gift shall be installed under the supervision of Association personnel.
The Executive Director shall obtain authorization from the Executive Board to borrow money for the Association. Authorization may be granted by the Executive Committee in emergency situations.
The Association shall set aside money to build a reserve fund. The purpose of the fund will be to protect the financial stability of the Association and to invest in special needs as recommended by the Executive Director and approved by the Executive Board. In emergency matters, approval can be made by the Executive Committee of the Board.
The goal for the fund will be an amount equal to at least six months operating costs for the Association.
Revised: July 2007
The Association may seek sponsors and/or partners to provide non-dues revenue or in-kind contributions to support its mission, programs, special events, resources or efforts on behalf of education and student success. To do so, the Association must function in the commercial marketplace and be able to provide meaningful and valuable opportunities and access to our members, education colleagues and business partners in a manner consistent with our mission.
Sponsorship/Partnership – For the purposes of this policy and NSPRA operations, “sponsorship/partnership” refers to arrangements under which an entity other than NSPRA pays the Association a monetary fee or other valuable consideration and/or collaborates with the Association in return for the opportunity for special recognition and/or special display of the entity’s name or logo in association with an event, activity, program, service, publication or product produced by or on behalf of the Association. Acceptance of a sponsorship does not include, indicate or imply an endorsement, recommendation or assurance of quality of the sponsor’s products or services, and is simply an opportunity for the sponsor to obtain exposure to NSPRA members. Acceptance of a partnership will be based on the entity’s relevance to the mission of the Association and education and its reputation in the marketplace. A sponsorship or partnership arrangement may include a variety of exposure opportunities and associated benefits or services, and can be exclusive or non-exclusive.
Resource Development – For the purposes of this policy and NSPRA operations, “resource development” refers to arrangements under which an entity other than NSPRA enters into an agreement with the Association to provide in-kind services or contributions, or a joint revenue-producing program, product or service that serves the needs of members in return for the opportunity for special recognition and/or special display of the entity’s name or logo in association with the program, product or service developed by or on behalf of the Association. A resource development agreement shall include exposure opportunities directly related to the specific program, product or service developed and, if applicable, specifics related to how revenues will be shared. NSPRA shall retain the right of final approval of the program, product or service design and content as well as the right to administer or distribute said resource.
I. General Policies and Guidelines
A. The Executive Director shall be responsible for approving all sponsorship/partnership, funding and resource development opportunities with identified sponsors/partners, member benefits providers and for-profit companies. All additional non-dues revenue opportunities, donations and in-kind contributions shall be subject to the Executive Director’s review and approval.
B. In developing and entering into sponsorship/partnership and resource development agreements, the Executive Director and staff shall adhere to the following guidelines in order to enhance the Association’s mission, safeguard the value and credibility of the NSPRA name and brand, and obtain outside revenues that appropriately reflect the market value of the sponsorship/partnership or resource development opportunity:
C. The Executive Director shall establish and implement staff procedures for ensuring appropriate ongoing review of suitability and return on sponsorship/partnership and resource development opportunities, and for ensuring that contractual terms provide NSPRA a reasonable ability to terminate sponsorship programs or partnerships that may no longer provide a reasonable return or otherwise no longer meet the foregoing criteria. Contract agreements shall include the following:
D. The sponsor/partner’s product or service shall be identified as “Proud Sponsor (or Partner) of NSPRA.” NSPRA shall not endorse any product, service or supplier and the phrase “Official product, service or supplier of NSPRA” shall not be used.
II. Guidelines for NSPRA National Seminar Sponsors
NSPRA offers a Sponsorship & Exhibit Opportunities program for interested exhibitors, sponsors and partners each year at the National Seminar. The program provides a variety of options at different price points for businesses and organizations that serve education to showcase their products and services to members and others who attend the Seminar. Entities interested in underwriting additional Seminar programs or functions not currently offered may contact the Association to submit a proposal.
National Seminar sponsors must adhere to the following guidelines:
III. Guidelines for Hosting/Sponsoring Social Events for National Seminar Participants
Sponsors, exhibitors, partners and chapters that wish to offer social events, entertainment activities, meals or other opportunities for clients, prospects or Seminar participants in general, that are extracurricular to the Seminar program should adhere to the following guidelines:
IV. Criteria for Developing Sponsorships and Resources
The following criteria shall be used when considering potential sponsorships and resource development partnerships:
Adopted: November 2009
Revised: September 2016
Association funds shall be deposited in financial institutions as determined by the Executive Director.
The Executive Director and two persons designated by him/her shall have the authority to sign checks.
One signature is required for checks up to $1,000; two signatures are required for checks of $1,000 or more.
A check made out to any of the signatories shall be signed by another signatory.
Revised: October 1988
Fidelity Insurance covering every employee shall be included in the insurance program, with adequate limits as approved by the Executive Board.
The Executive Director shall provide the Executive Board with monthly statements showing the financial condition of the Association as of the last day of the preceding month.
The monthly statements shall include all Board-approved budget items and such other information that will assist the Board in reviewing the financial condition of the Association.
An inventory of the Association’s furniture, equipment and products shall be maintained.
Revised: October 1984
At the close of each fiscal year, the books and accounts of the Association shall be audited by an independent certified public accountant in conformance with prescribed standards and legal requirements.
A complete and detailed written report of the audit, along with the auditor’s management letter, shall be provided to each Executive Board member and to the Executive Director. The Board may request the auditors to appear at a Board meeting to discuss the report and/or provide additional information.
Every three years, the Association will issue a Request for Proposals to solicit services from qualified public accounting firms for the preparation of the Association’s annual audit.
Revised: October 1988, March 2022
Purchasing decisions should be based on:
For items costing $2,000 or less that are needed very quickly, oral quotations or catalog prices may be used to make purchasing decisions. For items costing more than $2,000, written bids are required, from two or more vendors if possible.
All responsible bidders shall receive equal consideration. There will be no discrimination on account of race, color, religion (creed), national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender expression, gender nonconforming, age, marital status or disability.
Any furniture, equipment or software purchase of $500 or more shall be depreciated according to the requirements of the IRS Code.
Revised: January 1983; October 1988; July 1994; November 1997
All expenditures must be approved in advance by the Executive Director or his/her designee.
Accounts payable shall be kept current. The Executive Director shall report at each regular meeting of the Executive Board the total amount of accounts payable which are 90 days or older.
Salaries shall be stated on an annual basis and paid in 26 bi-weekly pay periods.
Revised: October 1983; July 1988
In addition to salary deductions required by law (including Social Security), the Association shall make salary deductions for salaried staff members at their written request for the following:
Employees shall hold the Association harmless against any and all claims, suits, demands or liabilities which may arise from compliance with this policy, provided that deductions have been made properly by the Association.
Employees and Executive Board members shall be reimbursed for expenses while on official business for the Association. All travel must be pre-approved by the Executive Director, and receipts are required for reimbursement. Reimbursement will be based on the following:
Revised: January 1981; October 1988; April 1992; March 2006
The Association’s insurance program shall be comprehensive and economical, consistent with sound insurance principles. Unless circumstances dictate otherwise, a single broker shall be used to ensure that there is no overlap or gaps in coverage.
The Association shall carry the following types of insurance:
The Executive Director shall determine the subject matter, pricing, and all other details of the production and marketing of Association products and services.
The Executive Director is authorized to shorten the work day or close the office for a full day when hazardous weather or other emergencies threaten the health and safety of the staff. Generally, the Executive Director will be guided by the decisions of the Office of Personnel Management regarding Federal Government workers in the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area.
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act addresses destruction of litigation-related documents. The law makes it a crime to alter, cover up, falsify, or destroy any document (or persuade someone else to do so) to prevent its use in an official proceeding (e.g., federal investigation or bankruptcy proceedings). The Act turns intentional document destruction into a process that must be monitored, justified, and carefully administered.
Common sense dictates that as a nonprofit organization, NSPRA must regularly shred or otherwise dispose of unnecessary and outdated documents and files. NSPRA needs to maintain appropriate records about their operations. For example, financial records, significant contracts, real estate and other major transactions, employment files, and fundraising obligations should be archived according to guidelines established by the organization. Because of current technology, electronic files and voicemail can become complicated as we come to understand the relevance of the delete button as a permanent method of file removal.
This policy is to help limit accidental or innocent destruction.
The document retention policy includes guidelines for handling electronic files and voicemail. Electronic documents and voicemail messages have the same status as paper files in litigation-related cases. Our policy covers back-up procedures, archiving of documents, and regular check-ups of the reliability of the system.
If an official investigation is underway or even suspected, nonprofit management must stop any document purging in order to avoid criminal obstruction charges.
It is the policy of the National School Public Relations Association to assure the appropriate preservation of all records of permanent value, to destroy records not warranting further preservation, and to follow a record retention program that will serve as a guide for the maintenance and/or destruction of records.
The Executive Director will be responsible for the maintenance and destruction of all records as outlined in this policy. The Executive Director will be responsible for continuously monitoring all records, both business and program, for the appropriateness of preservation and for following the timetables set forth by the government and/or NSPRA for destruction when necessary.
Adopted: March 2009
Copyrightable materials that are developed by employees during the course of their normal work activities become the property of the Association. When such materials are to be copyrighted, they shall be registered in the name of the Association and any further disposition of the copyright (transfer, reassignment, etc.) or any royalties resulting from it shall require approval of the Executive Board.
A dynamic and efficient staff, dedicated to creating and improving the best services for the members and the educational community, is an essential element in the successful operation of the Association. The Executive Board desires to secure and retain such a staff, and is interested in each individual as well as in the welfare of the total staff. The personnel policies of the Board attempt to reflect this concern.
In formulating specific policies, the Board’s goals for the Association are:
The Association shall continue to take affirmative action to make opportunities for employment and promotion available to every individual solely on the basis of the person’s qualifications and without regard to sex, age, race, color, religion or marital status, handicapping condition, or national origin.
Regular employees are those who work full- or part‑time in continuing positions.
Temporary employees are those working on an hourly basis in jobs for which a task or time limit is designated at the time the position is authorized.
Hourly employees are those hired on a work‑needed basis. They are paid an hourly rate determined by the Executive Director.
Contract employees are those employed for a specific project and are paid based on a contract agreed to with the Executive Director.
Full‑time regular employees are eligible for Association fringe benefits as specified in the personnel policies.
Part‑time regular employees may be included in group benefit plans such as medical and insurance on payment of the entire cost of their coverage.
Part‑time regular employees are eligible for vacation and sick leave pay on a pro‑rated basis.
Revised: January 1983; October 1986; January 1988
A personnel file shall be maintained in the Association office for every person employed on a regular basis. The file shall include the following:
1. Employment information
a. Application form
b. Tax withholding forms
c. Service record (assignments, salary, etc.)
d. Employment letter and pertinent correspondence
e. Pre-employment recommendations
2. Evaluation information
a. Supervisory evaluations signed by the evaluator and the employee
b. Any written and signed commendations and/or complaints, copies of which have been furnished to the employee, and any response from the employee
All personnel records are confidential. An employee may review the material in the employee's file with the exception of confidential letters of recommendation or credentials from placement agencies. The employee’s right to access includes the right to provide written objection to any information contained in the file. Any written objection shall become a part of the personnel file.
Every staff position will be designated as clerical, managerial or executive. The Executive Director will recommend, and the Executive Board will approve positions through the budget process.
Every position will have a job description approved by the executive director. Job descriptions will be reviewed and updated periodically. Any changes must be approved by the Executive Director.
Revised: December 1989
The Executive Director is responsible for the recruitment and selection of personnel. The Association shall hire the most qualified personnel consistent with budget requirements and staffing needs.
Members of the immediate families of Executive Board members or executive staff shall not be appointed as regular employees by the Executive Director. For purposes of this policy, immediate family is defined as parents, spouse, brother, sister, child, stepchild, grandparent, grandchild, parent‑in‑law, brothers- or sisters‑in‑law, and legal guardians.
Revised: January 1983
The probationary period for regular employees shall be 180 calendar days. During this period, employees will be informed in writing of progress made and of areas needing improvement.
If an employee’s performance is not satisfactory, or if sufficient progress is not evident, the employee’s service may be terminated at any time during the probationary period.
Revised: January 1988
The Executive Director shall provide an orientation for new employees to acquaint them with the Association’s policies and functions, and the responsibilities of their position and its relationship to the Association’s mission, goals and objectives.
Employees are encouraged to recommend improvements in job procedures to their supervisor or to the Executive Director. They are also encouraged to maintain and improve their skills by attending workshops, seminars and other training opportunities.
Employees are employed by and for the Association. Assignment to specific responsibilities is the responsibility of the Executive Director.
A position may be reclassified if there is a substantial change in duties and responsibilities.
An employee or a supervisor may make a written request to the Executive Director to study reclassification of a position. The Executive Director will make a decision on the reclassification within two months.
Promotions to jobs of a higher classification will be based on qualifications and ability to perform the functions of the position. In filling vacancies, priority will be given to current employees who meet position qualifications.
The Executive Director has authority to dismiss any employee under the following conditions.
All regular and contract employees who successfully complete the probationary period will have an annual job performance review with their supervisor and/or the Executive Director. If a person’s job performance becomes unsatisfactory at any point, and verbal suggestions for improvement do not result in satisfactory performance, the employee will receive a written performance warning.
A written performance warning will state how the employee’s job performance is unsatisfactory, make specific recommendations for improving performance to satisfactory levels, and establish the dates for a 30‑day probationary period. At the mid-point of this 30-day period, the employee and the supervisor and/or Executive Director will have a performance review conference.
If satisfactory job performance is not attained by the end of the 30‑day probationary period, the Executive Director may extend the probationary period for an additional two weeks, or may dismiss the unsatisfactory employee.
If a regular or contract employee feels they have not been treated fairly during the probationary period, they may use the employee complaint procedures.
If, in the opinion of the Executive Director, the best interests of the Association require that an employee must be dismissed immediately or on shorter notice than is provided in this policy, the Executive Director has the authority to do so.
If an employee’s position is abolished and there is no other appropriate position for him or her, the employee will receive written notification of dismissal at least thirty (30) days before termination.
Revised: December 1989, March 2022
The Association shall maintain an employee evaluation program. The purpose of the program shall be improvement of performance and the growth and development of employees.
Employees shall be evaluated by their immediate supervisor. Evaluations shall be completed at least annually and shall be in writing.
At each evaluation, the supervisor and the employee will discuss and set specific performance goals. Wherever applicable, these will be related to the goals, objectives and activities of the Association. The supervisor also will review the employee’s performance and progress in achieving the goals and objectives set at the previous evaluation.
Evaluations will be in writing and signed by the supervisor and the employee. The employee’s signature does not imply acceptance of the evaluation. The employee may add comments as an addendum to the evaluation. The evaluation and addendum, if any, shall be placed in the employee’s personnel file.
A complaint is an employee’s expression of discontent with a working relationship or working condition.
Complaints shall be made to the employee’s supervisor or the Executive Director, who will work with the parties at interest in an effort to resolve the complaint.
A grievance is an employee’s allegation that NSPRA policies or procedures have been violated or not fairly applied.
Initially, the employee should discuss the alleged grievance with the supervisor or Executive Director to seek an informal resolution of the matter.
If a grievance cannot be resolved informally within five days, the employee may file a written statement of the grievance with the supervisor and Executive Director.
Within ten (10) working days after receiving a written grievance, the Executive Director will meet with all parties at interest. The Executive Director will render a written decision to all parties at interest within thirty (30) working days after receiving the written grievance.
Revised: July 1995
The Executive Director will recommend to the Executive Board an average percentage increase for employee compensation that is included in the next year’s annual budget. The Executive Board will establish any salary increment for the Executive Director. The Executive Director will establish any salary increments for all other regular employees.
Salary increments will be based on each employee’s productivity and increased value to the Association.
Revised: July 1995; March 2007
Whenever possible, work will be organized to avoid overtime. Any overtime must have the prior written authorization of the Executive Director.
Eligibility for overtime pay will be based on Fair Labor Standards Act regulations.
Employees eligible for overtime shall be paid at one and one‑half times their hourly rate for all approved work in excess of 40 hours in any week. Eligible employees who are required to work on any Association holiday shall be paid twice their hourly rate for time worked on that day.
Whenever possible, work will be organized and scheduled so that excessive employee overtime is avoided. However, there will be times when some employees will have to work extra hours and/or days.
Executive employees are not eligible for compensatory time. Employees who are not eligible for overtime, as defined by the Fair Labor Standards Act, will be granted compensatory time as follows:
Compensatory time will be on an hour‑for‑hour basis and must be used within forty-five (45) days.
Revised: July 1986; December 1989
Paid holidays for all regular employees are:
If a holiday falls on a weekend, Saturday holidays will be observed on Friday, and Sunday holidays will be observed on Monday. NSPRA holidays will be on the date established for the Federal government observance.
Revised: January 1983; January 1986; July 1995; August 2020
Retirement Plan. A 401K retirement plan for regular employees shall be provided by the Association for employees who have completed three months of service. Each fiscal year, the Association will provide a Safe Harbor Contribution for all eligible employees. The NSPRA Retirement Plan will also offer employees the opportunity to invest in their 401K. The Association may also provide a matching fund designation each year as outlined in the Association’s 401K Plan and the enrollment package provided to all eligible employees. Matching contributions provided by the Association are subject to a 2-6 year graded vesting schedule. All elements of the Association’s 401K plan will follow the legal requirements of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) concerning 401K plans.
Social Security. The Association participates in Social Security and the retirement plan is based on that participation.
Hospital and Medical Insurance. Association employees are covered by a health benefits plan. A portion of the individual coverage is paid by the Association. Employees may choose family coverage and pay the difference between the cost of individual and family coverage.
Association employees who retire may continue coverage under the group plan by paying the premiums, contingent upon the insurance carrier’s policies.
Employees who leave the Association may elect to continue coverage under the group plan for up to eighteen (18) months by paying the premiums and conforming to the Federal COBRA requirements.
Travel Insurance. A travel insurance policy covers all staff when traveling on official Association business.
Moving Expenses. Moving and transportation expenses shall be paid for executive staff members who live outside the metropolitan Washington area at the time of employment. The amount to be paid toward these expenses shall be determined by the Executive Director at the time of employment.
Revised: January 1982; October 1986; October 1987; January 1988; July 1995; November 1999; July 2010; July 2014
The end-of-year financial enhancements for staff, when granted, are part of a mix of total compensation, designed to attract, motivate and retain a highly qualified staff, and are granted in recognition of outstanding effort and accomplishment on the part of individual staff members.
In an effort to attract, motivate and maintain a quality NSPRA staff, the Executive Board may, following a financially successful year, determine the total amount of an end-of-year financial enhancement for staff. The Executive Director, in consultation with the Executive Board, will consider the following guidelines to determine whether end-of-year enhancements will be granted:
The Executive Director will make a recommendation on end-of-year enhancements to the Executive Board. If the Executive Board decides to allocate end-of-year enhancements to employees, the enhancements shall be allocated based on the following:
Adopted: November 2006
Revised: March 2007; July 2016
Only regular employees shall be eligible for a leave with pay.
All leaves without pay will be granted only with the prior written approval of the Executive Director.
A new employee may not take a paid leave of absence during the first ninety (90) days of employment.
Employees accrue sick leave at the rate of 4.0 hours per pay period.
Accumulated sick leave is not reimbursed upon termination. However, it may be used for credited service at the time of normal, early, or disability retirement or death in active service for the purpose of determining benefits under the retirement plan. One additional month of credited service is allowed for each 162‑1/2 hours of unused sick leave up to a limit of one additional year of credited service.
Accumulated sick leave may be used for the following purposes:
The Association may request a doctor’s certificate verifying an illness whenever an employee’s immediate supervisor deems it necessary.
If an employee is on sick leave over a holiday, the employee will not be charged sick leave for that day. Sick leave is not accrued when an employee is on leave without pay.
The Executive Director may grant a leave of absence without pay for reasons of health for up to 4 calendar months to a person who has been employed by the Association for at least two years if the employee has used all accumulated sick and vacation leave.
Leave for jury duty or to appear as a witness in any local, state or federal court shall be granted in any necessary amount. Employees may be paid on court leave if there is compensation and that compensation (less transportation expenses) is endorsed to the Association. Or, the employee may take vacation or leave without pay and keep any compensation received from the court.
Court leave is not applicable when the employee is a party to a law suit. In such cases, employees shall take vacation or leave without pay.
An employee shall be allowed up to three days of absence without loss of pay upon the death of a child, parent (natural, foster, or in‑law), spouse, stepchild, brother, sister, grandparent, grandchild, or a relative domiciled with the employee. The Executive Director may authorize bereavement leave for other family members, or for unusual circumstances, not to exceed three days.
An employee who is a member of the National Guard or the U.S. Armed Forces Reserves and who is required to report for active duty shall be eligible for military leave. The employee must present a copy of the training orders to the employee's immediate supervisor.
The employee may take leave with pay for up to ten (10) working days if the employee's training compensation is endorsed to the Association. Or the employee may take vacation (or leave without pay if there is insufficient vacation accrued) and keep the compensation received from the military.
The Executive Director may authorize administrative leave when the office is closed for hazardous weather or other emergency, or for other special circumstances.
Employees shall be paid for administrative leave, except that hourly employees are not paid if the administrative leave is granted for an entire day that the employee was not scheduled to report for work, or if the administrative leave is granted for a portion of a day during which the hourly employee normally does not work.
If administrative leave is authorized while an employee is on vacation or sick leave, they shall not be charged with such vacation or sick leave.
With advance written application, approved by the Executive Director, employees may be granted leave with pay to attend professional meetings (e.g., conferences, seminars) as a participant or observer.
Child Birth/Adoption Leave
Regular employees who have completed at least one year of service may request leave for the birth or adoption of a child. This leave may not exceed twelve (12) weeks. An employee who is approved for Child Birth/Adoption leave may use a combination of accrued sick, vacation and compensatory leave. If more time is needed, the remainder of the leave will be without pay.
NSPRA will pay benefits for an employee on approved Child Birth/Adoption leave for up to twelve (12) weeks. No sick or vacation leave will accrue for any period of this leave that is without pay.
Revised: January 1985, January 1986, November 1997, March 2022
To promote wellness and a healthy work-life balance, NSPRA encourages its employees to use all earned vacation days. Employees shall accrue vacation during the fiscal year (Sept. 1 to Aug. 31).
Vacation leave shall be accrued as follows:
Employees may carry over a maximum of two weeks of vacation hours accrued in a fiscal year to the next. Any unused vacation hours over two weeks’ accrual as of August 31 of each year shall be forfeited.
At separation or retirement, any vacation hours, not to exceed what was accrued over the last two fiscal years, shall be paid out at 100% of the employee’s current per diem.
Vacation may not be accrued while on leave without pay.
Vacation leave must be requested in advance and approved by the Executive Director.
Upon approval, employees may take fractional amounts of vacation time, broken up at most into quarter-hour increments (i.e. 15-minute blocks of time). Vacation will not be charged for a holiday that occurs during an employee’s approved vacation leave.
Adopted: October 1980, 1983, 1986
Revised: January 1989, December 1989, November 1992, November1997, November 1999, July 2008, April 2021, March 2022, July 2022
The Association offices shall normally be open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., Monday through Friday. Regular employees work 37‑1/2 hours per week.
The Association maintains an electronic mail system (e-mail) and a worldwide website on the Internet solely for the purpose of communicating with its members and customers. These systems are the property of the Association and are to be used only for the conduct of its business.
The Executive Director is authorized to provide for monitoring the use of the Association e-mail system, and employees’ use of it periodically will be monitored. The purpose of monitoring is to help protect the Association from liability for fraudulent practices, employee harassment, and misuse of employee time. All Association e-mail messages may be stored on the computer back-up system.
Each employee will be informed of the adoption and existence of this policy, and their use of the Association e-mail system constitutes consent to the Association’s recording and monitoring of all e-mail messages.
Adopted: November 1999, March 2022
Employees shall be reimbursed for expenses while on official business for the Association, according to the provisions in policy 440.3.
New employees may be required to furnish evidence of physical fitness. At any time, the Association may require an examination of any employee to determine the person’s physical or mental fitness to perform assigned duties. Such examinations shall be performed by a licensed physician who may be chosen by the employee but must be approved by the Association. Expenses for such an examination will be paid by the Association.
An employee’s partisan political activity shall be of no concern to the Association so long as it does not prevent the employee from properly performing the employee's job, does not violate the law, and is conducted outside office hours and off Association property.
No staff member may solicit a gift of property, services, or money for promising or providing NSPRA business to a vendor.
No staff member may accept a gift with a value of $25 or more that may be offered by a vendor as a normal business practice.
Adopted: December 1989
Staff members shall not exclusively endorse any company that sponsors or exhibits at the NSPRA National Seminar or sponsors or partners with the Association on any year-round activity, program or award.
Staff members shall support all business sponsors and partners of the Association equally in promoting products and services to members and Seminar participants.
In the interest of fair and equal treatment, staff members may not:
a. Represent the company/product at an NSPRA Marketplace exhibit;
b. Serve as presenters for Seminar Corporate Showcase or other Seminar sessions featuring a company and/or product.
c. May not officially endorse or promote a product or service without the approval of the Executive Director.
Adopted: July 2016
When a request for credit information about an Association employee is received, the only information to be released is whether or not the person is employed by the Association unless the employee requests otherwise.
When a credit complaint is received by mail, all copies of the complaint shall be given to the employee. The complainant shall be informed in writing that the credit complaint was forwarded to the employee and no further action will be taken by the Association.
No employee may hold outside employment that adversely affects the employee's NSPRA job performance.
NSPRA employees may engage in and receive compensation for consulting or writing for publication, provided that:
Revised: July 1995, March 2022
Appropriate staff involvement in the decision-making process of the Association is encouraged.
Fraud is defined as any unsafe, dishonest, or illegal act or the intentional, false representation or concealment of a material fact for the purpose of misleading another to act upon it to cause harm to NSPRA (the “Association”) or to employees of the Association.
As stewards of the financial and other resources of NSPRA, each employee has the responsibility for preventing fraud and safeguarding those assets. It is the policy of NSPRA that each employee is responsible for the prevention, detection, and reporting of fraudulent or potentially fraudulent activities. Whistleblower protections are in place to maintain the confidentiality of the reporting employee and to guard against retaliation.
The prevention of fraud requires each employee to be alert and vigilant in the performance of job responsibilities. Each employee is expected to:
To detect fraud, each employee must be aware of actions constituting fraud, which may include, but are not limited to:
If there is any question as to whether an action constitutes fraud, contact either the Business Manager or Executive Director or Association President.
NSPRA staff may accept honorariums for services provided external to NSPRA sanctioned activities. It is expected that all time spent on such activities shall not be charged to NSPRA, or NSPRA projects.
Fraud Reporting (Whistleblower):
In the event of an alleged incident of fraud, each employee is responsible for acting as a whistleblower by immediately bringing the information to the following confidential resources:
Employees must exercise caution and sound judgment to avoid baseless allegations, which are those made with reckless disregard for their truth or falsity. An employee who intentionally files a false report of wrongdoing will be subject to discipline up to and including termination. In addition, employees who are aware of fraud and fail to report it may face personal action up to and including dismissal.
The whistleblower should NOT contact the suspected individual in an effort to determine facts or demand restitution. The whistleblower should NOT discuss the case, facts, suspicions, or allegations with anyone, unless specifically asked to do so by the Executive Director. The whistleblower is not responsible for investigating the activity or for determining fault or corrective measures; appropriate management officials are charged with these responsibilities.
Based upon the results of the investigation, the Association may:
The member of Association’s management performing the investigation shall have full access to:
Dishonest actions will not be tolerated and violators may be discharged and/or referred to the appropriate authorities. Restitution may be required. This policy will be applied, as appropriate, to all employees regardless of position/title, length of service, or relationship to Association.
Whistleblower protections are provided in two important areas – confidentiality and against retaliation. Insofar as possible, the confidentiality of the whistleblower will be maintained. However, an employee’s identity may have to be disclosed to conduct a thorough investigation, to comply with the law and to provide accused individuals their legal rights of defense.
The Association will not retaliate against a whistleblower. This includes, but is not limited to, protection from retaliation in the form of an adverse employment action such as harassment, termination, compensation decreases, or poor work assignments and threats of physical harm. Any whistleblower who believes he/she is being retaliated against must file a written complaint with the Executive Director or the President immediately. A proven complaint of retaliation shall result in a proper remedy for the person harmed and the initiation of disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, against the retaliating person. The right of a whistleblower for protection against retaliation does not include immunity for any personal wrongdoing that is alleged and investigated.
Questions related to the interpretation of this policy should be directed to the Executive Director or the President of the Association.
The National School Public Relations Association shall maintain a public relations program to support the programs and services of the Association. The program shall rely on a comprehensive, two‑way communications process involving both internal and external publics with the goal of stimulating a better understanding of the role, objectives, accomplishments and needs of the Association. The public relations program shall assist in interpreting public attitudes, identifying and helping to shape policies and procedures in the public interest, and will involve activities which earn public understanding and support.
Adopted: April 1981
Revised: April 1985
Members are guaranteed access to information about Association policies, financial reports, and Executive Board actions.
The Executive Director will make every effort to keep members informed about actions and the general condition and progress of the Association through publications, the website and at the Association’s Annual Meeting.
Statements regarding Association policy, positions or activities that are made in response to inquiries from the news media, other associations, or attorneys are to be made only by the President, Executive Director, or their designee.
Any NSPRA endorsement of the activities, projects, or policies of other individuals or organizations must be approved by the Executive Board.
The Executive Director may approve the sale of others’ products when it is in the Association’s financial interest and the product would be helpful to NSPRA members.
Any endorsement or joint project must further the Association’s Mission, Goal, and Objectives.
Association membership lists shall not be distributed to outside agencies or individuals except as approved in writing by the Executive Director and except as provided for in other policies and association guidelines (i.e., sponsors). In all such cases, the criteria for approval shall be that use of the lists shall be in the best interests and for the benefit of the NSPRA membership as a whole.
Complaints about Association materials, products, services or personnel should be addressed to the Executive Director. Executive Board members who receive complaints should encourage direct communication with the Executive Director and inform the Executive Director of the complaint.
Complaints about the Executive Director should be addressed to the Association President.
Revised: April 1983
Formal relationships between the National School Public Relations Association and other organizations/agencies shall be approved by the Executive Board.