The MSBA Leader Newsletter: October 2023

The MSBA Leader Newsletter: October 2023

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2024 MSBA Leadership Conference

Nominate one of your colleagues for the MSBA All-State School Board by mid-October

MSBA is accepting nominations for the 2024 MSBA All-State School Board through mid-October. The nomination application must be postmarked by Saturday, October 14, 2023. Applications may also be emailed by noon Monday, October 16, 2023. Visit the MSBA website to access a copy of the All-State School Board nomination form and to review the full criteria.

Nominate an up-and-coming board member for Rising Star Award honors

Nominate one of your school board colleagues for the 2024 MSBA Rising Star Award. Eligible school board members must be serving within their first four years on a school board which is a current member of MSBA. The nomination application must be postmarked by Saturday, October 14, 2023. Applications may also be emailed by noon Monday, October 16, 2023. Visit the MSBA website to download a copy of the Rising Star Award nomination form and to review the full criteria.

Show off successful programs at School Excellence Showcase

Does your school district have an excellent, successful educational program or project? MSBA invites you to register for the School Excellence Showcase for the 2024 MSBA Leadership Conference. School districts may use the showcase to display exemplary K-12, adult, or early childhood programs. Applications are due November 6, 2023. Visit the MSBA website for more information and to access the application form.


See Advocacy Tour Survey results and recap

The first step to the 2024 legislative session took place with the 2023 Fall Advocacy Tour. Choosing from one of four virtual sessions, school board members learned more about grassroots advocacy and found out how fellow school board members from across Minnesota are impacted by various issues. One-third of the state’s school boards participated in the tour’s survey. Please click here to access results and analysis of the 2023 Advocacy Tour Survey.

MSBA Workshops

Representing Your Community Through Policy and Engagement: Phase IV

Discuss open forums and ways you can make them more productive. Learn how your policies help you be a high-functioning board member. The Representing Your Community Through Policy and Engagement: Phase IV Workshop will be offered as a virtual two-part session:

  • Part A: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, October 20, 2023
  • Part B: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, October 27, 2023

Registration: The advance registration deadline for the Phase IV Workshop is October 6, 2023. All registrations should be coordinated through the school district office. Visit the workshop webpage for more information.

MSBA Student School Board Development Event

MSBA and various partners invite student school board members, district school board members and supporting staff from Minnesota‘s public schools to the 2023 Student School Board Development Event. This event will be held from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, October 24, at Shakopee High School and will focus on empowering student school board members while making their role more impactful. The event will include a combination of informative and collaborative sessions. Each year, a different district serves as the host site. Columbia Heights Public Schools hosted the first event. Shakopee Public Schools, which is home to the Academies of Shakopee, will serve as this year‘s host. Please click here for more information and to access registration.

MSBA Webinars

Coffee & Conversation: 8 a.m. Tuesday, October 3

The virtual Coffee & Conversation meetings are led by MSBA Executive Director Kirk Schneidawind and MSBA staff. Listening to and talking with your school board colleagues is the purpose of this series. The next Coffee & Conversation meeting is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. Tuesday, October 3. MSBA school board members, look for an email invitation in your inbox.

The Coffee & Conversation series is sponsored by PFM Asset Management.

Board Chair Chat: 8 a.m. Wednesday, October 4

The Board Chair Chat conversations center around the board chair’s roles and responsibilities. While focusing on the board chair, these conversations will be open to superintendents and all school board members — those who may want to assume the board chair role in the future and those who simply want to learn how they can further support their current board chair. The next Board Chair Chat meeting is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. Wednesday, October 4. School board chairs, look for an email invitation in your inbox on October 3.

Next MSBA Third Thursday webinar dives into helpful election information for candidates, school districts: 1 p.m. Thursday, October 19

MSBA will keep school board candidates and school election officers up to date on upcoming timelines before and after elections, when to seat board members, filing campaign documents, new laws and much more. “Getting Ready for the Election – and After the Election” is set for 1 p.m. Thursday, October 19. If you’re running for re-election or are a school district dealing with elections or referendums this November, you won’t want to miss this webinar.

MSBA members, please click here to register for the October 19 webinar through Zoom. (After you register through Zoom, you will receive a confirmation email message from MSBA a few minutes later.)

Last month’s webinar: Visit to watch a recording of the “Where are We Going and What Will We Find?” webinar presented on Thursday, September 21.

The Third Thursday Webinar Series is sponsored by Ehlers, Eide Bailly, InGensa, Sourcewell, and Widseth.

MSBAIT Matters

Winter-proof your workplace to stop slips and falls

By SFM Mutual Insurance
SFM Mutual Insurance Company is a participating workers’ compensation insurer in the MSBAIT Risk Protection Program. Visit the SFM website at

Are you ready for winter?

Even if you’d rather not think about winter just yet, now is really the perfect time to figure out how you’ll mitigate the safety risks that come along with snowy and icy weather.

Winter slips and falls are one of the most common causes of workplace injuries. They can happen at any workplace, to any employee, and they can lead to serious injuries — concussions, broken bones, herniated discs, and more avoidable injuries.

Every year, we see school employers suffer due to employee injuries caused by winter slips and falls. The impact can include:

  • Lost productivity
  • Costs to injured workers and their families
  • Replacement employee costs
  • Overtime for existing employees
  • Increased workers’ compensation costs
  • Facility damages from conditions caused by varying temperature fluctuations

That doesn’t even include the negative impact on injured employees’ lives.

“To avoid these costs, we recommend employers do everything they can to eliminate hazards and generate winter safety awareness among employees,” said Steve Sandilla, SFM senior vice president, strategic business operations. “Getting a jumpstart before the snow flies and providing simple reminders to employees can make a big difference.”

Click here to read the remainder of the “Winter-proof your workplace to stop slips and falls” article.

Consortium of State School Boards Association (COSSBA)

2024 COSSBA Conference set for February 22-25 in Dallas

Registration is open for the 2024 Consortium of State School Boards Associations (COSSBA) Annual Conference. The conference will be held February 22-25, 2024, at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas. Visit the COSSBA website to access conference registration and to book your hotel accommodations.

Access resources from COSSBA Federal Advocacy Conference

The COSSBA Federal Advocacy Conference was held September 25-27, 2023, in Washington D.C. MSBA members can access the following two resources from that conference, courtesy of COSSBA: Key Findings from 2022 Pew Research Center Survey of K-12 Parents and Impacts of a Federal Government Shutdown.

COSSBA Federal Reports available for MSBA members

As a benefit of MSBA’s membership with COSSBA, MSBA members can access the latest editions of the COSSBA Education Report and the COSSBA Court Report on the MSBA website.

Resources and Updates

Access “Student Success for All” resources on MSBA website

MSBA has sought out experts in the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) field to provide expertise and guidance to our members. MSBA’s DEI providers are Kinect Education Group, Stanton Adams Consulting and the Diversity Institute, and the YWCA Minneapolis. MSBA understands that each school district is unique and may have already started work around DEI or needs help getting started — or is somewhere in-between. MSBA invites your school leaders to reach out to these organizations to find the best fit for your school district. Visit the MSBA website to access Student Success for All resources from MSBA’s approved providers.

Rulemaking is now underway for K-12 Social Studies Standards through October 25

Per Minnesota Statutes 2021, section 120B.021, subdivision 4, Minnesota’s K-12 Academic Standards in each content area must be reviewed and revised every 10 years. The review and revision process for the K-12 academic standards and supporting benchmarks in Social Studies began during the 2020-21 school year. The formal rulemaking process has reached the stage where the Minnesota Department of Education is now filing a Dual Notice. Comments and requests for a hearing may be submitted until 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, October 25, 2023. Visit the Minnesota Department of Education website for complete information.

Rebates available through Clean School Bus Program

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law of 2021 authorizes EPA to offer rebates to replace existing school buses with clean and zero-emission (ZE) models. The 2023 Clean School Bus (CSB) Rebates process includes account registration, rebate application submission, review and selection by EPA, selectees will then submit purchase orders to request payment and then receive payment, which is followed by new bus delivery, existing bus replacement, and project close out. Visit the EPA website for complete information.

Other Workshops and Events

BoardBook: Simplify Preparation and Improve Efficiencies for Board Meetings

Webinars: October 9, October 10, October 23, and November 2

BoardBook reduces meeting preparation from hours to minutes. Join BoardBook for a live 30-minute informational webinar to learn how to reduce the time, money, and stress associated with board meeting preparation. Visit the BoardBook website to sign up for a free webinar. BoardBook is an MSBA-endorsed product.

Minnesota Department of Health: School Indoor Air Quality Training

October 11 (St. Cloud), October 25 (Duluth), November 1 (Arden Hills), and November 14 (webinar)

Public schools must have health and safety programs that comply with health, safety, and environmental regulations and best practices, including Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) management. One best practice is that public schools have an IAQ coordinator. The Minnesota Department of Health’s School Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) Training will discuss the state’s best practices for school IAQ management plans. Visit the Minnesota Department of Health website for schedule and registration information.

Minnesota Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board (PELSB): Information Sessions

Webinars: October 12, November 16, and December 14

Join the Minnesota Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board (PELSB) for one or more of their information sessions. During the sessions PELSB will address common questions about licensure and permissions, share resources, and answer questions from attendees. Register for one of these sessions via WebEx: 1 p.m. Thursday, October 12 (register here); 1 p.m. Thursday, November 16 (register here); and 1 p.m. Thursday, December 14 (register here).

Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry: Minimum Wage and Overtime Requirements and Exemptions

Webinar: 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Thursday, October 19

During its “Minimum Wage and Overtime Requirements and Exemptions” webinar from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Thursday, October 19, presenters from the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry will explain minimum wage and overtime requirements, including which workers are included and who can be exempt. Please click here to access registration.

University of Minnesota: Policy Breakfast

8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Monday, October 30 (Rochester)

The University of Minnesota’s College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) is hosting a series of Policy Breakfasts for researchers, practitioners, and policymakers to examine issues that are important to K-12 educators and administrators across Minnesota. The panel for the October 30 session will focus on The State of the State’s Accountability System. Panelists will discuss our current accountability system, how it compares to other states, and what the future of accountability could look like as we continue to strive for equity, justice, and improvement in Minnesota. Visit the CEHD website for more details and to access registration. RSVP by October 23. This event is free to attend.

The Future of Work: Adapting to a Changing Landscape in Minnesota Schools

9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, December 4 (Waite Park)

Save the date: MSBA and its education partners are hosting “The Future of Work: Adapting to a Changing Landscape” on Monday, December 4, in Waite Park. Please click here for more information about this symposium.

Job Openings

Visit the MSBA Job Openings webpage to access application information for these listings.


Minneapolis Public Schools — Superintendent (Application deadline: November 5, 2023)


Nicollet Public School — Part-Time K-8 Elementary Principal (Application deadline: Open until filled)

Other Administrators

Elk River Area School District — Educational Services Specialist (Application deadline: Open until filled)

Minneapolis Public Schools — Director of Compliance for Records Management (Application deadline: Open until filled)

Minnesota Association of School Administrators (MASA) — Administrative Coordinator (Application deadline: Open until filled)

Pipestone Area Schools — Director of Curriculum (Application deadline: Open until filled)

About the Leader Newsletter

The Leader Newsletter is published as a member service by the Minnesota School Boards Association, 1900 West Jefferson Avenue, St. Peter, MN 56082. The Leader is edited by Bruce Lombard (, the MSBA Associate Director of Communications.

The contents of this newsletter are provided for informational use only and are not to be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice, consult your attorney.

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