B2004 Monitoring Board Effectiveness


Policy Type: Board- Delegation of Authority
Responsible: President
Related Policies: B2000, B2001, B2002, B4000, B4001, B4002, B4003
Linked Procedures: B4000.01
Related Laws: 110 ILCS 805/ Illinois Public Community College Act
Related Standards: None
HLC Criterion: 2C2C The governing board of the institution is autonomous to make decisions in the best interest of the institution in compliance with board policies and to ensure the institution’s integrity., 5A5A Through its administrative structures and collaborative processes, the institution’s leadership demonstrates that it is effective and enables the institution to fulfill its mission., 5C5C The institution engages in systematic and integrated planning and improvement.

B2004 Monitoring Board Effectiveness PDF

Policy Statement

According to the Illinois Community College Act, the Board is exclusively responsible for the oversight and operations of the College.  To fulfill professional expectations and Higher Learning Commission accreditation obligations associated with operating the College, the Board hires a President and delegates operational duties to that person.  Since the President operates the College as the Board’s primary employee, the Board has a direct interest in monitoring the President’s performance and providing feedback in ways that support the President’s success. To accomplish this, the Board and the President create a partnership of focus and mutual accountability using the tenets of policy governance.

In this collaborative relationship, the Board is responsible for clearly defining the Strategic Outcomes (which identifies the desired results of the College’s work) and the President is responsible for determining the Means (i.e. strategies and methods) to accomplish the Board-defined Strategic Outcomes.  To facilitate and strengthen communication, the Board clarifies the responsibilities of the President, defines performance expectations for the President, and communicates specific leadership competencies that the President must demonstrate as they carry out their duties.  By doing so, the Board effectively defines, monitors, evaluates, and assures accountability for the Strategic Outcomes, as well as provides the President with the necessary tools for continuously improving the quality of College operations. 

To facilitate and sharpen Board decision-making, the Board will engage in a program of self-evaluation to determine if the Strategic Outcomes and Executive Limitations are appropriate, review the Board’s compliance with defined governing principles related to Board and Trustee responsibility policies, and review ways in which they can improve their support of the President.

This process of monitoring Board effectiveness provides the Board with opportunities to:

  1. Deepen its understanding of the President and the College.
  2. Strengthen the Board-President partnership to ensure President success.
  3. Connect and integrate elements of Board and President responsibility with College performance.
  4. Strengthen Board engagement with the President and College.
  5. Identify strategies to improve Board and Trustee performance.
  6. Improve its oversight of College operations.


Monitoring Board Effectiveness

The Board will conduct an annual self-assessment in January of each calendar year.  This self-assessment will be based on a summary/review of its performance over the preceding year.  The purpose of this evaluation is to allow the Board to assess their own processes and performance as it relates to a comparison of Board activity and adherence to the policies identified in the Governance Process and Board Delegation of Authority categories.  The following outcomes are desired from the monitoring Board Effectiveness process:

  1. A summary of Board accomplishments.
  2. A better understanding of what it means to be an effective Board (i.e. a refined understanding of the Board’s primary roles and core responsibilities).
  3. Clarification of what Trustees expect from each other and themselves.
  4. Identify opportunities for individual Trustee development.
  5. Improved communications among Trustees and between the Board and President.
  6. A plan for strengthening the working relationship between the Board and the President.
  7. A renewed sense of commitment to the College’s Strategic Outcomes.
  8. Identification of problems, potential issues, and areas to improve.
  9. An opportunity to discuss and solve problems that may hinder Board performance.
  10. Identification of strategies to enhance Board performance.
  11. Consensus on goals and objectives for the coming evaluation cycle focused on improving the Board performance.


Comprehensive Performance Review of the Board and President

The comprehensive performance review is part of a larger cycle of assessment and governance that focuses on a broader examination of President and Board performance to include the relationship between the President and the Board, the effectiveness of the Board itself, and the progress of the College in achieving goals since the last comprehensive performance review.  The review will recognize successes, identify improvement areas, and raise key strategic questions for the Board and President.

The comprehensive performance review will provide additional perspective on President and Board effectiveness from interviews with a cross-section of the College community. To accomplish this, the Board will seek an independent review (preferably by a third-party entity) to allow for objectivity and provide College constituents (i.e. faculty, staff, students, alumni, and others) the opportunity to offer anonymous feedback through a confidential process. Further, the comprehensive performance review will focus on strengthening relationships, building trust, and improving President, Board, and College effectiveness.

As it relates to the process of implementing a comprehensive performance review, the following guidelines will be observed:

  1. The frequency of the comprehensive evaluation will be, at a minimum, every five years.
  2. The Board will develop an objective and structured process in collaboration with the President.
  3. Sufficient time, typically several months, will be set aside to conduct the review.
  4. A process for communicating with the College community will be implemented.


Change Log

Date of Change Description of Change Governance Unit
03-07-22 Initial Adoption Board of Trustees
06-15-23 Annual Board Self-Assessment to be in January Board of Trustees