Bellingham Public Schools

Legal Organization

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Bellingham, Washington




A school district is a public corporation of the State. It possesses all of the usual powers of a corporation established for public purposes including purchasing, selling and holding personal property and real estate and entering into such obligations as are authorized by law.


While each school district is local in nature, it must be kept constantly in mind that it is created by State law and, as such, is a unit of State government whose Board members are State government officials charged with trusteeship of this, an important institution. The Board of Directors is vested by statute with far-reaching and final authority in practically all matters concerned with public elementary and secondary school education within limits set by statute.


This manual sets forth the local policy and related procedures as currently in force in the Bellingham School District #501. In addition to the contents of the manual, all statutory provisions of the Legislature of the State of Washington relating to education, plus all the rules, regulations and procedures promulgated by State administrative organization so authorized by the State Legislature are by their nature a portion of school district policy.


Such laws and regulations are aptly summarized in the State Manual of Washington and, in general, are not quoted or referred to herein except as they bear directly upon aspects of local policy.