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2311 Procedure – Instructional Materials

General Procedures

As specified in the Policy 2311, basic instructional materials must be approved by the Board following review and recommendation by the Instructional Materials Committee. Only materials approved by the Superintendent for trial use are excepted from this requirement. Non-basic instructional materials including digital resources, must be reviewed and approved by the appropriate principal or program administrator prior to purchase and use. Text resources and specialized programs require the review and approval of the program director. Digital resources require the review and approval of the Director of Instructional Technology and Libraries as described in the Digital Resource Evaluation Process listed below. All instructional materials must be selected and recommended based on Board-approved goals and curriculum. Each building principal and program administrator is responsible for ensuring the continuing familiarity of certificated staff with the requirements of Policy 2311 and these procedures, and for ensuring implementation in the selection of non-basic materials.

Parent and Community Member Participation in the Instructional Materials Process

District parents and community members participate in the instructional materials selection process through representation on curriculum committees, the Instructional Materials

Committee, and the Board of Directors. In addition, parents and community members are invited to review any instructional materials in current use or proposed for District purchase. Such review may be accomplished at a school or at the District administrative offices. The review should be arranged with the Director of Curriculum or appropriate building principal so as to

avoid disrupting the educational program. The review of materials should be undertaken with the knowledge of relevant approved curriculum specifications.

The following activities will be employed to help parents and community members become familiar with instructional materials:

  1. Information about basic materials in use or under consideration is available to citizens at the District Curriculum Department.
  1. Displays of instructional materials may be presented in schools at PTSA meetings, parent-teacher conferences, and public meetings during the school year.
  1. Basic materials scheduled for Board consideration shall be available for preview in the

District Curriculum Department for two (2) weeks prior to the scheduled Board meeting.

Evaluating Materials for Bias

All basic instructional materials selected for use in the District must be evaluated using the District’s Screening Guidelines for Bias and Stereotypes prior to purchase. It is recommended that non-basic materials also be reviewed using these guidelines.

Digital Resource Evaluation Process

The applicant requesting approval and installation of a digital resource is required to follow the evaluation process for new or updated versions of an existing resource. The applicant completes the required fields of the Digital Resource Evaluation form and submits to the Instructional Technology Department. Digital Resources that will be used for instruction or learning will need Instructional Materials Committee approval as well as Instructional Technology and Network Services approval.

Selecting Materials for Library Media Centers and District Circulation Collection

Selection of Materials for Library Media Centers

Library media materials for each building will be selected by the Library Media Specialist with support from the professional staff and the approval of the principal.

The following criteria, in addition to the goals set forth in policy 2311 for the selection of instructional materials, will be considered in the selection of library media materials:

  1. Curriculum needs of the individual school and individual student;
  1. Requests from administrators, teachers, parents, and students;
  1. Reading interests, abilities and developmental levels of students using library media centers;
  1. Date and reliability of information;
  1. Scholarship and competence of the author;
  1. Literary quality;
  1. Attractiveness and durability of the physical book/material; and
  1. Assurance of actual use.

Selection of Materials for the District Circulation Collection:

  1. The District circulation collection consists of non-basic instructional materials that, because of cost and other factors, are located in District offices and made available for circulation to schools in the District upon request. Catalogs listing the holdings of the circulation collection shall be kept current and made available to all staff members.
  1. The Director of Instructional Technology and Libraries shall be responsible for the selection and purchase of instructional materials for the circulation collection based on recommendations of curriculum committees, administrators, and staff. To the extent feasible, instructional materials under consideration for purchase should be previewed and evaluated by at least three (3) appropriate staff members prior to acquisition.
  2. In selecting circulation collection materials, preference should be given to media or physical formats that can be utilized by the greatest number of schools within the District and that are compatible with either existing equipment or with new equipment schools are expected to acquire.

District Instructional Materials Committee

The Instructional Materials Committee (“Committee”) is responsible for the duties specified in the policy and shall function based on the following:

  1. This Committee shall consist of twelve (12) members: one (1) elementary, one (1) middle school, and one (1) high school faculty member; one (1) special education faculty member; one (1) current curriculum committee leader; two (2) school administrators; three (3) parent/community members representing elementary, middle, and high school levels; the Curriculum Director (1), who will serve as chairperson; and the Director of Instructional Technology and Libraries (1), who will serve as the secretary. An addition

of two (2) non-voting technical advisors may be added to the committee when review of materials with specialized content is required. These members will be recommended by the Director of Curriculum and approved by the Superintendent or designee.

  1. Members of the Committee shall serve for two-year terms. Terms shall be staggered so that, each year, (a) one faculty member, (b) one parent/community member, and (c) either one building administrator or the curriculum committee member will rotate off the Committee. The Superintendent may make interim appointments to replace Committee members who are unable to serve full terms.
  1. Copies of the Committee schedule will be available at the beginning of each school year.

The chairperson shall provide District parents and community members with reasonable notice (e.g., through District and/or building publications) of opportunities to serve on the Committee.

  1. Materials proposed for adoption should be submitted by the Director of Curriculum to the Committee for review and recommendation no later than March of the year prior to implementation of the material.
  1. The Committee may review non-basic instructional materials at the request of teachers or administrators when submitted by the appropriate school, department, or District administrator. This procedure is recommended for specialized materials and teacher- selected resources that are used extensively throughout the District or for extended periods. The Committee will make recommendations to the appropriate administrator for the use of such materials with District students.
  1. Digital resources intended for supplemental use in a specific curricular area for use in more than one classroom and/or across the district will be submitted to and reviewed by the Instructional Materials Committee as a step in the Digital Resource Evaluation process. The Committee will make recommendations to the appropriate administrator for the use of such materials with District students.
  1. Guest speakers/presenters who are being used to deliver a portion of the adopted school district curriculum must have their presentation, notes and handouts reviewed and approved by the Instructional Materials Committee. If approved for use in the Bellingham School District the presentation will be included on a list of approved presentations and the list will be distributed to building administrators. Significant changes in content of presentations or any changes in handouts must be resubmitted to the Curriculum Office. See Policy 2321 Community Resource Persons.
  1. After approval by the Instructional Materials Committee, recommendations for adoption of basic materials will be forwarded to the Superintendent for Board consideration and approval.

Requests for Reconsideration of Materials

The District recognizes that opinions sometimes differ regarding the quality and suitability of materials and has the obligation to consider requests by parents, guardians, or custodians of District students for removal or restricted use of instructional materials. Whenever possible, such requests should be resolved informally at the classroom or school building level. If this informal process does not resolve the matter, the parent, guardian, or custodian may submit a formal Request for Consideration of Instructional Materials. The following procedures govern the submission of reviewing such formal requests:

  1. Requests must be submitted in writing on the form entitled Request for Reconsideration of Instructional Materials and signed by the individual making the request. Forms are available in all schools and District offices. Completed forms should be submitted to the Superintendent’s Office.
  1. Upon receipt of a request form, the Superintendent or designee shall appoint an ad hoc committee composed of the Director of Curriculum, one administrator, two certificated staff, and two parent/community members to review the contested material. The ad hoc committee shall submit a written report to the Instructional Materials Committee concerning the request.
  1. The Instructional Materials Committee will review the request form and the report of the ad hoc committee, and any other information it deems relevant. Following this review, the Instructional Materials Committee will submit a recommended decision concerning the request to the Superintendent or designee.
  1. The person making the request shall be notified by letter of the decision by the

Superintendent or designee.

  1. In the event the request is denied, the requester may appeal the Superintendent’s decision to the Board for a public hearing. The request for a hearing must be in writing, signed, and delivered to the Superintendent within two weeks following issuance of the Superintendent’s or designee’s decision. The Superintendent will arrange a timely Board hearing. The Board’s decision on an appeal is final

Reimbursement to the School District by Students for Loaned Materials Reimbursement to the District by students responsible for loss or destruction of loaned instructional materials shall be determined by the following scale:

1st year            100% of purchase price

2nd year           85% of purchase price

3rd year            70% of purchase price

4th year            55% of purchase price

5th year            40% of purchase price

6th year            to be determined by instructor (not to exceed 40%)

School principals have the authority to modify this payment schedule for good cause based on their judgment.

Disposal of Instructional Materials

Instructional materials may be removed from collections at any time that they no longer meet District standards for curriculum, Board-approved goals, or are no longer serviceable. Any instructional materials may be recommended for removal when the administration judges such removal to be in the best interests of the District. Ordinary procedures for withdrawal of materials are:

Basic materials shall be removed upon recommendation by the Director of Curriculum and approval of the Superintendent and the Board based on curriculum changes, goals for selection, and the availability of suitable replacement materials.

Non-basic materials shall be removed from collections by individual certificated staff holding such collections with the advice and approval of the immediate supervisor.

Materials that have been appropriately withdrawn shall be disposed of by the Superintendent or designee per state legal requirements.



Adopted: 06/26/03
Revised: 05/22/08