K-12 Governance Structures: State Profile

K-12 Governance Structures: State Profile - Montana

November 2017


Data are collected using publicly available state constitutional language and state statutes. Updated as of Nov. 1, 2017.
 

Governor
What constitutional or statutory duties does the governor have as it relates to education? The executive power is vested in the governor who shall see that laws are faithfully executed. He shall have such other duties as provided in this constitution and by law.

Each bill passed by the legislature, except bill proposing amendments to the Montana constitution, bills ratifying proposed amendments to the United States constitution, resolutions, and initiative and referendum measures, shall be submitted to the governor for his signature or veto.

The governor may veto items in appropriation bills, and in such instances the procedure shall be the same as upon veto of an entire bill.

In addition to constitutional duties, the governor shall:

-Supervise the official conduct of all executive and ministerial officers.

-Ensure that all offices are filled and that duties of the offices are performed or, in default of the performance, apply a remedy that the law allows.

-The governor shall make the appointments and fill the vacancies as required by law.
What is the appointment authority provided to the governor in education? The governor is an ex officio member of the state board of education and the board of regents of higher education and carries a vote in the event of a tie.

The governor appoints seven members of the state board of education who are confirmed by the senate.
Are the governor’s duties and powers and found in the state constitution? Yes
Are the governor’s duties and powers and found in the state statute? Yes
Citation MT CONST Art. 6, § 4
MT CONST Art. 6, § 10
Mont. Code Ann. 2-15-201
MT CONST Art. 10, § 9
Mont. Code Ann. 2-15-1508
Legislature
What constitutional or statutory powers does the legislature have as it relates to education policy? The legislative power is vested in a legislature consisting of a senate and house of representatives.

The legislature shall provide a basic system of free quality public elementary and secondary schools. The legislature may provide such other educational institutions, public libraries, and educational programs as it deems desirable. It shall fund and distribute in an equitable manner to the school districts the state's share of the cost of the basic elementary and secondary school system.

The legislature is required to form a school funding interim commission in the 2015-2016 interim and each successive fifth interim to study educational needs and costs and make recommendations.
What is the appointment or confirmation authority of the legislature in education? The senate confirms the governor's appointments to the state board of education and the state board of regents.
Which committees in the legislature have jurisdiction over education issues? House:
Education

Senate:
Education and Cultural Resources

Joint:
Education
Constitutional? Yes
Statutory? Yes
Citations MT CONST Art. 5, § 1
MT CONST Art. 10, § 1
Mont. Code Ann. 5-20-301
Chief State School Officer
What are the duties of the chief state officer? The executive branch includes the superintendent of public instruction and its powers are determined by law.

The superintendent of public instruction has the general supervision of public schools and districts and shall perform the following duties:

-Issue, renew, or deny teacher certification.

-Approve or disapprove of school opening/closing.

-Supervise school budgeting.

-Generally supervise school financial administration.

-Evaluate compliance with accreditation standards.

-Provide technical assistance.
What constitutional or statutory authority does the chief state school officer have as it relates to education policy? The superintendent of public instruction has the power to:

-Keep a record of all official acts and documents applicable to the administration of the office.

-Counsel with and advise county superintendents on matters involving the welfare of the schools.

-Call an annual meeting of the county superintendents.

-Address public assemblies on the subjects pertaining to education in Montana.

-Faithfully work in all practical and possible ways for the welfare of the public schools of the state.
How is the chief state school officer selected? The superintendent of public instruction is elected by qualified electors of the state.
Constitutional? Yes
Statutory? Yes
Citation MT CONST Art. 6, § 1
MT CONST Art. 6, § 4
Mont. Code Ann. 20-3-106
Mont. Code Ann. 20-3-105
Mont. Code Ann. 20-3-101
State Board of Education
What constitutional or statutory powers and duties does the state board of education have as it relates to education policy? The board of education shall:

-Affect an orderly and uniform system for teacher certification.

-Consider the suspension or revocation of teacher or specialist certificates.

-Administer school financial aid.

-Adopt uniform regulations for school buses.

-Adopt standards of accreditation.

-Approve or disapprove of educational media selected by the superintendent of public instruction.

-Adopt rules for the issuance of documents certifying equivalency of completion of secondary education.

-Adopt policies for the conduct of programs for gifted and talented.

-Adopt rules for student assessment.
What is the composition of the state board of education? The state board of education consists of seven members as well as the governor, commissioner of higher education, and the state superintendent of public instruction as ex officio non-voting members.
How are members of the state board of education selected? Seven members of the state board of education are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the senate.
Constitutional? Yes
Statutory? Yes
Citation Mont. Code Ann. 20-2-121
MT CONST Art. 10, § 9
Mont. Code Ann. 2-15-1507
Executive-Level Secretary
Does the state have an executive-level secretary? The state board of public education may appoint an executive secretary and other persons within legislatively authorized appropriations.

Additionally, the state superintendent of public instruction shall appoint a deputy as well as other professional staff.
What other duties does the executive-level secretary have? The executive secretary to the state board has duties and powers prescribed by the board.

The deputy state superintendent of public instruction shall perform the duties of the state superintendent in his/her absence.
Constitutional? No
Statutory? Yes
Citation Mont. Code Ann. 20-2-122
Mont. Code Ann. 20-3-103

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