CHAPTER 143

FREE PUBLIC SCHOOLS

BOARDS OF TRUSTEES OF SCHOOL DISTRICTS AND BOARDS OF EDUCATION OF SPECIAL SCHOOL DISTRICTS TO BE ELECTED

AN ACT PROVIDING FOR THE ELECTION OF BOARDS OF SCHOOL TRUSTEES OF SCHOOL DISTRICTS AND BOARDS OF EDUCATION OF SPECIAL SCHOOL DISTRICTS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met:

Section 1. That Chapter 71 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same is hereby amended by repealing (but only in so far as the same shall apply to the Counties of Kent and Sussex) the following section thereof : 2643. Section 21.

Section 2. That Chapter 71 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same is hereby amended by adding after 2643. Section 21 of said Chapter, the following new section to be known as 2643A. Section 21A, as follows:

2643A. Section 21A. In each School District in the Counties of Kent and Sussex, as at present constituted there shall be a Board of School Trustees who shall be representatives of the State Board of Education in said School Districts and shall exercise the powers granted to Trustees by this Chapter. The said Board of School Trustees of Kent and Sussex Counties shall be composed of four members, who shall be citizens of the State of Delaware and residents of the said School District. The Board of School Trustees shall be elected from the residents of the several School Districts in Kent and Sussex Counties by the qualified voters of that District at the annual election, which shall be held on the second Saturday in May, between the hours of one and five o'clock in the afternoon. The present Board of School Trustees of each School District in Kent and Sussex Counties shall, by this Act be appointed to serve, and shall act as the Board of School Trustees of said School District from and after the passage hereof until the Board of School Trustees are duly elected and qualify ; and that at the annual election held on the

second Saturday in May, 1943, after the passage of this Act, four members of the Board of School Trustees in each School District of Kent and Sussex Counties shall be elected, one of whom shall be elected for one year, one for two years, one for three years and one for four years from the first day of July next succeeding their election; and the person receiving the highest number of votes shall be elected for the term of four years, the person receiving the next highest number of votes, for a term of three years, the person receiving the third highest number of votes, for a term of two years, and the person receiving the fourth highest number of votes for a term of one year. At each annual election thereafter the successor of every member of the Board of School Trustees in each School District in Kent and Sussex Counties shall be elected by the qualified voters of said School District for a term of four years from the first day of July next succeeding their election and until their respective successors qualify.

In the event that there are not any nominations filed for members of the Board of School Trustees in any School District in Kent or Sussex Counties as hereinafter provided, and an election of Board of School Trustees is not held in any of the School Districts in Kent and Sussex Counties on the second Saturday in May, 1943 after the passage of this Act, the present Board of School Trustees in any School District in Kent and Sussex Counties shall by this Act be appointed to serve and shall act as the Board of School Trustees for the following terms, the member of the Board of School Trustees whose present term expires on the first day of July, 1943 shall serve for a term of four years, the member whose term expires on the first day of July, 1946 for a term of three years, the member whose term expires on the first day of July, 1945 for a term of two years, the member whose term expires on the first day of July, 1944 for a term of one year, and at each annual election thereafter the successor of every member of the Board of School Trustees in each of the said School Districts in Kent and Sussex Counties shall be elected as hereinbefore provided.

The annual school election in each of said School Districts of Kent and Sussex Counties shall be conducted by the members of the Board of School Trustees of each School District. The Chairman of the Board of School Trustees of each School District shall preside at the election and two other members of the said Board of School Trustees shall be judges of the election. Provided, that if, for any reason, one or more members of the Board of School Trustees should be unable to serve as election officers, the said Board of School Trustees shall designate another person, or persons, to sit in such capacity. And provided, further, that should the Board of School Trustees of any School District fail or neglect to provide election officers at such election, the voters present, when the polls open, shall designate and appoint election officers to conduct the election in such School District. The School election shall be held at the principal school house in the respective School Districts.

At least twenty days before an election as hereinbefore fixed, the Clerk of the Peace of Kent County and the Clerk of the Peace of Sussex County shall cause to be published in at least two newspapers published within his County notice of said School District elections, stating the offices to be Red, the date when nominations shall be filed, and the date and place of each School District election. The Clerk of the Peace of Kent County and the Clerk of the Peace of Sussex County shall also cause like notices to be posted in ten public places of each School District.

At least fifteen days before the day of election as herein-before fixed, nominations shall be filed with the Clerk of the Peace in the County where the respective School District is located, provided, however, if said School District is located partly in Kent County and partly in Sussex County nominations shall be filed with the Clerk of the Peace of the County where the principal school house or building is located. The said nominations shah be in writing signed by at least fifteen citizens and residents of said School District. The school election shall be by ballot and the Clerk of the Peace shall cause to be printed ballots which shall contain the names of all persons nominated which shall be entered alphabetically and without party designation. The Clerk of the Peace shall deliver or cause to be delivered such ballots to the persons appointed or selected to hold the election on or before the opening of the polls, and every qualified voter calling for a ballot shall receive one from the persons holding the election.

Every person desiring to vote at said elections shall have all the qualifications as provided for by Article 17 of this Chapter. The voter shall not vote for more candidates than are to be voted for at the election and in voting shall cross out the names of all candidates which he or she does not desire to vote for. Upon the close of the election the votes shall be read and counted publicly and the persons having the highest number of votes for each office shall be declared duly elected to the office for the term stated. In case of a tie, the persons holding the election shall, by a majority vote, decide which of the candidates so tied shall be elected.

The Election Board shall enter in a book to be provided for that purpose, a minute of the election, containing the names of the persons voting, the names of the persons chosen, shall subscribe the same, and shall give to the persons elected certificates of election, which book, containing such minutes, shall be preserved by the Board of School Trustees of said School District, and it shall be evidence in any Court of Law and Equity. All ballots cast and the records of the elections shall be preserved in the custody of the Election Board for a period of ten days. The ballots and other needed election supplies shall be provided by the Clerk of the Peace and paid for by the Levy Court, including the costs of publication and notices.

A vacancy on a Board of School Trustees for any cause shall be filled by the remaining members of the Board of School Trustees for the unexpired term. Any member ceasing to be a resident of his respective School District, his office shall, thereupon, become vacant.

Section 3. That Chapter 71 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same is hereby further amended by repealing (but only in so far as the same shall apply to the Counties of Kent and Sussex) the following section thereof : 2655. Section 33.

Section 4. That Chapter 71 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same is hereby amended by adding after 2655. Section 33 of said Chapter, the following new section to be known as 2655A. Section 33A:

2655A. Section 33A. The general administration and supervision of the free public schools and educational interests of each Special School District in Kent County and Sussex County shall be vested in a Board of Education 'which shall be composed of four members, who shall be citizens of the State of Delaware and residents of said Special School District and shall be elected by the qualified voters of said Special School District at the annual election which shall be held on the second Saturday in May, between the hours of one and five o'clock in the afternoon. The present Board of Education of each Special School District in Kent County and Sussex County shall, by this Act, be appointed to serve and shall act as the Board of Education of said Special School District, from and after the passage hereof until the Board of Education are duly elected and qualify ; and that at the annual election held on the second Saturday in May, 1943 after the passage of this Act, four members of the Board of Education in each Special School District of Kent County and Sussex County shall be elected, one of whom shall be elected for one year, one for two years, one for three years and one for four years from the first day of July next succeeding their election ; and the person receiving the highest number of votes shall be elected for the term of four years, the person receiving the next highest number of votes, for a term of three years, the person receiving the third highest number of votes, for a term of two years, and the person receiving the fourth highest number of votes for a term of one year. At each annual election thereafter the successor of every member of the Board of Education in each Special School District in Kent County and Sussex County shall be elected by the qualified voters of said Special School District for a term of four years from the first day of July next succeeding their election and until their respective successors qualify.

In the event that there are not any nominations filed for members of the Board of Education in any Special School District in Kent or Sussex Counties as hereinafter provided, and an election of a Board of Education is not held in any of the Special School Districts in Kent and Sussex Counties on the second Saturday in May, 1943 after the passage of this Act, the present Board of Education in any Special School District in Kent and Sussex Counties shall, by this Act, be appointed to serve and shall act as the Board of Education for the following terms, the member of the Board of Education whose present term expires on the first day of July, 1943 shall serve for a term of four years, the member whose term expires on the first day of July, 1946 for a term of three years, the member whose term expires on the first day of July, 1945 for a term of two years, the member whose term expires on the first day of July, 1944 for a term of one year, and at each annual election thereafter the successor of every member of the Board of Education in each of the said Special School Districts in Kent and Sussex Counties shall be elected as hereinbefore provided.

The Annual School Election in each of said Special School Districts of Kent County and Sussex County shall be conducted by the members of the Board of Education of each Special School District. The President of the Board of Education of each Special School District shall preside at the election and two other members of the said Board of Education shall be judges of the election. Provided, that if, for any reason, one or more members of the Board of Education should be unable to serve as election officers, the said Board of Education shall designate another person or persons to sit in such capacity. And provided, further, that should the Board of Education of any Special School District fail or neglect to provide election officers at such election, the voters present, when the polls open, shall designate and appoint election officers to conduct the election in such Special School District. The School election shall be held at the principal school house or building in the respective Special School Districts.

At least twenty days before an election as hereinbefore fixed, the Clerk of the Peace of Kent County and the Clerk of the Peace of Sussex County shall cause to be published in at least two newspapers published within his County notice of said Special School District elections, stating the offices to be filled, the date when nominations shall be filed and the date and place of each Special School District election. The Clerk of the Peace of Kent County and the Clerk of the Peace of Sussex County shall also cause like notices to be posted in ten public places of each Special School District.

At least ten days before the day of election as hereinbefore fixed, nominations shall be filed with the Clerk of the Peace in the County where the respective Special School Districts are located, provided, however, if said Special School District is located partly in Kent County and partly in Sussex County nominations shall be filed with the Clerk of the Peace of the County where the principal school house or building is located. The said nominations shall be in writing signed by at least fifteen citizens and residents of said Special School District. The school election shall be by ballot and the Clerk of the Peace shall cause to be printed ballots which shall contain the names of all persons nominated, which shall be entered alphabetically and without party designation. The Clerk of the Peace of Kent County and the Clerk of the Peace of Sussex County shall deliver or cause to be delivered such ballots to the persons appointed or selected to hold the election on or before opening of the polls, and every qualified voter calling for a ballot shall receive one from the persons holding the election.

Every person desiring to vote at said elections shall have all the qualifications as provided for by Article 17 of this Chapter, The voter shall not vote for more candidates than are to be voted for at the election and in voting shall cross out the names of all candidates which he or she does not desire to vote for. Upon the close of the election the votes shall be read and counted publicly and the persons having the highest number of votes for each office shall be declared duly elected. In case of a tie, the persons holding the election shall, by a majority vote, decide which of the candidates so tied shall be elected.

The Election Board shall enter in a book to be provided for that purpose, a minute of the election, containing the names of the persons voting, the names of the persons chosen, shall subscribe the same, and shall give to the persons elected certificates of Election, which book containing such minutes shall be preserved by the Board of Education of said Special School Districts and it shall be evidence in any Court of Law and Equity. All ballots cast and the records of the Election shall be preserved in the custody of the Election Board for a period of ten days. The ballots and other needed election supplies shall be provided by the Clerk of the Peace of the respective counties and paid for by the Levy Court including costs of publication and notices.

A vacancy on a Board of Education for any cause shall be filled by the remaining members of the Board of Education for the unexpired term. Any member ceasing to be a resident of his respective School District, his office shall thereupon, become vacant.

Section 5. That Chapter 71 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same is hereby further amended by repealing (but only in so far as the same shall apply to the Counties of Kent and Sussex) the following section thereof : 2656. Section 34.

Section 6. That Chapter 71 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same is further amended by adding after

2656. Section 34 of said Chapter, the following new section to be known as 2656A. Section 34A:

2656A. Section 34A. In Kent and Sussex Counties whenever a new Special School District shall be created and erected the State Board of Education shall at once appoint four suitable persons to be members of the Board of Education of such Special School District who shall take office immediately and serve under the provisions of this Act until the first day of July following the next Special School District election, and until their respective successors qualify. At the next Special School District election after such appointment there shall be four members elected, one of whom shall be elected for one year, one for two years, one for three years and one for four years from the first day of July following such election and until their respective successors qualify, such election to be held as hereinbefore provided.

Section 7. That Chapter 71 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same is hereby further amended by repealing (but only in so far as the same shall apply to the Counties of Kent and Sussex) the following section thereof: 2635. Section 13.

Section 8. That Chapter 71 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same is hereby further amended by adding after 2635. Section 13 of said Chapter, the following new section to be known as 2635A. Section 13A:

2635A. Section 13A. In Kent and Sussex Counties, when consolidation has been effected, the State Board of Education shall select from the Boards of Education or Boards of School Trustees of the Districts so consolidated four suitable persons to be members of the new Board who shall take office immediately and serve under the provisions of this Act until the first day of July following the next school election, and until their respective successors qualify. At the next school election after such appointment there shall be four members elected, one of whom shall be elected for one year, one for two years, one for three years and one for four years from the first day of July following such election and until their respective successors qualify, such election to be held as hereinbefore provided.

In the case of any consolidation as aforesaid, it shall be lawful for the State Board of Education to transfer as much of the budget allowance for the remainder of the biennium covered by the school budget as would have been required for the maintenance of the school that is eliminated by such consolidation to the transportation account for use in the transportation to and from school of pupils in the consolidated district.

Approved April 2, 1943.