Parent Affiliate Meeting Code of Conduct

  1. Arrive on time and end on time. Participants should arrive on time for meetings and stay for the duration of the meetings. Take breaks during designated time periods.
  2. Be prepared. Participants should review applicable materials prior to the meeting and make necessary preparations or complete assigned tasks in advance.
  3.  Appoint a facilitator (typically the Parent Affiliate President) to help the group stick to the agenda and guide the proceedings. Meetings should follow an agenda (preferably written) agreed to by all persons in attendance.
  4.  No tangents! Stick to the topic at hand. If you have other matters to raise, wait until the item under discussion has been fully discussed and resolved.
  5.  No gossip! Keep discussion focused on the issues with which the group is concerned. Items of concern do not include discussions about individuals.
  6.  One person speaks at a time. No side conversations. It’s thoughtless, rude, and distracting to engage in parallel conversation. Be respectful of others by paying attention to the person who has the floor. Good listening is a hallmark of a collegial environment.
  7.  Speak up! Don’t be a chair warmer. Everyone has the responsibility to contribute and everyone’s opinion matters—including yours! Don’t leech off the group’s collective brain. Be frank, honest, and candid where appropriate.
  8.  No complaining! Be positive in your comments and avoid value judgments. If there must be criticism, make it constructive by suggesting alternatives or solutions.
  9.  Share the floor. Don’t dominate the conversation. Speak freely, but remember that others have things to say too. The quality, not quantity, of your participation is what counts.
  10.  After it’s over, remember that the group speaks with one voice. Ideas belong to the group, not the individual. Leave united. Participants must collectively represent the interests of the organization not their own individual interests. In cases where this is not possible, conflicts of interest must be declared at the outset of any discussion. Regardless of their personal viewpoint, participants should not speak against a decision or undermine committee solidarity once a decision is made.
  11.  Relating to one another. All individuals participating in meetings will be treated with dignity, honoring their uniqueness and value. There will be no tolerance for discrimination in any form. Participants must deal with each other in an open, honest and respectful fashion. Communication in meetings should be clear, respectful, and attentive. Participants will not exercise undue authority, influence, or pressure on decisions. Conflict will be dealt with in a rational and timely manner.
  12.  Use discretion. Keep confidential information confidential and remember to speak with “one voice.”
  13.  Always act as an ambassador. When you are at a meeting you are acting as a representative for your organization. What you do and say both inside the meeting room and outside the meeting does not just reflect on you—it makes a statement about the organization to which you belong.
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