Open Meetings Act

Illinois Open Meetings Act

“It is the public policy of this State that public bodies exist to aid in the conduct of the people’s business and that the people have a right to be informed as to the conduct of their business.” (5 ILCS 120/1)

The intent of the Illinois Open Meetings Act is to ensure that public business is conducted in public view by prohibiting secret deliberations and actions on matters that should be discussed in a public forum.

The Act reflects the balance between the rights of the public against the needs of government officials to be able to discuss sensitive matters candidly by excepting particular narrowly-construed circumstances under which a meeting may be held in closed session. The Office of the Attorney General understands that access to meetings helps to ensure the accountability of government to its citizens.

If you wish to address the Board , public comments are part of each Board meeting agenda with the following rules established by the Board of Education.

When addressing the Board:

  • Please provide your name for the record and note a three minute limit to speak to the Board.  Time may not be yielded from one speaker to another.
  • Please, if you choose, submit a statement in writing to the Board.
  • Please know the Board will listen to comments but will not comment or ask questions of those who address the Board.
  • Please, if there is a large group at the meeting, assign a spokesperson for the group.
  • Please if there are repetitive speakers, speakers will be asked to only bring new information to the board on the same issue.
  • The President may deny an individual the opportunity to speak if the individual has previously addressed the Board on the same subject within the past two months
  • Please know that if specific confidential issues need to be addressed regarding employees, students or personally identifiable information of an individual, the Board will hear those issues in a closed session.
  • Each speaker shall address their subject matter to the Board of Education in a reasonable tone and shall focus on issues and not personalities. The use of profanity and attacks on individuals is not allowed.
  • The President has the right to change these procedures in certain instances, as he/she sees fit. The decision of the President on any of these rules is final.
  • Please conduct yourself with respect and civility toward others and otherwise abide by Board Policy.

Concerning comments or questions brought to the meeting the Board has the following options:

Forward the issue to the administration for follow up and report to the BOE at a later date

Add the item to a future agenda or

Take no action

Open Meetings Act links and documents:

Text of statute