What is... Site-Based Decision Making?

Have you seen "SBDM" on the school calendar and wondered what it is?

SBDMThe basic premise of site-based decision making (SBDM) is that the most effective decisions are made by those who will actually implement the decisions. The belief is that people involved at the campus level have a greater opportunity to identify problems, develop problem resolution and change strategy than people located off-campus. Site-based decision making concepts also recognize that people at the campus level are more likely to internalize change and to support its implementation if they are involved in the decision making than if they are not.

The objective of site-based decision making is to improve student performance and to enhance accountability. Each campus should have the freedom to set its own educational objectives, consistent with the school district's goals.

Definition: Site-based decision making is a process for decentralizing decisions to improve the educational outcomes at every school campus through a collaborative effort by which principals, teachers, campus staff, district staff, parents, and community representatives assess educational outcomes of all students, determine goals and strategies, and ensure that strategies are implemented and adjusted to improve student achievement. State and district policies require every school to have a SBDM committee. The function of the committee is to advise the principal in establishing the campus goals and plan for improvement. The responsibilities of the committee serves are to:

  • establish campus goals and plans for the improvement of student performance and well being through a campus needs assessment and performance data
  • develop, reviewing and revise the campus improvement plan
  • provide input in the areas of curriculum, budget, school safety, school organization and staffing patterns
  • approve campus-level staff development plans and the use of discretionary funds

A campus SBDM committee must:

  • have at least eight members,
  • be comprised of 50% parents and community members and 50% staff members
  • reflect the ethnic diversity of the school

For additional information about SBDM, see:

  • SBDM Overview (Dallas ISD)
  • SBDM Overview (ESC 20)
  • SBDM Roles and Responsibilities (ESC 20)

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