School Board

The board members standing and posing for the camera lined up in two rows.
Stephan Blanford, Rick Burke‚Äč, Jill Geary, Scott Pinkham
Front: Betty Patu, Leslie Harris, Sue Peters

The Board of Directors for Seattle Public Schools is an elected body of seven citizens representing geographical regions, known as Districts, within the City of Seattle. The length of each member's term is four years. Directors are elected by district in the primary elections and at-large (city-wide) in the general elections of odd-numbered years.

It is the belief of the Board of Directors and Superintendent that they are partners in the governance team of Seattle Public Schools. Both must do their jobs well for the organization to be successful and for the governance team as a whole to be effective.

2016 Board Officers:

Director Betty Patu - President
Director Sue Peters  - Vice President
Director Leslie Harris - Member-at-Large

Board Meeting Agenda(s)

Click on the date to view

  • May 24, 2016 - Board Special Meeting - Work Session: 2016/17 Board Governance Priorities and Superintendent SMART Goals

*We recommend viewing the agendas using Internet Explorer*

Work of the Board

Responsibilities of the Board of Directors include: hiring and evaluating the Superintendent; establishing policies for governing the school district; adopting a balanced budget each year; having legal and fiduciary authority for the school district; adopting instructional materials; and, serving as community representatives to the district and on behalf of the district.


Office of Internal Audit and Ethics

Under the direction of the Audit and Finance Committee, the Office of Internal Audit and Ethics conducts audits to support and promote integrity, accountability, and transparency with respect to internal financial controls and compliance of the District.  The office also oversees the District's Ethics/Whistleblower Program.

The Office of Internal Audit was created in 2011, and reports directly to the Audit and Finance Committee. This reporting structure was established to ensure that the Office of Internal Audit remains independent of District Management. Independence is essential to ensure that audit results are objective, and are communicated directly to the School Board.

The Office of Internal Audit provides recommendations only, and does not have any authority to implement operational policies or procedures on behalf of the District. Upon completion of an audit, the results are communicated to the Audit and Finance Committee, which ensures full transparency of the internal audit function.  In 2014, the Office expanded to become the Office of Internal Audit and Ethics.


Policy Review

One of the ongoing responsibilities of the Board of Directors is to establish policies that guide the operation of the School District. Learn more about the current policy work underway.

Current Initiatives

  • Budget Development – Implement a comprehensive budget development process that reflects the strategic plan priorities and includes both internal and external engagement
  • Audit Response – Develop and implement a response plan to address the SAO audits, using a project management team structure with Board Directors and CFOO as sponsors; Implement quarterly governance work sessions to provide management oversight of the district’s business systems
  • Policy Review—Develop governance policies and a governance structure to allow appropriate management oversight; ensure finance policies meet best practice standards

Board of Directors and District Maps

Map of the seven director districts

District I

Scott Pinkham
Scott Pinkham board webpage
District I Map

District II

Rick Burke
Rick Burke board webpage
District II Map

District III

Jill Geary
Jill Geary board webpage
District III Map

District IV

Sue Peters (Vice President)
Sue Peters board webpage
District IV Map

District V

Stephan Blanford
Stephan Blanford board webpage
District V Map

District VI

Leslie Harris (Member-at-large)
Leslie Harris board webpage
District VI Map

District VII

Betty Patu (President)
Betty Patu board webpage
District VII Map

Additional Links

Contact Us

Seattle School District
Board of Directors
MS 11-010
PO Box 34165
Seattle, WA 98124-1165


Directions to John Stanford Center

Annya Ritchie
Administrator, Board Office

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