TCSS Constitution

DOWNLOAD THE CONSTITUTION AND BYLAWS OF THE TEXAS COUNCIL FOR THE SOCIAL STUDIES

ARTICLE I

Name

The name of this Organization shall be the Texas Council for the Social Studies.

ARTICLE II

Purpose

The purpose of this Organization shall be to improve the teaching of the social studies in Texas schools, to encourage research, experimentation, and investigation in educational fields; to hold public discussions and programs; to sponsor the publication of desirable articles, reports, and surveys; and to integrate the efforts of all who have similar purposes through cooperative activities that advance education in social studies. Educational opportunities shall be provided through workshops, the dissemination of information, and the interchange of ideas and practice among members. The Texas Council for the Social Studies is organized exclusively for educational purposes, including, for such purposes, the making of distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under section 501(c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code.

 

ARTICLE III

Members

Section 1.     Membership Eligibility. Any person who is interested in the improvement of instruction in the social studies may become a member of the Texas Council for the Social Studies.

Section 2.     Honorary Membership. Honorary membership may be granted by a vote of the Executive Board.

Section 3.     Dues. Annual dues shall be set by the Executive Board. The membership year shall also be set by vote of the Executive Board. The name of a paid member shall remain on the membership roll for a minimum of thirty (30) days after the expiration of his or her annual dues.

ARTICLE IV

Officers

Section 1.     Elected Officers. The elected officers of this Organization shall consist of the PRESIDENT, the PRESIDENT-ELECT, the VICE PRESIDENT, the immediate PAST PRESIDENT, the PARLIAMENTARIAN, and the TREASURER. All officers must have been members in good standing of the National Council for the Social Studies and of the Texas Council for the Social Studies for one year immediately preceding their term of office.

Section 2.     Appointed Officers. The appointed officers of this Organization shall consist of the EXECUTIVE SECRETARY, the RECORDING SECRETARY, the DIRECTOR OF PUBLICATIONS, the CURRICULUM LIAISON(S), the DIRECTOR OF MEMBER SERVICES, and the DIRECTOR OF MEDIA AND TECHNOLOGY.

Section 3.     Executive Committee. The Executive Committee of this Organization shall consist of all elected and appointed officers. All elected and appointed officers shall be voting members of the Executive Committee. A representative of the Texas Social Studies Supervisors Association shall be a non-voting member of this committee. The duties and responsibilities of the Executive Committee are to make recommendations to the Executive Board and to act on behalf of the Organization and its purpose.

Section 4.     Nomination Procedures. The Nominations and Elections Committee shall select a minimum of two (2) and a maximum of five (5) candidates for each elective office with no more than one candidate per geographic area per office. A self-nominating candidate must submit a statement of interest to the chair of the Nominations and Elections Committee prior to February 1st.

The Nominations and Elections Committee shall review each nomination to ensure that all potential candidates are members in good standing of the National Council for the Social Studies and of the Texas Council for the Social Studies for one year immediately preceding their term of office, and that no more than one person from each geographic area has been nominated for each elected office. The Nominations and Elections Committee shall have responsibility for developing the slate of candidates for each elective office and shall submit the slate of candidates for all offices to the President at the spring meeting. Each candidate shall provide the Nominations and Elections Committee with biographical information, which shall be distributed to each member in a regular or special Council publication.

Section 5.     Election of Officers. The Nominations and Elections Committee shall be responsible for preparing the ballot. Voting will take place at the fall conference. Early voting/absentee ballots will be provided upon written request and must be postmarked to the Director of Member Services two weeks prior to the first day of the fall conference.

The Nominations and Elections Committee chairperson shall report the results of the election to the President. The President shall contact all candidates as to the election results. Candidates who receive the highest number of votes for the office of President-Elect, Vice President, Treasurer, and Parliamentarian shall be elected. In case of a tie vote, the Executive Board shall break the tie with a majority vote. The newly elected officers will be announced at the close of the fall conference. Their term of office will commence on January 1st of the following year.

Section 6.     Appointment Procedures. The President shall appoint the Recording Secretary. The Executive Secretary, the Director of Member Services, the Director of Publications, the Director of Media and Technology, and the Curriculum Liaison(s) shall be nominated by the Executive Committee and approved by the Executive Board. The representative of the Texas Social Studies Supervisors Association is appointed by that organization.

Section 7.     Term of Office. The term of office of the elected positions of President, President-Elect, Vice President, and Parliamentarian shall be one year. The Treasurer shall be elected for a three-year term. Vacancies in any elective office, with the exception of the Presidency, which shall be filled by the President-Elect, shall be filled by presidential appointment on an interim basis, pending approval of the Executive Board at the next regularly scheduled meeting.

The term of office of the appointed positions of Recording Secretary and representative of the Texas Social Studies Supervisors Association shall be one year and may be reappointed. The term of office of the appointed positions of Executive Secretary, Director of Member Services, the Director of Publications, the Director of Media and Technology, and the Curriculum Liaison(s) shall be three years and may be reappointed.

Section 8.     Removal of Officers. Any member of the Executive Committee or a committee chair of the Organization may be removed from office by a two-thirds vote of the Executive Committee with verified written notice to the officer/chair in question: after missing two (2) consecutive meetings; for inability or failure to fulfill the duties of the office as defined in the Constitution; for offenses in violation of the duties of his/her position as defined in the Constitution; or for causes not in accordance with the purpose of the Organization. Said member has the right to petition the Executive Committee in writing for reconsideration within ten (10) days after a written notification of vote for removal has been taken. The Executive Committee will submit a final ruling in writing to the petitioner within (30) thirty days.

ARTICLE V

Duties of Officers

Section 1.     President. The President shall preside at all meetings of the Executive Committee, the Executive Board, and the business meetings of TCSS. The President shall appoint the committee chairpersons. He/she shall collaborate with committee chairpersons in the selection of committee members representing the five geographic areas and levels of social studies instruction. The President shall be an ex officio member of all committees, with the exception of the Nominations and Elections Committee. The President shall perform all other duties proper to the office.

Section 2.     President-Elect. The President-Elect shall preside in the absence of the President and shall assist the President with special duties as assigned. In case of a vacancy in the office of the President, the President-Elect shall serve as acting President and also fulfill the obligations of his/her own term thereafter.

Section 3.     Vice President. The Vice President shall preside in the absence of the President and the President-Elect, shall serve as chairperson of the Membership Committee, and work with the Director of Member Services to monitor membership functions. In the case of a vacancy in the office of the President, the Vice President shall assume the duties of the President-Elect for the remainder of that term.

Section 4.     Past President. The immediate Past President shall serve as chairperson of the Nominations and Elections Committee, shall be responsible for the update of the Leadership Handbook, and assist the current President in other duties as assigned.

Section 5.     Recording Secretary. The Recording Secretary shall keep minutes for the Executive Committee, the Executive Board, and all business meetings of the TCSS. The Recording Secretary shall transmit all records to the Executive Secretary for permanent filing. He/she shall perform other duties as required by the President.

Section 6.     Treasurer. The Treasurer shall have the responsibility of accounting for all monies. The Treasurer shall prepare a budget and present it to the Executive Board for adoption at the spring meeting. The Treasurer shall maintain all financial records and release to an official successor within ten days of vacating office all books, records, and papers and shall receive an itemized receipt from the incoming Treasurer. The Treasurer shall issue payment for travel reimbursements, honoraria, and other approved Organization expenses as set by the Executive Board. Organization accounts shall be reviewed once a year by an accountant or a committee appointed by the President. The Organization account shall be audited by request of the Executive Committee at any time.

Section 7.     Executive Secretary. The Executive Secretary shall be responsible for the maintenance of an accurate file which lists the names and addresses of the Executive Committee and the Executive Board. He/she shall maintain a supply of official publications of the Organization, complete all legal and governmental reports required of the Organization, and serve as custodian of the archives. The Executive Secretary serves as co-chair of the Conference Committee. Additional duties may be assigned by the Executive Committee.

Section 8.     Director of Member Services. The Director of Member Services shall be responsible for the maintenance of an accurate database of Organization members. The Director shall complete documents required for Organization affiliations with local and national organizations. He/she shall perform other duties as required by the Executive Committee.

Section 9.     Director of Publications. The Director of Publications shall serve as Editor of The Social Studies Texan and shall be responsible for its preparation, publication, and distribution. The Director of Publications shall serve as co-chair of the Publications Committee and shall collaborate with the Director of Media and Technology on electronic dissemination of information.

Section 10.   Director of Media and Technology. The Director of Media and Technology shall have responsibility for the design and maintenance of the Organization’s website. The Director of Media and Technology shall serve as co-chair of the Technology Committee. He/she shall maintain website security, be responsible for accuracy of content, and ensure that information about the Organization’s activities is posted in a timely manner. He/she shall perform other duties as required by the Executive Committee.

Section 11.   Curriculum Liaison. The Curriculum Liaison(s) shall represent the Organization at State Board of Education meetings and maintain contact with the Texas Education Agency’s Social Studies Department. He/she shall submit information to the Executive Committee as received from State Board of Education meetings and perform additional duties as assigned by the Executive Committee.

Section 12.   Parliamentarian. The Parliamentarian shall advise the President and other officers, committees, and members of parliamentary procedure. The Parliamentarian shall serve as chairperson of the Constitution Committee.

Section 13.   Representatives of Affiliated Groups. The representative(s) of any affiliated group(s) shall serve as non-voting liaison(s) between the Organization and its affiliated group(s).

Article VI

Executive Board

Section 1.     Board Composition. The Executive Board shall consist of the Executive Committee (see Article IV, Sections 1-3), Board Representatives, and chairpersons of the committees. Each member of the Executive Board shall have voting privileges and shall be a current member of the Organization.

Section 2.     Board Representative Selection/Election. Board Representatives shall be selected within their respective local councils. The President may select up to three at-large delegates from underrepresented geographic regions of the state.

Section 3.     Duties. The Executive Board shall approve the business of the Texas Council for the Social Studies in conformity with the programs and policies provided for the Constitution and By-Laws. All members of the Executive Board shall have a vote at Board meetings. The quorum for all Executive Board meetings shall be a minimum of twenty Board members.

Article VII

Committees

 

Section 1.     Committee Membership. With the exception of the Textbook Committee (see Section 12), all committees shall include members from the five geographic areas if possible.

Section 2.     Conference Committee. The Conference Committee shall solicit bids for conference sites two years in advance from local councils in designated areas and will make recommendations to the Executive Board for establishing and maintaining guidelines for the annual conference. This committee shall consist of the Executive Secretary and the previous year’s conference chairperson as co-chairs, and at least four members.

Section 3. Constitution Committee. This Constitution Committee shall review the Constitution to determine whether revisions are necessary and shall make appropriate recommendations. This committee shall consist of the Parliamentarian as chairperson and at least four (4) members.

Section 4.     Curriculum Committee. The Curriculum Committee has the responsibility of making recommendations to the Executive Board on matters relating to curriculum. The Curriculum Committee shall consist of a chair and a co-chair who will serve two-year overlapping terms, the TCSS President-Elect, the Curriculum Liaison(s), and at least four (4) members. The Texas Education Agency’s Director and Assistant Director of Social Studies may be invited to be ex officio members without voting privileges.

Section 5.     Membership Committee. The Membership Committee shall be responsible for promoting membership and shall consist of the Vice President as chairperson, the Director of Member Services, and at least four (4) members.

 

Section 6. Nominations and Elections Committee. The Nominations and Elections Committee shall consist of the Executive Secretary, the immediate Past President, and at least four (4) members. The Executive Secretary and immediate Past President may serve as the representative from his/her geographic area. The chairperson of the Nominations and Elections Committee shall be the immediate Past President. A co-chair from a geographic area different from that of the immediate Past President shall be selected from the committee membership by the President (See Article IV, Sections 4 & 5 for procedures to be followed by this committee in fulfilling its responsibilities.)

 

Section 7. Publications Committee. The Publications Committee shall be responsible for the guidelines, printing, and dissemination of the Council’s publications. The Publications Committee shall consist of the Director of Publications and the chairperson of the Editorial Board as co-chairs, and at least four (4) members. Additional duties may be assigned by the President and/or the Executive Board.

Section 8.     Scholarship Committee. The Scholarship Committee shall be responsible for selecting student scholarship winners and teacher mini-grant scholarship awards. The Scholarship Committee shall consist of a chair and a co-chair who will serve two-year overlapping terms. There will be at least four (4) members. The Treasurer of the Organization should serve as an ex officio member of this committee.

Section 9. Special Awards Committee. The Special Awards Committee shall execute established procedures for bestowing merited honors on TCSS members who are selected to receive its annual awards. The Special Awards Committee shall consist of a chair and at least four (4) members.

Section 10.   Teacher Standards Committee. The Teacher Standards Committee shall monitor the State Board of Educator Certification on teacher standards and report to the Executive Board. The Teacher Standards Committee shall consist of a chairperson and at least four (4) members.

Section 11. Technology Committee. The Technology Committee shall research and keep the membership informed of technological innovations in social studies and/or instruction, be open to increasing uses of technology in the classroom, and recommend to the Executive Board matters pertaining to appropriate workshops, grants, hardware and/or software that can be utilized by social studies teachers across the state. This committee shall consist of the Director of Media and Technology as chair, one co-chair, and at least four (4) members.

Section 12. Textbook/Instructional Materials Review Committee. The Textbook/Instructional Materials Review Committee shall participate when appropriate in all aspects of the state textbook adoption process for social studies. This committee shall consist of a chairperson; during adoption cycles at least four (4) members will be added. Criteria for membership of this committee shall include but not be limited to (1) expertise in the subject area for which textbooks/instructional materials may be adopted, (2) experience and/or expertise with the grade level(s) or which texts shall be adopted, (3) no conflict of interest (no paid involvement with a bidding publisher in the current adoption cycle within the last three years).

Article VIII

Meetings

Section 1.     General Membership Meetings. There shall be one (1) general meeting of the membership each year. This meeting shall be held during the annual fall conference.

Section 2.     Executive Board Meetings. There shall be two (2) meetings of the Executive Board each year. One meeting will be held in the spring and the second during the annual fall conference. The committees of the Organization will meet during the spring meeting and the annual fall conference.

Section 3.     Executive Committee Meetings. The Executive Committee will meet at least four times annually.

ARTICLE IX

Affiliation

Section 1.     NCSS Affiliation. The Texas Council for the Social Studies shall be affiliated with the National Council for the Social Studies.

Section 2.     Local Council Affiliation. Local councils may affiliate with the Texas Council for the Social Studies without fee or financial obligation. To become or remain an affiliated local council, the state membership office must receive names and contact information for local officers by October 1 of each year.

ARTICLE X

Associated Groups

Section 1. Organizations whose goals are consistent with the purpose of the Texas Council for the Social Studies as stated in Article II of this Constitution shall be eligible to apply for Associated Group status.

Section 2. Organizations desiring Associated Group status shall make application for such status by sending the following information to the President of TCSS:

a.   Letter of request from the applying group’s governing board;

b.   List of officers;

c.   Current membership list; and

d.   Current copy of the applying group’s constitution.

Action on the application shall be taken at the next regular meeting of the TCSS Executive Board.

Section 3. Members of Associated Groups must also be members of the Texas Council for the Social Studies.

Section 4. Associated Group privileges shall include:

a.   Provision of meeting space and program listings as coordinated through the TCSS President, President-Elect, and Conference Program Planning Coordinator;

b.   Publication of information in The Social Studies Texan; and

c.   Other privileges as approved by the Executive Board of the Texas Council for the Social Studies.

Section 5. Associated Groups shall submit an annual report to the TCSS President. The report shall contain a list of officers for the following year, a membership list, and any constitutional changes.

Section 6. Disassociation may occur by vote of the Executive Board of the Texas Council for the Social Studies.

ARTICLE XI

Dissolution

 

If at any time the Organization shall cease to carry out the purposes as herein stated, all assets and property held by it, whether in trust or otherwise, shall, after the payment of its liabilities, be paid over to the National Council for the Social Studies for its organization as long as it is exempt within the meaning of section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code. If the said National Council for the Social Studies is not then exempt, the net assets, as aforesaid, shall be distributed to one or more exempt organizations within the meaning of section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code, which exempt organization shall be designated by the final Executive Board of the organization. If the Executive Board is unable to select such an organization, the assets shall be distributed to the federal government or to a state or local government for a public purpose. Any such assets not so disposed of shall be disposed of by the Court of Common Pleas of the county in which the principle office of the Organization is located, as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.

 

ARTICLE XII

IRS Section 501(c) (3) Restrictions

No part of the net earnings of the Organization shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributed to its members, trustees, officers, or other private persons, except that the Organization shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in Article II hereof. No substantial part of the activities of the Organization shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and the Organization shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements) any political campaign on behalf of any candidate for public office. Notwithstanding any other provision of these articles, the Organization shall not file for federal income tax exemption under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code or corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or (b) by a corporation, contributions to which are deductible under section 170 (c) (2) of the Internal Revenue Code, or any corresponding section of any future federal code.

ARTICLE XIII

Parliamentary Authority

The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the Organization in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these Constitution and Bylaws and any special rules of order the Organization may adopt.

 

ARTICLE XIV

Amendment of Constitution

Section 1.      This constitution may be amended by a majority vote of the members present at the officially scheduled general meeting of the Texas Council for the Social Studies after sufficient publicity of the proposed changes has been given.

Section 2.      This constitution may be amended by the approval of three-fourths of the members present at the officially scheduled general meeting of the Texas Council for the Social Studies in the event that prior notice of the proposed changes has not been given. Changes will take effect immediately upon ratification.