TCSS Policy Statements

Download the TCSS Policy Statements


TCSS Policy Statements

Developed July 1987, and revised  as indicated


TCSS Oath of Office (April 2003; Revoked, March 2007)

We promise to follow the Constitution and By-laws of the Texas Council for the Social Studies and to fulfill our offices with honor and integrity, modeling good citizenship and directing our positions with leadership to encourage the improvement of social studies.

Committee Function Review

The Executive Committee shall reevaluate the need and purpose for the existence of each ad hoc or special committee every year and make recommendations for their continuance or dissolution. This action is to be accomplished prior to the presentation of the budget at the Spring Meeting.

Committee Meetings–Special

If expenses for Special Committee participants are to be reimbursed, the budget for such reimbursement should generally be approved either by the Executive Board or in advance by the Executive Committee (if necessary in an emergency.) In general, hotel expenses are based on double occupancy; travel reimbursement will be based on the lowest possible fare; mileage rate reimbursement shall be based on IRS allowable expense. The Chairperson of the Special Committee is responsible for communicating budget limitations and/or description of expenses TCSS agrees to reimburse to participating committee members.

Conference–Complimentary Tickets (April 2001)

TCSS will pay for the Awards luncheon tickets for the four Teachers of the Year Award and the Billy Sills Award winners plus four of their guests.

Conference–Credit (October 1995)

TCSS shall provide evidence that the conference participants have attended offerings in the Fall and Spring Conference. Each conference participant is responsible for determining his/her district policy on accepting and granting staff development credit for sessions offered during any TCSS meeting.

Conference–Exhibit Refunds (April 2001)

Within 14 calendar days of payment, a full refund will be honored. Between 15 calendar days from date of payment and 31 calendar days before the conference, the booth rental minus a $100.00 processing fee will be refunded. Thirty calendar days before the conference, no refunds will be made. These policies must be printed in every letter sent to potential exhibitors.


Keynote Speakers: the Conference Steering Committee shall provide a gift for each Convention keynote speaker at a cost not to exceed $25.


The most Local Council(s) shall receive is one-fourth (1/4) of all convention generated proceeds/revenues after any specially requested funds have been deducted. The Local Host Council shall forward to the TCSS Treasurer an itemized accounting of all expenses and revenues generated following the conclusion of the convention activity. This should be done within 90 days of the close of the convention. (Amended April 1993)

Conference–Registration Fees (October 2001)

The TCSS convention pre-registration and on-site-registration fees shall reflect a differentiated charge for TCSS members and non-members. The difference in charge shall be the cost of membership in TCSS. Non-members become members with payment of appropriate registration fee. The Policy committee recommends the following procedure be used to increase membership in TCSS:

  • The Conference Registration Committee must identify pre-registration packets of those whose membership is not current according to records of the Director of Member Services. When these registrants arrive at the conference they shall be referred to the Director of Member Services to update their dues before their registration is complete. (Amended October 2001)
  • College/University students are encouraged to attend the conference. Their registration must include membership unless they already hold valid membership in TCSS. Their registration fee shall be set by the Conference Steering Committee. (Amended October 2001)
  • Presenters and facilitators shall pay the registration and membership fee. (Amended October 1996)
  • The Conference Steering Committee shall set registration fees and make the decision regarding special options such as a one day fee which might attract more registrants to their city. (Amended October 1996)
  • All exhibitors who pay to exhibit will receive up to 10 name badges without further cost. Exhibitors or publishers who wish to present sessions must be a member and pay the registration fee for the conference. (Amended October 1996)
  • Speakers and special guests are excluded from the policy requiring payment of fees and membership. (Amended October 1996)

Conference–Registration Refund (Amended 1989)

Money or pre-registration may refunded minus a $5.00 processing fee if the refund is requested three weeks or more prior to the annual conference.

Conference–Seed Money (Amended 1993)

The TCSS Treasurer shall send, upon request to the Conference Steering Committee, a sum of $1,000 to be used as seed money. The TCSS President may authorize the Treasurer to provide additional seed funds upon request by the Conference Steering Committee.

Conference–TCSS/TSSSA Relationship (October 1996)

Responsibility for arrangements for TCSS and TSSSA Functions at Fall and Spring Conferences:

  • Spring Meeting: The TCSS President will work with the TSSSA President and the TSSSA local arrangements committee to insure that TCSS has hotel and meeting accommodations made at the same time that TSSSA makes arrangements for their Spring Conference. All hotel contacts will be made by TSSSA.
  • Fall Conference: The TSSSA President will work with the TCSS President and the TCSS Conference Steering Committee to insure that TSSSA has hotel and meeting accommodations for their Fall Conference that meets the day prior to the opening of the TCSS Fall Conference. The arrangements should be made at the same time that TCSS makes arrangements. All hotel contacts will be made by Conference Steering Committee.

Executive Secretary–Appointment

A committee consisting of the Past President, President and President-Elect shall recommend to the Executive Committee a person to serve as Executive Secretary. The name shall then be forwarded to the Executive Board for approval. (Executive Committee Clarification, April 1992). The Executive Secretary appointment is for a three (3) year period. However the committee identified above with Executive Board approval may renew the appointment term.


Executive Secretary -President’s Plaque

The Executive Secretary shall be responsible for the design and purchase of a plaque recognizing the service of the Immediate Past President to be given to that person by the current President during the Fall Conference Awards Luncheon immediately following the person’s term of office.


Financial Responsibilities

The budget shall be proposed by a subcommittee led by the President-Elect. Members of the subcommittee will include the President, Treasurer and Executive Secretary. The Executive Board shall review, make recommendations and approve the operational budget during their scheduled meetings.

TCSS fiscal year shall run from July 1 to June 30. (Amended April 2004)

Local Council/TCSS Affiliation

TCSS affiliation forms will be sent by the Director of Member Services to Local Council Presidents on May 1. The Local Council President should return the completed affiliation form by June 1. In the event that the affiliation form is not returned by the due date, the Director of Member Services will send follow-up letters to the appropriate Local Council President and Board Representative. Upon receipt of the affiliation forms, the Director of Member Services will forward copies of the forms to the TCSS President and Executive Secretary.

Membership (April 2001)

Member dues: The regular membership dues shall be $15.00 per year, effective November 1, 2001.

Elementary School Membership: $30.00 per year. This membership entitles an elementary school to receive a one-year subscription to The Social Studies Texan and three educators from that campus may register at the fall conference at membership rates. Effective November 1, 2001.

Institutional Subscription: $40.00 per year. An Institution, such as a school library, may receive two copies of the three yearly issues of The Social Studies Texan.

Membership Year: The TCSS membership year will begin on August 1st of each year and expire on July 31st (Amended October 2006)

Membership Office–Mailing Label Requests from Outside Sources (October 1993)

Publishers and other educational organizations may purchase TCSS membership mailing labels upon approval by the President. The President shall review each request and determine whether or not the purposes of the requesting groups are consistent with the purposes/goals of the TCSS Constitution. Upon approval, the President shall direct the Director of Member Services to produce the membership mailing labels and provide a billing invoice to the requesting party. The fees to be charged for the service are as follows:

Outside sources requesting labels shall be charged $.10 per mailing label plus a $15.00 processing fee.

Membership Office–Mailing Labels for TCSS Membership Affiliates

The TCSS Director of Member Services shall provide mailing labels to affiliated Local Council Treasurers of their council’s membership free of charge one time per year upon request. (Amended October 2001)

Membership Office–Director of Member Services Responsibilities (April 1993; October 1995)

The TCSS Director of Member Services shall make available a current report of membership labels to the Conference Registration Chairperson prior to the Fall Conference to send pre-registration materials.

The TCSS Director of Member Services shall attend the Fall Conference, arriving the evening prior to the first day of the conference. During the Conference the Director of Member Services shall handle questions and concerns about membership, collect dues, and work with the Vice-President at the membership table.

Upon purging the TCSS membership records, the TCSS Director of Member Services shall send, in January, an updated membership list to all affiliated Local Council Treasurers.

The TCSS Director of Member Services shall be paid a sum to be determined by the Executive Board on recommendation by the Treasurer, Vice President, or Executive Secretary. This person is not an employee of TCSS. TCSS shall contract with this person for his/her services.

NCSS Affiliation–(April 1993)

In May or June, the Executive Secretary in conjunction with the Director of Member Services, shall request a current membership list from NCSS and TCSS. The Executive Secretary and Director of Member Services shall review the lists and determine the number of joint TCSS and NCSS members. This information is necessary for the completion of TCSS affiliation form required by NCSS.

NCSS–Award Recipients (October 2002)

TCSS shall reimburse transportation costs to the NCSS annual meeting for any TCSS Teacher of the Year for Elementary, Middle or Secondary Education and the Billy Sills Award for Distinguished Service who goes on to win the NCSS Teacher of the Year for Elementary, Middle or Secondary Education or the NCSS Service Award.

NCSS Delegates–Reimbursement of Expenses

The President shall have all convention expenses paid based upon receipts. TCSS shall reimburse transportation costs to the NCSS annual meeting for TCSS members serving as official Texas Council delegates. President-Elect shall also be reimbursed for lodging expenses based upon receipts (Amended April 2004). No delegate should apply for reimbursement from TCSS if they receive reimbursement from other sources.

NCSS Delegates–Reimbursement of Expenses (October 2002) (Amended 2012)

TCSS shall reimburse transportation costs to the NCSS annual meeting for TCSS members who reside in in Texas serving on the four NCSS House of Delegates Standing Committees or on the NCSS Board of Directors, if not reimbursed by other sources.

NCSS Leadership Seminar (April 2001)

TCSS shall pay the travel and hotel expenses for the President and President -Elect to attend the NCSS Leadership Seminar each summer.

NCSS Officers Attending TCSS–Reimbursement of Expenses (October 2004)

The TCSS President will invite the President and/or Executive Secretary of NCSS to attend the TCSS Fall Conference. TCSS will reimburse for expenses (travel, hotel) and registration) up to $750.00 per person, if not covered by another source.

In the event of a dispute over travel reimbursements, the executive committee shall have final authority over such decisions. (Amended February 2013)

Nominations and Election–Committee Structure and Procedures (March 2007)

  • The mandate of the Nominations and Elections Committee is to solicit and recruit qualified candidates for TCSS elective office.
  • A co-chair will be selected by the incoming President from among the current committee members. The co-chairmanship will rotate among the geographical regions.
  • Potential candidates will submit a statement of interest form to include the following: name, address, telephone and e-mail contact information, educational background, current and past professional employment, position sought, experience in local and state councils and other organizations, awards and honors.
  • Selected candidates will submit a 150 word “position statement” to the chairperson of the Nominations and Elections Committee within three weeks of notification of selection.


Nominations and Elections–Voting Procedures (March 2007)

  • Elections will take place at the fall conference in a location provided by the host committee. Conference name badges will be used as identification, and a TCSS membership roster list will be used to check off members as they vote.
  • Hours for voting will be publicized prior to and at the conference. Voting will be available for no less than eight hours over a two day period (Friday and Saturday) and will close at 12:00 Noon on Saturday.
  • The Chair of the Nominations and Elections Committee will notify the TCSS President with election results by 5:00 PM on Saturday.
  • Campaigning is not allowed before or during the conference, including but not limited to, t-shirts, buttons, fliers or mailings. Candidates must stay away from the voting area unless casting a vote themselves.
  • Candidates will be introduced at all conference meal functions prior to the close of voting, but no electioneering for candidates may take place during presentations or meal functions.
  • The Nominations and Elections Committee will prepare posters containing pictures of candidates, as well as biographical information and position statements submitted by the candidates.

Past President–Leadership Handbooks

The TCSS Past President shall be responsible for updating both the TCSS Leadership Handbook and the Local Council Presidents Handbook in cooperation with the Executive Secretary. The TCSS Past President will provide one (1) copy of the Local Council President’s Handbook to the local council president of new councils upon receipt of their affiliation forms.

In even years, the Local Council President’s Handbook shall be reviewed, revised, or reprinted as deemed appropriate.

The Executive Board Representative, TCSS Officers, and Committee Chairpersons shall receive one (1) copy of the TCSS Leadership Handbook. This copy of the TCSS Leadership Handbook is to be passed on to new Executive Board Representatives, TCSS Officers, and Committee Chairpersons at the beginning of the next officer or committee chair/board representative term.

President–NCSS Delegates

The President shall appoint delegates to represent TCSS at NCSS. Priority should be given to the following positions in this order: Past President, President, President-Elect, Executive Secretary, Vice-President, Treasurer, Parliamentarian and Recording Secretary. Other delegates may be selected from the Executive Board. Selected delegates must agree to attend all House of Delegates meetings.

President–TCSS Spokesperson

The President is the official leader/spokesperson of TCSS. The Executive Secretary may also serve as spokesperson for the organization. The President may designate other spokespersons as deemed appropriate.


The outgoing President shall give a certificate of appreciation to each Officer and Committee Chair for service to TCSS.


President-Elect–Appointment of Committee Chairpersons/Members

The President-Elect shall appoint new committee chairpersons annually prior to the spring meeting. Committee chairpersons may be reappointed to consecutive terms under extenuating circumstances. Committee Co-Chairs may be appointed at the request of a committee or as the President-elect deems necessary. (Amended April 2003)

Committee chairpersons shall reflect the various geographic areas of the state and membership in local councils with consideration for mixed gender and ethnicity. Committee members appointed should similarly reflect this diversity.


An appropriate gift for the outgoing President should be secured by the incoming President and presented during the Spring Meeting. The cost of the gift for the outgoing President shall not exceed $50.

Special Awards Committee Procedures (April 1989)

The annual selection process shall parallel the committee term of office with decisions regarding nominations, announcements of winners, and presentations of awards made by one committee.

All properly submitted nominations must be considered in each category annually. A first-time nomination not selected for an award shall automatically be considered for one additional year in that same category without renomination. Criteria for special awards and nomination application forms will appear in the fall Social Studies Texan and also be available as handouts at the fall conference. May 15 is the postmark deadline for nominations. Only nominations that follow the guidelines for documentation will be considered. The outgoing committee will give all properly submitted nominations to the incoming committee at the TCSS Spring Meeting. (Amended October 2001)

Awards shall consist of recognition plaques and pins and cash awards. TCSS shall pay for NCSS membership (or extension) for one year for the winners of the TCSS Elementary, Middle, and Secondary award and the Billy Sills Award. (Amended October 2002)

When appropriate, NCSS awards fit into the TCSS selection cycle. TCSS shall nominate its annual winners for national consideration, but TCSS shall never nominate more than one name for any one award.

Stalwart Fund

TCSS has established a separate account as the Stalwart Fund. This fund, established by donations and/or memorials in honor of a TCSS member, provides for special recognition of TCSS members. Disbursement of the funds shall be at the discretion of the Scholarship Committee.

TEXANNewsletter Editorship

The President may serve as an editor or may appoint an editor(s) of the TCSS journal, The Social Studies Texan. The editor(s) will be responsible for including teaching activities, committee reports, council news, and scholarly articles.

TEXANAdvertising Rates

The Publications Committee and the Editor of The Social Studies Texan shall review the advertising rates prior to each meeting of the Executive Board to insure that the rate structure is adequate to cover all per page costs and provide some income to TCSS.

TEXANEditor and Director of Membership Reimbursement (April 1993, Amended October 2003)

TCSS pays/reimburses for travel, lodging (up to state-approved limits) for the Director of Membership and the Editor of the Social Studies TEXAN to attend the fall and spring TCSS meetings, NCSS annual conference, and other approved functions. (October 2003)


Treasurer–Reimbursement of Officers, Committee Chairs, and Committee Members

The Treasurer is authorized to reimburse TCSS Committee Chairpersons for transportation and TCSS Executive Committee for transportation and lodging to attend the Fall and Spring Executive Board meetings if they are not reimbursed by other sources. Reimbursement for lodging (up to state rate) shall be for up to 3 nights for the TCSS Fall Conference and up to 2 nights for the TCSS Spring Meeting. (Amended October 2003) Travel reimbursement should be based on the lowest possible fare; mileage rate reimbursement is determined by the IRS allowable expense. Copies of the airline ticket receipts should accompany reimbursement requests and should be submitted to the Treasurer within two (2) weeks following Executive Board meeting(s). (Amended October 2002 and April 2003)

TCSS pays/reimburses the travel expenses of Standing Committee Chairs for attending the TCSS Fall Conference and Spring Meeting. (October 2003)

TCSS pays/reimburses the Curriculum Liaison Chair(s) and/or the President’s designee for travel, lodging (up to state rate), and meals for attending meetings of the State Board of Education. (October 2003)

TCSS pays/reimburses the TCSS President for all expenses to all meetings at which he/she represents TCSS. (October 2003)

TCSS pays/reimburses travel expenses for any and all Executive Committee members and/or the President’s designee(s) who represent TCSS at an approved function(s). (October 2003)

Appointed committee chairs and co-chairs attending the Spring Meeting will be reimbursed for one night’s lodging, in addition to the already approved transportation reimbursement, up to the maximum state rate, if not reimbursed from other sources. (March 2006)

Appointed TCSS committee members attending the Spring Meeting each year will be reimbursed for mileage/lodging expenses up to a maximum of $50 that are not reimbursed from other sources. (March 2006)


Vice President–Membership Promotion

The TCSS Vice-President shall be responsible for seeing that a representative of TCSS attends a variety of other professional meetings to solicit memberships in TCSS. In order to minimize expenses, the TCSS Vice-President should solicit representatives to attend other professional meetings from TCSS members who have already planned to attend. The Policy Committee recommends that TCSS have representative(s) attending one or more of the following meetings:

Law and Humanities Institute                          TASCD

Texas Historical Association                            TEPSA

Texas Middle School Association                   Association of School Librarians

Geography and Economic Institutes              Texas High School Coaches Association

Any other associations deemed appropriate by the Vice President.

Website Coordinator

The TCSS Website Coordinator shall have responsibility for the TCSS website. The Website Coordinator will maintain website security, be responsible for accuracy of content, and ensure that information about TCSS activities will be posted in a timely manner. Maintenance may include information regarding special awards, grants, and the annual conference. In addition, the Website Coordinator shall recommend to the Executive Board the acquisition of software, hardware or identify a company able to assist in the operation of the website.

The TCSS Website Coordinator shall be reimbursed by TCSS for reasonable expenses including travel, hotel, and registration associated with attending the Fall Conference, Spring Meeting, and Executive Retreat.


Website Coordinator Appointment

A committee consisting of the Past President, President and President-Elect shall recommend to the Executive Committee a person to serve as Website Coordinator. The name shall then be forwarded to the Executive Board for approval. (Executive Committee Clarification, April 1992). The Website Coordinator appointment is for a three (3) year period. However the committee identified above with Executive Board approval may renew the appointment term.