How to prepare board members for transition

A question was asked on the I am a Homeschool Group Leader Facebook group regarding planning for a transition.

One issue I’d like to hear about on your podcast is how to choose board members, and prepare them well for a transition. I plan to retire from co-op coordinating when my youngest ages out of the co-op.
Besides listing what I do, how I do it, where to look for alternative ways to do it, and telling them to pray about if the Lord is calling them to step up, are there other steps?

Several other homeschool leaders chimed in with this advice that I think is worth repeating.

Jennifer wrote: You need to raise up some leadership to replace you. Train people, so they see it is not scary or pure magic.

I am finding that people recently are attracted to shorter periods of service, so if you can structure a system that allows a couple of years and a break, that seems more appealing.

Lydia shared her experience: Ask like minded people to join your board. Choose some to be a coordinator over areas i.e., high school, middle school, etc. Give them small areas of oversight to begin building leaders.

For teachers, have new moms assist seasoned moms to teach a class the first year. Then the next year ask some of the new moms to step out and teach a class. Some moms will never be able to teach a class, but they are good supports to other moms.

Ask one mom to be in charge of field trips or study hall, that way they do not have to teach, but can contribute. Then later on ask them to move int a coordinator position.

Those in coordinator position can be groomed to be on the board. Make a list of things that you do, see what you can delegate to others. That way others will begin to manage the co-op. Then ask the one that seems to be the natural born leader to take over the co-op.

Ginny had a great idea: Create a Board Binder with all the details of what you do and why. Outline the various positions. We created this over the last two years. Any member of your board might need to be replaced at any given time for numerous reasons. And any member of your group should be able to pick up the binder and step into a leadership role if needed. Having a board binder (operations manual) helps in that.

Ideally, identify new leaders in plenty of time for training and demonstrating for the new leaders. We identified our new treasurer in December for a June 1 transition. It gives her time to think, plan, ask, etc. We didn’t reveal to the members until April.

If you’d like more advice like this come join over 2,000 homeschool leaders on Facebook at I am a Homeschool Group Leader Facebook group

Helpful Resources

The Homeschool Organization Board Manual is a combination of a template for your homeschool group’s board to create binders to keep important documents and a board training manual to explain the board’s duties and responsibilities. Written specifically for homeschool groups.

The three-video set will to train your homeschool group’s board members. Many homeschool leaders have never served on a nonprofit board before so these videos explain the duties of a board, its structure, how to run a meeting, and more. For more details visit: Homeschool Board Training video set

Leave a Reply