Constitution of the Georgia Science Teachers Association
Revised: November, 1993
Second Revision: March, 2005
Third Revision: February 2015
Constitution of the Georgia Science Teachers Association

PREAMBLE

The Georgia Science Teachers Association is an incorporated non-profit association of
professional science teachers whose primary aims shall be to encourage the development of
science interests and abilities as a vital part of the total educational development of the
students. The science teacher of today must be at once a dedicated professional educator,
aware of the philosophy and function of education and of current practices therein; an
enlightened citizen in terms of knowledge, understandings, appreciations, and behavior;
competent in scientific endeavors, capable of making science a living force in the lives of
children.


The aims of this Association shall be to cooperate with and support organizations and agencies
which strive to improve science and science education, to encourage science teachers to
participate actively in their local teacher organizations, to provide for administrators
understanding and acceptance of the aims and objectives of this organization, to encourage an
adequate pre-service and in-service training program for science teachers and to act as a
professional clearing house for science teaching (instruction, outreach and challenges facing
science education) of local and national significance.


Article I – MEMBERSHIP


Section A. Regular Member. The regular membership shall consist of those professional
educators who are primarily concerned with science teaching at any level, that is, anyone who
teaches science in the classroom or elsewhere, or who trains and/or supervises science
teachers. Full association rights and privileges are afforded to the regular member.

Section B. Associate Member. The associate membership shall consist of those persons
interested in science teaching but whose responsibilities are not primarily those of the
professional science educator. The Associate Members will not have the right to vote, nor will
they be able to hold elective office in the Association but may be eligible for appointive office.

Section C. Student Member. All full time students enrolled in an organized science education
curriculum at any college or university of the state shall be eligible for student membership.

Section D. Honorary Member. The status of Honorary Member of the Georgia Science
Teachers Association may be awarded as recognition for outstanding service to the association
and/or to the science education profession as a recipient of the Dallas Stewart Award, or be of
outstanding service to persons not directly involved in science education.

Section E. Membership Procedures. One becomes a Regular, Associate, or Student Member
by applying to the Association and paying an assessed fee commensurate with the membership
status for a membership year that runs one year from the date of the current paid
membership. GSTA provides membership options of one, two, or three year terms. The
membership term begins when the application form and fee are received by GSTA. Honorary
members are granted membership and complimentary conference registration at the discretion
of the Board of Directors. Honorary Membership will be granted for an indefinite term and can
only be terminated by a vote of the Board. Membership is not transferable.

Article II - STRUCTURE OF THE ASSOCIATION

Section A. Board of Directors. The decision-making group for the Association is defined in
Article IV, Section A, Paragraph 1, to carry out the goals and objectives of the Association. The
Board is bound by the provisions of this Constitution.

Section B. Board Records. The Corporation is embodied in the record of proceedings of the
Board of Directors and the annual meeting. The accounts shall be kept by the Executive
Secretary Treasurer.

Section C: Executive Board. The Executive Board is the leadership group for the Board of
Directors and is defined by Article IV, Section B, Paragraph 1. The Executive Board is also
bound by the provisions of this Constitution.

Section D. District Organization. The Association is divided into twelve (12) districts. The
purpose of organizing into districts is to promote membership in the Association and to provide
more and better services to individual members. The District Director represents the interests
of district membership on the Board of Directors.

Section E. District Membership. District membership is determined by the location of the
educator's work place, not his/her personal residence.

Section F. Strategic Planning. The organization’s Strategic Plan is designed to provide a
shared mission and vision through changes in leadership, and allow the organization to
prioritize the use of its resources. Along with this constitution it should guide the decisions of
the Board of Directors in order to ensure that all organizational activities are in line with and
support the organizations mission and goals. The Strategic Plan should be reviewed and
revised by the full Board of Directors or by a committee appointed by the president, every five
years.

Section F. Position Statements. Position statements are summaries of the organization’s
views regarding specific issues related to science education in the state of Georgia. These
statements are reviewed annually by the Legislative Committee, who makes recommendations
to the Board. Policy statements must be approved by the Board, before being voted on by the
general membership. A majority of votes cast must be in favor of supporting each statement
in order for it to be adopted as an official position of the organization.

Article III – OFFICERS
Election, Duties and Responsibilities, Terms of Office

Section A. Officers of the Georgia Science Teachers Association.

Paragraph 1. Elected officers of the Association will be the President, Vice-President, President-
Elect, Secretary, four (4) Members-at-Large and twelve (12) District Directors. These members
at large shall represent the areas of (1) college membership; (2) High School membership; (3)
middle school membership and (4) elementary school membership. A non-elected science
supervisor/coordinator, member-at-large will also serve on the Board of Directors.

Paragraph 2. The science supervisor/coordinator position shall be considered a voting member
of the Board of Directors and is to be named by GSSA biannually in even numbered years. The
Publications Editor(s), Webmaster, the Executive Secretary/Treasurer, a Deputy Treasurer and
Conference Registration Chair will be appointive offices. Such appointments will be
recommended annually by the President and approved by the Board of Directors.

Paragraph 3. Any Georgia Science Teachers Association district may establish a district
organization. The District Director will be responsible for administering the establishment of
the district organization and election of officers and will serve as the chief executive.

Paragraph 4. Officers holding elective positions, except as noted below, must receive a
plurality of votes of members voting by statewide ballot and shall hold office for a term of one
(1) year or two (2) years or until a successor is elected and qualified. Offices of a one-year
term include President, President-Elect, and Director. Offices of two (2) year term include Vice-
President, Secretary, District Director, and five (5) Members-at-Large. The District Director
must receive a plurality of votes of members in his/her district and shall hold office for a term
of two years. Odd numbered districts will elect their directors in odd-numbered years; even-numbered
districts in even numbered years. The two (2) Members-at-Large who represent (1)
college membership and (2) middle school membership shall be elected in odd-numbered
years. The two (2) Members-at-Large who represent (1) High School membership and (2)
elementary membership shall be elected in even-numbered years. Terms of office shall begin
with the Transition Meeting held no later than May 31st of each year. District and Level
Directors may serve for no more than two consecutive, elected terms in the same position. The
term of appointed office shall be indeterminate and appointment shall be recommended
annually by the President and approved by the Board of Directors.

Paragraph 5. To provide that some continuity of administration will be maintained, the
President-Elect will succeed the President. The Vice-President will become President-Elect in
the event that the person elected to this office is unable to fulfill the responsibilities of the
office. This policy of ascendancy pertains only to the President-Elect.

Paragraph 6. In the event that the office of State President is vacated during the term of office,
the President-Elect will ascend to that office, fill the unexpired term, and continue in the office
for one (1) full term. In the event the office of District Director is vacated during the term of
office, the President shall appoint someone to fill the unexpired District Director's term.

Section B. Election Procedures.

Paragraph 1. The State President shall, on or before November 15 each year, appoint a
Nominating Chair. The Nominating Chair will prepare a slate of nominees, with written consent
of the nominees, for those offices identified in Article III, Section A, Paragraph 1. The
Nominating Chair should be neither a current Board Member nor a Candidate who is running
for a position on the Board.

Paragraph 2. Any member of the Georgia Science Teachers Association may submit suggested
nominees for state officers. These suggestions must be made in writing, must include the
written consent of the potential nominee, and be received by the State President no later than
December 5 each year.

Paragraph 3: To be eligible for office a candidate must be a current member of the Georgia
Science Teachers Association prior to nomination. If running for a District Director that
candidate must work in the district he/she is seeking to represent. If running for a Member-at-
Large position, that candidate must be working in the level he/she is seeking to represent at
the time of the election.

Paragraph 4. The Nominating Chair will prepare and distribute a ballot with voting information
by February 1, with voting to be open for a minimum period of two (2) weeks, and the results
to be announced on or before March 15 of each year.

Paragraph 5. Only regular members in good standing, i.e., members who have paid their
assessed dues for the current membership year, will receive a ballot, and consequently be
eligible to vote on elected officers.

Paragraph 6. It is the policy of the Georgia Science Teachers Association that candidates
running for any office may not campaign at a state conference, association meeting, or by
utilizing the GSTA website or social media resources. Use of GSTA meetings and resources to
campaign provides an unfair advantage, thus using GSTA meetings and resources to campaign
will be considered grounds for disqualification.

Section C. Duties and Responsibilities of State Officers

Paragraph 1. Acceptance of nomination and election or appointment to office make the duties
and responsibilities indicated in the following paragraphs of this section obligatory. Any state
officer who does not attend two consecutive Board of Directors meetings without submitting
written reasons considered justifiable by Board of Directors consensus shall indicate by the
absences the intention of vacating that office. The President shall be authorized to appoint
someone to fill the unexpired term of the office.

Paragraph 2. Duties and responsibilities of the State President are:
a. Shall be held accountable for all funds received by the Georgia Science Teachers
Association and shall be solely responsible for the disbursement of said funds.
b. Shall have the duty of planning the annual business meeting as part of the Georgia
Science Teachers Association Annual Conference.
c. Shall solicit funds from sponsors and maintain correspondence with sponsors for the
support of the annual state-wide Science and Leadership Conference. The president shall
serve as a member of the conference committee and assist in preparing the conference
budget.
d. Shall cooperate with and be generally available to organizations and meetings involved in
science and science education activities; and shall otherwise be active in professional
activities.
e. Shall be responsible for maintaining the correspondence necessary for effective
organization of the Association and shall be informed at all times of activities of districts and
committees.
f. Shall be accountable to the members of the Georgia Science Teachers Association for the
activities of the Association.
g. Shall take the initiative with the Board of Directors in leading the Association toward a
definite and firm policy on all issues, regardless of nature, pertinent to science and science
education.
h. May appoint such committees as deemed necessary for the efficient operation of the
Association.
i. May delegate other duties and responsibilities as deemed necessary to subordinate
officers, appointees, or committees.
j. Shall take whatever action necessary to insure that all members receive adequate and
advance notification of Association activities.
k. Shall serve on the board of directors of the Georgia Science Teachers Education
Foundation.
l. Shall serve on the finance committee of the state organization.
m. Shall support Strategic Planning Committee in implementation of the current
Association's Strategic Plan.
n. Shall, after completion of the term of office, serve one (1) year as the State Executive
Director of the Association.

Paragraph 3. Duties and responsibilities of the President-Elect are:
a. Shall assume duties and responsibilities of the President in the absence of same.
b. Shall be chair of the program committee for the annual state-wide Science and
Leadership Conference. These duties shall include:
1. Selection of a conference program planning committee, which will assist with the
review and selection of concurrent sessions and other items related to program.
Membership of this committee will include the vice president of the Association,
Executive Director of the Association, and members to represent a cross-section of the
membership.
2. Selection of a theme, logo, and conference strands for the conference and present to
Board of Directors Board during transitional meeting.
3. Solicit and select presenters from those submitting applications for presentations at
concurrent sessions and correspond as necessary
4. Schedule concurrent sessions into available time and space
5. Arrange and type program
6. Design program and have it printed.
7. Provide appropriate program information for appropriate electronic distribution
8. Will assist in the development of a conference budget.
9. Provide periodic updates of program to members of the Executive Board of Directors,
Executive Director, and members of the program planning committee.
c. Shall cooperate with and be generally available to organizations and meetings involving
science and science education, and otherwise actively participate in professional activities.
d. Shall assume those responsibilities delegated by the President.
e. Shall serve on the board of directors of the Georgia Science Teachers Education
Foundation.

Paragraph 4. Duties and responsibilities of the Executive Director are:
a. Shall serve as chair of the annual Science and Leadership Conference and as such, be
responsible for the overall quality, publicity and decision making of the conference. These
duties shall include:
1. Selection of a local arrangements chair.
2. Formulation of a budget for the annual state-wide Science Teachers Conference and
present this budget to the Board of Directors of the organization by the first meeting of
the fiscal year. The Executive Director is responsible for approval of all expenditures
related to the conference.
3. Secure speakers for the conference's general sessions, special events, and the
awards ceremony.
b. Shall serve on the board of directors of the Georgia Science Teachers Education
Foundation.
c. Shall serve as an advisor to the president and the Board of Directors.

Paragraph 5. Duties and responsibilities of the State Vice-President are:
a. Shall chair the membership committee of the Georgia Science Teachers Association.
b. Shall coordinate information regarding youth activities.
c. Shall serve on the program committee of the annual Science and Leadership Conference.
d. Shall serve as Parliamentarian during official meetings of the Georgia Science Teachers
Association.

Paragraph 6. Duties and responsibilities of the State Secretary are:
a. Shall maintain the minutes of the Board of Directors for each official meeting.
b. Shall submit compiled minutes to the Executive Secretary after the Transition Meeting.

Paragraph 7. Duties and responsibilities of the Members-at-Large are:
a. Shall attend meetings of the Board of Directors and represent concerns of the
membership in that instructional level.
b. Shall encourage membership.
c. Shall submit information, news, and at least one article for an instructional column in
Observations or The Georgia Science Teacher according to the yearly specified publication
schedule.
d. Shall assist conference coordinator with identification and solicitations of workshops for
appropriate level.
e. Shall lead a Share-a-Thon session at conference to trade ideas among instructional level
membership.

Paragraph 8. Duties and responsibilities of the State Executive Secretary/Treasurer are:
a. Shall maintain membership files and regularly up- date membership information.
b. Shall maintain Association financial records, make deposits and disbursements for the
treasury as directed by the President.
c. Shall prepare and publish an annual audit of all treasury records.
d. Shall conduct business of the Association as directed by the President and/or Board of
Directors.
e. Shall maintain the archives of records regarding the business of the Association.
f. Shall maintain financial records, make deposits and disbursements for the Foundation as
directed by the Board of Directors of the Foundation.

Paragraph 9. Duties and responsibilities of the Publications Editors are:
a. Shall be responsible for the collection, publication, and distribution of material
constituting the official Georgia Science Teachers Association publications.
b. Shall publish and distribute no less than three (3) issues of each publication per fiscal
year.
c. Shall make other mailings at own discretion or as directed by the State President or
Board of Directors.

Section D. Duties and Responsibilities of District Officers

Paragraph 1. Acceptance of nomination and election to office make the duties and
responsibilities in the following paragraphs of this section obligatory. Any District Director who
misses two consecutive Board of Directors meetings without written reasons considered
justifiable by Board of Directors consensus, or who fails to send a representative, thereby
indicates the intentions of vacating the office. The State President shall appoint someone to fill
the unexpired District Directors' term.

Paragraph 2. Duties and Responsibilities of the District Directors are:
a. Shall coordinate staff development workshops within the district.
b. Shall promote or encourage membership among potential members within the district.
c. Shall act as a communications link with Georgia Science Teachers Association
membership within the district.
d. Shall submit district news, information, and reports to be published in GSTA’s
eObservations according to the yearly, specified publication schedule.
e. Shall encourage the establishment of local Georgia Science Teachers Association chapters
within the district.
f. Shall coordinate district meetings as a part of the Annual Conference program.
g. Shall attend meetings of the Board of Directors and represent the concerns of the district
membership.

Article IV - STATE COMMITTEES
All committees of the Georgia Science Teachers Association formulated for whatever purpose
must be representative of the Association, inclusive of all instructional levels and reflecting no
biases with respect to race, sex, or origin.

Section A. Board of Directors

Paragraph 1. MEMBERSHIP: The Board of Directors for the corporation shall consist of the
State President, State President-Elect, State Vice-President, State Secretary, Executive
Director, four (4) Members-at-Large, one appointed Supervisor’s Representative and the
twelve (12) District Directors. The State Executive Secretary/Treasurer and the Publications
Editors shall attend all Board meetings. The designated Science representatives of the State
Department of Education are recognized by the Association as advisors to the Board. In this
capacity (as advisors) the State's Science representatives are encouraged to attend, as nonvoting
participants, the meetings of the Board of Directors.

Paragraph 2. MEETINGS AND DUTIES: It shall be the primary responsibility of this Board to
plan all Association activities. The Board must plan a publicized annual meeting, the actual
date and time to be set by the Board. It will commonly occur during the Annual Conference of
the Association. Publicity will occur through The Georgia Science Teacher and GSTA
Observations. Proxy and/or cumulative voting will not be allowed in matters of Association
business. The State President may call additional meetings of the Board as needed. The
Secretary will communicate dates and times of these called meetings to Board members.
Roberts Rules of Order will govern all Association meetings.

Section B. Executive Board

Paragraph 1. MEMBERSHIP: The Executive Director, President, President-Elect, Executive
Secretary/Treasurer, Vice-President and Secretary make up the Executive Board.

Paragraph 2: DUTIES: The primary responsibilities of the Executive Board include proposing
an annual budget, making recommendations to the Board of Directors and making emergency
decisions that represent the entire board when calling a meeting for the entire Board is not
practical. They are held accountable to the larger Board of Directors and bound by the
provisions of this Constitution.
Emergency situations are defined as those where the President determines that a matter
requires action of the Executive Board where (a) a full Board meeting cannot reasonably be
arranged in time for the needed action; and (b) the subject of the needed action involves
either confidentiality concerns or is one of immediate financial necessity. In these
circumstances the Executive Board is permitted to take action but is required to report to the
full Board of Directors of their action(s) at the next regular Board meeting.

Section C. Nominating Committee

Paragraph 1. MEMBERSHIP: The membership of this committee shall be the State President a
Nominations Chair, and up to two additional members, reviewed by the Executive Board and
appointed by the State President.


Paragraph 2. DUTIES: The duties of this committee shall be as stated in Article III, Section B,
Paragraph 3. In the event that the Chair of the Nominating Committee is nominated for an
office, the State Executive Secretary/Treasurer shall conduct the election or the President will
appoint someone to run the election.


Section D. Awards Committee


Paragraph 1. MEMBERSHIP: The awards committee shall be comprised of a chair, appointed for
a three year term by the president, a Foundation representative, and the level representatives
for elementary, middle, secondary, and college. Each level representative shall form a
subcommittee composed of a majority of classroom teachers for the purpose of evaluating the
awards nominations/applications. The chairperson shall be responsible for receiving
applications and communicating with all nominees/applicants and the district representatives
concerning the final selection.

Paragraph 2. DUTIES: The awards committee shall serve as a link between Board of Directors
of the Association and the Georgia Science Teachers Education Foundation. Annual awards in
recognition of meritorious service to science and/or science education will be presented by this
committee at the annual business meeting. Each committee shall determine the criteria for
those awards, the nature of the awards to be given, and ascertain worthy recipients.

Paragraph 3. Criteria for the awards should be published in the Georgia Science Teachers
Association's various publications to enable members to make nominations for the various
awards.

Section E. Budget Committee

Paragraph 1. MEMBERSHIP. The Budget Committee will consist of members of the Executive
Board and a Deputy Treasurer. Advisors from the field of finance, commerce, or management
can be appointed at the discretion of the president.

Paragraph 2. DUTIES. The committee shall develop, monitor and report on the annual budget
and any special funding secured through grants, contracts or awards. The annual fiscal budget
should be developed with input from the president, the executive secretary-treasurer and
chairs of the standing committees and Foundation and presented to the full board for approval
prior to the beginning of the fiscal year.

Section F. Advocacy Committee


Paragraph 1. MEMBERSHIP. Membership of this committee shall consist of a chair appointed by
the President, the President, President-elect, Executive Director and additional members as
deemed necessary. The Legislative Advocate shall serve as an advisor.

Paragraph 2. DUTIES. The committee shall communicate with the Legislative Advisor regarding
current activity in the Georgia General Assembly, the Georgia State Board of Education, and
the Georgia Department of Education, the Governor’s office, and other policymaking bodies
and will discuss the appropriate actions of the Georgia Science Teachers Association. Duties
further include an annual review of the organization’s policy statements and to make
recommendations for necessary revisions. Members of this committee will attend meetings of
the Georgia General Assembly, Georgia State Board of Education, and other appropriate
meetings as deemed necessary. The Chair of this committee will communicate Legislative
updates the membership at large in a timely manner.

Section G: Media Review Committee

Paragraph 1. MEMBERSHIP. Membership of this committee shall consist of the publications
editor(s), webmaster, and additional members as deemed necessary, and appointed by either
the Executive Director or President.

Paragraph 2. DUTIES. This committee shall develop, review or revise publication policies and
guidelines for material and information included in the Association’s printed or electronic
media. This includes the GSTA website, eObservations and social media outlets. Together
these committee members should work to recommend clear and consistent publication
practices across all forms of media. An annual review of the established guidelines should be
conducted and recommendations made to the Board of Directors.

Section H. Special Purposes Committees
Committees for special purposes may be named by the State President or District Director as
needed.


ARTICLE V--MEETINGS OF THE ASSOCIATION

Section A. Business Meeting. The Association business shall be conducted by membership
present at the annual meeting, announced at least 30 days prior to the date of the scheduled
meeting.

Section B. Rules. Robert's Rules of Order, the current revised edition, shall govern the
business meetings of State and District Association groups.

Section C. District Meetings. Business meetings of the District Association shall be
conducted at a time determined by the District Director.

Section D. State-wide Meetings. There will be an Annual Conference of the entire
Association for the purpose of bringing both the membership and other interested professional
people information and experience in the field of science and science education, and to bring to
the participants current ideas and practices in the field of science teaching and related topics.
In the event NSTA has scheduled either a Regional or National Conference in Georgia a state
conference may not be scheduled.

Section E. Additional Meetings. Additional meetings shall be encouraged, especially at the
district level, where such might serve to promote the aims and objectives of the Association as
set forth in the Preamble of this Constitution.

ARTICLE VI -- FINANCES

Section A. Fiscal Year. The Fiscal Year shall be determined by the Board of Directors.

Section B. Membership Year. Membership shall run one year from the date of the current
paid membership.

Section C. Budget. The Executive Board will prepare the annual budget for approval by the
Board of Directors. Amendments and corrections to the budget will be completed and approved
by the Board of Directors as needed.

Section D. Dues. Dues will be assessed by the Board of Directors, in the amount necessary to
meet the needs of the annual budget.

Section E. District Activities. Districts that have their own chapter organization or hold
local conferences and/or workshops may collect fees necessary to sponsor their events.

ARTICLE VII -- GEORGIA SCIENCE TEACHERS EDUCATION FOUNDATION

Section A. Purposes. The Georgia Science Teachers Education Foundation shall serve as a
non-profit, tax-deductible corporation of Georgia Science Teachers Association. The goal of the
Foundation is to distribute scholarships and awards for promoting science education. The
Foundation shall accept real or personal gifts from individuals or corporations.

Section B. Board of Directors. The decision making group of the Foundation shall consist of
a Board of Directors. The Board of Directors will be comprised of members of Georgia Science
Teachers Association and may have as members representatives from business and industry,
communications, marketing, and science related areas. The president, president-elect,
director, chair of the awards committee and executive secretary-treasurer of the Association
will serve on the Board of the Foundation. Other members of the Association may be appointed
to the Foundation's Board of Directors. The officers of the Board of Directors will consist of a
chair, vice-chair, secretary and director. The executive secretary-treasurer of the Association
shall serve as the treasurer of the Foundation. The chair is appointed for a three year term by
the president of the Association.

Section C. Meetings. The Foundation has to have at least one annual meeting to be held at
the time and place determined by the Chair of the Board of Directors.

Section D. Finances. The Foundation is financed by the membership of Georgia Science
Teachers Association and by contributions from the business and charitable community. Funds
for awards shall be allocated by the Board of Directors of the Association.

Sections E. Awards and Scholarships. The Foundation will establish awards, scholarships
and grants to science professionals and their students throughout Georgia. The nature and
number of the awards will be determined by the Board of Directors of the Foundation. The
awards program will be administered by the chair of the awards committee.

ARTICLE VIII – AMENDMENTS

Section A. This Constitution should be reviewed at least every five years, but may be
amended at any time. Amendments must be made in writing and seconded by any member,
and submitted to the Board of Directors for review. A simple majority approval by this Board
shall require that the amendment be submitted to the regular membership by distributing a
ballot. The amendment shall be considered passed when approved by a two-thirds majority of
voting members.

Constitution approved by membership ballot 2/20/15.

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