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Chapter Bylaws Of the SMHS Chapter of the NHS

Chapter Bylaws Of the Spring Mills High School Chapter

Of the National Honor Society

Adopted: November 6, 2014

ARTICLE I: NAME

The name of this chapter shall be the Spring Mills High School Chapter of the National Honor Society [which may be referred to as the Cardinal Chapter for non-administrative issues].

ARTICLE II: PURPOSE

The purpose of this chapter shall be to create an enthusiasm for scholarship, to stimulate a desire to render service, to promote worthy leadership, and to encourage the development of character in students of Spring Mills High School.

ARTICLE III: POWERS

Section 1. This chapter operates under the direction of and in full compliance with the National Constitution of NHS. See www.nhs.us/constitutions. The powers vested in the organization shall be in accordance with the National Council and NASSP who are responsible for the operational control of the National Honor Society at the national level, but cannot review the judgment of the Faculty Council regarding selection and/or dismissal of individual members to the chapter. In addition, this chapter will maintain active affiliation with the national organization on an annual basis.

Section 2. The principal has the right to approve all activities and decisions of the chapter. The authority extends to selection and dismissal of members. The principal appoints one or two members of the Spring Mills High School faculty to serve as chapter advisor(s). The principal appoints and works closely with the five-member Faculty Council. The principal cannot serve as the chapter advisor and is not a member of the Faculty Council. The chapter advisor(s) shall be ex-officio, nonvoting members of the Faculty Council. The principal shall receive appeals in the cases of non-selection of candidates and the dismissal of members.

Section 3. The chapter advisor(s) is given the authority to supervise the administration of chapter activities, as delegated by the school principal. The chapter advisor(s) should be familiar with the National Handbook and have a working knowledge of the Society policies, as well as those of the school and county. The chapter advisor(s) should promote chapter activities, stimulate positive actions by the members, and provide information about local and national policies regulating chapter activities. The chapter advisor(s) approves chapter activities, maintains chapter records, and attends all meetings and functions.

Section 4. Final authority on all activities and decisions of the chapter resides with the school principal. [For reference, see Article V, Section 1 of the National Constitution.]

Section 5. Non-discrimination. Our chapter of NHS maintains policies and practices that are designed to prevent discrimination against any qualified candidate or member on the basis of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex (gender), and disability. This policy of nondiscrimination applies to all practices, including the chapter administration and the selection, discipline, and dismissal of members.

ARTICLE IV: MEMBERSHIP

Section 1. Membership in this chapter is an honor bestowed upon deserving students by the faculty and shall be based on the criteria of Scholarship, Service, Leadership, and Character.

Section 2. Membership in this chapter shall be known as active, and graduate. Active members become graduate members at graduation. Graduate members have no voice or vote in chapter affairs.

Section 3. Eligibility:

  1. Candidates eligible for selection to this chapter must be members of the junior or senior class.
  2. To be eligible for selection to membership in this chapter, the candidate must have been enrolled for a period equivalent to one semester at Spring Mills High School
  3. Candidates eligible for election to the chapter shall have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale.
  4. Upon meeting the grade level, enrollment, and GPA standards, students will be notified by letter of their eligibility as candidates. Candidates will be provided instructions and access to the Candidates Forms.
  5. Both the student and the parent/guardian must sign the Candidates Form indicating they have read it and that they understand that membership in the chapter has responsibilities/requirements and that they understand that membership is not guaranteed based on scholarship.
  6. The student must return the signed Candidates Form to the NHS advisor(s) by the specified date and time to remain in consideration for NHS selection by the school faculty, Faculty Council, and principal. Candidates shall then be considered based on their service, leadership, and character.

ARTICLE V: SELECTION OF MEMBERS

Section 1. The selection of members to this chapter shall be by a majority vote of the Faculty Council which consists of five faculty members appointed by the principal. The chapter advisor(s) shall be non-voting, ex-officio member(s) of the Faculty Council.

Section 2. The selection of active members shall be held once a year during the second semester of the school year.

Section 3. Prior to the final selection, the following shall occur:

  1. Students’ academic records shall be reviewed to determine scholastic eligibility.
  2. All students who are eligible scholastically (i.e., candidates) shall be notified and asked to

complete and submit the Candidate’s Form for further consideration.

  1. The faculty shall be requested to evaluate candidates determined to be scholastically

eligible using the official evaluation form provided by the chapter advisor(s).

  1. The Faculty Council shall review the Candidate Forms, faculty evaluations and other

relevant information to determine those who fully meet the selection criteria for

membership.

Section 4. Each selected candidate will be notified by letter and invited to join the Spring Mills

High School Chapter of the National Honor Society. Selected candidates become members when

inducted at a special ceremony.

Section 5. An active member of the National Honor Society who transfers from this school will

be given an official letter indicating the status of his/her membership.

Section 6. An active member of the National Honor Society who transfers to this school will be

automatically accepted for membership in this chapter. The Faculty Council shall grant to the

transferring member one semester to attain the membership requirements and, thereafter, this

member must maintain those requirements for this chapter in order to retain his/her membership.

Section 7. A description of the selection procedure shall be published in an official school

publication that is widely available in a timely fashion to all students and parents of the school.

The selection procedure shall be determined by the Faculty Council and shall be consistent with

the rules and regulations of the National Honor Society.

ARTICLE VI: OBLIGATIONS OF MEMBERS

Section 1. Annual dues for this chapter shall be $25 per member payable within the first

semester of the school year. [Note: Dues cannot exceed what is noted in the national

constitution.] Dues will be payable to the chapter within 30 days of induction.

Section 2. Each member of this chapter who is in good standing with regard to the membership standards and member obligations shall be entitled to wear the emblem adopted by the National Honor Society.

Section 3. Any member who withdraws, resigns, or is dismissed from the chapter shall not use

and/or return the emblem to the chapter.

Section 4. Chapter members who are seniors in good standing shall be granted the privilege of

wearing the honor cords/stoles at graduation.

Section 5. Chapter members are required to attend all meetings with only 3 excused absences.

Excused absences are only accepted by prior arrangements with chapter advisors or principal.

Section 6. Chapter members are required to participate in a minimum of one community project

and one school project per year.

ARTICLE VII: OFFICERS

Section 1. The officers of the chapter shall be president, vice president, corresponding secretary,

recording secretary, treasurer and historian.

Section 2. Student officers shall be elected at the last meeting of each school year. All returning

members in good standing with the chapter are eligible to run for a position as an officer. Any

active member can nominate an eligible member as a candidate for office.

Section 3. Voting shall be by secret ballot. A majority vote shall be necessary to elect any officer

of this chapter. If the first vote does not yield a majority, a second vote shall be taken of the two

candidates receiving the highest number of votes.

Section 4. It shall be the duty of the president to preside at the meetings of the chapter, and serve

as the official representative of the chapter at school and community functions.

Section 5. The vice-president shall preside in the absence of the president and shall also keep a

record of members’ contributions to leadership and service.

Section 6. The corresponding and recording secretaries shall be responsible for all official

correspondence and shall keep the minutes and attendance records for meetings.

Section 7. The treasurer shall keep the record of business expenses, dues, and all other financial

transactions of the chapter.

Section 8. The historian shall maintain a written and multimedia record of all chapter events

throughout the year with as much documentation as feasible.

Section 9. Officers and the faculty advisor(s) shall collectively be known as the chapter’s

Executive Committee. The executive committee shall establish annual goals for the chapter and

have general charge of the meetings and the business of the chapter, but any action by the

executive committee is subject to the review of the chapter members.

ARTICLE VIII: MEETINGS

Section 1. Regular meetings of this chapter shall be a minimum of once per month (e.g.,

monthly, weekly, etc.). Special meetings can be called by the advisor(s) or president with

approval of the advisor.

Section 2. This chapter shall conduct its meetings according to Robert’s Rules of Order.

Section 3. Members are expected to attend all chapter meetings. (See Article VI)

ARTICLE IX: ACTIVITIES

Section 1. The chapter shall determine a minimum of 2 service projects for each year: one

community based and one school based.

Section 2. All members are required to participate in a minimum of one community based and

one school based project as organized by the chapter.

Section 3. These projects shall have the following characteristics: fulfill a need within the school

or community, have the support of the administration and the faculty, be appropriate and

educationally defensible, and be well-planned, organized, and executed.

Section 4. Each member may have the additional responsibility for choosing and participating in

an individual service project which reflects his or her particular talents and interests and as

approved by the chapter advisor. This is in addition to the chapter projects to which all members

contribute.

Section 5. The chapter shall publicize and promote its projects in a positive manner.

ARTICLE X: DISCIPLINE and DISMISSAL of MEMBERS

Section 1. Any member who falls below the standards of scholarship, leadership, character, or

service may be considered for discipline or dismissal from the chapter of the National Honor

Society. A member of the National Honor Society is expected to maintain his/her academic

standing and take an active role in service and leadership to his/her school and community.

Section 2. If a member’s cumulative grade point average falls below the standard in effect when

he/she was selected of a 3.5 on a 4.0 scale he /she will be given a written warning and a

reasonable time period for improvement. If the cumulative grade point average remains below

standard at the end of the warning period the student will be subject to further disciplinary action

by the Faculty Council that includes consideration of dismissal from the chapter.

Section 3. Violations of the law or school regulations can result in immediate consideration of

the dismissal of a member (see Section 5 below). These violations include, but are not limited to

DWI, stealing, destruction of property, cheating, truancy, or possession, selling, or being under

the influence of drugs or alcohol at school or school-related activities or in the community.

Section 4. Offenders of the school conduct code (such as use of profanity, failure to comply,

unexcused absences, excessive tardiness, etc.) will receive written warning notification. A

conference may be requested by either party (administration, advisor(s) or student/parent). If the

member is involved in another violation of the school conduct code, the member may be

considered for dismissal.

Section 5. Chapter officers, as representatives of the chapter, can be removed from their

positions as a consequence of disciplinary action taken by the Faculty Council.

Section 6. In all cases of pending dismissal:

  1. The member will receive written notification from the advisor/Faculty Council indicating the

reason for consideration of dismissal.

  1. The member has the right to respond to the charge(s) against him/her at a hearing before the

Faculty Council prior to any vote on dismissal (in accordance with due process identified in

Article X of the National Constitution). The member has the opportunity to present his/her

defense either in person or via a written statement presented in lieu of the face-to-face hearing.

Following the hearing, the Faculty Council will then vote on whether to dismiss. A majority vote

of the Faculty Council is needed to dismiss any member.

  1. The results of the Faculty Council vote will be presented to the principal for review, and then a

statement may be sent to the student and parents. Dismissed members shall surrender any

membership emblems to the principal or advisor.

  1. The Faculty Council’s decision may be appealed to the building principal and afterwards

according to provisions of the school district discipline policies.

  1. A member who is dismissed or resigns, may not ever again be considered for membership in

the National Honor Society.

Section 7. In lieu of dismissal, the Faculty Council may impose disciplinary sanctions upon a

member as deemed appropriate.

ARTICLE XI: RATIFICATION, APPROVAL, and REVIEW

Section 1. These bylaws will be approved upon receiving a two-thirds affirmative vote of all

active members of the chapter, a majority affirmative vote of the Faculty Council, and approval

by the administration.

Section 2. These bylaws shall be reviewed and if necessary, revised within five years from the

date of approval noted on this document.

ARTICLE XII: AMENDMENTS

These by-laws may be amended by a 2/3rds vote of the chapter, provided notice of the proposed

amendment has been given to members at least one month prior to the vote. The exceptions are

Articles V and X, which are developed by the Faculty Council with the approval of the principal

(selection and discipline).

[Note: It is recommended that the Ratification and Amendment articles be the final articles

should the chapter wish to insert additional articles.]

*Approved on November 6, 2014

**These by-laws were reviewed by the chapter and advisor(s) during the 2018-2019 school year.

No amendments were proposed for consideration by the Faculty Council. The council nor

principal, Mr. Robert Myers, made any amendments.

Approved on February 2019

Changing the Bylaws

Once the bylaws have been accepted by a vote of the chapter and approved by the Faculty

Council and the administration, they become the ‘law’ or guiding principles of the organization.

If this principle is adhered to, it will be necessary to change the bylaws only occasionally, due in

large part to their specificity and detail.

Occasionally, the bylaws may have to be revised or completely rewritten. The revision is usually

drafted by a specially-appointed Bylaws Revision Committee.

After a change has been proposed and a draft has been prepared, the members of the chapter

should be informed and given copies so that they can review and discuss the issues before they

come to a final vote. Proposed amendments or revisions most commonly require a two-thirds

vote of the chapter for adoption. NOTE: Sections dealing with revisions to the procedures for

selection, disciplining, and dismissal of members can be changed only by the Faculty Council,

though input from the chapter is allowed and encouraged.

Some chapters are criticized for spending too much time amending their bylaws instead of

dealing with other chapter concerns. However, there are times when an outdated set of bylaws is

a real hindrance to the chapter. Some good reasons for amending bylaws are:

  • statements no longer suit the chapter or school situation
  • bylaws are arranged so poorly that essential information is hard to find (this situation

sometimes occurs when an old document has been added to and amended over a period of years).

  • bylaws contain elements that have caused long-standing disagreement
  • bylaws violate individual rights or local/state policies
  • bylaws prevent the chapter from adapting to change.

It is important that each time the bylaws are reviewed or changed, that the date of approval be

updated and included on the new document. Old, now outdated copies should be destroyed

except for those kept on file for historical purposes.

Copies of chapter bylaws, in addition to being available for use by chapter members, should be

readily available for use by the principal. Some schools systems require that these organizational

guidelines be approved by the local school board or are on file with central office. This is another

reason for careful review and preparation of the text as a representative document of the chapter.