RAILS Board Portal - Training and Educational Resources

RAILS Continuing Education: Trustee Development

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Trustee Training

Our partnership with United for Libraries (a division of the American Library Association) provides you with online trustee training resources. You will need to log into our website for access information.

Trustee Academy

The Trustee Academy is a series of online courses offered by United for Libraries to help Trustees become exceptionally proficient in their roles on behalf of their libraries.

All of the online courses are taught by a professional in the field. Courses include:

  • Trustee Competencies
  • Working Effectively with Your Library Director
  • The Library's Budget for Trustees
  • Standing Up for Intellectual Freedom
  • Everyday Advocacy - Why the Library Matters!

Short Takes for Trustees

Short Takes for Trustees is a series of short videos (8-10 minutes each) that can be shown during board meetings to stimulate discussion about the important role that Trustees play in the governance of their libraries.

Topics in the series explain the basics, such as what it means to be a Trustee (discussing the broad fiduciary responsibilities of governing boards as well as the limits of an advisory board), as well as how to set policy, how to evaluate the library director (and why you should), along with board self evaluation, and the ethical and parliamentary standards for boards — both governing and advisory.

Freedom of Information Act/Open Meetings Act Hotline

Illinois public library directors and Freedom of Information Act/Open Meetings Act officers can use our FOIA/OMA Hotline to receive free help from an Ancel Glink attorney on basic questions like:

  • Are trustee text messages subject to FOIA if they are sent via their private phones?
  • If the requested records are on the library's website, do I still have to provide a copy?
  • Can I charge for electronic records?
  • Does the OMA require a library board to adopt public comment rules?
  • Can a trustee on vacation participate in a board meeting electronically?
  • How long do we have to keep our audio recordings of closed sessions?

You will need to log into our website for contact details.

See more about FOIA/OMA Hotline

Additional Resources