By law, every school in the Netherlands is linked with a medezeggenschapsraad (MR). This is a participation council, where elected representatives of teachers, students and parents are consulted by the school management over matters concerning the management of the school. The MR holds, according to legislation, two types of rights: the right of advice (adviesrecht) and the right of approval (instemmingrecht). Matters in which either right can be used are specified.
The roles and responsibilities of the MR
The MR has three main roles:
The MR should always be consulted on anything the school wants to implement (that can be a school plan, a budget, changes in school times, etc.). The MR therefore checks whether the school makes good policy proposals and approves (instemmingrecht) or rejects (adviesrecht) them.
MR members are chosen by their constituency to represent them. It is therefore the task of the MR to announce to the council what is going on among the constituency.
In addition to checking proposals from the board and maintaining contact with the constituency, the MR can also develop initiatives itself and come up with proposals (for example, based on information from the constituency). This is also referred to as unsolicited advice and thus the MR makes use of its right of initiative.
More information about the Wolfert MR can be found here.