1. Name

The name of the group shall be Colchester Chinese Educational Organisation (CCEO).

2. Aims

CCEO is a non-profit organisation.

The aims of the group shall be:

• manage and operate the Colchester Chinese School;

• promote the learning and teaching of Chinese;

• provide a social platform for Chinese learners;

• enhance the understanding of Chinese culture among members and local people;

• cultivate multilingual and multicultural talents.

CCEO intends to become a registered charity.

3. Membership

Becoming a Member

Membership is open to anyone who:

• is aged over 18 years old; and

• lives in Colchester or the surrounding areas; and

• supports the aims of the group.

The group will not discriminate on the grounds of gender, race, colour, ethnic or national origin, sexuality, disability, religious or political belief, marital status or age.

There will be an annual membership fee which will be agreed at a General Meeting and will be payable by all members.

Membership of teachers, volunteers, adult students, and child students’ parents will become effective once the membership application form and the first annual membership fee payment have been received. Others’ membership applications will need to be approved by the Committee.

A list of all members will be kept by the Secretary.

Ceasing to be a Member

Members may resign at any time in writing to the Secretary.

Any member who has not paid their membership fee for one year will be contacted by the Committee, who will then decide whether that member is deemed to have resigned.

Any offensive behaviour, including racist, sexist or inflammatory remarks, will not be permitted. Anyone behaving in an offensive way or breaking the equal opportunities policy may be asked not to attend further meetings or to resign from the group if an apology is not given or the behaviour is repeated. The individual concerned shall have the right to be heard by the management committee, accompanied by a friend, before a final decision is made.

4. Committee

The business of the group will be carried out by a Committee elected at the Annual General Meeting (AGM).

The Committee will meet as necessary and not less than four times a year.

The Committee will consist of 6 members, and be composed of 3 officers and 3 other members. Up to 2 additional members may be co-opted onto the Committee at the discretion of the Committee.

The officers’ roles are as follows:

• Chair, who shall chair both General and Committee meetings;

• Treasurer, who shall be responsible for maintaining accounts;

• Secretary, who shall be responsible for taking minutes, distributing papers, and keeping records of members.

In the event of an officer standing down during the year a replacement will be elected by the next General Meeting of members.

Any Committee member not attending a meeting without apology for three months will be contacted by the Committee and asked if they wish to resign.

The Committee meetings will be open to any member of the group wishing to attend, who may speak but not vote.

5. Meetings

Annual General Meetings

An Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be held within 15 months of the previous AGM.

All members will be notified in writing at least 3 weeks before the date of the meeting, giving the date, time, and venue.

Nominations for the Committee may be made to the Secretary before the meeting, or at the meeting.

The quorum for the AGM will be 10% of the membership or 8 members, whichever is the greater number.

At the AGM:

• The Committee will present a report of the work of the group over the year.

• The Committee will present the accounts of the group for the previous year.

• The Committee for the next year will be elected.

• Any proposals given to the Secretary at least 7 days in advance of the meeting will be discussed.

Special General Meetings

The Secretary will call a Special General Meeting (SGM) at the request of the majority of the committee or at least 6 other members giving a written request to the Chair or Secretary stating the reason for their request.

The meeting will take place within 21 days of the request.

All members will be given two weeks notice of such a meeting, giving the date, time, venue, and agenda, and notice may be by telephone, email or post.

The quorum for the SGM will be 10% of the membership or 8 members, whichever is the greater number.

Rules of Procedure for Meetings

All questions that arise at any meeting will be discussed openly and the meeting will seek to find general agreement that everyone present can agree to.

If a consensus cannot be reached a vote will be taken and a decision will be made by a simple majority of members present. If the number of votes cast on each side are equal, the chair of the meeting shall have an additional casting vote.

6. Finances

An account will be maintained on behalf of the group at a bank agreed by the Committee.

Three cheque signatories will be nominated by the Committee (one to be the Chair and one to be the Treasurer). The signatories must not be related nor members of the same household. Every cheque must be signed by the Chair together with another nominated signatory.

Records of income and expenditure will be maintained by the Treasurer and a financial statement given to each meeting.

All money raised by or on behalf of the group is only to be used to further the aims of the group, as specified in item 2 of this Constitution.

7. Amendments

Amendments to the Constitution may only be made at the AGM or an SGM.

Any proposal to amend the constitution must be given to the Secretary in writing. The proposal must then be circulated with the notice of meeting.

Any proposal to amend the constitution will require a two thirds majority of those present and entitled to vote.

8. Dissolution

If a meeting, by simple majority, decides that it is necessary to close down the group it may call an SGM to do so. The sole business of this meeting will be to dissolve the group.

If it is agreed to dissolve the group all remaining money and other assets, once outstanding debts have been paid, will be donated to a charitable organisation. The organisation shall be agreed at the meeting which agrees the dissolution.

This constitution was agreed at the Inaugural General Meeting of the group on 8th October 2016.