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Approximately 1,400 locally elected officials govern the state's 236 traditional public school districts, determining the return on investment of $5.3 billion in local, state and federal funding for K-12 public education in Arkansas. That includes 41% of the state's general revenue and 2/3 to 4/5 of local property taxes.

Public school districts are also the largest local government entities in the state, generally dwarfing their respective city and county budgets. Because of our efforts in the 91st General Assembly, school boards must now choose to hold their elections either in May (Primary) or November (General).

To maximize participation in local districts, we strongly encourage districts to follow the lead of the Helena-West Helena and Pulaski County Special School Districts, which set local and state records for voter turnout in school elections, and choose November.

Talent now drives economic development. And the biggest piece of the talent pipeline is Pre-K-12 public education. Nothing is more important to the present and future of our families, communities and state than the delivery of excellent public education options, including industry-relevant career pathways, for all students. With nearly $150,000 invested in each student during their 13 years in the K-12 system, we must elect and re-elect leaders who demand these fundamental business principles in the governance of our public schools:

  • Student Focus
  • Transparency
  • Accountability
  • Rewards
  • Choice

To run for school board, candidates must:

  • be a qualified elector of the school district served whose name has been filed and certified by the county clerk of the county in which the school district is domiciled for administrative purposes;
  • be a U.S. citizen;
  • be an Arkansas resident;
  • be a resident of the district and respective electoral zone if elected from zones;
  • not be an employee of the district served;
  • not claim the right to vote in another county or state;
  • not presently be adjudged mentally incompetent by a court of competent jurisdiction;
  • never have been convicted of embezzlement of public money, bribery, forgery, or other infamous crime.

Run for school board. Lives, families, and the present and future of your city, region and state depend on it.

Relevant Dates (May Election)

  • Thursday, February 22, 2018
    SCHOOL DISTRICT DEADLINE: NOTIFY COUNTY CLERK – DATE OF ANNUAL SCHOOL ELECTION Deadline for a school district to notify the county clerk which election date under Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-102(a)(1)(A)(i) and (ii) it chooses to hold the election. Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-102(a)(1)(B); Act 910 of 2017
  • Thursday, February 22, 2018
    BEGIN: CANDIDATE FILING FOR THE ANNUAL SCHOOL BOARD ELECTION (IF HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH THE PREFERENTIAL PRIMARY ELECTION) 12:00 Noon – First day a candidate filing by petition can file a petition of candidacy, the political practices pledge and the affidavit of eligibility with the county clerk. School elections held concurrently with the Preferential Primary Election shall file during the party filing period as set forth in Ark. Code Ann. § 7-7-203. Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-111(e); Act 910 of 2017
  • Thursday, March 1, 2018
    DEADLINE: CANDIDATE FILING FOR ANNUAL SCHOOL ELECTION (IF HELD MAY 22ND ) 12:00 Noon – Deadline for a candidate filing by petition to file a petition of candidacy, affidavit of eligibility, and political practices pledge with the county clerk for the Annual School Election held concurrently with the Preferential Primary Election (May 22, 2018). Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-111(e); Act 910 of 2017
  • Monday, March 5, 2018
    DEADLINE FOR SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES TO FILE A STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL INTEREST [WHEN ANNUAL SCHOOL ELECTION IS HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH PREFERENTIAL PRIMARY ELECTION – NOVEMBER 6TH] [Unless filed by an incumbent office holder by January 31, 2018.] Ark. Code Ann. § 21-8-701(c)(1)(A)
  • Monday, May 7, 2018
    15 DAYS PRIOR TO THE PREFERENTIAL PRIMARY ELECTION AND NONPARTISAN ELECTION Early voting begins for Preferential Primary Election and Nonpartisan Election between the hours of 8:00 am and 6:00 pm, Monday through Friday, and 10:00 am to 4:00 pm on Saturday. Early voting ends at 5:00 pm on the Monday prior to the election. Ark. Code Ann. § 7-5-418(a)(1)
  • Tuesday, May 22, 2018
    PREFERENTIAL PRIMARY ELECTION AND NONPARTISAN ELECTION (& ANNUAL SCHOOL ELECTION IF BEING HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH PREFERENTIAL PRIMARY ELECTION) Polls open 7:30 am to 7:30 pm. Ark. Code Ann. § 7-7-203(b); Ark. Code Ann. § 7-10-102(b)(2); Ark. Code Ann. § 7-5-304; Act 1088 of 2017; Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-102(a)(1)(A); Act 910 of 2017
  • Tuesday, June 19, 2018
    ANNUAL SCHOOL RUNOFF ELECTION (IF HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH GENERAL PRIMARY) Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-121(a)(3); Act 910 of 2017

Relevant Dates (November Election)

  • Wednesday, August 1, 2018
    BEGIN: CANDIDATE FILING FOR THE ANNUAL SCHOOL ELECTION HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH GENERAL ELECTION (NOVEMBER 6TH) 12:00 Noon – First day a candidate filing by petition can file a petition for candidacy, the political practices pledge, and an affidavit of eligibility with the county clerk. Annual School Elections held concurrently with the General Election, or in odd years, shall file during a one-week period ending at 12:00 noon ninety (90) days before the election. Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-111(e); Act 910 of 2017
  • Wednesday, August 8, 2018
    CANDIDATE FILING DEADLINE FOR THE ANNUAL SCHOOL ELECTION HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH THE GENERAL ELECTION (NOVEMBER 6TH) 12:00 Noon – Deadline for a candidate filing by petition to file a petition of candidacy, affidavit of eligibility, and a political practices pledge with the county clerk for the Annual School Election held concurrently with the General Election (November 6, 2018). Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-111(e); Act 910 of 2017
  • Monday, August 13, 2018
    DEADLINE FOR SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES TO FILE A STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL INTEREST [WHEN ANNUAL SCHOOL ELECTION IS HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH GENERAL ELECTION – NOVEMBER 6TH] [Unless filed by an incumbent office holder by January 31, 2018.] Ark. Code Ann. § 21-8-701(c)(1)(A)
  • Monday, October 22, 2018
    15 DAYS PRIOR TO THE GENERAL ELECTION Early voting begins for General Election between the hours of 8:00 am and 6:00 pm, Monday through Friday, and 10:00 am to 4:00 pm on Saturday. Early voting ends at 5:00 pm on the Monday prior to the election. Ark. Code Ann. § 7-5-418(a)(1)
  • Tuesday, November 6, 2018
    GENERAL ELECTION DAY (& ANNUAL SCHOOL ELECTION IF HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH GENERAL ELECTION) Polls open 7:30 am to 7:30 pm Ark. Code Ann. § 7-5-102; Ark. Code Ann. § 7-5-304(a); Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14- 102(a)(1)(A)(ii); Act 910 of 2017
  • Tuesday, December 4, 2018
    ANNUAL SCHOOL RUNOFF ELECTION (IF HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH GENERAL ELECTION) Ark. Code Ann. § 6-14-121(a)(3); Act 910 of 2017 
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