School board elections frequently now take place on dates different from the general election, with low voter participation. Critical Race Theory activists take advantage of low-turnout elections to vote in friendly school board members. Citizens will have a better chance to elect civics reformers to school boards if the states shift school board election dates to coincide with the general election in November–during elections for president, which have the highest turnout.
Furthermore, school board candidates should be identified by party. Party identification provides a strong information signal to all voters. Non-display of partisan labels is an exercise in information suppression, which necessarily becomes an exercise in democratic suppression.
Model Legislative Text
- The date of a school district’s election for members of its board of education shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, simultaneously with the general election.
- The date of a school district’s election for members of its board of education shall be held on even-numbered years beginning in 2024.
- The term of every school board member elected in 2024 or thereafter shall be 4 years.
- No school board election shall be held in 2023 or any other odd-numbered year.
- Any school board member whose term expires in 2023 or any other odd-numbered year shall continue to serve until the election in the following even-numbered year.
A. The term of any board member serving a term as of January 1, 2023, may be lengthened in accordance with this section but shall not be shortened.
B. In an even-numbered year, the number of school board seats to be elected shall be equal to those with terms that would have expired in the previous odd-numbered year and those with terms expiring in such an even-numbered year.
6. Replacements of school board members who resign or die shall be according to existing statute law.
For the election of school board members, the names of all filed candidates shall be listed alphabetically with political party designation.
If any provision of this chapter, or the application of any provision to any person or circumstance, is held to be invalid, the remainder of this chapter and the application of its provisions to any other person or circumstance shall not be affected thereby.
Existing Bills Introduced
Missouri: SB 234 (2023)
The National Association of Scholars, in consultation with other supporters and friends of the Civics Alliance, drafted these model bills to translate into legislative language the principles in the Civics Alliance’s Civics Curriculum Statement & Open Letter. Just as these bills have been drafted with the expectation that different states will modify them as they see fit, they also have been drafted with the expectation that not every supporter of the Civics Alliance will endorse these bills or every part of them. Individual Civics Alliance signatories and supporters should not be assumed to have endorsed these bills, unless they say so explicitly.