Resources for Candidates
In Iowa, school board members, or directors, are elected to serve four-year terms. School Board elections are held on the Tuesday after the first Monday of November in odd-numbered years, on the same day as municipal elections. School Board members are an unpaid elected position.
There are several resources readily available to School Board candidates about Iowa election laws and the duties of School Board members. In addition, the information shared here should answer most questions when considering serving on the School Board.
2021 School Board Election
Get important School Election dates and information at the Story County Auditor’s website.
November 2: School Election Day, 7 AM to 8 PM; Find your polling location
There are three seats up in the 2021 election.
2021 Board Election Timeline
August 23, Candidate filing begins. Each candidate must file an affidavit of candidacy and nomination petitions with the Board Secretary Chris Stensland. The affidavit of candidacy and nomination petitions must be filed together or they will be rejected. Copies of nomination papers are available at the school secretary’s office, county auditor’s office, or on the Secretary of State’s website. The minimum number of signatures needed depends on the number of registered voters in the school district as of May 1, 2021.
September 16: Last day for a candidate to file nomination papers. Must be presented no later than 5:00 p.m. Nominating papers for the Ames Community School District School Board must be delivered to the district office at 2005 24th Street by that deadline.
September 21: Last day candidates may withdraw. Last day written objections to nomination papers or eligibility of candidates may be filed. Deadline is 5 p.m.
Requirements of School Board Directors
- Members of the Ames CSD School Board are elected at large for four-year voluntary terms.
- The School Board follows a governance model. In this process, the Board gives direction to the school district as to their priorities and goals, and the administration then develops the best procedures and practices to fulfill those goals.
- The School Board meets the second and fourth Monday of each month. Unless otherwise indicated, the first meeting date of each month will include a Work Session at 5:30 p.m. with a Regular Meeting immediately to follow. The second meeting date of each month will be a Regular Meeting only with a start time of 6:30 p.m. From time-to-time special meetings may be scheduled. School Board members also sit on a number of committees which advise the district in areas including policy, equity, and facilities.
For more information, we encourage any interested individuals to review the Iowa Association of School Board’s 2021 Guide For Iowa School Board Candidates and the Iowa Secretary of State’s Candidate’s Guide to the School Election.
The Iowa Secretary of State’s Office has a page with information for School Board candidates, including a summary of election laws as well as nominating petitions.
The Story County Auditor’s Office is a good source for additional information, such as voter registration and voting locations.
Iowa Association of School Boards
The Iowa Association of School Boards represents school district directors throughout the state. The IASB web site includes a section with information for candidates. In addition, their web site includes a range of information about the responsibilities and duties of School Board members as well as key issues for public education in Iowa.
Ames Community School District
The Ames CSD website contains a range of information, from policies and budgets to features on the work of our students and teachers. As a candidate for School Board, a few areas that might be especially helpful include:
- Budget: One of the biggest responsibilities of any School Board is approving the annual budget. Visit the District Financial Dashboard for a copy of the current budget.
- Governance: The School Board relies upon policy governance to help define and focus its role, vision and values. All Board Policies are on the website and would be good to review in becoming familiar with the work of the School Board.
- Superintendent: The Superintendent is the sole employee who the School Board is responsible for when it comes to performance and results.
- Board Meetings: All meetings of the Ames CSD School Board are posted on YouTube. Visit our YouTube channel for an archive of past meetings.