School Board Elections

School Board elections are held the first Tuesday in November of even number years in conjunction with state general elections. Board members are elected at large for four-year terms. New directors take their seats in January, and the Board elects new officers at that time.

Considering running for school board? Check out these links:

View MSBA’s “Get On Board” video for prospective board members (3.38 minutes).
Scroll through MSBA’s “Running for the School Board” Candidate Primer


In order to be eligible to be elected to the School Board a person must be:

  • at least 21 years old at the time the term of office begins,
  • a resident of the district for at least 30 days prior to the election,
  • an eligible voter, and
  • not registered as a convicted sex offender or convicted of a felony.


An Affidavit of Candidacy is available in paper form from the District Office or electronically from the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State Affidavit of Candidacy Form.

If the private data box is checked on the Affidavit of Candidacy, the Address of Residence Form must also be completed.

Click here to access the Campaign Filing Packet through the Minnesota Secretary of State.


Candidate filing dates for the November 2022 School Board Election are from Aug. 2-16, 2022. Candidates must file their Affidavit of Candidacy and $2 filing fee with the school district clerk at the District Office. Once filed, the fee will not be refunded.

Campaign Financial Report

Candidates must file Campaign Financial Reports within 14 days after receiving $750 in campaign contributions or spending $750 on the election. Subsequent reports are due ten days before the election, 30 days after the election, and by Jan. 31 of each year following the year when the initial report was filed. Once a final report is filed no subsequent reports are required. Candidates should refer to the campaign manual for complete information.

Candidates must certify that all reports required by Minnesota Statute 211A.02 have been filed or that the candidate has not received contributions or made disbursements exceeding $750 in the calendar year. The Campaign Financial Report Certification of Filing must be submitted no later than seven days after the election. Candidates should refer to the campaign manual for complete information.

Click here for candidate campaign financial reports

What qualities make a good school board member?

Trust, teamwork, integrity, commitment, vision, courage, and respect

After nearly 100 years of working with school boards, Minnesota School Boards Association staff have identified common traits among outstanding school board members. Board members have no individual authority; an effective board acts as a whole and respects staff expertise. Good board members develop skills over time through experience and continued training. Board members who run on a single issue or for personal gain create discord and aren’t effective leaders who can improve student achievement.

Outstanding school board members are:

  • motivated by the best interests of all students.
  • willing to spend time and energy on school board business.
  • passionate about public education.
  • committed to governance training.
  • able to make difficult decisions.
  • able to function as part of a team.
  • strong communicators, willing to listen.
  • collaborative.
  • believers in the democratic process.
  • trusted.

MSBA’s Standards for School Board Leadership

Conduct & Ethics, Vision, Structure, Accountability, and Advocacy & Communication

As the entity legally charged with governing a school district, each school board is responsible to its community for governing efficiently and leading effectively to provide for equitable education, resulting in high student achievement.

The following five standards are essential to being an effective, high-performing school board team:

Conduct & Ethics: The school board, as a whole, provides leadership to the community on behalf of the school district by conducting its business in a fair, respectful, legal, and responsible manner.

Vision: The school board, with community input, envisions the educational future of the community and then formulates the goals, defines the outcomes, and sets the course for the school district.

Structure: The school board, to achieve its vision, establishes organizational and physical structures for student and staff success.

Accountability: The school board is accountable to the community for constantly monitoring the conditions affecting the school district as a whole.

Advocacy & Communication: The school board advances its vision at the local, regional, state, and national levels.