Considering School Board Service

General Eligibility

Board members must be bona fide residents and qualified electors of the school district.

Board members must have a high school diploma or its equivalent.

Board members are required to complete a basic course of training (12 hours) for new board members conducted by MSBA.

Each year, board members are required to complete 6-hours of continuing education conducted or approved by MSBA.

Common Questions



How many meetings must I attend?
That depends on the district. Boards usually hold one regular meeting each month and then special meetings as dictated by needs. Some boards do hold regular bi-monthly meetings. There is a requirement t
o attend 80% of all meetings or a pro-rata share of your compensation should be returned to the district.


What is the compensation?
By law, board members receive annual compensation based on student enrollment:
 Less than 
five thousand (5,000) students enrolled in the school district, the person shall receive an annual salary of Four Thousand Dollars ($4,000.00);
(b) At least five thousand (5,000) students but less than ten thousand (10,000) students enrolled in the school district, the person shall receive an annual salary of not less than Four Thousand Dollars ($4,000.00) but not more than Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00); and
(c) Greater than ten thousand (10,000) students enrolled in the school district, the person shall receive an annual salary of not less than Four Thousand Dollars ($4,000.00) but not more than Six Thousand Dollars ($6,000.00). 

Most districts do cover travel expenses to required meetings and some conferences. However, this may vary by district as determined in local policy.

May my spouse be employed in the district?
No. The spouse of a board member may not be employed in the district. Mississippi State Constitution Section 109

Getting Started

The structure and terms of board members in Mississippi varies depending on the type district. There are usually seats open for election on county boards during regular November elections. In municipal districts, usually one seat is open for appointment each year in January-February.

You should contact your local school district office for the election/appointment cycle and deadlines.


 Why Board Service Is Important

We applaud your interest in becoming a member of your local school board. The Mississippi School Boards Association is committed to quality leadership and advocacy for children in public schools. As such, we are dedicated to supporting the efforts of potential and future school board governing members.  School board member legal powers and duties are outlined in the Mississippi Code of 1972, Section 37-7-301 et al.

Serving as a member of your local school board is one of the most challenging and rewarding jobs you will ever undertake. It also is an enormous responsibility. As a school board member, the decisions you make will affect children and their parents, the livelihood of school system employees and the economic well-being of your community. Service to a board requires time, energy, a willingness to learn about issues affecting your schools, and a passion for a public education system committed to providing the best and most appropriate education for all children entrusted to its care.



Effective School Board Members

  • Have good communication skills

  • Are able to accept criticism

  • Demonstrate good reasoning and critical thinking skills

  • Can manage stressful situations

  • Are able to commit substantial time to board work

  • Take responsibility for actions

  • Maintain a good sense of humor

  • Are respected in their communities

  • Understand the board's roles and responsibilities

  • Have the courage to make difficult decisions

  • Understand that the board sets the standards for the district though board policy

  • Understand that the board makes decisions as a team and that individual board members may not commit the board to any action

  • Insist that all board and district business is conducted ethically and honestly

Specific Duties

Duties of school boards are related to visioning, goal setting, budgeting, purchasing, employment, and policies. Duties include:

  • Hiring and evaluating the superintendent.

  • Approving and monitoring the budget

  • Setting salaries for employees

  • Approving purchases

  • Establishing district policies

  • Adopting the school calendar

  • Ensuring local policies comply with all state and federal laws and regulations

  • Building schools and closing schools

  • Establishing district vision

  • Establishing district goals and monitoring progress

  • Assess board effectiveness

  • Approving personnel actions based on superintendent's recommendation


School Board Members and Boards DO NOT:

Implement policy. School boards adopt policy. Superintendents carry out policies and manage the day-to-day operations of the school district.

Evaluate staff, teachers, or any employee except the superintendent. Boards should not become involved in employment interviews or employee evaluations.

Direct activities of any employee except the superintendent. The superintendent manages the daily activities of all district employees.

Office: 380 Zurich Drive, Ridgeland, MS 39157
Mail: PO Box 203, Clinton, MS 39060
Phone: 601-924-2001   Fax:601-924-2002   Toll Free:888-367-6722