PONCA CITY – The Ponca City Public School Board of Education hereby announces that any statutorily qualified individual interested in running as a candidate on the Ponca City School Board of Education may file for this seat at the Kay County Election Board between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday, Dec. 2 through Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. The Ponca City Board of Education has one position vacant this year – Ward #5, currently held by Don Nuzum. The term of office for this seat will run from 2020 until 2025.
The State made significant changes in 2018 to regular elections for Board of Education members. House Bill #2082 establishes a Board of Education Primary Election to be held on the second Tuesday in February, which falls on February 11, 2020. The Board of Education General Election, if needed, will be held on April 7, 2020, being the first Tuesday in April.
If only one (1) candidate files for a Board of Education office, that candidate is deemed to be elected and no election is held. If only two (2) candidates file for an office, they appear on the ballot at the Board of Education General Election held in April, and no Primary Election will be held in February. If three (3) or more candidates file for the same office, their names will appear on the ballot at the Primary Election in February. If a candidate receives a majority (50% +1), that candidate is elected. If no candidate receives a majority, the two candidates with the highest number of votes will proceed to the General Election in April.
Any contest of candidacy petitions, or withdrawal of candidate, must be filed by 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 6, 2019 at the Kay County Election Board.
When will the term of office begin for the newly elected board member?
The term of office will begin at the first regular, special or emergency board meeting following certification of February 2020 results for the candidate who receives more than 50% of the votes cast in the February Primary Election when there are more individuals file for the office. For individuals who run unopposed, including an incumbent member, the term of office will begin after the 2020 April General Election. The current school board member will continue serving until the newly elected board member takes the Oath of Office at the first board meeting following the election.
What if no one files for the board seat?
If no one files for the open board seat, the seat is officially vacant as of the date of the February Primary Election. The board of education would have sixty days from the date of the election to appoint an individual to the vacant seat or the board would have to call a special election to fill the vacancy. Any person appointed would have to meet all eligibility requirements as if they had run for office.
Qualifications of Candidates for Office:
To be eligible to be a candidate for member of the board of education of a school district, a person must have resided in the district for at least six months preceding the first day of the filing period, and have been a registered voter registered with the county election board at an address located within the geographical boundaries of the district for six months preceding the first day of the filing period. In school districts that have been divided into election districts, a candidate must have resided in the district for six months preceding the first day of the filing period and have been a registered voter registered within the county election board at an address located within the geographical boundaries of the election district for six months preceding the first day of the filing period.
No person shall be eligible to be a candidate for or elected to be a member of the board of education of a school district unless the person has been awarded a high school diploma or certificate of high school equivalency.
A person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor involving embezzlement or a felony under the laws of this state or of the United States or who has entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to such misdemeanor involving embezzlement or felony or who has been convicted of a crime in another state which would have been a misdemeanor involving embezzlement or a felony under the laws of this state or has entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to such crime shall not be eligible to be a candidate for or be elected to any school board office for a period of fifteen years following completion of his sentence or during the pendency of an appeal of such conviction or plea.
No person shall be eligible to be a candidate for or serve on a board of education if he or she is currently employed by the school district governed by the board of education or is related within the second degree by affinity or consanguinity to any other member of the board of education or to any employee of the school district. The following are relatives within the second degree: A candidate’s spouse, child, parent, grandchild, grandparent, brother, sister, spouse’s child, spouse’s grandchild, spouse’s brother, spouse’s sister, spouse’s grandparent, grandchild’s spouse, parent’s spouse, and child’s spouse. The prohibitions in this paragraph shall not apply if the board member candidate is related within the second degree of affinity or consanguinity to an individual employed as a substitute teacher by the school district or as a temporary substitute support employee if the school district has an Average Daily Membership of less than five thousand (5,000).
Candidates must affirm that upon being elected as a new member of the Board of Education, within fifteen (15) months of election, they will complete at least twelve (12) hours of instruction on education issues, including school finance, Oklahoma education laws, and ethics, duties and responsibilities of district board of education members. Three (3) of these twelve (12) credits must be earned as follows: one (1) credit in ethics, one (1) credit in open meeting act and open records act, and one (1) credit in school finance. Incumbents must affirm that they will complete six (6) hours of instruction within fifteen (15) months of election emphasizing changes in school law. Three (3) of these six (6) credits must be earned as follows: one (1) credit in ethics, one (1) credit in open meeting act and open records act, and one (1) credit in school finance.
Voters Eligible to Vote:
To be eligible to vote, a voter must be registered with the county election board at an address within the geographical boundaries of the district.