Illinois contains different types of school districts (community unit, elementary, high school, consolidated, etc.). With few exceptions, governing school boards consist of seven members elected to serve four year terms. Terms are staggered so there are three or four seats contested at each biennial election.
In many school districts, candidates run at-large. This means members of the board can live anywhere within the district and a voter can vote for any candidate(s). In some community unit and consolidated districts, proportional representation between congressional townships and between urban and rural areas is required. This may restrict the number of board members that may be elected from any given area.
When are school board elections held?
School board elections are held during the Consolidated Election on the first Tuesday in April of each odd-numbered year. (If that date conflicts with Passover, the election moves to the second Tuesday.) Vacancies caused by death or resignation are filled by appointment (by the remaining board members) until the next election.
How do you become a school board candidate?
Helpful Resources for Interested Candidates
The responsibility for conducting elections rests with the county clerk (or election commission in some locales). The following links provide guidance and information on school board elections.