Facts About the Missouri State Board of Education
According to the Missouri Constitution, “The supervision of instruction in the public schools shall be vested in a state board of education ...” (Article IX, Section 2a). This provision gives the State Board of Education general authority for public education, within limits set by the General Assembly.
The Board is made up of eight citizens appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate. Members serve staggered, eight-year terms so that one term expires each year. No more than four members of the Board may belong to the same political party. No more than one member of the Board may reside in the same county or Congressional district. When terms expire, members continue to serve until being replaced or reappointed. The Board elects its own officers each year. Members receive $25 for each day of an official meeting.
The Board’s duties and responsibilities range from preschool to the postsecondary and adult levels. The Board does not have direct authority over higher education institutions. However, the Board sets standards for and approves courses and professional programs for teachers and school administrators in Missouri’s public and private higher education institutions.
Under federal law, the Board serves as the state-level governing body for career and technical education programs provided by local school districts, community colleges and four-year institutions.
The Board has no authority to regulate or accredit private, parochial or home schools in the state.
- appointing the Commissioner of Education and setting policies for the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
- defining academic performance standards and assessment requirements for public schools.
- accrediting local school districts. The Board accredits school districts through the Missouri School Improvement Program, which includes minimum standards for high school graduation, curriculum, student testing, support services and other areas of school operations.
- establishing requirements for the education, testing, assessment, certification and recertification of all public school teachers and administrators.
- operating the Missouri School for the Blind (St. Louis), the Missouri School for the Deaf (Fulton), and the statewide system of Missouri Schools for the Severely Disabled.
- overseeing federal education programs and the distribution of federal funds to school districts.
- establishing regulations for school bus safety and for fiscal management in local school districts.
- submitting annual budget recommendations for education to the Missouri Legislature.
- administering the state’s Vocational Rehabilitation and Sheltered Workshop program, which provide services for adult Missouri citizens with disabilities.
MISSOURI STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION
Charles W. Shields, St. Joseph, was appointed to the State Board in August 2012 and became president in June 2015. He is President and CEO of Truman Medical Centers. Mr. Shields joined TMC in July 2010, after serving 20 years in the Missouri General Assembly as part of the House of Representatives, a Republican member of the Senate and most recently as President Pro Tem. He earned his bachelor's degree in marketing and his master's of business administration from the University of Missouri.
Shields' term expired on July 1, 2020. He is serving at the pleasure of the Governor until a replacement is named.
O. Victor Lenz, Jr., Ph.D., was appointed to the State Board in June 2013 and became vice president in June 2015. Dr. Lenz has a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Central Methodist College, a Master of Science degree in Counselor Education from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville, and a Doctorate in Educational Administration from St. Louis University. He served as president of the Missouri School Boards Association from 2011 to 2012 and was most recently the president of the Lindbergh School Board of Education.
Lenz's term expired on July 1, 2019. He is serving at the pleasure of the Governor until a replacement is named.
Kimberly Bailey, Raymore, was appointed in August 2018, and most recently served as the president of the Raymore-Peculiar R-II school board. She is a licensed mental health professional and trauma specialist and is an approved supervisor through the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists. From 2008-2015, Bailey served as the Dean of Women for Calvary Bible College and Theological Seminary in Kansas City and has since worked as a private practice therapist in Raymore. Bailey earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She holds a master’s degree from Friends University in Wichita, Kan.
Bailey's term expires on July 1, 2025.
Donald Claycomb, Linn, was appointed to the State Board in August 2018. He retired as president of State Technical College of Missouri in June 2016. His background also includes work with the State Council on Vocational Education and the educator preparation program at the University of Missouri-Columbia. He was the founding teacher of the agriculture program at Trenton Junior College and taught high school agriculture. In 2015, Claycomb was selected as a DESE “Pioneer in Education,” an honor bestowed upon individuals who have made significant contributions to education in the state of Missouri. Claycomb earned his bachelor’s degree and his doctorate from the University of Missouri-Columbia. He holds a master’s degree from Northwest Missouri State University in Maryville.
His term expires on July 1, 2021.
Carol Hallquist, Kansas City, was appointed to the State Board of Education in June 2018. She is founder of PrincipalsConnect, a nonprofit that matches retired business professional volunteers with urban school principals. Hallquist serves on several education-related community boards in Kansas City. She retired as president of the Hallmark Corporation Foundation with Hallmark Cards, Inc., in 2016.
Hallquist's term expires on July 1, 2022.
Peter F. Herschend, Branson, was first appointed to the State Board of Education in December 1991. He was reappointed for new terms in November 1999 and October 2007. He left the board in July 2017 but was reappointed in 2018. Herschend is founder and co-owner of Herschend Family Entertainment Corp., which owns Silver Dollar City and other entertainment properties. Before his appointment to the State Board, Herschend served 12 years on the Branson Board of Education.
Herschend's term will expire on July 1, 2023.
Mary Schrag, West Plains, was appointed to the State Board of Education in March 2019. Schrag currently works as the owner and chief executive operator of Physical Therapy Specialists Clinic, Inc. in West Plains. She serves as project director for SOARHigh, an ongoing project that works with select students in the areas of nutrition, physical education and social-emotional wellness. Schrag served on the Advisory Commission for Professional Physical Therapists for the Missouri Board of Registration for the Healing Arts from 1989-2002. She served on the Missouri State University Board of Governors from 2002-2011 and is a current member of a local workforce investment board. Schrag holds a Bachelor of Arts in biology and psychology from Drury University and a Bachelor of Science in health-related professions from the University of Missouri.
Schrag's term will expire on July 1, 2024.
Pamela Westbrooks-Hodge, Pasadena Hills, was appointed to the State Board of Education in January, 2020, by Missouri Governor Mike Parson. Westbrooks-Hodge works for Edward Jones, leading Information Systems Audit. She holds certifications in financial, operational and information systems auditing and has considerable expertise in strategy formulation and execution and talent development. She previously worked for Express Scripts, Anheuser-Busch and Bank of America in senior governance, risk and compliance roles. She earned a bachelor's degree in finance from Northwest Missouri State University, then her master's degree in business administration from the University of Missouri-St. Louis.
Westbrooks-Hodge's term will expire on July 1, 2026.