University of Arkansas Office for Education Policy

Arkansas State Board of Education Welcomes New Member

In The View from the OEP on July 6, 2012 at 4:24 pm

New State Board of Education member, Jay BarthNews broke yesterday afternoon that Governor Mike Beebe had appointed Hendrix College Professor Jay Barth to the Arkansas State Board of Education. Dr. Barth will be filling a vacancy left by Ben Mays, a veterinarian from Clinton, Arkansas, who was serving as the Board’s Chair. Dr. Barth has an impressive vita which notes that he has been a professor at Hendrix  since 1994 and currently is M.E. and Ima Graves Peace Distinguished Professor of Politics and director of civic engagement projects at the college. Here are a few other highlights from Dr. Barth’s vita:

  • While at Hendrix, Dr. Barth has taught courses in Southern Politics, American State and Local Government, The Politics of Education, and Methods in Political Analysis
  • At the Clinton School of Public Service, Barth taught a course in The Dynamics of Social Change
  • He co-authored the report Arkansas Education in the Post-Lake View Era: What Is Arkansas Doing to Close the Achievement Gap? in February 2008
  • Dr. Barth has been consistently involved with the Democratic Party of Arkansas, serving on the State Executive Committee since 2007.


Dr. Barth is a prominent scholar in the Natural State, who some say “wrote the book on Arkansas politics.”  As an office that strives to help our legislators and educators make “data-driven decisions,” we are excited to see a researcher and educator such as Dr. Barth appointed to the State Board.

Indeed, Barth is coming into this position at an interesting and challenging time with the approval of the ESEA Waiver, the (potential) new charter school applications, and monitoring of the state’s priority and focus schools lists – to say nothing of what is lurking around the corner that remains to be seen. If you want to join in and see how Dr. Barth does in his first meeting, you can attend the next State Board of Education meeting Monday, July 6th at 9:00 AM in the Arch Ford Building Auditorium located at the State Capitol Complex in Little Rock Arkansas – OR – if you can’t make it to Little Rock, you can log in from your own computer and watch live coverage of the meeting.


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