Alabama voters defeated Amendment 1, the Appointed Education Board Amendment, which would have renamed the Board and changed it from an elected body to an appointed body. According to election night results, 75 percent of voters opposed the amendment, and 25 percent voted in favor of it.
The measure would have amended the Alabama Constitution to rename the State Board of Education as the Alabama Commission on Elementary and Secondary Education and changed the board members from being elected by voters to being appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Senate.
The Alabama State Board of Education is an elected executive agency of the Alabama state government, responsible for managing the state’s public K-12 education. The board is composed of nine members, including the governor, who also serves as the president of the board. The other members are elected to four-year terms by voters in one of the state’s eight education districts.
This measure was sponsored by Republican Senator Del Marsh of Alabama’s 12th Senate District. On May 16, 2019, the Alabama State Senate approved SB 397, with 30 members supporting the amendment and five members not voting. On May 31, 2019, the bill was passed by the House in a vote of 78-21 with five members not voting.
Between 1998 and 2018, about 81 percent (72 of 89) of the total number of measures that appeared on statewide ballots during even-numbered years were approved, and about 19 percent (17 of 89) were defeated.