Arkansas Department of Education Division of Elementary and Secondary Education School of Innovation Application Process

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Learning Services
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Federal Programs; Superintendents; Assistant Superintendent; Principals; Technology Coordinators; Teachers; Curriculum Coordinators; School Counselors; Equity Coordinators (Disability/Race/Gender/National Origin); District Coordinators (ALE; Homeless; ESOL; SDFS & Foster); Parent Involvement Coordinators/Facilitators

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Ark. Code Ann. § 6-15-2801 states that a School of Innovation (SOI) is a school that “transforms teaching and learning,” and defines innovation as “a new or creative alternative to the existing instructional and administrative practices." SOI designated schools should be engaged in practices that are intended to improve academic performance and learning for all students. For more information on Schools of Innovation, please visit the Division of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Schools of Innovation web page at

The SOI process allows schools the flexibility to try different approaches, experiment with ideas that challenge the status quo, and explore waiver possibilities that will expand access to new learning opportunities. Join a cohort of 50 Arkansas schools designing systems to implement ideas and strategies that address all learners' needs in a changing world!

To best support School of Innovation applicants, DESE and Office of Innovation for Education will be hosting a zoom session on October 23, 2020, from 10:00-11:30 a.m. to provide an overview of the SOI application process and answer any questions. 

Please use the link below to register for the upcoming session on Oct. 23rd:

Schools interested in applying to become a School of Innovation must complete and submit the Intent to Apply Form by November 6, 2020. The Intent to Apply form is located on the website. Information regarding the application timeline is attached to this memo.


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