AR Briefly

Applications now available for LEARNS Act workgroups

By: - March 14, 2023 5:00 pm
Education Secretary Jacob Oliva

Education Secretary Jacob Oliva speaks to an official prior to a House Education Committee meeting on Feb. 28, 2023. (Antoinette Grajeda/Arkansas Advocate)

The Arkansas Department of Education issued a Commissioner’s Memo on Tuesday inviting Arkansans to participate in the implementation of the LEARNS Act.

Through volunteer workgroups, participants will contribute to the development of rules and policies for the expansive education bill that Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders signed into law last week.

The LEARNS Act takes unprecedented steps in hopes of restructuring the state’s K-12 schools, addressing teacher pay, school safety, career readiness, literacy, a new voucher program and “indoctrination,” among other topics. 

Workgroups will be organized into six areas — school safety, early learning, parental empowerment, teaching and learning, educator workforce and career readiness. Ten to 15 applicants will be selected for each group, and they will submit recommendations to Education Secretary Jacob Oliva for consideration.

Meetings will be virtual and face-to-face, and those selected must agree to commit the time needed over the next few months, according to the memo.

Interested participants must complete an application and upload their resumé by Mar. 31 to


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Antoinette Grajeda
Antoinette Grajeda

Antoinette Grajeda is a multimedia journalist who has reported since 2007 on a wide range of topics, including politics, health, education, immigration and the arts for NPR affiliates, print publications and digital platforms. A University of Arkansas alumna, she earned a bachelor’s degree in print journalism and a master’s degree in documentary film.