Virtual event

The School Board Forum has moved to a virtual event

A pair of forums offering voters a chance to hear from seven school board candidates have been moved to an online event due to the recent upsurge in Coved cases in Polk County. The event had been scheduled for the James Austin Center in Lake Wales with a capacity of 100 guests. The event will now take place via Zoom, with a link to post for interested guests.

The August primary election will be the last chance to vote in some local races, including those for new school board members for three different seats on the seven-member council.

A total of nine candidates are seeking to serve on the board, which governs more than 100 local schools.

Both events will take place on Monday, July 18 and Thursday, July 21. The public is invited to tune in to see and hear the contestants discuss the challenges facing public education and the important role it plays in our community. .

Sara Jones and Justin Sharpless will compare their views at the July 21 forum in Lake Wales. The virtual event will begin at 6:30 p.m.

The forum series will be sponsored by a host of local organizations, including the American Association of University Women, the Family Literacy Academy of Lake Wales, Citizen Support Services and Rotary on the Ridge.

Both events will take place virtually on Zoom. Events will begin at 6:30 p.m.

July 18 will feature Open Seat Six contenders Sara Jones and Justin Sharpless and three Seat Seven contenders including incumbent Lisa Miller, and challengers Dell Quary and Jill Sessions.

July 21 will feature the candidates for seat three, including incumbent Sarah Fortney and challenger Richard Nolte, as well as seat five incumbent Kay Fields and her opponent, Terry Clark.

Additional event information, including a link to the broadcast, will be posted this weekend at