School Choice Week

The countdown is on for Arkansas’ May 1 School Choice deadline, and the Marion School District opened the application season by joining in the celebration of National School Choice Week this week.

Nationally, the week is a celebration of parents choosing the best K-12 educational option for their children. In Arkansas, parents have the opportunity to send their children to any public school, regardless of where it is located, through the state's School Choice program. The deadline to apply for School Choice is May 1, for enrollment in the following school year.

For families living outside the district who are interested in Marion schools, this means now is the time to start filling out School Choice applications. The application, and other useful information, can be found on the district’s registration page, at

The first step for families interested in attending Marion through School Choice is to fill out the School Choice application on the district’s website. Applications for School Choice must be received by May 1, but parents are urged to apply early to ensure their spot. The next step will be in March when registration for the 2022-23 school year opens. Elementary-age students can also make their magnet school selection in March. See below for the full registration process.

Dr. Glen Fenter, Marion superintendent, said the district regularly sees strong interest among parents looking to bring their children to Marion through School Choice.

“Excitement continues to grow in the region regarding the great things we have to offer within the Marion School District,” he said. “Whether it’s our commitment to excellent academic programming; our amazing team of teachers, administrators, and staff; or our new hybrid calendar, families are excited about Marion.”

Fenter said the district works hard to ensure the academic, social, and wellness needs of every student are met. This includes the utilization of programs like “The Hub” – an academic pathway for students who may not thrive in the traditional school format – and the high school JAG program, which provides work-based learning experiences and academic/career coaching for at-risk students. Recently, the district also established one of the state’s only school-based health clinics to provide on-campus medical care for students and staff.

The district is comprised of a high school, a junior high (which includes a separate facility and programming for seventh-graders), and three K-6 magnet schools. 

“We know every child learns in different ways, and we want to create a learning environment where every student is welcome and has a chance to succeed,” Fenter said. “That’s why we have three different K-6 magnet schools, where families can choose the path where their children can get a great start on a bright future. Moreover, we place tremendous emphasis on a myriad of extracurricular programs, ranging from consistently successful traditional sports teams, to outstanding band and choir programs, along with contemporary offerings like robotics and esports, and much, much more. Every child deserves a chance to be a champion in and out of the classroom, and they have great opportunities to benefit from those positive experiences in the Marion School District.”


For new students who do not live in the Marion School District (School Choice):

  • Fill out School Choice paperwork available on the district’s website and return it to the Central Office, where it will be time-stamped. This is due by May 1, 2022. 
  • Once the new registration opens (March), families can register students at under “2022-2023 new student registration.”
  • If the student is K-6, families can also fill out the 2022-2023 magnet selection form (March).
  • Approval of school choice will be made by the superintendent, and parents will be notified in late May-Early June 

 For new students who live in the Marion School District

  • Once the new registration opens (March), families can register students at under “2022-2023 new student registration.”
  • If the student is K-6, families can also fill out the 2022-2023 magnet selection form (March).

  “We encourage all local parents to be thoughtful in choosing the best educational option for their children,” Fenter said. “We are proud of what we have to offer at Marion. Great things are happening here. We welcome all who choose to be a part of the Patriot community.”