Welcome to The Sarah Fortney School Board of Polk County, Florida Campaign (District 3) Website!

Every Student PROTECTED. Every Family RESPECTED.

School Board Elections are held at the Primary and are a whole county vote for each district. You may cast a vote for one School Board seat in each district. These date were pulled from the Florida Division of Elections and may be adjusted within rules by the Polk County Supervisor of Elections.

Primary Election Date - 8/23/2022

Vote by Mail Ballot Request Deadline - Aug 13 , 2022

Start receiving Vote-by-mail Ballots Date - July 14-21

Vote-by-mail ballots must be received by 7:00pm on August 23rd.

Early Voting at the polls - August 13-20 (required) may be held August 8-21.

Sarah Fortney's Achievements

I have worked with the superintendent and board to build transparent decision-making processes and positive relationships with ALL stakeholders.

I have streamlined redundant documentation (ex. using existing software for parent teacher communication)

I have worked to budget contractual cost of living as a priority, not with what's leftover. All employees have seen a pay increase and kept insurance premium at no cost for employees.

I have fought for meaningful application of STEP increases as a recruiting tool and teacher incentive for continuous loyalty to our school system.

I have worked with state representatives to get Polk County Schools equitable funding from the state.

I have strived for a sustainable balance between genuine assessments and state/district mandated tests. Including addressing the loss of classroom instruction time due to testing.

I have addressed waste. Focusing the spending of funds on materials that provide sustainable value for student achievement.

I have sought educator input on the purchasing of supplies and programs used district wide. Implementing collaborative councils to evaluate programs that directly impact student outcomes.

I have emphasized getting effective and updated technology through district based grant writers and making it available for consistent teacher and student use.

I combated state interference with local level district policy making. For example, teacher and student evaluations, exceptional education and discretionary budgeting.

I have supported our Community Schools program, to help build positive partnerships with community stakeholders and provide needed resources for students and their families.

I have supported opportunities for alternative education pathways including post-secondary avenues that help students gain skills for joining the workforce and dedicated to early identification of student career interest by expanding our CTE programs, our academies and our adult education programs by linking them to technical career colleges.

Endorsed by:

  • Lakeland Business Voice PAC

  • Florida Realtors PAC

  • Polk County Builders Association PAC

  • Polk Education Association (PEA) Victory PAC

  • Florida Education Association (FEA) PAC

  • Polk Education Association Retired (PEAR) PAC

  • Equality Florida Action PAC

  • Teamsters Local Union No. 79 PAC

  • American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) PAC

  • Families Deserve Inclusive Schools PAC

  • West Central Florida Labor Council PAC

Notable Quotes

"Every student protected. Every family respected."

"PK-12 Public Schools just do it better!"

"Science Rocks!"

"Lets hold everyone accountable."

"Kids are not data for someone elses agenda."

"Unite and Fight"

"Some days I am a leader, some days I follow, but ALL days I care."

"Let teachers, TEACH!"

“If you’re not willing to roll in the dirt and fight for these kids, get out of the seat.”

“We have gifted schools and schools for the greatly disabled. Where are the schools for the middle ground?”

Consider Joining our Campaign By Donating!

Please make checks payable to

Sarah Fortney Campaign

P.O. Box 222, Auburndale, FL 33823

Click the button above to REGISTER TO VOTE.

About Sarah

Sarah Fortney was born and raised in Melbourne, Florida. She is a product of the Florida education system, having attended public school in Brevard County, Florida. She continued her education at the University of South Florida and began teaching shortly afterwards, beginning her 33.5 years experience in the classroom.

Not only is she an experienced teacher, but she is also a sponsor and mentor to many, an informed union representative and a community leader.

Her current goal is to be re-elected to the School Board of Polk County so that she may serve her community that she has called her home for more than 30 years.

Can't make it to the booths?

Request a Mail-In-Ballot.

Visit... Polk County Supervisor of Elections - Mail-In-Ballot Request (this website is not associated with the campaign and may not be up-to-date)

Sarah's Letter to the Ledger


School Board is out of touch.

Disclosure from the start of this letter. I am running for Polk County School Board District 3 in 2018. Over the last 33 years as a classroom teacher, I can’t remember a time when our profession hasn’t had to beg for financial compensation. Actually, we’ve spent huge amounts of time and energy fighting politician’s mandates. Our steps and cost-of-living pay increases should be at the beginning of budget process.

The waste of time and money by this district is well documented. Two words “pep rally” followed by a survey. Really?

Our employer is so out of touch with what really goes on at a regular public school. The positive relationships built and paid forward in so many ways can never be financially compensated.

If anyone reading this doubts the words above, please, spend a week in our shoes. Maybe then our daily experiences would be appreciated, uniting us for public school staff and students."

Sarah Fortney, Science teacher, Stambaugh Middle School, Bartow