New Mapping Challenge! Schools in Arkansas

Release Date:

As we continue to prepare states for Topo production, here is another challenge for Arkansas schools!  Features participating in this challenge include General Schools, Elementary Schools, Middle Schools, and High Schools.

As you can see from the map, ample seed data exists for this challenge.  However, in addition to confirming existing schools, volunteers should also check for missing schools.   

TNMCorps Mapping Challenge: Schools in AR

(Public domain.)

Not sure what each point color represents?   

See this graphic or the article titled Editor Roles and Point Colors in our November 2018 newsletter for an overview of what each color means.   


Tips and tricks for this challenge:  

Existing Schools  

  1. TNMCorps is working on getting the interactive web map up and running for this challenge.  In the meantime, volunteers can locate existing schools by using the dropdown filters on the web editor’s edit tab to filter by feature type and edit status.   
  2. Remember we are not collecting preschools or childcare facilities.  If you come across an existing point for a childcare or preschool, please document your findings in the ‘Comments’ field and delete the point.   

Missing Schools 

  1. To search for missing schools, volunteers can use the list of cities on the Arkansas Municipal League's directory of local governments along with ADE’s District directory
    • Searching the district directory for each municipality returns the name of the corresponding school district.  
    • Volunteers can then conduct a separate web search using the name of the school district to locate its website. 
    • The district’s website should contain a separate page with grade levels and address information for each of the schools in the district.   
  2. To see if each school is already represented, volunteers can use the web editor’s search tab to search for the school name or address and verify whether a point already exists for it. 
    • If a point does not yet exist for the school, locate the correct building in aerial imagery and place a point for the school on the center of the building. 
    • If a point does already exist, review the point’s geographic location, symbol, and attribute information against the school’s website and make any adjustments necessary.  
    • Be sure and check nearby points for duplicates as well. 
  3. Before adding a point for a missing school, volunteers should also use the web editor’s search tab to search for the school’s name.  Searching by name will make sure that a point doesn’t already exist for the school on a former building.   

School Symbols 

  1. Not sure which symbol a school should receive?  Check out our Structures List, our Tips and Tricks, or this decision tree for guidance.  
  2. Our expanded Structures Definitions also provide further insight into what each school represents.  

Possible Sources 

  1. Remember to find an authoritative source (e.g., a school or district website) for each feature.   
  2. The Arkansas Department of Education Data Center contains a School Locator from which volunteers can search for schools and districts. 
  3. The Arkansas Municipal League contains a directory of local governments that may be helpful when searching for school districts.  

Proper Point Placement 

  1. Our March 2019 newsletter includes an article on aerial interpretation for school structures. This article walks readers through how to find the correct building to place a point on when examining aerial photography. 


If you have any questions during the mapping process, reach out to us at and someone will be happy to assist!  Thank you for all that you do, and happy mapping!