List of Iowa districts with 500 or fewer students

Of Iowa’s 327 public school districts, 104 districts have an enrollment of 500 or fewer students, according to the Iowa Department of Education’s latest numbers, released in December. RELATED STORY: Iowa rural educators say ‘student first’ proposal undermines them

1. Adair-Casey Community School District: 252.6

2. Albert City-Truesdale Community School District: 92.0

3. Alden Community School District: 143.0

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Ruthven-Ayrshire school leaders focus on social-emotional success, too

Editor’s note: IowaWatch in a year-long investigation found that although each state is required to identify the bottom-scoring 5 percent of Title I schools every three years, it doesn’t mean these schools are “failing,” as some Iowa policymakers label them. Iowa’s 34 schools are on a “comprehensive” list. IowaWatch is featuring some of them. Less than a year into comprehensive designations, the COVID-19 pandemic shut down schools across the country in March 2020. This effectively pressed pause and added a fourth year to schools on comprehensive lists.

Waterloo’s Carver Academy sees kids who’ve dramatically changed

Editor’s note: IowaWatch in a year-long investigation found that although each state is required to identify the bottom-scoring 5 percent of Title I schools every three years, it doesn’t mean these schools are “failing,” as some Iowa policymakers label them. Iowa’s 34 schools are on a “comprehensive” list. IowaWatch is featuring some of them. Middle school has always been a time of change, but in 2021, the ability to adapt and persevere not just through adolescence, but through a global pandemic, showed just how determined kids can be. “In today’s age at the middle school level … we truly have to be adaptive,” said Sheena Canady, principal at George Washington Carver.