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
These 34 schools are on the state comprehensive list. They are the Title I schools that score in the bottom 5 percent in the state based on students’ performance on the Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student Progress test, and/or for high schools, have a graduation rate below 67.1 percent. This allows them to get additional funds and support. Baxter Elementary, Baxter Community School DistrictBlack Hawk Elementary, Burlington Community School DistrictSunnyside Elementary, Burlington Community School DistrictJames Wilson Grimes School, Burlington Community School DistrictCedar River Academy at Taylor, Cedar Rapids Community School DistrictCharter Oak-Ute Elementary School, Charter Oak-Ute Community School DistrictIowa Virtual Academy, Clayton Ridge Community School District (Guttenberg)Mid City High School, Davenport Community School DistrictFrank L. Smart Intermediate, Davenport Community School DistrictMadison Elementary School, Davenport Community School DistrictMonroe Elementary School, Davenport Community School DistrictKing Elementary School, Des Moines Independent Community School DistrictGoodrell Middle School, Des Moines Independent Community School DistrictHiatt Middle School, Des Moines Independent Community School DistrictHarding Middle School, Des Moines Independent Community School DistrictMoore Elementary School, Des Moines Independent Community School DistrictLincoln Elementary School, Dubuque Community School DistrictFulton Elementary School, Dubuque Community School DistrictDurant Elementary School, Durant Community School DistrictEast Sac County Elementary, East Sac County Community School District (Sac City)West Elementary School, Emmetsburg Community School DistrictEssex Elementary School, Essex Community School DistrictGeorge Elementary School, George-Little Rock Community School DistrictLittle Rock Elementary School, George-Little Rock Community School DistrictRogers Elementary School, Marshalltown Community School DistrictAnson Elementary School, Marshalltown Community School DistrictRuthven-Ayrshire Elementary School, Ruthven-Ayrshire Community School DistrictSouth Page Senior High School, South Page Community School District (College Springs)Sylvia Enarson Elementary School, Villisca Community School DistrictExpo Alternative Learning Center, Waterloo Community School DistrictGeorge Washington Carver Academy, Waterloo Community School DistrictFred Becker Elementary School, Waterloo Community School DistrictHawarden Elementary School, West Sioux Community School DistrictIreton Elementary School, West Sioux Community School District
Source: Georgetown University’s Edunomics Lab. These numbers are from the 2018-2019 school year, which is the most updated per pupil data they have.
When you have orbited the sun as many times as I have, people sometimes want to tap into the insights you have gathered through the years. Young journalists and newsroom managers ask about the lessons I accumulated from a half-century in the newspaper business. One lesson is quite simple, actually: Keep your eyes and ears open, and never hesitate to ask questions. The lesson came through loud and clear one afternoon in the 1980s when I was an editor on the Des Moines Register’s metro desk. The phones were constantly ringing.
Principal Chris Myers sought to make mental health counseling available to students in the rural district of Graettinger-Terril for nearly four years. But each time he thought he might be close, money, or lack thereof, got in the way. Myers’ luck changed in July 2020, when Iowa received $50 million in federal funds through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, aka the CARES Act. The act passed in March 2020 as a $2.2 trillion relief package to respond to the economic fallout from COVID-19. Of that $50 million in CARES Act money, $30 million was allocated per capita, at $9.50 per Iowan.
The Test Iowa program does not have sufficient tests for the West Des Moines School District due to high demand, said the superintendent on Thursday.
This comes as the delta variant of COVID-19 is gaining momentum in the state with less than two weeks before the start of the 2021-22 school year. Iowa’s 330 school districts had approximately 484,000 public school students in K-12 last school year. The West Des Moines district held a meeting Thursday for its Return to Learn plan when Superintendent Lisa Remy made the comment about the tests. Test Iowa is the state’s primary screening program for COVID-19. It began in April 2020 as the pandemic started.
BySophia Schillinger and Sabine Martin/IowaWatch-Cedar Falls Tiger Hi-Line report |
Iowa state Sen. Bill Dotzler has traveled across Iowa’s country roads on his bicycle while training and riding for RAGBRAI. On these rides, he pays attention to farmers spraying pesticides in fields along his routes. “I’ve been out on the roads where you can see sprayers in high winds situations. You know you kind of pedal as fast as you can so you don’t get hit with it,” Dotzler, a Waterloo Democrat, said. But any efforts to add regulations to pesticide spraying in recent years at the Iowa Legislature have not gone anywhere.
ByFenna Semken, Clare Rolinger, Sophia Schillinger, Mina Takahashi, Taylor Shelfo and Stephen J. Berry |
Facing intense academic demands and ever-present peer comparisons through social media, an increasing number of Iowa high school students grapple with mental health issues and enduring problems previous generations seldom confronted, an IowaWatch High School Journalism Project has found.
Legislators, superintendents and lobbyists in Iowa say the formula used to fund Iowa’s public school districts is outdated and creates a major disparity in the level of education Iowa students receive.