USDA awards $224,000 for Iowa farm-to-school programs

BY: - July 20, 2021

Some of Iowa’s littlest farmers will have a chance to garden and learn about food production with new grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA awarded three Iowa groups $224,000 to create or expand farm-based learning for students. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, a former governor of Iowa, said in a USDA press release […]

Iowa Republicans tout legislative successes at Christian conference

BY: - July 16, 2021

Iowa Republicans ran a victory lap at a conservative Christian event Friday, touting their successes from the legislative session and their handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Gov. Kim Reynolds was the first elected official to speak at the Family Leadership Summit, an all-day gathering at the Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center in downtown Des […]

Biden meets with mayors and governors on infrastructure package

BY: - July 14, 2021

WASHINGTON —  President Joe Biden met with a group of governors and mayors on Wednesday as he seeks to build support for a massive federal infrastructure package awaiting action from Congress. The local officials joining Biden in the Oval Office included Mayors Nan Whaley of Dayton, Ohio; Kate Gallego of Phoenix, Ariz., and Michael Hancock, […]

Mental health groups say they were unaware of new $20 million program

BY: - July 12, 2021

Key stakeholder groups were left in the dark during formation of a new federally funded, school-based program for children's mental health.

Iowa community college leaders oppose student debt forgiveness, free college

BY: - June 23, 2021

Student debt forgiveness raises concerns about fairness to students who chose lower-cost educations, two Iowa community college leaders said during a recent interview on Iowa PBS. Forgiving student debt does not solve the underlying issues in higher education, said Kristie Fisher, the chancellor of the Iowa Valley Community College District. “What I’d hate to see […]

Iowa schools to use $774.5M in federal aid to improve literacy, achievement gaps

BY: - June 14, 2021

Iowa state education officials laid out plans for spending $774.5 million in federal aid from the American Rescue Plan, including efforts to address a drop in student literacy.  The pandemic-related aid is aimed at elementary and secondary schools, part of a $122 billion effort nationwide.  Iowa and other states got access to two-thirds of their […]

Iowa bans ‘divisive concepts’ from diversity trainings, school curriculum

BY: - June 8, 2021

Iowa schools, public universities and governmental agencies will not be allowed to teach certain concepts in their curriculum or diversity trainings under a law signed Tuesday by Gov. Kim Reynolds. House File 802 prohibits school curriculum and mandatory diversity training from including certain concepts that Republican lawmakers identified as divisive. Among the prohibited topics are […]

Education legislation changes outlook of school districts

BY: - June 7, 2021

As summer begins for Iowa’s various school districts, administrators are taking a collective breath after a difficult school year filled with many legislative and safety changes.  In the 2021 Iowa Legislative session, there were nearly 300 House and Senate bills introduced that focused on education, according to the Iowa Department of Education. In 2020, there […]

Student leaders at Iowa’s public universities are disappointed and anxious about potential tuition increase

BY: - May 29, 2021

Students at Iowa’s public universities are preparing for tuition increases as they shoulder the cost of the Iowa Legislature’s decision to not increase higher education funding this fiscal year. Citing millions in COVID-19 relief funding and declining enrollment in four-year institutions in the state and country, Iowa Republicans kept funding levels for fiscal year 2022 […]

Attempts to ban teaching on ‘critical race theory’ multiply across the U.S.

BY: - May 23, 2021

WASHINGTON — From statehouses to Congress, Republicans have launched into a fight against the teaching of “critical race theory,” which just a year ago was a niche academic term. Experts in critical race theory say it’s about acknowledging how racial disparities are embedded in U.S history and society, and the concept is being mischaracterized by […]

GOP achieved ‘most, if not all’ policy goals for 2021 legislative session, leaders say

BY: - May 20, 2021

Iowa’s 2021 legislative session came to a close late Wednesday with the passage of a ban on local mask mandates, a final win for the Republican-controlled House, Senate and governor’s office.  Over the course of the session, lawmakers passed bills to bring students back to school and remove mask mandates, allow permitless carry of handguns, […]

Reynolds signs law to forbid Iowa schools, counties and cities from requiring face masks

BY: - May 19, 2021

After midnight and surrounded by a cheering, unmasked crowd, Gov. Kim Reynolds signed into law a bill that forbids Iowa schools, counties and cities from requiring face coverings. The law takes effect immediately. Iowa schools may not mandate masks for students, employees or members of the public. Any cities or counties that still mandate mask […]